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Sunday 26 January 2020

ISPO Show: Surprise Product - DAHLIE Supreme Wool Jacket

Have you heard of the ISPO show in Munich? I was lucky enough to attend the show a few years ago and stayed in contact as it was such an amazing experience. It’s the largest trade show for sports businesses and has more than 2,800 exhibitors showing the latest sports products from everything from snows ports to health & fitness. As a result, when they asked for testers for some of the products that won awards at the show I jumped at the chance and was chosen to be the ‘female first’ tester.

The product that I was chosen to test was the DAHLIE Supreme Wool Jacket

What Did I Think?
I did an unpack of the jacket on instagram @mia79gbr which you may have seen (if you didn't I've uploaded it to YouTube also here). What I deliberately did was to NOT read up on the jacket. I didn’t want anything to influence my test. It helped that there was very limited information that came with the jacket so I didn’t have to worry about that!

My first impressions
When I opened the box and held up the jacket, I immediately got the impression of good quality. The jacket was a mix of 3 colours; white, orange and grey and the design was very pretty. It wasn’t over-detailed but it was a nice mix of block colours. I felt it would suit both males and females. 

It felt soft to the touch and the fabric felt a decent quality, I didn’t wasn’t rumpled from being in a box for a few days which was a very good start for a running jacket which would be put through it’s paces! I need my running jackets to perform well and take abuse as I need to concentrate on performance and not on how I fold my kit! 

As I looked through the jacket, I noted a few small things that I liked. For instance, there is a  rubber tab on the main zip. This is a small thing but when you’re racing long distances in the cold with gloves on, you don’t want to be fumbling with zips or having to take your gloves off. It’s a small thing but it can make a BIG difference. 

The waistband is adjustable so the wearer can make it a tighter fit. This doesn’t matter so much for me as I prefer my jackets to hang rather than be close fitting around the waist, but it could be good if you’re a runner who prefers a closer fitting jacket or who may be running long distances with temperature variations for instance from day to night. 

The jacket is slightly longer at the back so you don’t get a gap at the waistband between the jacket and your running tights. I like this – and who wants a draught on their back while they’re running? Particularly if it’s cold enough to warrant a jacket.

There are reflective stripes on the upper arms of jacket which are quite small – about 3 inches long and there are 2 on each arm. These are the only reflective sections on the jacket.

There are pinhole sized holes in the back of the jacket – typically where I sweat when I run. These pinholes appeared to increase the breathability of the jacket and to allow the evaporation of the sweat. If I wore a running backpack, these would also help to avoid overheating here which may occur if the jacket was the same thickness here as on the rest of the jacket.

The pockets are a decent size. Big enough for a phone, keys and snacks should I wish to carry these in my pocket. A pocket in each side of the jacket and the same size pocket on each size. 

Something I noticed when I turned the jacket inside out is that the fabric is interestingly textured on the inside in almost a honeycomb pattern. Looking at the fabric more closely, it had a shine indicating a water resistant or water-proofing quality.

There is quite a lot to it for a running jacket. I’m used to lightweight, packable style jackets. This jacket is almost too beautiful to be scrunched up in a pocket if I get too warm halfway through an interval session at the track. 

I also noticed that it is dirt-repellant. Despite having fairly large white blocks of colour on it – they don’t attract the dirt and any marks can easy be wiped off to leave no stain which I was very impressed with.

Challenges … or Opportunities?
About two days after I received the jacket, I went away with work and during a training exercise, I fell and sprained my ankle very badly. This meant that although I had run with the jacket, that I would not be able to do further running tests due to not being able to run. So what did I do …? I tested the jacket as an every day jacket also! No problem … turn the problem into an opportunity.

What do Dahlie say?
After I had tried the jacket and made up my own mind, I had a look at the Dahlie website to see what they had to say:

A technical women's jacket for cross-country skiing, intended for training at moderate to high intensity in colder weather. Made up of a 3-layer softshell material with wind and water-proof front.

Jacket Supreme Wmn with wool is a technical top jacket for cross-country skiing, designed for training at moderate to high intensity in colder weather. Made in a 3-layer softshell material with wind- and water-proof front. Lining of wool blend, with no less than 47% wool, for optimal temperature control on colder days. 

The wool blend material is upgraded with a new composition, which provides a better ventilation as well as improved insulation. Elastic stretch panels made of polyknit mixed with wool under the arms and on the back for good mobility and ventilation. Stretch panel on the back has tiny holes to optimize moisture wicking and venting. Reflective details for increased visibility on the front and back. Tailored sleeves for an ideal fit. Two hand pockets with zippers on the front. Bionic Finish Eco® provides durability to the material both in the form of long-lasting colours and the ability to withstand harsh weather.

  • Fluorine free
  • Water-repellant
  • Dirt-repellant
  • improved colour fastness
  • Quick dry
  • breathable
  • weather proof
  • Possible to reactivate with heat after wash

Would I buy this jacket? What would I change?
I would make larger reflective strips. The strips to be almost only added as a formality. They’re so small as to almost make no difference and it is unlikely that they would make the difference to someone being able to see someone wearing the jacket on low-visibility and not seeing them. 

I would add the rubber zip tabs onto the pockets also. The tab on the main zip is brilliant and means I can undo the zip without removing gloves, but this would be handy to have on the side pockets too. I’d also like a rear pocket. 

I did really like this jacket. I’d be able to use it as a high-performing jacket to wear to long-distance events particularly ultra-marathons and timed distance runs.

It also works as an every day jacket as I found out when wear it while injured. It is smart enough to wear to work or to the office and socially and it is warm enough to wear instead of a light jumper. 

Any Downsides?
A downside, is that it is expensive unless you have the funds to fully prepare for a big event and want a premium jacket but in which case, it is a great quality, high performing jacket and it looks as great as it’s performance.

The jacket can be purchased from the Dahlie Sports website and retails at 299 EURO. 

**I was allowed to keep the jacket after the test but said exactly what I thought of it. I’m not getting paid to write this review.**

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