Until now, Canadian-based apparel company Athletes Collective did one thing really well. And with the newest release, it’s safe to say that Athletes Collective now does three things really well.
Adding to it’s already solid line of affordable and unbranded t-shirts is a line of v-necks and versatile shorts made for everyday use. The Toronto-based apparel company, best known for being an “unbrand,” with no visible logos, Athletes Collective gear is everything you would want in high quality running apparel, without the eye-popping price tag. Perhaps what we like best about this brand is that there isn’t a single item that will put you back more than $30. For now, AC gear is only available direct online, which is what allows the prices to stay staggeringly low.
Earlier this summer, we raved about the Folkerson T, a high-quality, breathable and colourful t-shirt and long-sleeve that were the backbone to the one-person operation that is Athletes Collective. Here at Canadian Running HQ we got a first look at the newest gear and it’s been a hit on our daily lunch run on the trails, in the office, and in the gym. The shirts and shorts have even been popular as summer work attire.
The shorts are a key addition, as the brand goes beyond just a line of short and long sleeves. The shorts are the perfect length as short shorts can be a bit revealing in public and shorts past the knees become a burden when doing exercise, both casually or intense. There are seven-inch and eight-inch option for the shorts depending on personal preference. We liked the seven-inch short for both running and wearing around town.
The gym-appropriate shorts might just convince you to add in that strength routine before or after your run too.
What’s different about the Every Moment shorts versus classic split shorts is exactly as the name says. The shorts are designed for every moment, whether that be in the gym, hitting the treadmill or the outdoors for a run, or grabbing a cup of coffee to kickstart your weekend morning.
The Every Moment shorts have a conveniently placed pocket at the front, large enough for credit cards and keys, while being subtle enough that it won’t be bothersome. You can fit an ID, a credit card – just in case a post-run beverage is in the cards – and a set of house keys in the handy pocket with no issues. For bulkier items or additional space, there’s a rear zip-up pocket plus two casual side pockets.
The real win with the shorts is that they eliminate the need to separate running clothes from casual wear. Because they have all the features of casual shorts–pockets, fit and a sharp look–you can get away with wearing them anywhere you would with casual apparel. The fact that they do everything that a pair of athletic shorts does is an added bonus.
To see how the Every Moment shorts would fare, we went out for an hour run in 32 C heat and with a brutal humidity level. As one can imagine, that’s not a pleasant experience regardless of what you’re wearing. Fortunately, the shorts limited any discomfort, didn’t chafe and didn’t continually ride up or slip down.
As there is no inner liner, a pair of sports-oriented boxer briefs go well with the shorts. Right after, we got away with hitting up a local cafe (pasta too, typical runners) to refuel sans the creepy looks that sometimes are associated with the running split shorts.
Canadian Running‘s colour recommendation: 7″ Royal Blue.
Folkerson V-Neck – $25
Adding to the regular-collared Folkerson T, the Folkerson V is the running shirt with a focus on style. The subtle dip in the front collar is a welcome change to many traditional running shirts and further adds to the lifestyle-focus of Athletes Collective.
One great look on the t-shirt is the not-so-subtle colour transition on the shoulder stitching. That’s no accident. On the Astro Orange v-neck, for example, the black stitching is a great way to break up the vivid colours and gives it depth. The colours are also smartly chosen to hide the sweat stains that come with running or exercising in the summer. Those who battle humidity will know the pains of trying to control perspiration.
Not to be underestimated is the great feeling of having the breeze hit your neck when wearing a v-neck while running. It adds breathability and looseness around the neck so sweat won’t pool in that area.
Canadian Running is excited to see more colourways come out in the future as one can rarely have too many athletic shirts. As one of the first things to get stinky after workout out, having a deep closet is always a good thing. Fortunately, at just $25 each, almost a full week’s lineup can be purchased for $100, the price of a single, branded t-shirt of similar quality.
And with pre-shrunk fabric, the rate at which you wash the shirts will not matter as the shirt’s size will remain unchanged through repeated cycles.
Canadian Running‘s colour recommendation: Astro Orange.
Staff at Canadian Running liked the original release of the Athletes Collective Folkerson t-shirt so much that matching outfits was commonplace. We expect the same co-worker matching faux pas to come up with the Folkerson v-neck.
Check out the full lineup of Canadian-made gear at AthletesCollective.com. And good news: AC is planning to release women’s apparel in 2017.