Roland Sands Design has no business making protective riding gear. I mean, there are plenty of companies cranking out leather jackets with protective armor, thankyouverymuch; it’s just kind of rude for the new guys to be raising the bar so high, you know? If the devil is in the details, they’re going strait to hell with the new Women’s Oxford Jacket from Roland Sands Design. Serves ‘em right.
Like RSD’s first-generation of protective riding gear, the materials and workmanship are superb. The top-grain cowhide leather (.8-.9mm) is a knock-out to three out of five senses: looks, feels, and smells amazing. If you could hear it, it’d be purring. If you could taste it, it’d taste like a filet mignon, medium rare, wrapped in bacon. With dark chocolate sauce.
And Flaming Hot Lime Cheetos on the side.
Quilted accents, a belted waist, and antiqued pewter hardware are style elements more common to the Paris runways than any garage I know. Caution: if you lean over a gas tank when you ride, don’t do it in this jacket unless you have a protective decal covering it (the men’s version, The Clash, has a smooth, harmless facade).
The Women’s Oxford Jacket is decidedly haute, but it’s not designed to be a jacket for all rides. Dual sport or technically demanding riding merits a bit more protection. It is armor ready though; RSD’s lightweight, flexible CE-approved spine, shoulder, and elbow armor fits into pockets sewn into the gold satin lining, but it’s sold separately. The nominal additional cost is worth far more than the cost of any road rash, but do yourself a favor and just leave it in...unless you have strong, tiny monkey hands (which I don’t), removing and replacing the armor is a pain in the...well...it’s hard.
I wore this jacket in 60-degree weather in the morning and it did a great job insulating me without an inner thermal liner. Someone who knows what it’s like to have cold wind blowing down your chest designed the collar; it’s not going to happen to you. I though I’d roast on the 90-degree ride home (the only vents are in the low back) but I didn’t, even on my heat-blasting Monster.
The Women’s Oxford jacket is luxe in black, but also comes in a totally unique new shade called ‘clay’ (there’s really nothing like it anywhere). Both command second looks that live up to their $700 price tag, and neither has any business being functional and safe to boot. Shame on you, Roland Sands...straight to hell