Why AETHER Is the Ultimate City-to-Backcountry Outerwear Brand
If you're not familiar, it's time to get acquainted
In partnership with AETHER
A few years back, your correspondent received an AETHER jacket as a gift from a (very generous and appreciated) friend. I was unfamiliar with the brand at the time, but have since shouted from the rooftops with religious fervor for one simple reason: this jacket is the best jacket I have ever owned, full stop.
For anyone else yet to be acquainted, here’s the skinny. AETHER was founded in 2009 by two urbanite gents with an intense passion for the outdoors, both of whom craved technical outerwear that would support their woodsy exploits but still look right at home on a city street. The result is a handsome line of outerwear, layering pieces and footwear with an elegant urban aesthetic that belies technical construction on par with the most alpine-focused brands out there.
Put more specifically, my coat is one that regularly elicits compliments from total strangers on the subway, and I’ve also been known to snowboard comfortably in it with nothing but a T-shirt underneath.
AETHER’s mantra is “you only get one spin” — that is to say, time is precious and using as much of it as possible in the pursuit of adventure is of paramount importance. So whether it’s snowboarding, riding motorcycles, hiking peaks or just tearing up the town, they’ve got the goods to have you looking your best and feeling your comfiest doing it. And because every AETHER piece is guaranteed for life, you can purchase one secure in the knowledge that you’ll never need to replace it, thus freeing up your mental bandwidth to focus on your next adventure.
One caveat emptor, albeit the cool kind: AETHER only makes each of their garments for a limited time, so alas, the cherished coat in my closet is no longer on offer — but never fear, their current collection is chockablock with handsome gear guaranteed to give you every bit as much satisfaction as I’ve gotten out of mine.
Below, a few of our favorites to consider adding to your sartorial arsenal this season. Including, it bears noting, a couple styles that dropped literally only moments ago. Get ‘em while you still can:
This is what we mean when we say elegant design: crossing a cotton/cashmere sweater with a hooded vest is a tricky proposition, but thanks to a spot-on tailored fit and considered details like rib-knit sleeve cuffs and low-key piping along the yoke and pocket linings, AETHER nailed a really clean aesthetic and created a versatile fall/winter weekend staple. Waterproof shell plus 40 grams of Primaloft® Gold insulation to keep the elements at bay, sweater sleeves to allow for greater range of motion and keep you from overheating. Win-win.
Everything you want in a puffer: great fit, clean, minimalist aesthetic, and just the right amount of quilting. The deal-sealer here, though, is AETHER’s use of “pre-baffled” fabric — in short, the “baffle” on a quilted jacket is the compartment that holds the down (800 fill-power goose, in this case), and thanks to baffles bonded into the fabric itself, the Launch jacket has no need for exterior stitching. Completely smooth surface, no feathers leaking through. Game changer.
Launched today, the Narrows Pullover has the perfect mix of mountain-y sherpa vibes and city streetwear flair. Obviously this is a recurring theme here, but the fit gives the traditional fleece concept a more contemporary feel, as do the contrast bungee hood and mesh pockets. Add clutch details like zippers on the kangaroo pocket and underarm grommets for breathability, and you’ve got yourself a cool-weather no-brainer.
Also brand-new to the AETHER lineup, the Camber jacket deftly marries the traditional waxed cotton jacket with the quilted puffer — you get the rugged, heritage feel of a waxed cotton exterior shell, but with the insulating power of goose down contained within. Two-by-two ribbed moto collar and cuffs, zippered pockets both interior and exterior, and even a tin of wax upon request should you ever need to re-up the rain-proofing. City mouse, meet country mouse.
AETHER’s recent foray into the world of footwear now includes this eye-catching high-top sneaker, crafted from perforated Italian leather and packed with every bit of the technical consideration found in their outerwear. The Dalton features D3O® impact protection (the same industry-leading tech AETHER uses in their moto gear to protect you from the road) at the ankle and beneath the insoles for shock absorption, plus a padded tongue for maximum comfort. The accent eyelets and matching bi-color natural rubber soles are just the icing on the vestiary cake.
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