Phresh Wear Inc. was conceived in 2003, incorporated in 2004, and hit the golf apparel world with a Spring 2005 collection. The mastermind of former competitive golfer Tim Tochor, the line targets the needs of the modern demanding youthful demographic. Tochor’s background was as a college golfer in Southern California.
It was during this time he noticed that a younger and less traditional golfer was rapidly becoming a more abundant presence on the course. Golf apparel, on the other hand, was stuck in a time warp and still catering to the older, more conservative set. He knew this absolutely had to change. Recently I had the opportunity to interview Tim about golf and Prhesh.
How long did you play golf competitively? Who were some of the players that you played alongside?
I played competitively for only 2 years. I started very late and just wanted to see how great I could get. I played Golden State, Tear Drop Tour, and Cascade mini tours for about 6 months then realized that this was not the life for me. I was at a course where the Leadbetter Academy was located and was fortunate to play some rounds with some touring pros at the time. The person I played the most with was Gabriel Hjertstedt.
What did you bring with you from the course that you apply to your developmnt of Phresh?
Individualism, style, and fun were things I wanted to bring with the Phresh brand. The name really speaks for itself.
Do you consider yourself a bit of a non-conformist?
In the beginning I think we were perceived as being non-conformist, however, that was not our goal. Today we seem fairly mainstream with all the color and performance fabrics available under every label. Our line can truly be worn by male and female, any size and style.
When did you realize that your skills would be better utilized servicing the golf industry rather than playing competitively?
I think that it wasn’t as much as realizing I would better serve the golf industry as an apparel brand as much as it was the expectations I had of becoming a touring pro. I really did not have the passion to play competitively when I got there. It truly is an individual sport, extremely competitive and can get very lonely out there on your own.
What types of golfers do you envision in your line? Is it more of a piece of clothing, a statement, or an attitude?
Phresh is for every golfer, every age and every size. We see it as more of a life style. Some of our customers wear the color to make a statement or give them a certain attitude. Others wear it for comfort and style. All of our apparel you can wear on a golf course, casual dining, or relaxing around the cottage or home.
What niche is Phresh meant to fill?
We really try to have European type design and color with North American fit and price points. There are so many great golf lines out there and fit and value is the most important to everyone.
How much of your line will be tailored to women in the future?
We first started our collection in men’s styles only. This was more or less the walk before you run approach. I think it is very important to build and grow within your limits in order to have a solid base to maintain longevity. We introduced our women’s line last year and it has been very successful. We see our women’s line growing in the future to the same size as our men’s, currently we are about a 75/25 split men’s to women’s styles. However, I see it being a 50/50 split by Spring 2011
Is it more difficult to produce golf clothing for women? What about juniors? Will you expand to juniors in the future?
I think the most difficult challenge for women’s wear is fit. Many women are not brand conscientious. They are more concerned with fit and look. We really focus on fit and also size range to allow every woman to look and feel great in our line. That is why we size from 2 – 16 on bottoms and s – 1X for tops. I actually have several juniors that wear our line in the smalls. They seem to really love the individualism so you see them purchase the brightest colors and have fun with it.
Where do you see the Phresh line in the next few years?
It is a very exciting future for Phresh, we do see a full collection in men’s and ladies within the next few years. As we grow we will add to the line not only with our accessories but also with more styles for more seasons
How often do you get out to play now? How’s your handicap?
I actually get out and play about 10 – 15 rounds per year. Since leaving California 10 years ago I really had golf burn out and had no desire to get out and play. In the past few years I actually just started to have fun playing again and have no expectations on my game.
Ouch, you have to ask my handicap? Okay the best way for me to give you a handicap is I am a 14 off the tee and a 4 if I can find my tee shot.
What does Phresh bring to the average golfer that they can’t find in another line?
For the average player, we try to bring some individualism to the apparel without losing the tradition of the game. We like the stories of the 4 buddies going out to the golf course and teeing off with orange pants, pink shirts, and smoking their cigars. It seems to be accepted within their group to have fun with their clothing on the golf course.
Is your style acceptable at the most conservative locations or is that what you are not trying to do?
All our styles are acceptable at all locations, private, traditional, and public facilities. We have developed our line that way in fit and style.
What can we expect from Phresh in the future?
As mentioned the collection will definitely be growing over the years and you will see us grow with the every changing fabric whether it be polyester, cotton, eco friendly, and dare I say a little cashmere.
On the course? Off the course? Adidas’ new adicross line has you covered
Furthering golfwear’s trend toward the more casual and versatile in a big way, Adidas today unveiled a new line extension: Adicross.
