As many of us soon realise, cycling isn't just about riding bikes. There's a whole community of passionate riders, a rich and thriving culture built up over generations of experiences, developments and shared interests. It's within the very fabric of this culture where cycling apparel brand, Rapha, proudly sits.
Commonly known for their bold colours, elegant designs and performance driven technology, Rapha has branched a little further afield and has set their sights on the world just outside of cycling; pre/post ride apparel.
The Rapha City collection is one area which has received a great deal of the brand's attention. It exhibits a marriage of function and fashion for the urban cyclist, but the new Rapha women's Souplesse Transfer collection not only caters for the city rider but to the road cyclist who wants to travel comfortably and in style to/from their next cycling adventure.
Rapha Women's Souplesse Transfer Hoodie
The Transfer Hoodie is your classic style long-sleeve, full-length zipped jacket with a hood, pockets and drawstring adjustment. It's a traditional concept, for sure, but when you add in some Rapha flare, it transforms from just another hoodie into perhaps the most luxurious hoodie I've ever worn. How do they achieve this?
Constructed from a thick 190gsm polyester for the main body, this fabric has had water repellent treatment which is overlaid on front and shoulders. The side panels are made from a blend of thick polyester and elastane with bonded seams to allow the garment to move with you without being restrictive.
To finish it off, there are two zipped pockets at the front for safely storing your essentials and the hood sits neatly flush against the back when not in use.
Rapha Women's Souplesse Transfer Sweatpant
To complement the Transfer hoody, the Transfer Sweatpant completes the effortlessly stylish look to the collection.
Warm and lightweight, these sweatpants are also constructed from a thick polyester fabric with a thick and comfortable waistband which has been reinforced with adjustable cords for a dialled fit.
There are two zipped pockets at the front with another snap pocket in the rear of the pants.
Rapha Women's Souplesse Transfer: Verdict
Admittedly, I was unsure at first considering I'm not usually a trackie type of person, but I was quite drawn to the clean and minimal look of the Transfer Collection, not to mention the high expectation that comes with the Rapha brand name.
In the hand, both top and bottoms feel incredibly soft with a lovely sleek sheen feel to them. The fabric is reassuringly thick as the quality of the 190gsm polyester inspired confidence that I'd remain cosy whilst wearing it.
The fit is something that I think really stands out for the Transfer Collection. It's loose enough to layer underneath with and yet, it retains a lovely feminine fit which doesn't leave you feeling like your wearing just any baggy hoodie and pants combo. It's actually rather flattering with the sweatpants tapering off at the ankle and the hoodie cinching in at the waist a little, a refreshing and welcomed fit.
Overall, the Rapha women's Souplesse Transfer Collection has a lovely feel and fit. It's comfortable without being trashy and despite being a tracksuit and all in black, the look and charm of it are really rather feminine.
When it comes to brands like Rapha though, you can expect to pay for this level of quality. The Transfer hoodie and sweatpant will set you back a total of £200, which is quite considerable when you think about it in the grand scheme of things. But if you fancy treating yourself and you cycling means more to you than just riding a bike, then why not go ahead and indulge?
For more information on Rapha's Transfer collection and to see the full range of cycling kit available, head over to their website here.
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