REV’IT Tailored Technology: A “City Collection” worth wearing

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RIS - Grazia Ladies and Melville

A few weeks ago, I contacted REV’IT about getting some gear for a trip I’ll be taking/covering to Seattle in a few weeks and they were kind enough to send some stuff out (great gear by the way, look for a review once I get back). In the box was a magazine-looking thing entitled REVZINE I thought would be filled with some sort of news and I hoped to find somthing in it interesting enough to share with you. I got around to looking at it a few days later and, it turns out, it’s basically their brochure for a new line they’re doing called “Tailored Technology” and the stuff is absolutely fantastic.

At first, I only briefly glanced through it at what appeared to be a line of somewhat fashionable overcoats. The idea of any bike brand earning the kind of brand loyalty that it would require for someone to wear a REV’IT branded jacket when just walking around the street (like some asshat might with his Ferrari jacket) seemed really funny to me, but when I started to read the little paragraph about the jackets I realized these were armored motorcycle jackets and they instantly went from middle-of-the-road overcoats to the best looking motorcycle jackets I’ve ever seen.

I know what you’re thinking, when are Wes and Sean gonna stop directing all of their focus to what biker jacket is the coolest, but that isn’t the point here. These aren’t cool in a skinny jeans/Hollywood/Wes-is-gonna-wear-it-while-taking-selfies-of-him-and-his-dog-so-you-will-tell-him-how-cool-he-is kind of way. This gear is cool in the I-commute-to-work-and-work-in-a-real-office-with-real-adults kind of way. Before the commenters freak out on me, I’m sure some, if not many, of you work in tech or ad sales or banking or accounting or law or some other field like that and wear whatever you want to and you don’t care what they think because your a badass and blah blah blah. That’s not the point.

The point is that the more people who buy bikes and use them for their daily life, the better. It decongests the streets, it changes the general perception of motorycles and the people who ride them, it encourages manufacturers to spend more money to develop better products, and then gear companies to spend more money to develop better and safer gear. The appearance and fit of the gear has been one of the barriers for people to get into motorcycling (again, not looking at those of us obsessed with the act of riding but looking at those who would consider it for commuting reasons). For the past few years, companies have finally been making gear that doesn’t make you look like a power ranger. REV’IT took it a step further and is making gear that makes you look like someone who belongs in a professional environment.

“High fashion on the outside, high tech on the inside: that is the ‘Tailored Technology’ concept behind our new urban collection. Ride the city street looking fabulous, but safe in the knowledge that inside those good looks is the kind of modern technology and functional features normally found in high end dedicated motorcycle wear. You stay comfortable, safe and dry, and you look good doing it.”

The only bad news is that we here in the U.S. are only getting 4 of the 13 jackets shown in the materials I received, but hopefully if we can create enough interest in the other items, more of it will come our way. The 4 pieces that we’re getting aren’t all that exciting (we’ve all seen Belstaffs before) but I could see my buddy who’s an ad exec at Yahoo! or my other friends who work in San Francisco or New York wearing lots of the other pieces in the collection and not feeling like they looked out of place (something I’m told is a big deal in those environments).

The Gear

Melville Jacket

The Melville Jacket is a stylish waxed cotton twill, Belstaff-styled jacket that comes with a detachable thermal liner. It has a Hydratex mesh G-liner (their own-brand waterproof membrane) and Knox lite CE protection in the shoulders and elbows. It comes with a compartment for a Knox Advance X CE back protector and has reflective paneling on the collar. The Melville comes in both a black and brown (I’m a big fan of the brown) and retails for $299.

Gracia Ladies’ Jacket

The Gracia Ladies’ jacket is the womens’ version of the Melville jacket and also comes with a detachable thermal liner. It also has that waterproof membrane and Knox lite CE protection in the shoulders and elbows. It comes with a compartment for a Knox Advance X CE back protector and has reflective paneling on the collar. The Gracia Ladies’ jacket comes in both a black and brown and retails for $299.


Brera Jacket

The Brera Jacket is parka inspired, thermal lined jacket constructed of an abrasion-resistant nylon. It also features hydratex lite and Knox Lite CE protectors in the shoulders and elbows, with a compartment for a Knox Advance X CE back protector and also has reflective paneling on the back of the collar. The Brera comes in black, marine blue, and dark green and retails for $219.

