Both Cafe du Cycliste’s and Donkey Label’s gear shy away from the norm, both going after a more fashion statement than pure race aesthetic, but neither give up the performance traits we want.
Above, Cafe du Cycliste’s Yolande long sleeve men’s merino TechnoWool jersey gets four rear pockets, one with a zip, plus a zip chest pocket. The fabric is 25% wool, 71% polyester and 4% polyamide. Other features include headphone cable loops, raised snap collar and thumb loops on the cuffs. Inside the full zip front is a wind flap to keep cool air out.
This one’s been out for a bit, but the women’s version is new and shown after the break, along with the gilet (vest) and the first release from upstart Donkey Label…
The gilet is a lightweight (100g) windproof vest with mesh rear panel to vent moisture and excess heat. Reflective bits abound, and the cut pulls it snug to the body so there’s no flapping thanks to elastic panels on the side.
The women’s version gets subtle pink color additions as well as a more feminine cut. Lycra hems at the cuffs and body opening and rear opening for pocket access round out the features.
The women’s Yolande keeps the same basic look but with lighter elbow pads and only comes in this light gray color. The men’s is available in several shades. Jersey is $199 and vest is $118.
Already have your winter riding kit? Swing over to their website and check the short sleeve jerseys for some pretty unique designs to set you apart come spring.
New brand Donkey Label has been working on their line for what seems like years. We first heard of them so long ago that, honestly, I can’t remember exactly when it was. Now, finally, they’ve brought their first collection to market and it’s a bit different.
Above is their Lion of Flanders jersey. It’s available in both black and white, each using slightly different materials for different types of riders. Both use a thinner, smoother material across the chest, neck and ends of the half-length sleeves, which lets them screen their graphics. Seams are double stitched with contrasting, and the textured material on the shoulders and body is an Italian mesh. The black is a bit thicker and less stretchy, the white is lighter and a bit more flexible…but they say even mountain bikers have found that they don’t snag on trailside branches.
It’s a mix of domestic and Italian fabrics and hand sewn in Minneapolis, Minnesota, and they’ve got some other pretty good looking jerseys on their site. The only complaint we have (without actually having any in to wear yet) is that the website is sorely lacking in complete product photos. Detail shots are great, but we’d like to see more of the complete item.
They’re also doing some mostly organic body balms and soaps that look interesting. Check them out at DonkeyLabel.com.