The only guarantees in life are death and taxes...AND WINTER!

November 29, 2017

The only guarantees in life are death and taxes...AND WINTER!

Benjamin Franklin was once quoted as saying “ The only guarantees in life are death and taxes”; as Canadians I think we can safely add winter to that list. That being said with winter temperatures and snow in our near future we need to talk temperature ratings on coats and boots and how there are no guarantees. It is silly to think that just because a boot or coat “is good to -20’C” that that will be true for everyone. Activity, tendencies and layers all contribute to the warmth of any given item.   

For winter apparel follow these 3 simple rules and you will be warm and dry until the spring crocuses pop through that final bit of snow:

Rule #1 - You are the furnace, your coat and/or boots act as the insulation. So, if you tend to be a colder person or are not producing heat (ie: standing waiting for public transportation) you will need the most insulation possible to trap what little heat you are producing. On the flip side if you run hot (either just someone who runs on the warmer side or are literally running) you will need far less insulation.

Rule #2 - You cannot rely on just a warm coat and boots. The layer you wear next to skin can really affect how well your body regulates temperature. Take into consideration your activity levels, heat output and what you plan to wear next-to-skin. (I highly recommend merino wool - all day - everyday - head to toe)

Rule #3 - Try to be realistic with the demands of your outerwear and footwear. One jacket may not be able to achieve everything you are looking for it to do. There are so many different choices, it is best to create a collection of winter pieces that will allow you maximum comfort no matter how big you want to make that snowman, or how far you want to snowshoe or how much you want to enjoy a taste of local icewine in the freezing temperatures at this years festival. Each different activity requires some thought as to what will make the perfect fit to keep you comfortable, happy and most importantly enjoying whatever it is that you enjoy doing during the coldest months of the year.

In an attempt to make your shopping experience easier we have adopted a simple system to help illustrate the warmth of our boots. The next time you’re in you’ll notice we’ve removed the temperature ratings and came up with our own rating system based on the insulation used in the boot, we call it our “snowflake rating”


1 snowflake (Warm) = Fleece or 100g of insulation
3 snowflakes (Warmer) = 200g of insulation
5 snowflakes (Warmest) = 400g of insulation

This allows you to shop through our footwear section and have an idea of how much insulation a boot has to offer and will help you to pick to most appropriate one for your needs. The 3 rules above still apply and while you are shopping for the perfect winter boot have a closer look at our sock collection (baselayer for your tootsies) as socks play a critical role in keeping your feet warm, dry, footloose and fancy free!

This year I encourage you to embrace Jack Frost’s winter wonderland with the power of knowing that you are warm not because the tag on your jacket says it’s good to -40’C but, because you have all the tools to make the perfect choice in your winter clothing and footwear collection.