Taksim Ladies’ Jacket

The Taksim Ladies’ jacket is a 3/4 length parka inspired jacket constructed of polycotton poplin. It has a detachable thermal liner and the hydratex mesh G liner like most of the jackets in the lineup. I also comes with Knox Lite CE protection in the shoulders and elbows with a compartment for a Knox Advance X CE back protector. The Taksim Ladies’ jacket has a reflective panel at the collar, a removeable hood, and removeable faux fur in the hood. It comes in black and dark green and retailes for $299.

A bike offers you mobility and freedom: the fastest way to cross town is on two wheels. The intent behind our Urban Collection is to offer you the feeling of safety and comfort on your ride to work or meet with friends, and allow you to look hood when you get there. Style meets function for urband riders; the Urban Collection is designed specifically for urban use, protecting you on your trips around the city.

As I mentioned earlier, we aren’t even getting the stuff that really shouted “urban commuter” to me. To understand why I really appreciate the direction this line is taking, check out the Avenue GTX Jacket, Monti Jacket, Opera Jacket, and Camden Ladies’ Jacket and then have one sent from Europe or complain until they start carrying them here. Also feel free to let them know their site is a pain in the ass and that the photoshoot just looks silly.

  • http://RideApart.com/ Wes Siler

    Nice to see that Rev’It hired Takashi Murakami to art direct their photoshoot.

    • http://www.twitter.com/seanmacdonald sean macdonald

      amazing.

    • Bruce Steever

      Comment Win of the Day.

    • http://www.facebook.com/mitchel.durnell Mitchel Durnell

      I would have gone with the boob-milk jump rope figure myself.

    • Union Garage NYC

      This is disturbingly spot-on….

    • http://twitter.com/TheVeeTwin Damo Von Maciel

      Holy NSFW Batman!

  • fletchty

    Jackets are great but seriously, where are the pants?

    As a self-proclaimed #hipsterWhOCaresAboutSafetyANDlooks I want something thats not an outright compromise.

    Yes there are A.) draggin jeans (no serious good armor option really and you have to deal with not being able to try them on in real life. B.) Maple moto jeans which look great but wtf if they dont fit after shrink im screwed with a 400 dollar pricetag? C.) Uber technical riding gear which makes you look like a doofus D.) dianese pants which look amazing but SUCK BALLS for anyone skinny and taller than 6’1.

    p.s. i’m mentiong this in the same vein of “CITY GEAR”. meaning for riding around town while still looking good and being safe.

    i dont want to be a #saggypantsBRO or #YOIJUSTWENTSNOWBOARDINGMENGS

    • Bruce Steever

      Check out Teknic’s riding jeans. Armor options, good fit, reasonable prices and durable when the fit hits the shan. I’ love ‘em.

      • fletchty

        Yeah no. Not to throw shade at your choice, but not my thing.

        Probably should paint a clearer picture:

        I wear skinny/slim cut denim without the pre-distressed look.

        • http://www.facebook.com/electricbike Troy Rank

          You definitely earned your hipster status :) How do you make jeans with armor and still make them look slim?

          • http://twitter.com/pinkyracr Susanna Schick

            You ask How? like this: http://instagram.com/p/W0ZCTXoWGS/ in action: http://instagram.com/p/VxxSCVoWKu/ They’re not skin tight, but he’s gonna grow into them when he starts training for track sprinting again. And I included D30 armor in the knees. This pink denim is actually pretty tough, for “not Cordura” denim. I can make you a pair of custom pants to fit your lifestyle, too. ;-) for a price.

            • http://www.facebook.com/electricbike Troy Rank

              Badass Pinky, It is possible. Those are dope.

              • http://twitter.com/pinkyracr Susanna Schick

                you know, any tailor can replace a broken zipper. just sayin’.

                • http://www.facebook.com/electricbike Troy Rank

                  True, but I didn’t give a fuck, and eventually I ripped them in half.

            • the antagonist

              And what, pray tell, might that price be?

              • http://twitter.com/pinkyracr Susanna Schick

                $250 if you’re close to the sample size, $300 or more if I have to make a lot of fit changes. $100/hr for difficult clients. ;-) hit me up via sustainablefashionla.com

                • http://www.facebook.com/electricbike Troy Rank

                  That’s really not bad at all!

        • Kr Tong

          IF that’s what you want, Dainese has “its not gay it’s italian” tailoring on their scooter pants. They’d match up to this stuff pretty well. Not made for fast long slides, but armored for knocks around town.

