Tuesday, February 28, 2012

Review: Jackeroo hooded vest

Melbourne's inclement and changeable weather leads to some interesting clothing requirements. Just as in Crowded House's "Four Seasons in One Day", we can have a weekend topping 37oC and dry, then 25oC and tropically steaming and wet to 19oC drizzly and dank by Tuesday. Seasoned Melbournites can usually take this in their strides, and plan appropriately, (even if our tram and train networks seemingly can not), however having some multi-seasonal pieces of clothing goes a long way towards not being caught too badly off guard. My take on this is to wear layers, and take-off, or do-up as required. I usually keep a pair of fingerless gloves of some kind stuffed in the pockets of most of my coats and outer-wear vests, and a bandana, shemagh or Headsox scarf to round out my options. However, here is a piece of clothing that fills several niches at once. This is the Jackeroo hooded vest, which is a KMART line, apparently. I'm a big fan of vests, mostly because I wear my holster harness all the time, and a vest is a good way to cover up its lines. This adventure-wear vest is no exception. With long lines, it comes down past my belt line, even in size M, and zippers shut to give me a nice snug fir to keep the wind and weather out. There are two chest pockets, closed with hook-and-loop, one of which featuring a second, zipperable pocket and lanyard loop. The outer is a tightly woven nylon and the inner is a breathable and wicking polyester mesh.

Below this are two bulkier triple pockets; one side opening pocket for hands,and two buttoned-down gear pockets on each side give ample storage capacity. The bottom of the left pocket has another lanyard loop. The waist has a well fitted and mounted shock-cord drawstring, adjustable on both sides. The hood buttons to the body with press-studs and features the same wicking mesh as the body. A great feature of this hood is the incorporated bill, which extends past the drawstring, a great addition for glasses-wearers like myself.
 The collar of the vest also has some good features worth mentioning.

As well as having a press-stud closure, the high collar is tailored to stay up without being too constrictive, which is a welcome relief to those of us who don't like water trickling down into our drier layers.Not only is the vest quick drying (but not waterproof, mealy resistant)and very light, it also packs down int a very small bundle, for when you want to either pack something just-in-case, or the weather changes and it's too much to wear. I usually just open mine up, as the light material just whisps around me day-to-day. I have only seen these in khaki, which is great, as it's my colour, but the other products in this line also come in light-safari-green.

I'm very happy with this as an inclement weather vest, camping and adventuring-wear, and urban preparedness ready piece of clothing. It fits my aesthetic nicely, and is hard wearing, light and suitable for multiple conditions.


  1. Any link or other information where a Yank like me could get one of these vests?

    I've even got a friend in QLD that can pick one up if I just knew where to direct him.

    1. Hi there Lance, i've looked and looked, and it appears that K-Mart Australia are not listing it online anywhere, but if they are available, it would be in-store at K-Mart ....


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