I should mention: my experience with Hoodlamb began with a rough start. Since stories usually go from beginning to end, I’d like you to bear with me until we get to the actual quality of the coat.
Receiving the coat:
I moved to Massachusetts for the winter. The need for a winter coat led me to Hoodlamb’s website, after spending hours reading blog posts ranking vegan and cruelty-free coats. I desperately tried deciphering the terminology that outerwear brands frequently used, like “fill count,” among others. Thoroughly overwhelmed, Hoodlamb’s Nordic Parka drew me in. I preordered it at the beginning of October.
The website said pre-ordered coats would ship in the first week of November. I needed it around then, as the weather got colder and colder. A delay would not have been a big deal, but there were no alerts on the coat’s status, and I had already endured one sizeable snowstorm with improper outerwear. Two weeks after expected, the Nordic Parka arrived (in the wrong size). Over Thanksgiving break, I rummaged through the family coat closet until a found an extra coat that would get me by.
Hoodlamb agreed to ship me the correct size with free two-day shipping, as I needed the coat within the week for another snowstorm. Ten days after supposedly sending the jacket out, I hadn’t seen the delivery date or tracking number. After emailing them, I received a confirmation that my coat had just shipped. So, almost two and a half months after I ordered my jacket, I finally got it. Despite all this, I must say, it is a fantastic coat.
However, it is crucial, in my opinion, to note that Hoodlamb is not a fast-fashion enterprise. They must have received an overwhelming amount of preorders (ethical fashion is on the rise, yay!), and also had to deal with the glitch on the coats’ sizes. I am confident they had much more on their plates than the usual winter season. Their customer service representatives were always prompt and helpful each time there was a problem. I fully expect them to be on top of their game in the upcoming winter season, as they know what to expect. We need to continue supporting companies like Hoodlamb to break the fast fashion trend.
The shell is organic cotton herringbone and hemp; the lining is 20% hemp, 35% recycled PET, and 45% acrylic Satifur; the insulation is Thermore® Ecodown® – 100 High Loft. Through using hemp in production, the coat is instantly made more durable. Beyond the parka itself, farming hemp adds nutrients to the soil and requires half the amount of water than to produce cotton.
I am a size small in most clothing. However, depending on the brand, I will sometimes need to purchase in a medium, as I have broad shoulders. This coat I bought in size small, and it fits perfectly. There is plenty of room for me to layer underneath without the coat looking bulky and anything less than chic, whether that be a blanket scarf or a couple of light jackets. Despite this, it is not too big when I am not wearing layers underneath. It is always comfortable and fits well.
Wearing my Women’s Nordic Parka, I was able to walk around campus in temperatures of 0 degrees Fahrenheit (with negative wind chill) and be even a little too warm. It has a deep hood, so if you’re not wearing a hat, it falls over your face a bit. That is much better than the alternative, I must say.
I wore the coat over a vest when I hiked with my dog, Bella, one 25-30 degree morning, which was a mistake. The parka holds so much warmth that it keeps in every bit of heat you produce. If you’re going on a long walk, there is no need to layer. Short city trek? Maybe wear a small jacket underneath, as you won’t have time to generate much body heat. Just about every single day this winter I have pulled my Nordic Parka out of the closet to wear on my daily excursions, whether that be an adventure to the #KremlinAnnex protests at the White House or a hike to a physics professor’s office. However, I avoid wearing this coat when temperatures are above the low to mid-40s; it’s just too warm!
The physical appearance of the Nordic Parka is (besides not freezing my tooshie off) one of my favorite parts of the coat. The length is perfect- yes, my legs were chilly when it hit -4 degrees, but it was nothing close to unbearable. The color and style of the faux fur hood compliment the gray color of the coat perfectly. More importantly, the hood also blocks out a lot of the wind. Hoodlamb’s logo is tucked underneath the zipper on the parka in a classy and stylish way- not in your face like some brands (cough cough).
The parka can be dressed up to look stylish and high-end with your best outfits, or you can wear it with a pair of sweatpants to do a chai latte run. After a few months of wear neither the color of the coat nor the inside faux fur lining or hood, show any dirt marks or stains. This Hoodlamb Women’s Nordic Parka will be a staple in my wardrobe for years to come.
With experience, I can state that the coat’s quality and heft are high enough that I have never feared it snagging or tearing in any way. Although the zipper can be finicky, like any coat, I have pulled at it with all my might, and nothing broke. That zipper is one of my favorite features just because it is “Amelia-proof.”