          • fletchty

            My problem with dainese is that their pants are always too short for me.

            • http://www.twitter.com/seanmacdonald sean macdonald

              they make long sizes.

              • Tommy Erst

                Not in 28 waist. Doomed forever. My dianese pantsbarely make it to my ankles. Fine when touring and tucked into boots. Useless otherwise.

                • http://www.twitter.com/seanmacdonald sean macdonald

                  I wear a 28 waist and dainese pants in a size 98 fit me well. Never tried their denim, but it works for their leathers.

      • the antagonist

        Unfortunately, they’re ugly as sin. Not just Teknic, pretty much every reasonably priced riding jean (I’ve tried almost all of them), looks like it was designed in the 90′s to wear either to a rave or a Nickelback concert.

        The closest to decent I’ve found have been Dainese jeans. They have a modern fit, decent quality denim, and none of that horrible faux-distressing. But they cost a lot more and still suffer from gratuitous logos and giant pockets that look like they were swiped off a pair of JNCOs.

        I don’t know why it’s so hard to make simple, classic cut jean, with high quality denim, and then sew in some kevlar panels and maybe a couple pockets for slim armor.

        I’ve given up and just wear regular jeans with knee/shin guards on top.

        • isupposeso

          I just purchased the slim fit jeans by Maple. They are kevlar lined and have CE removeable padding in the knees and hips. These jeans look awesome and are really comfortable. checkout http://www.maplemoto.com and see for yourself

          • the antagonist

            Ooh. Those do look nice.

        • socalutilityrider

          HA! I have the Dainese jeans and those pockets are terrible! You nailed it with the JNCO comment. I have since gotten a pair of Kushitani Zylon jeans, made by Edwin. They are better, but not perfect. The cut is not quite close fitting enough for me. But they really do look like actual dark denim jeans.

    • http://www.facebook.com/mitchel.durnell Mitchel Durnell

      Was about to say Deth Killers jeans may fit the bill but their website is different now and there’s no online store anymore?

      • Guest

        It’s still there; though the link their homepage does seem to by broken:

        http://www.dethkillers.com/dethstore/index.html

      • http://metabomber.com/ Jesse

        Wearing my Deth Killers right now. No armor in them, and the Kevlar in the denim make the fabric really stiff and not a lot of give. I still wouldn’t want to crash in them, but they are better than mall-brand fashion denim, to be sure.

      • Filly-fuzz

        Finally managed to get a pair in Oz after dethkillers ignored my emails for 6 months, and they tore from daily wear in less than a year.
        Not worth it

    • http://www.facebook.com/eddie.hollander.5 Eddie Hollander

      Normal looking riding pants? I have several.

      BMW Summer23 pants, they come in black or khaki

      Aerostich Darien pants, get em without the velcro and leg reflectors.

      I ride 360 days out of the year, mostly in NYC and take a few 3-4 month trips every other year. Around town I usually am either in the Darien pants, Summer pants or some older Icon jeans (that look normal).

      I have a dozen different jackets, some rev’it! When I want to not look like I’ve been riding I wear a Hein Gericke 34 length leather jacket, looks just like the Melville.

  • Bruce Steever

    The idea of functional riding gear that might double as runway fashion isn’t new, but this stuff does look pretty wearable. And most importantly, it isn’t priced in the firmament (i’m looking at you, Astars Nero line).

    • http://www.twitter.com/seanmacdonald sean macdonald

      look at the monti or opera that i linked. i’ve never seen any moto stuff like that.

      • Union Garage NYC

        We’ve got both the Opera and Monti in stock, and quite a bit of the rest of the urban line. Online shop should be up within days, but anyone in NYC area can come try on or call/email to order.

        Opera:
        http://uniongaragenyc.com/blog/the-revit-opera-jacket-exclusively-at-union-garage/

        Monti:
        http://uniongaragenyc.com/blog/wp-content/uploads/2013/02/Monti-FB.jpg

        • http://www.twitter.com/seanmacdonald sean macdonald

          that’s awesome news. they told us that stuff wasn’t coming, hows the fit/finish?

          • Union Garage NYC

            These two jackets weren’t brought into the U.S. market but we ponied up and bought enough they let us bring ‘em in. Only downside is that re-orders aren’t happening until next winter so once they’re gone they’re gone.

