I’ve been waiting for three years to get a pair of Shefly pants. Back in 2019 I’d seen a kickstarter for this small brand, women owned. A friend got in on the original kickstarter. When I asked her about them she raved with joy. At the time the cost of the pants held me back. While I love supporting makers, I just couldn’t justify the cost. Then I saw a few more of friends who had gone in on that first opportunity.
My curiosity was peaked and I decided I’d take the plunge when the next round of pants were available. Then the world shifted, causing shipping, factories and small brands like this one to put their work on hold. I checked in on the availability regularly and learned the challenges being faced by this group of women looking to change the way pants are made. I watched as they leaned into developing their business and navigating factory closures, shipping challenges and more. Throughout all the upheaval the team at Shefly kept intrested folks updated with honest social media posts while taking the time to learn how to prepare the brand for growth.
As soon as the next round of pants went on pre-order I committed. It would be nearly three more months wait. Shipping delays persisted. When the package arrived, I was immediately impressed with the recyclable packaging which detailed the story of how the brand came to life.
What I didn’t expect was how much I would like the pants. So much that right after I tried them on, I went straight to my computer to order a second pair. Again, I’d need to wait for the second pair. Meanwhile I put the first ones to the test on a summer road trip that included the opportunity to camp and hike. The trip and time since have allowed me to put the pants through hot summer days, pouring rain and even the season change to fall and winter. The pants continued to perform and have become a standard part of my hiking wardrobe.
WHAT I LOVE:
These are one of the more expensive pants I’ve purchased but now that I’ve put them to the test, I am confident in the investment. Every detail was considered. The silhouette is just perfect whether you are curvy or have a narrow profile. Sizing is always tough with online orders, but I following the sizing guide to just the right fit. The rise is high so for someone short waisted or who prefers low rise pants its a consideration.
The stretchy DWR finish fabric is soft on the inside, is durable on the outside and repels water like a dream. The zippers are great quality and don’t bind. The pockets are deep and well placed. I love the flap over the back pockets instead of a zipper or snap. The back pockets are deep and with the flap, my phone stays put. Rolling the pants up is easy and the snaps holding the straps are a firm hold without feeling like you’ll pull the rivets out trying to undo them. The cinch at the bottom of the legs is a nice touch to keep the bottoms against your boots or change the styling.
The “pee fly” which runs from just below the front fly all the way to the back is the element I’ve seen questioned over and over again. I found every thing about it just like the choice of fabric. I was skeptical the zipper would be easy to use. The zipper is SO easy to work and the fly falls open easily and wide enough to ensure you can pee without getting anything wet. It says easily open leaving a hand open for using my Kula Cloth or T-paper. The strip of fabric that’s been run on the inside of the pant from front to back to cover the zipper (should commando be your style) is soft, wide enough and designed to stay put. I don’t notice it, even when I’ve worn the pants biking.
I am also really impressed with how well the pants shed water. I’ve put them through several rainy day tests. The DWR finish rivals my rain gear. When they stop shedding as well, I find a wash and some time in the dryer on low heat refreshes the finish. With four colors to chose from there is an option for everyone.
Theses were completely worth the wait. Next I’d love to see more color options, shorts in the same basic design and a few other fabric weight options as they are able to add them.
For winter, I’ll combine these with my merino Chickfly pants to never have to put my rear completely in the cold again AND be able to pee outside.
WHAT I’M NOT A FAN OF:
My only complaints are minor and for some might actually be pros.
The fabric has a beautiful stretch which can loosen the fit a bit more than I prefer. A trip through the laundry seems to fix it. The fit is true to size, but with the stretch, I found a size smaller than my “normal” size worked. Following the sizing chart to be sure. And if you get it wrong, ask to exchange them.
Another consideration is the pant is definitely high waisted. For many this is a benefit. But for my short frame, I have to really hike the pants up and cinch the waistband otherwise the pant drops lower in the crotch and fly fabric seam can chafe a bit. Once I figured out how I need to wear them and got a few washes in I haven’t had issues.
The final thing I found fabric is a bit heavier than I’d prefer for summer hiking. I wore these on several days where temperatures got well above 80 degrees (Fahrenheit) and paid for it. Rolling the legs up helped, but didn’t give me the amount of temperature regulation I wanted or needed. I prefer hiking pants over shorts, but these are just too heavy for high temperatures. I really hope when their shorts become available I’ll be happy with those for summer adventures.
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