2012 Head-to-Toe Christmas Apparel Gift Guide
2012 has been an outstanding year for golf apparel, so that means it’s going to be a GREAT Christmas for our favorite golfers – nothing makes a better gift than new golf garb. Let’s take it from the top, shall we?
The posh Canadian outerwear company called Nobis, produces an extensive line of headwear, including their Hunter and Xander Ivy-style caps ($40 each) which are great for golf, with super-soft fabric and proprietary, fast-drying sweat bands.
Golf shirts for every taste
The star of any golf outfit is the shirt, and designers have taken the humble golf polo and molded it into myriad styles to reflect the taste of any golfer. From all-natural Pima cotton to bamboo yarn to high-tech sweat-wicking synthetics, golf shirts can be custom-fit almost as well as clubs these days.
If you haven’t hard of Martin Golf Apparel before now, you have a good excuse: the company doesn’t sell online or direct to customers, nor does it market to any store chains; you’ll need to look in high-end pro shops. The company’s luxurious lisle Pima cotton shirts are double-mercerized to lock in a permanent luster, which makes them just as appropriate for business casual off-course environments.
The shirts by Energy Athletic are unique in the golf apparel world. According to the company, a “negatively charged, electromagnetic ionized field is embedded in the fabric.” I don’t know if the ions will help your game any, but they do resist static cling, and the fabric wicks moisture very well and wears beautifully.
Is your favorite golfer the Euro-chic-sporty type? The form-fitting, boldly colored synthetic fabric shirts by continental favorite Fila make you feel more athletic and svelte whenever you wear them. They might even induce a Sergio-like running scissors kick.
Maybe the golfers on your list prefer to hug the trees on the course instead of curse them. For the environmentally conscious, fashion-forward golfer on your list, check out the shirts (and shorts, pants, and sweaters) by A|U|R Golf. This young and stylish company spins its sartorial magic from yarn derived from recycled plastic bottles, bamboo, and even coffee grounds (yes, yarn spun from coffee grounds). A|U|R’s sleek, earth-friendly fabrics and multi-hued color palette set the company apart from the competition.
Golf pants for, well, “unique” tastes
Considering the cornucopia of offerings in golf shirts, it feels like the bottoms get sort of ignored. If your favorite golfer is tired of khakis, take a walk on the wild side with Royal and Awesome golf pants and shorts (and caps). This British company proves that not all things from the UK are understated.
Keep your new golf shirts dry with the new Sunice Edge Collection. The Canadian outerwear maker drew inspiration from the PGA Tour’s young guns for a trimmer, more form-fitting line of wind and rain resistant outerwear.
Keep your pants on
Maybe the best golf apparel accessories we discovered this year are the ingenious belts by Nexbelt. Nexbelt has patented a ratcheting system that takes the little holes out of the belt. Thanks to this slick new system, Nexbelt belts fit waist sizes from 28″-40″ and 38″-50″. If your golfer loses weight, he (or she) can go down 13 waist sizes and still use the same belt! Nexbelts come in white, brown, black, and several other colors and buckle styles, and some even have a hidden ball marker under the buckle.
Happy feet, happy golfer
It’s hard to golf if your feet hurt. Comfort begins with great socks. There’s one golf sock that guarantees no blisters: KentWool. The company’s new 19th Hole Collection protects your tootsies in style. I’ve worn mine almost continuously throughout the fall, and they still feel brand new.
When it comes to golf shoes, the hottest trend of 2012 has been “street” golf shoes with nubs on the bottom instead of traditional soft spikes. A number of new and non-traditional golf shoe makers have introduced their own takes on the street shoe.
GoBe Golf offers footwear with sleek yet sophisticated designs perfect for 18 holes followed by a casual lunch at the club.
Along the same lines, the iconic Croc brand makes street-style golf shoes for men and women that meld comfort and functionality in the company’s trademark geeky-chic idiom.
Of course, the trend-setting street shoe was first innovated by ECCO, whose spokesperson Fred Couples debuted them at The Masters and triggered the craze. This year, ECCO introduced its newest line, the Tour Hybrid, which is the first-ever crossover model to feature a genuine leather upper atop the company’s revolutionary Street outsole. The ECCO BIOM Hybrid is also an excellent choice (and might be easier to find this holiday season). ECCO shoes are consistently the most comfortable straight out of the box of all the golf shoes we’ve tested over the years.
Finally, if the end of the season turns ugly, keep toasty and dry with Nike Lunar Bandon footwear. This is simply the best bad-weather golf footwear ever made (click the link above to read why).
Next time, we’ll move on to our favorite non-apparel golf gifts…
Until then, happy shopping!
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