Wandering down the main aisle of the massive convention center, my head swiveled back-and-forth in amazement as I digested the sheer amount of golf that surrounded me. Equipment, apparel, training aids, travel companies, simulators, wacky gadgets, Golf Channel crews and personalities, and even semi-trucks — you name it, and you see it at the PGA Merchandise Show.
It wasn’t my first time experiencing the sensory overload that accompanies this annual event, but I suppose that effect may never truly wear off for us golf-loving souls.
This year I spent the better part of three days dissecting the expansive show room floor, chatting with designers, questioning company founders, and sifting through all the “show noise” in search of the latest and greatest in the world of golf fashion. Golf and fashion, can you imagine those two words in the same breath?
Fortunately, there are a handful of companies that have taken the reigns and are pushing the golf world toward more stylish gear. Or at a minimum, offering us style-conscious golfers the chance to look good on the course. Though most apparel companies were showcasing their Fall/Winter 2018 lines, there were some super stylish pieces that will come to market soon.
So here we go! Let’s take a look at some of the most stylish and interesting brands (and individual pieces) from the 2018 PGA Show.
G/FORE: Pushing Boundaries
It’s no surprise that G/FORE continues to push the limits in the golf industry. Someone’s got to do it, right? From the show’s edgy booth to the mind-blowing gear, Moss’s creative genius shines bright in the brand’s self-proclaimed “Refined Rebellion.” Eye catching pieces, witty slogans, and smart use of bold colors lead the way as G/FORE infuses their line with streetwear and fashion pieces alike.
Standing front and center this year was G/FORE’s shoe game. The Gallivanters have been my go-to shoe for a few years now — they strike the perfect balance between style and comfort — and I love seeing G/FORE continuing to creatively push boundaries by tapping off-course footwear styles for on-course use.
There are a ton of great designs to choose from, but two intriguing favorites this year were the the Wing-Tip Golf Boot and the High-Top Disruptor. The wing-tip boot fits right into my style sweet spot, but for those who enjoy streetwear, these high-top disruptors are incredible.
The recently announced acquisition of G/FORE by long-standing golf brand Peter Millar should only further G/FORE’s footprint in the world of golf. Expect the expertise of Peter Millar to really help drive G/FORE’s business forward, while Moss and team continue to design incredibly bold and interesting products. Refined Rebellion, indeed.
Greyson Clothiers: #FeedTheWolf
One step inside the Greyson Clothiers booth and you were seemingly teleported from the uninspiring convention center to a homey, well-appointed home. With comfortable couches, plentiful artwork, captivating imagery and even hand-drawn sketches of the booth’s original concept, the Greyson digs certainly stood atop the most inviting and inspiring booths at the show.
Then again, I’d expect nothing less from Charlie Schaefer, the uber passionate and design-savvy founder of Greyson. Strolling around the booth, there are show-stopping apparel pieces at every turn. A camo-print cardigan and vibrantly colored vest in one corner, quilted joggers and wolf-emblazoned performance hoodie in the next.
The attention to detail is second to none, highlighted by varying cuts of collars, uses of multiple fabrics and creative designs. Lining just about every wall you’d find a medley of colorful and refreshingly unique polos, and though that aforementioned camo-print cardigan tops my list of favorites, a close second might just be the “dancing with wolves” print polo with contrasting collar.
I’ve yet to dive into detail on Greyson, but look for an in-depth brand feature coming soon. #FeedTheWolf
J. Lindeberg: Fusing Fashion, Sport & Art
Front and center at the show, J. Lindeberg revealed four one-of-a-kind polos designed, created, and actually painted by a Swedish artist. Each of the original hand-painted polos were on display in the J. Lindeberg booth, and limited quantities of polos created from these pieces will be available in late spring 2018.
Whether you’d rock theses designs on the course or not, this idea shows how the Swedish fashion house continues to think outside the box in it’s mission to fuse sport and fashion. That mantra shines through in it’s upcoming line of apparel too. Colors are bold. Fabrics are highly technical. And the focus on apparel performance gives a nod to the fact that golf is actually, well, a sport.
