It’s cold. Usually fall is the nicest time of year where I live – yes, even nicer than summer which can be marred by fog.  After all the tourists have left, fall usually has unusually warm days, afternoons best spent at the beach and long evenings just begging you to come have dinner out on the deck. Except for this fall, which for some reason has been filled with more fog, cold and general fall-ness than normal.

But not to worry. The tea basket has found its place out on the counter, the crockpot is working overtime and my Sierra Designs Flex Hoody Vest has been keeping me warm on our  morning school drop-offs and post-dinner walks.  When Sierra Designs first sent this for me to test out a month or so ago, I honestly didn’t think I’d have a reason to test it for a few months at least – but the weather gods had different plans. So I’ve been giving the Flex Hoody Vest some serious playtime the last few weeks, and I’ve come to find out, there’s lots to love about it.

Warmth – with 650 fill goose down, the Flex Hoody Vest keeps your torso toasty without adding bulk to your arms or decreasing mobility.

Hood – I’ve owned three vests in my lifetime, but none of them has had a hood, a feature I’ve loved for keeping head and ears warm on crisp walks and even when not worn, providing additional neck warmth and wind coverage.

Pockets – like most moms, I always travel with my “stuff” even if I’m just going around the block – my phone, cash, gloss, tissue – so I love the 2 zippered hand pockets and 3 interior pockets (1 zippered) for all the things I need when I’m out with the kids.

Color – I know a warm, down vest should be all about practical things, but it doesn’t hurt that Sierra Designs has some nice color options too. From Fern, Magenta and Sky to Eggplant, Agate and Black, you’ll find a subdued, natural or vibrant color to match your style and personality.

Visit Sierra Designs to learn more about the Flex Hoody Vest and their entire line of outer wear, active wear and gear for all your family’s outdoor adventures.


MWS was not paid for this review. Sierra Designs provided a sample for the review.

Kate Bayless is a writer, editor and will have a warm torso this fall thanks to Sierra Designs’ new Flex Hoody Vest. Her work has appeared in Parents, American Baby, Fit Pregnancy, iVillage and other publications. Visit her at or @katebayless.

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