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First thoughts on the Ibex Wool Aire Sweater
Is it a sweater or is it a jacket? The Ibex Wool Aire Sweater, as it is aptly named, is a jacket. Confused yet? Not to worry! I’ll clear it up as this is truly a multi-functional jacket AND sweater. With its lightweight and insulating qualities, it can function admirably as both. In addition, this mid-layer (yes another use), is fantastic underneath a ski jacket shell for braving the cold mountain ski lifts.
This has been the perfect fall jacket for our climate here in Colorado. Cooler mornings and evenings have provided a good testing ground these last few months.
It’s handled wind, rain, and sub-freezing temperatures. The Ibex Wool Aire Sweater is so light that I kept thinking I would need more. Maybe, a thicker sweater underneath or a winter coat over top? Ultimately, I forgot about it as I never got cold!
The Ibex Wool Aire Sweater is advertised to have a lean semi-fit cut. I enjoy my endurance sports, and can now proudly say that I have a lean semi-fit body. I am testing a Medium, and as you look at the above picture, I think it could have been a little bit more fitting. Of course, this is for my physique and will vary. A slightly cinched mid-waist would have given me perfection. A few more inches of length would have been nice as well, but that’s not a deal breaker.
This is the perfect jacket for the tweener seasons, and a fabulous sweater for the winter season. I have a very nice shell jacket for ski season, but lack a good mid-layer to provide that warmth and insulation. The Ibex Wool Aire Sweater will do nicely, and I can’t wait to take this sweater out onto the slopes.
Performance of the Ibex Wool Aire Sweater
I have spent the last few months wearing this jacket for a variety of activities to gauge its multi-functionality. First of all, trick or treating with the kids. We went scouring the neighborhood for the ‘big’ bars. It went from sunny and 60 to chilly and 45 really quick. I was kept on my toes chasing little ones from porch to porch, but over my 3 hour trick or treat experience the colder temperatures never even crossed my mind.
Secondly, I went out to dinner with my wife. Denver, Colorado has a hip and active vibe, so even the fanciest of places will still have a casual feel to it. Hence, I wore my Ibex Wool Aire to an Asian Fusion restaurant. The sweater was nice enough to feel presentable, and light enough to not feel burdened down by a heavy coat. The cool and misty fall air provided the perfect backdrop for a romantic walk in the park after dinner.
And lastly, I wore my jacket in the pouring rain. I had actually been waiting for weeks to get a good downpour to be able to test the jacket. That storm finally materialized, and I went for a run to see how my body heat and sweat would work against the elements. As you may have guessed, I got pretty wet, but the Wool Aire sweater did kept me warm. I didn’t want to push my luck and get sick, so I cut my run short by a few miles.
I am aiming to use the Ibex Wool Aire Sweater in the coming months as a mid-layer while skiing. I will report on it’s ability to keep me warm. Sitting on a chair lift during a windy early morning will be the true test.
Technical Features and Gadgets
The pockets are great. Large outer pockets are nice for keeping your hands warm. The interior pocket has held my valuables (keys, phone, and wallet), as well as my hat and gloves. The only thing is that since this is such a light and thin jacket, it does show a bit bulky when the hat and/or gloves were in there. How cool is this! The interior pocket can be turned into a stuff sack as the entire Ibex Wool Aire Sweater can be pushed in to create a small soft pillow. A space saver for sure especially when traveling.
The thinner outer layer does give me cause for concern in my case. I tend to be clumsy, and sometimes run into things. A tree branch whack could do some damage I presume.
I am always a bit tentative when it comes to having to wash something this nice especially with the technical features. I have shrunk and ruined plenty of garments in the past, so I made sure to follow their instructions to the Tee. No fading to report. The Merion Wool filling is just as soft without bunching up.
- Shell: 100% Recycled Nylon Lining
- Lining: 88% Recycled Rip Stop Poly, 12% Regular Poly Double RipStop.
- Fill: 90% Australian Merino Wool, 10% Recycled Polyester
- Warm wool insulated jacket
- Fit: Semi-Fit
- Reverse coil full zip
- Back length from top of shoulder=29 1/4″ (size L)
- 7″ hand-warmer pockets & 6″ chest pocket
- Adjustable hem with cord lock system; elastic cuffs
- Interior mesh pocket that doubles as a stuff sack
- Garment Weight (oz): 15.04
Ibex Wool Aire Sweater Final Thoughts
The Ibex Wool Aire Sweater is super comfortable, warm, light, and therefore extremely versatile for a variety of conditions. I have been able to enjoy this jacket for a multitude of uses. Lightweight Merino Wool insulation makes this jacket a powerfully warm, and comfortable insulating piece of outerwear. With a lean semi-fit cut, the Ibex Wool Aire works well alone or under a shell. It stays warm when wet, and packs down small to fit in a pack or serve as a travel pillow.
MSRP: $325. For more information on the Wool Aire Sweater and other Ibex gear visit www.ibex.com.