Thursday, January 27, 2011

Haglöfs: design fail

Haglöfs have been around for ever in the Nordic region but are relatively new in the UK where they have garnered much praise. It's interesting that in Finland you can pick up Haglöfs gear in any high street sports chain - like Intersport -  whilst in the UK they have cleverly branded themselves as a niche, top-end brand like Arcteryx or Patagonia only selling in good outdoor shops. Despite buying most of my Haglöf stuff on sale in Intersport over the years, I really think they do make some great stuff but no one is perfect.

Branding is all important, hence having your logo on the velcro cuff tabs is a nice little touch isn't it? Well, no...

...not really! This exactly the type of thing in design that is completely obvious in retrospect but you miss before the failure. I note that my jacket must have been the original Vipers, because on the Viper II they have gone over to soft cuffs. Nevertheless, looking on Haglöfs' site, a number of their more expensive softshells made out of branded materials are sporting the accident-waiting-to-happen cuff design. If you were thinking of buying one of those jackets, its worth knowing that the cuff tab might break after only moderate use. And on the off chance that anyone from Haglöfs stumbles across this post - building a structural weak point into your design for branding reasons is not a good idea folks!


DJS said...

That's so true! I've got a Haglöfs Ozone myself and that particular detail struck me instantly, it's a very good jacket, but I'm always a bit concerned about the velcro H design.

Anonymous said...

Trivia note: Haglofs is now a Japanese firm! Were bought by the running shoe firm, Asics, last summer. Not necessarily a bad thing if you check the quality of gear by Jap firms like MontBell.