Craft Shift Stretch Fleece


When it comes to layering, most active apparel suppliers get fancy with names to differentiate the base layer from the second and third layers. Craft keeps it delightly simple: Layer 1, layer 2, layer 3. Ah, we love such simplicity.

The company's key layer-2 piece is the long sleeve Shift Stretch top. According to Craft: "The Shift fabric construction creates internal grooves, which run deep into the fabric propelling excess heat from the body. Side stretch panels are knitted with a larger loop configuration allowing the fabric to dry quickly and ventilate excess heat."

OK, so how did in perform in test? The following comments from our testers:

>> "I've worn the Shift Stretch top over a Craft Pro long sleeve layer 1 undershirt for track and backcountry skiing. The combination is pretty amazing. It's about all you need on days when temperatures are in the 20s and 30s. On colder days, I've found I need only a microfiber jacket over this combination to stay comfortably warm."

>> "Typically I've found Craft's fit excellent -- A large really is a large. Other key features I liked include the long front zip (easy to get on and off), the stretch side panels (they flex with body movements), the high, soft collar (snug but not tight) and the longer cut in the back (drapes well down the rear)."

>> "On the plus side is the zippered breast pocket. It holds a wallet and keys or sunscreen and sunglasses easily. On the downside, the Shift Stretch top isn't comfortable when worn by itself. The inner fabric is soft enough, but the zippers rubbed my skin the wrong way."

SNEWS Rating: 4 hands clapping (1 to 5 hands clapping possible, with 5 clapping hands representing functional and design perfection.)



Manzella Power Stretch glove

For people who tend to be warm, it's difficult to find the perfect glove for high-energy activities like running or hiking in cold weather, because gloves tend to feel too toasty once a hot-blooded person has been moving a while. Yet these human heaters sometimes want or need more


Patagonia's Stretch SST Jacket

This last summer, Patagonia had announced that it was coming out with a waterproof/breathable fly-fishing jacket made of a lightweight, highly compressible stretch fabric. SNEWS® immediately sent one to our resident river fly-fishing geek, who happens to live near Washington more


Review: Rab Stretch Neo Jacket

Polartec’s waterproof/breathable NeoShell fabric debuted to consumers earlier this year — one entry on a growing list of competitors to Gore-Tex, eVent and other proprietary shell technologies. Our first test of NeoShell came in the form of the Rab Stretch Neo Jacket, which more


Columbia Omni-Heat 360 Fleece

Few of the activities our testers did outdoors this past summer, fall and now winter, were done without the Columbia Omni-Heat 360 ½ zip fleece (photo, right). Shortly after we received this item, it became one of our stay-warm staples. It features Columbia’s Omni-Heat more


ExOfficio Give-N-Go Stretch Underwear

Underwear is underwear, right? Oh so wrong. Especially if they go into your suitcase or backpack and need to be airy and dry quickly so you can lighten your traveling load. The ExOfficio Give-N-Go Stretch Underwear has become a go-to when SNEWS® packs its bags -- or even just more


LifeSpan Stretch Partner

One may wonder why anyone would need a piece of equipment to stretch, especially one that takes up the same amount of floor space as an indoor cycle. Heck, stretching is something you can do on the floor or using walls and chairs. Why indeed. Unless you are truly motivated, more


True Home Stretch Gym

A piece of exercise equipment that looks like a cage for a large circus tiger or like a medieval torture device might turn you away. But don't let appearances deceive you. The True Stretch gym 500ss could be a great investment in your health and fitness, with a few caveats. But, more


Craft Breeze T-Shirt and Pro Underwear Brief

The SNEWS team swears by Craft's technical underwear for cross-country skiing and for cycling adventures so when we had the opportunity to test the company's Layer 1 Pro Underwear briefs and short sleeve Breeze T-Shirt we leaped to the front of the line. The same comfort and more

Web Extras: Stretching -- Some Downright Dangerous Stretches

By Michael Hodgson For the complete story, see GearTrends® Fitness 2006, p. 20, "Stretching the Imagination" Though still performed by many gyms and in school programs around the country (those that still have school P.E. programs that is, and don't get us started on that lack) more