Style, warmth and practicality. What more could you want in chilly-weather gear? SmartPak has an incredible variety of new layering apparel that is perfect as temperatures drop. We’ve already reviewed the Piper Down Vest and Piper Sherpa 1/4 Zip Pullover (catch up on our test-drives here and here, respectively). To round things out, we checked out the new Piper 3-in-1 Riding Jacket. You can view the complete line of Piper outerwear, which also includes a down coat, a barn coat, a full-length trainer’s coat, a packable raincoat and more here.
SmartPak’s Piper brand has been reinventing the equestrian apparel game. At the barn where I board, on any given day about three out of every four breech-wearing butts are repping the SP logo. The folks at SP are riders themselves, so they know exactly what riders want and need and have created a clothing line that delivers it at a budget-friendly price point (as their tagline goes: “SmartPak gets us because they are us.”) And, this time of the year, they know what we want/need most: outerwear.
The Piper 3-in-1 Riding Jacket includes a wind- and water-resistant softshell jack and a zip-in fleece interior jacket, so there are three ways to wear it: both layers together for a warm, dry combo, or each layer separately. This versatile 3-in-1 design is perfect for us equestrians — you can start with both then peel the softshell off mid-lesson, or vice versa when the sun starts going down and the temperature drops.
It’s a jacket that ticks all the boxes. For my working mother-of-a-toddler adult amateur self, this one garment really streamlines the process of getting out the door and to the barn. No need to check your weather app and do a bunch of meteorological calculations in your head (“Well, it’s raining now but looks like just a 25% chance of drizzle during the hour of my lesson, and while it’s presently 50 degrees it might drop into the upper 30s by the time I leave the barn….”) Just grab the 3-in-1 and GET THYSELF TO THE BARN, GIRL!
SmartPak understands the importance of detail and this coat is just another example of that ethos at play. A few of the “little things” that are actually really big things about this jacket that I really appreciate:
- Pocket power: Both layers have zip pockets. Because A) the last thing you need cantering around a jump course is a phone falling out of your pocket, and 2) my ponie needs them treats!
- Fit: Piper has performed yet another miracle in creating a garment that is not only workmanlike, but also flattering. The soft jacket hugs your curves and follows your movement in a way that is completely nonrestrictive (go ahead, throw your hands up that horse’s neck! your trainer might yell at you, but this jacket won’t judge) yet nips in just right so you don’t feel like Spongebob Squarepants riding around out there.
- Size: The jacket is available in XS through XXL sizes and there’s a size chart on the site for reference. I’m a 5’2″ Shetland pony of a human and the size small jacket length hits me just below the butt, so it would hit closer to the hip for taller ladies. Which is the perfect length for a riding jacket, IMO; for me, I zip up from the bottom to create a “V” while I’m in the saddle. I’m athletic build and have breast-feeding boobs (TMI?) and the Small had plenty enough breathing room that I felt like I could still layer it over a sweater if needed. If you’re a real petite lady, like Jumper Nation editor Lynn, consider sizing down to XS — Lynn, who is 5’2″ and 110, and tried a Small in the Sherpa Fleece had the same observation. One bonus of the jacket is that it has adjustable velcro wristbands, so even if it’s a little long in the sleeves you can cinch it up.
- Zippers: Life is too short for broken and stuck zippers (why cannot tall boots get this right?!). SP’s zippers are heavy duty and easy to tug up and down even with gloves. In addition there are multiple points of connection between the softshell layer and the fleece layer so it feels like one united jacket instead of a jacket-within-a-jacket.
- Color: I am big-timing hearting this Glacier color that SmartPak has introduced! (Literally, we just re-painted our house almost this color exactly.) It’s bright but also sort of wintry cool. If you’re into the matchy-matchy, you can pair the jacket with breeches (more styles available), SP saddle pad (also available in dressage and with piping), face mask, turnout sheet and polo wraps. Just do a search for “Glacier” on the site and go wild.
All things considered, I give this jacket five out of five stars. The jacket retails for a very reasonable $129.95 here. As an FYI SP’s 12 Days of Deals is happening NOW so go check it out!