If you’re a cyclist, you’ll be aware of merino wool. It is fine, and soft, and has long been used to make cycling kit.
It is said by many that, such are the naturally anti-bacterial properties of merino wool, you could wear a good merino cycling jersey many times over, in polite company, and without washing, before offending anyone with your odour.
You may want to have a little think about whether wearing cycling kit in polite company is appropriate, and whether it’s the best place to find out whether you smell or not.
But if it is, merino wool should be your material of choice.
In less polite company, on the bike, it is equally revered for an ability to regulate body temperature; by trapping warmth when you’re cold, and breathing when you’re hot and sweaty.
On the hottest days it’s not usually the kit for me, but in cooler and in-between conditions I’m more likely to pull on a piece of merino wool than anything else – I love the stuff.
And this, from Rivelo, a merino/polyester blend, is an absolute belter.
It’s mid-weight, and so ideal to wear as a single layer in late spring and early autumn conditions, or as one layer amongst others in winter.
First time out I wore it on a still and sunny winters’ day, where temperatures hovered around 6C. I had a long sleeved base layer underneath, and a gilet over the top, and I was as snug as a merino ewe on a New Zealand hillside.
And, I had achieved that snug-ness without looking like the Michelin man.
I had, in short, nailed it.
As a jersey, it is warmer than it looks and feels. It is not windproof, and therefore it isn’t a barrier to the weather, but there’s no doubt that when you pedal hard and generate some body heat the wool traps a layer of warmth within.
I can see myself wearing this in all kinds of combinations in all kinds of conditions.
It helps that, in slate grey and orange, it is also a bit of a looker; with simple geometry, stripes of colour, and sewn in logos (I do like a sewn in logo…details, details), it pulls off that clearly-wearing-cycling-kit-but-don’t-look-silly-in-the-café look beautifully.
The sample I tried was a Large (in most kit I am a Large and edging down towards Medium) and it fits me like a glove.
A woolly glove, obviously.
The cut is fairly racy, but with nice long arms and a long dropped hem at the back. The pockets are standard, sturdy, and with no sign of sag. The zip feels like quality.
It’s just a really good, stylish, wearable, and woollen (blend) piece of cycling kit.
I LOVE it.
That’s all there is to say.