Urban inspired. Decidedly non-traditional. The Adicross line (styled “adicross”) leverages Adidas’ clothing and footwear styles from other arenas and reimagines them for wear on the fairway. Available December 1, the line brings Anorak jackets, henleys, hoodies, joggers, and even an Oxford to the golf course.
And before you clutch your saddle shoes in terror, remember, this is a line extension targeting a particular segment of the golfing population, not a total change of course for the entire Adidas Golf brand. If you’re wondering who represents the segment in question, think Erik Anders Lang: filmmaker, irrepressible golf enthusiast, and host of Skratch TV’s Adventures in Golf.
Lang hosted a launch event in Manhattan’s Meatpacking District warehouse space where he sat down with Adidas execs and world No. 1 Dustin Johnson for a chat about the new line. He praised the performance aspects of the five-pocket pant and the footwear styles, in particular.
As for golf’s top-ranked player, regarding the Adicross line, DJ told us the line is much more in keeping with stuff he’d actually wear than the baggy shirts and khakis that were the uniform of golf when he started out on tour.
“This is a line that I’ll wear all the time,” Johnson said. “I can wear it to the course and then go meet some buddies for lunch, and I’m not a walking poster for golf.”
From the Stretch-Woven Oxford, to the jogger pant, to the Adicross Bounce footwear, every item Dustin Johnson wears in picture below is intended for both on- and off-course wear.
“Adicross is the lifestyle brand that golfers everywhere have been waiting for,” said the world No. 1. “This is something that I’ll wear when I’m traveling to a tournament, practicing at home, or even headed to the gym.”
The aforementioned versatility of the Adicross line is very much a function of the materials: No-show sweat wicking technology, nylon-spandex blends (featured in the five-pocket pant and short), Primeknit (featured in Icon Polo and Jacket). These are clothes that are ready to wear to the office, but stretch, are light enough, and offer enough comfort to play 18 holes in.
“We wanted to challenge ourselves to design a line that would aid in helping athletes in their game, their life and in their world,” said Chad Alasantro, senior designer, men’s apparel at adidas Golf. “adicross is a perfect blend of hidden technology, fused with a creative aesthetic.”
The Adicross line also boldly brings street-inspired footwear to the golf course, retooling Adidas’ ultrapopular Bounce design to support the foot and grip the turf during the golf swing (and resist water during dew-sweeping early morning rounds)
“Adicross was designed as a result of the feedback we were hearing from our core consumer,” said Dylan Moore, Creative Director, Adidas Golf. “Like everyone else, golfers live in a complex, busy world with many diverse interests. They expect more from less and demand performance out of what they wear.”
The centerpiece Bounce features an ergonomic fit, offset wrapped saddle with multiple eyelet rows for customizable lacing, and a non-marking adiwear rubber spikeless outsole that features 181 strategically-placed lugs for a green-friendly grip.
The Bounce will be released in January, and additional styles will follow in February.
Regarding said “additional styles,” you can spot a few in this promo video.
Review: Nike Flyknit Elite golf shoes
OK. Let’s discuss the elephant in the Flyknit Elite golf shoe room straight away: A percentage of golfers will never wear a high-top golf shoe, regardless of how well it performs. Likewise, a percentage of golfers will not wear sneaker-style golf shoes.
If you don’t find yourself in one of the groups above, however, beyond aesthetics, the Flyknit Elite presents a viable option if you’re already a Flyknit wearer in other shoes, or are looking for lightweight spikeless shoe with ankle support (and more ankle support than the Flyknit Chukka offers).
Appearing on the global sports scene during the Sochi Olympics, Flyknit footwear featuring Flyknit technology has been a fixture in other sports for the past few years. The Swoosh brought the TPU yarn technology and high-strength support fibers to golf footwear with the Flyknit Chukka and Flyknit Elite to market in June.
The tech is aimed at offering lightweight support, and the precision weave allows targeted areas to stretch and others to support. The company indicated the concept was born out of “runners a shoe with the snug (and virtually unnoticed) fit of a sock.” Breathability is the hallmark of the knit upper, and the sock-like, mid-height collar prevents debris from entering the shoe.
While the shoes aren’t waterproof, they do have what Nike calls “dew protection” along the upper’s edge to keep feet dry in wet grass. Obviously, another element of the Flyknit imperative is to use fewer materials is less overall waste, for which our landfills thank us.
The sole, of which a picture is worth more than a thousand words, features what Nike calls an Integrated Traction pattern, which offers a grip at least commensurate with any spikeless offering.
For this review, I was sent the Flyknit Elites in the Black/Clear Jade/Glacier Blue/White colorway. Two other colorways, pictured below, are also available. The shoes come in sizes 7-12, with half sizes in-between, as well as sizes 13 and 14, and sell for $270.
