Svelte by name, svelte by nature.
RRP – £90
Website – www.svelte.co.uk
I’m beginning to realise that while merino is a beautiful material, it performs better with a synthetic friend. First my wonderful TORM jersey, now this wonderful Svelte number – and a few others besides – clearly benefit greatly from a combination of merino and a little of something else.
That little addition of ‘something else’, lifts the durability of its jersey in terms of both shape and general longevity. Naturally, such an addition therefore has wider implications; comfort and aesthetics.
But what of Svelte, the brand?
Formed ‘right in the heart of London’, this is a truly British cycling brand and one that could go a long way. Focused, quite clearly, on quality and minimalism every one of its products is one that I’m immediately interested in.
And somewhat fantastically, it isn’t a brand that proclaims to be British, while unabashedly purveying the delightful creations of Chinese mass production. As the Svelte website states:
“Not only were design, quality and fit our key objectives. In a bid to support local manufacturing and skills being lost from the UK, The Heritage Jersey is 100% manufactured in London, Great Britain from materials 100% sourced in Europe.”
More of this, please.
Svelte describes its range as ‘truly timeless’ and I have to agree – this is a jersey that will look as good in 60 years time as it does now. Plain, but with some nicely thought out design quirks; a zip dock here, an oversized metal button there. Exquisitely considered jersey design.
You have to admit, the Heritage jersey is rather good looking. But just click through to their other products… The arm warmers are awesome. Perhaps they’ll send me some…
How does the jersey… size up?
Well, Svelte’s sizing is rather small as it turns out. They weren’t messing around when they landed on the name ‘Svelte’. Usually a large, I had to send me original consignment back; no one needs to see that.
However, along came the XL and it was just right, if a little shorter than my other jerseys. Then again, I’m a hefty 6’3” with relatively short legs and a sizeable torso. Weird, huh? And certainly not Svelte.
Initially, I was concerned that the Heritage jersey might be uncomfortable, but I needn’t have feared a thing. At no point was it uncomfortable. In fact, the only time I really noticed it was when peeking vainly at my reflection in shop windows.
Svelte also does a women’s version of the Heritage jersey in the same 3 colourways; burgundy, green and navy – there’s no excuse.
Is it worth it?
Occupying a price-point somewhere between TORM (at the lower end) and Rapha (at the higher), Svelte’s jerseys sit nicely below the potential tipping point of £100.
And I think, considering the quality of the garment and work that has gone into making it truly British (or, at least, European) it is money well spent. Just make sure you order a size above your usual.