            Fit is similar to other REV’IT! urban line pieces. Not super forgiving lot long arms or girth mid-sections. The Opera has a really nice tailored fit with a split-tail that snaps together or unsnaps for riding. The thermal liner includes the knit collar and goes all the way down to the knit cuffs. Had a few customers rock it most of the winter with just a t-shirt underneath. this sucker’s warm.

            The Monti is a really great utility piece. It looks odd in the picture with the big padded thermal liner at the collar, but it’s very functional and when removed leaves a very smart looking jacket. Anonymous, black, doesn’t look like a motorcycle jacket but actually has a slight upgrade in armor over the Opera.

            Both jackets have mesh backing that wears/breathes really well against an undershirt with the liner out. And the Monti has a snap-strap thingy for connecting with a belt or belt loop so you don’t flash crack riding through the city. Opera is long enough you don’t need it. Both take back protectors. Both have “Hydratex Lite” waterproof membranes built into the shells.

            Cordura type 450-dennier shell on the Monti. Wool/Poly blend on the Opera.

  • http://www.facebook.com/electricbike Troy Rank

    Am I wrong to be suspicious about the abrasion resistance of these things? They look freaking awesome, but I’m just not sure I want to slide across the freeway in one. How do you think they perform relative to a leather or cordura jacket?

    • http://www.twitter.com/seanmacdonald sean macdonald

      understandably so. like i said, we haven’t actually seen one in person yet so it’s hard to gauge how tough the waxed cotton exterior is but I would imagine a leather or heavy weight cordura would have to be better.

      • http://www.facebook.com/electricbike Troy Rank

        It’s the same stuff the Vespa (corazzo?) guys have been using for a while. I’m sure it has some merit I’m just blown away that my cordura BMW pants have no frayed after walking on them for 8 years. I’m a believer in that material now. The stuff delivers and isn’t terribly ugly.

    • Benjamin Watkins

      I’ve yet to go down wearing mine. Hoping to keep it that way. That said, I still assume leather would be better, but my leathers are also not very waterproof. Choose your battles…

    • Mark Desrosiers

      Yeah, it’d be dicey on a highway, but for in-city sub-50mph speeds, ought to be decent.

      • Union Garage NYC

        Agreed here. The whole urban line comes with Knox CE armor, some of the more flexible and lightweight CE shoulder and elbow armor we’ve seen, but it passes CE. And the materials are not going to hold up to highway slides but for lower speed urban riding they’re great. Definitely not leather qualities in a slide but closer to 500D Cordura.

    • the antagonist

      You’re right to be suspicios, IMO. But as someone who rides to work everyday and doesn’t like showing up at the office looking like a Power Ranger, I’m willing to compromise a little on protection while commuting at reasonable speeds on surface streets.

      I put on the real gear to head to the mountains, though.

  • Benjamin Watkins

    I bought myself the Melville jacket last November and I’ve been wearing it nearly every day commuting 20mi each way to and from work all winter around Seattle. It’s done a pretty good job of keeping me warm and dry without making me look like a fireman riding an SMT.
    Critiques: In really heavy rains, I’ve gotten some water ingress at the elbows. The belt hardware is a little cheap. And about a week or two ago, one of the riveted snap buttons on one of the pockets popped out, much to my disappointment.
    Otherwise, it’s been pretty great. I’m looking forward to zipping out the liner… C’mon summer!!

    • Tex Mawby

      Benjamin, Send a picture of your problem with the snap to: info@revitusa.com and the where you bought the jacket. There is an easy fix here….and since the line is so new to us, we know it falls under the warranty period. Cheers, Tex

      • http://twitter.com/Mr_Paynter Mr Paynter

        Awesome follow up!

  • Kr Tong

    The brera looks tough. Not for me, but a 6 2, 190 lb russian on a dirt bike would kill it.

    Black is ok but I want some barbour looking stuff. Browns, blues, corduroy collars and plaid liners.

  • roma258

    Yeah, Rev’IT stuff is quality. FWIW the Melville is just about sold out on the Revzilla site. Another jacket that caught my attention recently is Skyline from Aether Apparel. A bit on the pricey side, but very slick looking: http://www.aetherapparel.com/shop/mens/shells/skyline/

  • http://www.facebook.com/paul.redican.7 Paul Redican

    I had a look at the Revit Mellville jackets in Auckland, very well made and seriously heavy duty fabric, Revit gear lasts very well and reeks of quality for a good price My Revit monster gloves are good after 5 years of daily use.