Here’s the essential question for potential purchasers of the Flyknit Elite: There are bulkier shoes on the marketplace with more stability. There are spike-laden shoes on the marketplace that offer more traction. However, to get a lighter shoe with the Flyknit’s performance and aesthetic characteristics, is that trade off worth it?
Below is a quote from Nike Staffer Jamie Lovemark about the shoes. And yes, he’s paid by Nike, but he could also be wearing the more traditional Lunar Control line of shoes as he plays for his daily bread.
“I always have guys come up to me and ask about (the shoes),” Lovemark said. “They always want to know if they have spikes on them and if the traction is good, which has never been an issue for me with these shoes. Plus, I like the fact that they have a different look. There’s nothing wrong with standing out when you’re on the course.”
No doubt you’ll stand out. And in giving these shoes a spin, there is likewise no doubt that they are lighter and more fitted to the foot than any offering I’ve come across personally. There’s also more of a feeling of rootedness or connectedness with the ground than many spikeless models offer.
Ultimately, the Flyknit Elite is an athletic shoe you can comfortably and capably play golf in, while, you know, having a commendable shoe game, if that’s your thing.
Review: Biion Golf Shoes
Pros: Comfortable, lightweight and distinctive. Biion shoes are a unique option for those looking for a splash of color in their wardrobe. Considering all of their five shoe styles, there are a total of 50 different colorways available — a dream come true for golf fashion lovers.
Cons: Despite their unique design and wide variety of colorways, some feel that the looks of the Biion shoes are a bit too aggressive for their tastes. For a smaller group, the barefoot sensation was unfavorable.
Who They’re For: Biion’s blend of traditional aesthetics with modern polymer technology is unlike any other in the golf shoe market. If you are the “trendsetter” in your weekly foursome, it’s worth considering the many options offered by Biion.
What you need to know about Biion
When the founders of Biion Footwear started their company, they sought to mix comfort and versatility into a shoe that truly stood out. They settled on a spikeless, slip-on design made entirely of Ethylene-vinyl acetate (EVA), a lightweight and rubber-like material similar to that of Crocs sandals.
Functionally, EVA is a great choice of material, as it’s not only soft but also resilient, meaning that it will form to your foot during a round without permanently deforming afterwards. In addition, EVA is highly water resistant, meaning that even after a long, hot day on the course, the shoes won’t absorb your sweat (e.g. unlike a pair of boat shoes). The shoe did pick up dirt and grass stains fairly easily due to its low profile and all white upper, which would be a problem if not for the EVA construction, which can simply be hosed down or thrown in the wash in between rounds.
Intended to be worn without socks, Biion shoes also feature patterns of small holes all throughout their upper surfaces. This feature, along with the tiny bumps lining the inner sole called “nodes,” works to enhance airflow and breathability while also providing “a therapeutic massage with every step.”
Offered in five different styles (Classics, Saddles, Brights, Wingtips, Patterns), each with nearly 10 different color combinations, it is definitely hard to pick one favorite. My two favorite pairs are the black-and-pink “Brights,” and the white-and-blue Brights, but I ultimately settled on the white version for this review.
One key point I found was that, in order to be worn properly without socks, one should go down a size from their typical golf shoe size. So if you wear a 10, try Biions in a 9.
Unless I’ve been doing something wrong this entire time, I would guess that I am like most golfers in that I don’t often play in rubber-like shoes, without socks. After getting used to this new sensation by playing a few rounds in the shoes, I found myself mostly impressed with how they performed. The EVA construction makes for a firm, yet cushioned insole, with the massage nodes being noticeably helpful in keeping ones feet from getting too hot.
Due to the low profile of the shoe, I could easily feel the slope in the greens, and I was pleasantly surprised to find that my feet were sufficiently supported in pretty much all lies. The one exception to this is that, depending on your course conditions or how off-line you’re hitting the ball, you may find yourself having to dump sand or wet rough clippings out of your shoes often because of the “holey” design of the shoe.
And while I’m not so sure about those of you with 115-mph club head speeds, I can say that I certainly never felt like I was on the verge of “swinging out of my shoes” (literally). As I said earlier, playing golf with this kind of shoe on is a fairly significant change for most golfers. Within the extent of the rounds I played (one with, one without a cart) with the Biion shoes, I really enjoyed the fit and performance. That being said, a small group did say that the overall feel is just a tad too far out of left field for them. For such an extreme design, this shouldn’t come as a surprise. Overall, the reviews were favorable among those I asked.
With an MSRP of $99, Biion golf shoes aren’t a bad option for those who look to add something new and different into their golf wardrobe. While their looks may not be for everyone, especially purists, the shoes offer a different approach to golf footwear that ought to be given a try.
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