Fashion Forward or Fashion Faux Pas??
A Few Do’s and Don’ts for the Outdoor Woman
By: Liberte Austin
Being a prepared shooter involves a great deal of attention to detail and knowledge of the necessary equipment and gear. Clothing is an essential part of being prepared for any given shooting situation. Believe it or not, shooting fashion faux pas are a lot more noticeable than you think. Serious shooters and avid sportsmen notice the gear and clothing of their fellow sportsmen. While some women tend to be more concerned with the aesthetic aspects of clothing, serious shooters are more concerned with the functionality. When I first started shooting several years ago, I have to admit that I was always concerned with how something looked. Having a fashion background, it was hard not to want to look cute at the range or in the field. As time went on and I spent more time outdoors and on the range, I realized that looking good was the least of my worries. Before long, I was looking for clothing that was going to meet my specific needs and I was less concerned how it was going to look. Today, a lot more brands are listening to the serious woman shooter and incorporating many functional and tactical options into their clothing.
In my opinion, the most valuable asset your clothing can offer in the field is fit and comfort. Wearing uncomfortable clothes can make or break you as a hunter. Comfort must extend beyond how an item of clothing feels; it also has to keep your body temperature comfortable as well. Personally, I prefer stretchy tops with temperature regulating fabric. Under Armor, Cabelas and BassPro Shops have great lines of these base layers that will keep you warm during winter and cool during summer. Bottom line is: it doesn’t matter if you look good because if you’re cold you aren’t going to stay those extra hours necessary to get the job done.
Fortunately, there are many brands out there that understand a woman’s needs. These days you not only find functional clothing, but it’s fashionable too!
One feature commonly overlooked by novice shooters is the importance of soundproof clothing. I have made the mistake more than a few times of wearing something that was comfy or warm only to realize it was the noisiest fabric ever! There is nothing more unnerving than noisy clothing when it is of the utmost importance to be quiet. When you’re at the store buying clothes, you should walk around in it for a while. Sit in the dressing room quietly and listen to the sounds you make while moving or walking. All of the brands I mentioned above make clothing that is soundproof.
Camo, Camo, Camo!! Camo seems to be the color of choice these days and everywhere I go, I see camo showing up in a lot of the major retailers. While some may be shopping for camo because it looks good, be sure you are also shopping for camo for what it was intended! The camo you are wearing should match the environment in which you are hunting. While I love pink just as much as the next girl, there just aren’t many environments made up of pink unless you’re hunting the botanical gardens for flamingos! To be a serious hunter, you also have to look the part, so be sure your camo is on point. If you have a planned hunt and you are unsure of what type of surroundings you are headed into, it’s not uncommon to ask your guide what to wear. One of my favorite outdoor brands right now is She Outdoor because they pay so much attention to detail in every item of clothing. With She Outdoor, every pocket, every sleeve length, every fabric was chosen with women in mind. Another new favorite is Camo Girl. This brand has really grasped the female figure and their style is so trendy. I’m so appreciative of brands that make functional clothing for women that also looks great on.
Next time you’re shopping for shooting gear keep these essentials in mind… fit, functionality and fashion!! Enjoy!