Review by Arnie P
The Craft Drama Wool Comfort Zip M was provided for review.
Craft Drama Wool Comfort Zip M
The Craft Drama Wool Comfort Zip M is a base layer long sleeve top with a half zipper and a collar. There are bands of ribbing along the outsides of the sleeves and vertical bands on the front and back of the shirt. The location of the vertical bands are right and left of center. The shirt is a solid color with the ribs being lighter. The collar fits well around the neck. I find the height of the collar perfect. The fit around the neck is snug but not tight. The zipper extends down to the sternum on me. This shirt is long for me as it extends about 8 in below my waist.
The Craft brand began in 1973 when the Swedish inventor Anders Bengtsson donned the first set of underwear and went for a run. Now, on most days people see Craft employees leaving the office for an outdoor activity testing their latest products.
Specifications on product received
Measured weight: 10 oz/283 g
The washing instructions are in international symbols. My interpretation is: wash at or below 40C (104F), do not bleach, do not tumble dry, do not dry clean, use a cool iron on reverse side. I will use my standard wool washing method (warm water with Woolite soap on a gentle cycle and hang dry).
Trying the Drama Wool Comfort Zip M
When I applied for this test, I did not have a choice of colors. Although I would not have chosen this color, once I removed it from the package, it did not look like it would have looked on a computer monitor. This is a good color to have during hunting season. In the fall, I hike in areas during hunting season.
When I tried it for the first time on my skin, I could feel a slight itchiness. I wore it for 4 hours the first time. The next time I tried the shirt, I wore a long sleeve silk undershirt for the first layer. I wore that combination in the house when I was not active. At 64F in the house, I felt cool, but not uncomfortable. I added a sweater and felt warm, but not hot. Since I felt comfortable with the silk undershirt, I will wear it unless I specify otherwise.
Out for a walk
The next time I walked to the plaza, it was 30F, high humidity, and it felt raw outside. I put a down jacket over the Drama Wool Comfort Zip M. On the return trip, I stopped at Starbucks for a pound of coffee beans. My hands and face got cold. Since I had a backpack, I could warm my hands in my jacket pocket.
In my next report, I will share the results of hiking with my Wednesday hiking group, and more local walks. I will go to the gym and cardio exercise. My gym is cold in winter and in summer. My testing will be over when the hot weather of summer arrives. I will be in my basement with my pellet stove running. I will be there when the temperature reaches at least 85F. This should be a good sign of performance in warmer weather. I won’t be able to replicate a hot humid environment. There’s always a chance I will find something else interesting to report about.
I wish to thank 4alloutdoors.org and Craft for the opportunity to test the Drama Wool Comfort Zip M base layer shirt. Please check back in about a month when I will have more to say.
I used my washing machine on delicate wash with a low suds detergent. Since I wore silk underwear as the first layer, I washed them at the same time. I hung dried them in the cellar. The silk dried in less than 3 hours and the Drama Wool Comfort Zip M took over 3 hours but less than 4 hours to dry. I find inside drying takes longer. I am sensitive to some kinds of wool and this is one. I was less bothered after the first wash but not enough to wear without the first layer of silk.
At the gym
I never know when I leave the house, whether my gym will too hot or too cold or within a comfortable range. My preferred comfort range in the gym is feeling a little warm to feeling cool in a way that encourages me to keep up the pace. Wearing the Comfort Zip M at the gym, I was always comfortable regardless of temperature swings. I was comfortable and did not overheat even after 30 minutes of cardio exercise.
Most Wednesdays I hike with a group of hikers in Harold Parker State Forest for about 2 hours. The first time I wore the Wool Comfort Zip M it was 22 F. With the outer layer of a light down jacket, I felt cool most of the time but never cold. See picture below, waiting for hike to start at trail head.
My warmest day in Harold Parker was in the low 60’s. That day we hiked for over 2.5 hours and I was warm enough to remove my hat and light jacket.
On a morning in February, I woke to 7 in of heavy snow. The kind that is heavy and sometimes sticks to your shovel. I wore my silk first layer and put my Drama Wool Comfort. It was 30 F so I also wore my light down jacket. I shoveled for an hour. I finished before I ran out of steam. I was comfortable and warm and did not sweat, which was not like previous experiences. I find I can do more shoveling when I am comfortable. I also did not get as tired. I had on three layers and did not feel any restraint. This combination was lightweight. I won’t go as far as I enjoyed shoveling snow but it made the task easier.
I have noticed no odor despite wearing the Comfort Zip M several times before washing. I am pleased with the current performance and will continue wearing the Comfort Zip M a lot. I wish to thank 4alloutdoors.org and Craft for the opportunity to test the Drama Wool Comfort Zip M top. Please check back in about a month when I will have more to say.
A last look 3-25-18
March bought us three or four northeasters in the form of snowstorms. There was a lot of nasty weather to be spending outdoors shoveling snow. I also hiked in Harold Parker and went to the gym. I have been to a few indoors activities where the temperature changed a lot from too cold to too hot.
Hiking in Harold Parker
The hikes this month in Harold Parker involved wearing traction devices and due to the snowstorms, the trails were rough. The fallen branches and fallen trees were difficult to navigate around. With reduced traffic on these trails, the surfaces were rough with some foot holes in the snow. The unfrozen water in some places was a challenge. These places required more exertion. The Drama Wool Comfort kept me comfortable, and I did not get too hot.
At the gym
During this period the gym had been on the cold side when I arrived in the morning. The Drama Wool Comfort has kept me comfortable. I used the stair-master and doing up to 45 minutes. Most people are sweating a lot on this machine I was not sweating but got warm.
I have been to a couple library activities that lasted between 2 and 3 hours. When the library installed energy efficient windows, I noticed the heating and cooling system had difficulty maintaining a stable temperature. It is not uncommon for attendees to be putting their coats on and then taking them off. With the Drama Wool Comfort on I did not have that problem. I felt cool when it was cold and comfortable when it was hot.
I was at a dental clinic for about 4 hours. This is another place where the temperature is not well controlled. However, I remained comfortable during this period..
I found that the Drama Wool Comfort worked best when I was the most active. In these situations, I did not get sweaty but felt warm. When I was not moving much and pretty much sitting, I felt cool, a few times I was on the verge of feeling cold but it did not happen.
I liked the feel of the material to the touch. I had no snagging or pilling. I had a slight problem with the zipper in the closed position.
I wish to thank 4alloutdoors.org and Craft for the opportunity to test the Drama Wool Comfort Zip M top.