Okay, when you shop at a gear store for fashion, you ought to keep your expectations minimal. And I did come away with a few surprises!


  • Smartwool socks! Yay for toasty feet.
  • Two Armor Luxe tees.

These aren't the true replacements I'd hoped for my aged LL Bean Mariners; those are heavier weight, somewhere between a sweater and a top, while these are (high quality, very soft, comfortable, and nicely cut) tees. But the LL Beans will probably last another season while I keep looking for their true replacements and in the meantime, experience with striped items tells me I will also wear these tops a lot.


The Columbia puffer. Too coral a red for me and the zip does not work well; feels cheap. I'm seriously on the hunt for a lightweight and water resistant replacement for my old Thermoball, but that's for another thread, coming soon!

The North Face fleece. Too warm for what I wanted, no double zip, and no substitute for the merino I really wanted. Colour is great, but next!

The Frame Le High Straight jean. Nice quality. Fit is fine, but stretched out within an hour -- that's too much stretch for me. Also, the length was awkward. Supposed to be cropped but on me, it hit the ankle bone, which was fine with boots but did not work with sneakers, where the bottoms kept bumping into the laces. Rolling didn't work since they would flop down (not tapered or rigid enough to stay put in a roll.) So....next!!

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