Is my jersey sewn inside-out?
And other riveting answers about SheBeest garments!
I was in a focus group on women’s technical sport clothing and one participant wanted to know why the jersey we were reviewing looked like it was sewn inside-out. I was totally baffled on what she was talking about, then realized that from an outsiders point of view, it does kind of look that way. The feature was on the Sheena, the ‘Queen’ of all SheBeest jerseys. This best seller has a body-hugging race-cut fit. SheBeest enhanced the tailored silhouette by turning the collar and zipper seams outward and covering the raw seams with colorful, stretch tape. This construction detail benefits you by making a seamless finish on the inside so you don’t feel zipper tape and neck seams when the jersey is fully zipped. The stretch tape is the creative way SheBeest made it look pretty on the outside. In true Shebeest fashion, the opportunity for color, style, and technical details are never ignored.
Another inside-out observation is about those wide, multi-rowed seams that appear like they belong on the inside of the garment. However, there is a method to the madness, a reason for the seam. A flatlock seam – the wide multi-row stitch – allows for a bit of leeway with pulling of the thread and helps flatten a seam. I’ll explain both.
As athletic apparel is generally made of a knit material, it’s super stretchy in multiple dimensions. A straight seam on this type of fabric can make the fabric pucker. Plus, by the nature of athletic apparel, the wearer is actively moving, stretching the fabric and putting tension on the seam. It’s not a mistake to see the flatlock, it’s a stretchy benefit!
In the fashion world, we’re used to clean lines where seam threads are invisible or are in a single, straight line. Those are tidy and ubiquitous. However, this type of seam isn’t ideal when wearing snug spandex athletic apparel for long periods of time. A flatlock helps avoid bulk in the inside of the garment. You know those red indent marks left on your skin when you take off something tight? Flatlock seams help prevent that.
That led me to ask myself what other mysteries lurk to those outside the apparel industry. How about raglan sleeves, such as on the Divine Jersey and Bellissima jerseys? When the body’s in a cycling position, that sleeve style allows the fabric to slide up and down arm and shoulders easily versus having a seam across the shoulder, which keeps the shoulder cuff in place. Mystery solved. What about a “semi auto-locking puller” on zippers? The tension gained when the puller is in the down position ensures the slide won’t move up nor down the zipper teeth. Therefore you can position the zipper at any point and not worry about it unintentionally slipping. When the pull is fully up at the zipper’s top, you can stash it in the “zipper garage,” a handy fabric tab – such as seen on the Starbright Veneer Jacket - that covers the pull so it’s less likely to rub against your neck while riding, not able to snag your necklace, nor catch on a headphone cord.
My explanation thought process kept going, as this was getting fun. SheBeest put a “screen door” on the S-Cut Jersey. It functions as a screen on the lengthy front zipper, allowing airflow while keeping bugs out. My cycling teammates have loads of stories about bees flying down their jersey and stinging them. Not only does that hurt, it takes your focus off riding – a dangerous situation alone or in a group. The screen door also serves as a visual modesty panel should you go low with the zip. Well played, SheBeest.
What about a downside? SheBeest puts features on cycling shorts that make the bottom line. The halter on their Petunia Bibs reaches up and over a helmeted head for bathroom breaks. Plus, you don’t have to unzip a jersey to get the job done. Anyone who’s tried to take a mid-ride bio break with jersey pockets full of cargo will appreciate not having to precariously dangle items over a porta-potty hole. A halter gives more comfort over the double-strap traditional straps that always seem to want to land uncomfortably - and unflatteringly – right over the boob’s center. Yuk. See the mesh between the waistband and the halter? That’s fully breathable, multi-stretch, evenly-tensioned brilliance.
One last tidbit: the folks at SheBeest’s customer service department are super helpful, so if there are other questions I haven’t answered here, they will gladly de-mystify the feature. I know they take feedback with consideration and have worked to make every style not only look beautiful, but perform beautifully. They cater to serious athletes who also want to look fashionable. They put end-use thought into every piece so we can reap the rewards. Thanks SheBeest!