This review could be very short indeed: basically this is the most perfect set of outdoor clothing for any child to have. I am so utterly in love with the Didriksons’ Slaskeman outfit for my daughter, and she is as delighted with it as I am.
Do I need to say any more?
Well, perhaps I better had otherwise the editor of this fine publication might try and take the clothes back off me for failing in my duty to inform you all about them – and then I’d have to fight ‘Ed’ for them, and it would all be a bit messy. I’d probably win, ‘Ed’ would be embarrassed, I’d never get any more gear to test, and it would be the end of a beautiful friendship…
So, let’s start at the beginning…
“Would Isabella like to test some waterproof gear from Didriksons?” came the email from ‘Ed’s’ glamorous assistant…
“Yes” said I, without bothering to consult my 2-and-a-third year-old because her answer would of course have been “no”…because she likes to contradict me.
Now, I’d never heard of Didriksons so I Googled them. It seems they’ve been around for 101 years, they are Swedish, and their origins are in manufacturing oil treated clothing for the local fishing industry in a location where Sweden meets the Atlantic. i.e., somewhere with extremes of coldness and wetness…
As a result of this I deduced that the clothing I’d be in receipt of would be pretty perfectly manufactured for extremes of weather therefore. And Didriksons has a company tagline which I really like: “You can never change the weather or nature. So you better be well prepared for it.” I really relate to this…in fact it is my own personal ethos when it comes to preparing for stepping beyond the confines of my own front door daily!
When the clothes arrived for Isabella I was delighted by their bright and appealing colour – we were given the red/arctic set to test, and they are really jolly and visually pleasing.
I find this is important because like other children of her age, my daughter has a very firm opinion about what she will and won’t wear. If it’s a dull colour she won’t wear it without threats or bribes – but I had no qualms about presenting her with this waterproof coat and dungaree set because, as stated, it is really rather dazzling.
The next thing that struck me was the feel of the coat and the trousers. They are super tactile and cuddly soft, and I just kept wanting to stroke the fabric…odd I know!
The waterproof set is made with Didriksons trademarked STORMsystem for “100% True Waterproofness”. And this set also comes with their trademarked DRY fabric technology for 100% waterproofness AND windproofness (I’m making words up I know – but the concepts are real).
Anyway, the dungarees and jacket are very soft, the material is super malleable too, making the outfit a delight to wear. As any parent knows, if a garment is in any way restrictive or uncomfortable you will not get an active toddler to wear it – they need physical freedom to run about and go wild. The Didriksons Slaskeman outfit is absolutely supportive of this fact – it enables your child to run free in the pouring rain and a howling gale and remain dry and warm.
So, all I had to do was wait for it to rain…cue Hurricane Bertha.
Whilst many were cowering indoors afraid of the wrath of this (overhyped) weather system’s approach, me and Isabella were out looking for puddles to jump in.
As the hurricane was totally overblown (sorry!) we weren’t able to put the waterproofness to the test, but what I can say is that I found the jacket and trousers super easy to get on a child who really doesn’t like to sit still for long…and they were most certainly windproof. Isabella stayed absolutely warm and unbothered by the strong winds in which we were running about.
However, on this initial test run I did discover that there was something I disliked about the outfit. The trousers come with extremely tight ankle cuffs and a stirrup…which are both brilliant and really annoying at the same time. Let me explain…
You see, the stirrup is well manufactured and stays in firm place under a welly boot – but gets filthy dirty of course. And the cuffs are sooooooo tight they stop the trousers from letting even a soupcon of puddle up the leg. Therein lies their brilliance. And their annoyance. Having got the trousers on (very easily) I then had to poke the welly up the trouser – which was difficult as the cuff kept biting back at me and wanting to disallow me! And then I had to fiddle with the mucky sole of the welly to get the stirrup in place.
I thought about this. I wondered about putting the welly on first – but then, wellies are ALWAYS muddy, and to do so would mean potentially getting mud all over the inside of the dungarees and therefore all over whatever Isabella was wearing under them.
You could put the trouser inside the welly – however, I don’t know about you but it makes me laugh so much when I see people with waterproof trousers tucked in wellies. Errrrm, hello, the rain/puddle/wet weather will run down your leg, down inside your welly, soak your sock and foot and render your attempt to remain dry utterly useless.
So the only real solution is to put the dungarees on, and then fight the aggressive cuff to insert the welly.
Anyway…fast forward to the wettest bank holiday on record for some indeterminate amount of time…and an unbelievably muddy walk around some maize fields.
Not only did Isabella stay 100% dry and warm in the lashing rain and horrible wind, but she was so so so happy to be able to wade through puddles deeper than her wellies, fall in the mud, hide in the maize, and at the end of the walk get back in the car as dry as she started.
We really did put this gear to the test. And it is fantastically brilliant. And the cuffs that annoy me prevented the deep, deep puddles from getting into Isabella’s wellies…so really I decided at that point I loved them.
But then I had to extract the now FILTHY wellies from the stirrups and cuffs. Taking the dungarees off Isabella was easy: unclip, pull down, step out…no fuss, no mess, no contortionist/octopus type requirements needed for either of us…
But getting the wellies out of the trousers resulted in me getting very muddy hands and ranting just ever so slightly.
To conclude: then I washed the outfit, and it has remained as perfect as it was prior to the wash. And before I ramble on and bore you too much, there is almost nothing about this outfit that I don’t totally love and adore. And that which I dislike is actually the result of a very positive feature. Does that make sense?
Okay, in absolute conclusion: if you have a child and you live in a country where it rains, buy Didriksons’ Slaskeman children’s waterproof jacket and dungaree set. You won’t need any other wet weather gear, you won’t regret your decision, and you won’t even feel a massive dent in your pocket compared to comparable gear on the market from other manufacturers.