For what seemed like two decades the golf world lost it’s style and it became the land of the khaki pants and white shirts that had boring written all over it. However in recent years there has been a resurgence of sorts on both the professional level as well as the local municipals you play each week in the apparel we see players wearing. Why the sudden change? We don’t really have an answer to that or an answer to who is responsible for the change, but we are just glad that the change is taking place. You see, The Hackers Paradise was created for this very reason. Golf apparel is just as important in our eyes as what clubs you play. Comfort, style, and quality can build confidence that never really occurred to most people. Like equipment, there are different brands, types, and styles and everybody has an opinion on what works and what doesn’t from the “experts” on television to the columnists and bloggers around the world.
Ask any golf fan out there the first thing that comes to their mind when the name Ian Poulter comes up and they will say the same thing. “The guy with the crazy clothes”. I must admit a few years ago that was my first thought too and when we found out that Ian Poulter was launching his own label a few years back, we had no idea what to expect. But for us, the line was not really available too much over on this side of the pond so we kind of put it on the back burner. That all changed this January while at the PGA Merchandise Show we got the chance to visit with company and the people responsible for the line. We learned at that time that Ian Poulter Designs would be launching here in the US this year and that we would get to learn so much more about it.
Once the PGA Merchandise Show concluded we were able to meet up with the Ian Poulter Design group and get a private showing of just what the line would be all about and what made it so special. While there and viewing the clothing, we were almost shocked that it was not what we expected at all. Going into the showing we expected “outlandish” or “cartoon like” and coming out the words that we were using to describe the apparel line to friends and co-workers were “Tradition, Elegance, and Quality”. At this point in time we could not wait to be able to try some on and review them so our readers could learn more about the brand that we believe will influence a lot of style for the next few years. We also learned of their US launch being at Doral this year and were invited at that time to go to the tournament and see for ourselves.
The Hackers Paradise decided to take that opportunity to go down to Doral and view the launch of the Ian Poulter Design apparel line as well as cover CA Championship going on there that week. While there we got the opportunity to speak with Ian Poulter himself briefly while we ate about the clothes and his game. The Hackers Paradise again came away impressed with a man that was more “about” his family than the image you see on TV and his game. The line was not started to make huge profits and “sell out” to the masses. It was started because someone (financing this on his own) had a passion for something and an attention to detail that you just do not see anymore. It was a breath of fresh air in some ways to hear somebody speak about golf apparel (or golf in general for that matter) where they spoke about the tradition behind it and why certain things were included in each piece. Once again we left their thoroughly impressed with not only the clothing line, but the person behind it. We could not wait to review Ian Poulter Designs.
A package arrived at the THP offices a few weeks ago and once opened we realized that the wait was worth it. Not only did they send over a few outfits for us to review for the readers. But they told us to use these outfits in our Huge Charity Raffle Event we were hosting. At first glance, the thoughts were exactly the same we had when we got to seem them prior. Bold without being flashy and the attention to detail is like nothing we have ever seen before. I was really looking forward to trying some of the gear on and seeing if first impressions will hold true throughout the entire review.
Before we get into the actual apparel I want to touch on a couple of things. When THP first saw these shorts/pants, we think “plaid”. Well, there is actually a lot more to it than that and we wanted our readers to be informed on what goes into making these. From the company:
We are proud to announce that all of Ian Poulter tartans are milled in Scotland and Northern England. Each season we design and develop three unique distinctive tartans, all of which are registered with the Scottish Tartan Authority and carry the coat of arms ‘Weave Truth With Trust’.
The Celts expanded westward until the Atlantic ocean halted their progress, thus forcing them to settle in Western extremities â€“ Ireland, Scotland, Wales, Cornwall and Brittany. Over the millennia the culture and craft has been diluted, in some cases lost due to external influences, however despite the unique topography of the Scottish mountains, isolated glens and remoteness ensured that the Romans were kept at bay. Despite the lack of firm evidence, logic dictates that tartan in some form or another was woven and worn in the Highlands of Scotland during those 1600 years.
The shorts that we got to review were the Tartan shorts and we got to check out 2 different color patterns the black and red style pictured above as well as a gorgeous blue pattern. Each season Ian Poulter Design will put out three new limited edition Tartan collections and we must say that the grouping that we got a chance to take a look at were as nice as anything we have seen before. We love the fact that they are limiting themselves to three color patterns for each collection because it really leaves us wanting more. As we mentioned previously in this review, the attention to detail is astonishing. You can see in the pictures above and below that they have added small but nice features including (not pictured) slits in the legs of both the pants and shorts.
When it comes to shirts we look for all kinds of things when it comes to style. Some are flashy prints and patterns, others are simple and elegant with different materials and cuts used. The Ian Poulter Design shirts that we got lucky enough to try out fit into the latter part of that statement. The most important thing to us is comfort and I can honestly say without a shadow of a doubt that I have now tried on and worn the most comfortable golf shirt ever created. Shown Below…
The Ian Poulter Design Classic Golf Shirt is made up of viscose and polyester and at first glance looks similar to a fine cotton shirt. However it is not even close! One touch to the material makes you realize that this is so much more. It is like wearing pajamas or a velvet robe on the golf course or do better describe it, think of that one tee-shirt that you have had for about 20 years and no matter what falls on it, you can never get rid of it because it is just that comfy. Now multiply that by two and you have what this shirt feels like.
Once you get past the comfort part of golf shirts, it becomes all about the look and this one, like all the shirts we tried from their line, does not disappoint. It has a “sand washed” finish that is perfect for what we call “bridge wear” because although it is perfect for the course, it could even be better at the restaurant afterwards.
Like the Tartans that we spoke about earlier the attention to detail with the shirts is impeccable. We love the fact that the company chose to not use tags as we have become more of a fan of this than ever before. The button down collar keeps any of that “curling”, that we have all had happen to us, from ruining the look of a great shirt. With the red shirt featured below we got another perfectly put together shirt and at first glance it appears to be a plain red shirt. However after closer inspection you see the Ian Poulter Design logo throughout the piece. It was a nice touch and we really enjoyed pairing this up with the black and red Tartans that we spoke about earlier.
In my mind, nothing ties men’s outfits together better than belts and belt buckles. Ian Poulter Design has gone ahead and done something that I hope most companies take notice of. They have two styles of belts. One with a larger and more flashy buckle and one with a simple buckle that is based more on belt color than with large buckles. Both can be put with any of the outfits and both look outstanding. But for those wanting just a little something extra (bling if you will) they have also added a large buckle with crystals around the logo. All three styles are pictured below.
Overall we think that the Ian Poulter Design apparel line is about as nice as anything we have come across as of yet in the world of golf apparel. In fact to classify this as golf apparel is not really doing it justice because it is so much more. Having just launched in the US, you can imagine that clothing of this design and quality carries a premium price tag, and you are correct. However just like with a fine meal sometimes you have to pay a price for luxury and if we had to describe the Ian Poulter Design apparel line in one word, that would be it. LUXURY! For more information on the entire collection that we reviewed and much more check out their website at www.ianpoulterdesign.com.
Till Next Time