Free Country

Free Country was founded in 1990 with the humble mission of making outdoor apparel accessible to all. The New York City-based company offers an extensive range of apparel for men, women and children spanning all four seasons. For many people, standup paddling is one of many outdoor pursuits they indulge in and it’s great to have a stylish outdoor brand which covers a wide range of activities.

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Birds Eye Melange

I recently picked up a pair of Hydro Mini Stripe Board Shorts from Free Country. I regularly run errands after paddling and was excited to find a hybrid board short which could easily transition from the water to the street. The hydro mini Stripe are constructed with a lightweight 4-way stretch fabric and styled to mimic your favorite pair of jeans. Most importantly for using them off the water, the shorts have three pockets. The Free Country board shorts are super comfortable and quick drying – the fabric literally sheds water.

I also tried out Free Country’s Bird’s Eye Melange long-sleeved shirt. The Bird’s Eye Melange is perfect for wearing on a cooler day for flat water paddling or pulling on afterwards when you want more warmth than just a short-sleeved shirt. Equipped with flat seams for a full range of motion and Microtech moisture wicking fabric, this simple shirt easily suits a range of situations. I’ve only had mine for a short time and it has already become one of my favorites for a range of activities! Of note on the sizing; I normally consider myself to wear a medium shirt and shorts. After reviewing the Free Country size chart, I select a small. Both items fit loosely and are generously proportioned, suggesting the The Free Country range runs big.

If you are a budget conscious shopper looking for an outdoor brand with a wide range that won’t break the bank, take a look at Free Country for some great apparel.

 

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Matt Chebatoris

Matt is a former national security professional and lifelong adventurer. He has published material on a variety of topics in the foreign policy arena and created PaddleXaminer™ as a platform to share his enjoyment of paddling with others. When not on the water, Matt can be found hiking along rugged mountain trails in the California wilderness. Matt resides in Los Angeles and is a member of the Lanakila Outrigger Canoe Club in Redondo Beach, California.