Sometimes the simplest things can bring such pleasure. A fleece. A warm, cuddly fleece. Every company has a fleece sweater of some sort, right? So what’s the big deal? This new Calluna fleece line, featuring the ExOfficio Calluna Fleece Hoody, launched in late 2014 has such snuggly goodness.

ExOfficio Calluna Fleece Hoody warm cuddly goodness

I snagged an Calluna Fleece Hoody to try out on a trip to Scandinavia in November 2014.  It was hard to believe that one fleece would work so well in so many conditions: stand-alone sweater for cool afternoons, a mid-layer under an insulated jacket for truly cold evenings, or even an extra layer for active pursuits – one that could be washed out and march right back into action the next day for a dinner out even.

The ExOfficio Calluna Fleece Hoody ($95) is made of a moisture-wicking polyester that has a great look too. It is “space-dyed,” giving it a slightly multi-colored effect for more texture. The hoody – I ended up with black, which was a great do-it-all color, frankly – had a tall zip and snap collar that I could bury my chin and nose in for extra wind and chill protection. The hood pulled up snugly around my head when the breeze really picked up – also serving as yet another under layer for a down jacket on truly cold late fall Norwegian nights. It even protected my head for a run – and dog sledding!

ExOfficio Calluna Fleece Hoody dog sledding

Therese all warm and cozy with the ExOfficio Calluna Fleece Hoody under her musher’s coat.

Two front pockets were superbly placed to tuck hands; thumb loops on the longer sleeves also said nothing but warmth. An inner zip pocket could hold small personal items securely, such as ID or a hotel key or even a smartphone. Good thing too, since one drawback was the lack of a zipper on the two front hand pockets – don’t trust anything in them since they aren’t that deep!

And now I’m back to the fleece material – it’s such a cozy, thick, plushy fleece that I just love its feel. Plus, seaming helps it look good – not just like some baggy sweater. And he agrees: “Love seeing her in the ExOfficio Calluna Fleece Hoody … sexy and cuddly at the same time.”

Also available, but not tested yet, is a vest ($80) that has a front-zip with a longer fold-over snap-front closure. Coming out in 2015 is a Calluna Fleece Wrap ($90) that looks appealing too – I can imagine it’s warm goodness on a long trans-Atlantic flight or in a chilly hotel room or hostel.

I may end up with a Calluna wardrobe – and it may be in my bag for a lot of trips to come. The HITT Seal of Approval for the ExOfficio Calluna Fleece Hoody is well deserved.

ExOfficio Calluna Fleece Hoody HITT Seal of Approval

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Therese Iknoian

Traveler at HI Travel Tales
Little did her parents know that a short trip to Europe in high school would launch a lifetime love of travel, languages and cultures. Trained as a news journalist, Therese Iknoian spent a decade as a daily newspaper journalist before launching a freelance writing career specializing in outdoor, fitness and training. All the while trotting the globe, her focus finally turned to travel. Fluent in German, Therese runs a translation business (www.ThereseTranslates.com) working primarily with companies in the outdoor/sports/retail industry. Also a French speaker, she loves to learn a bit of the language wherever she goes -- gdje je kupaonica? Мне нужна помощь! -- often embarrassing herself in the quest for cross-cultural communication and the search for great travel discoveries.
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