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Kit review: Spotty Otter Drift Down Jacket

Written by Fiona October 24 2012

I “met” Spotty Otter on Twitter (or was it LinkedIn?). They looked to be selling great outdoors clothing for children and so I asked if they would like me to review a couple of items on my blog. Spotty Otter make outdoors clothing for kids. Not grown-up kit made smaller but children’s clothing designed to suit kids. The clothing is bright and beautiful. But the real test is in the trying.

My friend and fellow blogger, Ellen, has three boys. They grow (a lot) and Ellen is always happy to receive new clothes for the boys to test. Here Ellen gets Boy 3 to review Spotty Otter’s Drift Down Combo Jacket. You can also check out her fab blog InABunDance

Boy 3 puts the Spotty Otter jacket through its paces

Boy 3 puts the Spotty Otter jacket through its paces

Ellen writes: It catches me out every year… the first chill dampness of the winter. I find myself browsing my extensive collection of fleece and down, hauling on thick socks and stout boots. The children though have rather inconveniently outgrown last year’s collection of cosiness. So the first time there’s frost on the grass, there is invariably a great hunt for warm coats and accessories.

I might add that this doesn’t apply to all the children. Boy Two is still stubbornly going out in his shorts and t-shirt as often as he can. I can’t explain it – either he lacks a normal set of pain receptors or he is so contrary frostbite won’t stop him proving his point. However, he’s 10 so it’s his own look out.

Boy Three on the other hand is three and likes to be comfortable. He is also extremely swift on his feet and rather wriggly. So when we were offered a Spotty Otter drift down combo jacket to review, I didn’t hesitate.

Spotty Otter Drift Down jacket

Spotty Otter Drift Down jacket

Boy Three is only three, but he’s also big for his size and shows no sign of taking a rest from the relentless growing. I ordered an age 5-6 for him on the basis that even if it is miles too big, he’ll get there in the end.

The jacket arrived and isn’t miles too big – it’s roomy and the sleeves are a little too long, but not inconveniently so. Larger garments are much better for Boy Three in any case as they are easy to throw on to his constantly moving form.

He loves it, which is always a bonus. He pronounced that it was very snugly and asked if could he wear it to bed.

What’s good about the Spotty Otter jacket?

It is very warm.

The zips are covered in fabric so they don’t scratch.

The sleeves are detachable to transform the jacket into a body warmer. Come back in May to see how this works for us. Actually though, this feature would add more life to the garment as it could be worn as a body warmer long after the child’s arms had outgrown the sleeves.

The hood is detachable too, but fixed on firmly enough as not to fall off at the first tug. Something that has been very annoying in the past.

There are reflective patches on the jacket. Ideal as an added safety feature.

It is machine washable. D’oh, it would have to be.

What’s less good about it?

So far, very little. It’s gorgeous and practical.

Occasionally a few feathers make their way out, which might cause a tickle to someone sensitive.

It is pricey at £86 so it would need to be durable which I think it will be.

I will be very interested to see how it lasts after some hard testing by Boy Three and frequent washes.

It also hasn’t had the benefit of a heavy shower of rain to see if it becomes waterlogged or not.

I’ll report back in a few months. Meantime, I’d like to ask Spotty Otter when they are going to do these in my size.

 Find out more about the Spotty Otter ranges, including Drift Down, Patrol, Explorer, Waterproof, Fleece and Accessories.

Look out for another review from a mum about her daughter’s Spotty Otter outfit in the coming days…

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