    Armadillo (a U.K label also do a good line of urban ‘scooter ‘ wear with D30 and nice construction and design and safety features, My Girlfriend got the Betsy Field jacket and loves it for her commute.

    http://armadilloscooterwear.com/collection/womens/betsy-field

  • jaski_sm
  • monjeanmarc

    I’m from France and here the urban styled rider I must say is always well equipped. Especially here in Paris, rain is very usual so we have to wear waterproof almost every day / tomorrow will be snowing again :( The most common style here is the english leather long jackets like soubirak or spidi motocombat http://www.spidi.com/eu/eu_en/textile-motorcycle-jackets/motocombat-h2out.html Motocombat spidi is quite an old jacket type (I believe it’s from late 80′s) but it’s the most popular all the shops downtown sell the motocombat. It’s quite expensive (around 700 $) but it’s very solid and resistant, I’m at my second one in 10years and some small crashes

  • Mark Desrosiers

    That Melville may look like the “white whale” of motorcycle gear, but serious ATGATT people would probably “prefer not to” ride fast in waxed cotton. #PunWednesday

  • DucMan

    Sean, very well said. I am with you all the way. Aerostich has been fighting this fight for 30 years. The difference, of course, is that the ‘Stich gear is designed to just zip off in thirty seconds when you get to work, and this is designed to leave on as you enter the office. For city speeds in the designed “urban” environment, these look perfect. Bravo, REV’IT!!!

  • http://www.facebook.com/luisduartevieira Duarte Vieira

    I’ve bought the Bastille jacket for the very same reasons Sean states in the article and couldn’t be happier.Enough protection from the elements (went through a downpour this evening whithout any problem:-) and enough crash protection not to compromise too much. And yes, it looks smart enough off the bike to be used as a regular office outfit. For mountain roads fun in the weekend, I have other jackets.

  • http://twitter.com/pinkyracr Susanna Schick

    ooooh, I need me that Brera jacket!!!

  • the antagonist

    Rev’it! makes quality gear. I had the opportunity to crash test one last year and came out pretty well. But if you’re on a budget, I picked up one of these at a local shop recently and have been really surprised by how decent it looks, even off the bike:

    http://www.motorcycle-superstore.com/14/67/906/32216/ITEM/River-Road-Laughlin-Jacket.aspx

    The only logos are small designs on the buttons. CE armor, back protector, intake and exhaust vents, and water resistent. It’s not race level protection, but it’s a good compromise for commuting and putting around town. I have more protective, but less discreet, gear for aggressive rides and touring.

    The buttons and zippers feel cheap, because it is cheap. But even if I wind up replacing the main zipper and few snaps down the road, it’s still a bargain.

    • http://www.twitter.com/seanmacdonald sean macdonald

      just keep in mind that not all of their products are made of the same shell. The question isn’t whether REV’IT makes quality gear (we know they do) but if THIS line’s focus on fashion negatively impacts the toughness too much.

  • Emmet

    That Melville looks great! I wear a Belstaff with an Icon chest/back protector and Dainese elbow pads, but the combined price of all this >>$299

  • isupposeso

    Rev’it makes amazing high quality gear. I’ve got to know these guys because their office is in my neighborhood. Nice guys and put out a great product. Some of the gear gets techy looking but now they are making gear that looks great and fits awesome!!! I bought a pair of pants at the sample sale that are amazing and I saved a shitload of money. I highly recommend their products for ultimate protection as well as being semi-fashionable. I bought the gracia for my girlfriend and almost bought the rebel leather for myself. Check out the Opera jacket as well. A super cool evening winter coat with removable armor. Sweet!!!!

  • Tex Mawby

    More coolness in the pipeline as far as Urban Collection goes. New pieces for sure FW13, and we will be addressing the pants too. Also might be importing some more of the FW13 collection. I get to many compliments in my Opera to not consider it for FW13 launch. Thanks for the kind words and the constructive criticisms. And Wes is just sour because one of our models could be his doppelgänger. Here is a link to our Photo Shoot….enjoy!

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedded&v=WUHxAVneTz0

  • http://www.facebook.com/dan.sciannameo Dan Sciannameo

    Union Garage in Brooklyn (www.uniongaragenyc.com) carries the Revit kine and has the Opera jackets.

  • http://www.facebook.com/michael.howard.9889 Michael Howard

    Some nice-looking gear but… does the fluffy hood go OVER your helmet or UNDER it?