I really dig the contrasting button-down collar polo as a great staple piece, while the deep auburn-colored bomber jacket (one of the coolest pieces from the show) will transition seamlessly from the course to the streets.
Footjoy 1857 Collection: The Return of the Classics
Did you dramatically fall to your knees in despair upon learning that Footjoy Classics would no longer be produced a few year back? Me too. Well gents, we’re all in luck with the introduction of Footjoy’s 1857 collection.
Paying homage to the year of it’s establishment (1857), Footjoy is releasing a line of hand crafted golf shoes — yes, they’re literally made one-by-one by hand, with 36 hours of man power being poured into each shoe. From all white wing-tips to the classic saddle style, each of these 1857 shoes are 100% leather, including that coveted leather bottom.
The only bad news? These ultra high-end shoes are rumored to set you back a cool $750 (exact cost TBD). Like a good pair of dress shoes though, with proper care, they’ll last a lifetime. Start saving – they’re available for purchase July 1st.
Original Penguin: They’re back
They’re backkkk. After playing a little hard to get with the golf industry, Original Penguin released a new golf line at this year’s show. They remain as playful as ever, with a booth that featured arcade games (Golden Tee!) and the famed Penguin logo everywhere.
The apparel falls in line with that playful mantra too, with designs that tap colorful stripes and patterns (the mini penguin print is pretty cool) on a nice cotton-poly blended fabric. I’ve yet to dawn a polo, but suspect the fit will be appropriately tailored, too.
The golf line drops this Spring, and be sure to check out the limited run of polos designed in collaboration with our boys over at Sugarloaf Social Club!
Ralph Lauren: A Staple and Show Stopper
Catching my eye in the Ralph Lauren booth were two pieces. First, a simple yet often overlooked piece: the basic cardigan. It’s nothing new, but the solid navy knit button-up cardigan should be a staple piece in every stylish golfer’s wardrobe. Do like JT and rock it with a tie, or simply throw on your favorite polo underneath.
The second item was more of a show stopper: a camo print rain suit. I generally recommend picking up a rain suit that’s a little more neutral (so it can match most any outfit), but this design is just too good to ignore. The colors, print and detailing in the zippers make for a really sharp piece that’s sure to liven up your closet.
Devereux: Fun Prints
Not only did Devereux (“DVRX”) drive their badass pop-up shop trailer from Scottsdale to Orlando, but they brought the heat with some great new looks too.
I really dig the mini-cactus print polo, while those who enjoy resort-wear are sure to gravitate toward the mini-fish print short-sleeve button down and floral-designed polos. All pair well with their ever popular – and uber lightweight – Gravity pants or my favorite, the trim fitting Ford pants.
Stitch: #DressYourGame with the SL1
The little Cary, NC based company is little no more. Since I turned to Stitch Golf’s stylish head covers nearly two years ago, the brand continues to expand and grow. Founder and lead designer Charlie Burgwyn’s eye for a sleek and functional golf accessory is second to none.
This year, Stitch took the #DressYourGame attitude to the next level, displaying 50 pre-determined “looks” that pair their ultra-light SL1 golf bags with specific head covers. So while you can certainly pick and choose your own head covers to match a golf bag, Stitch is making it easier than ever to ensure every aspect of your style is spot on when you head to the course. If you’re digging Stitch, shoot us an email ( email@example.com ) for a 15% off promo code!
Dunning: The Best Golf Sweatshirt
It’s not necessarily new, but it is arguably my favorite golf sweatshirt. Okay, Dunning calls it a Performance Golf Sweater, but let’s cut to the chase – it’s a sweatshirt. And it’s magical. The v-neck sweatshirt easily transitions from the course to the gym, and I’ve even rocked it under a blazer. It’s versatility is overshadowed only by the level of comfort from the ultra-soft interior.
Linksoul: Laid Back & Cool As Ever
I love hanging around the Linksoul booth. It’s hard to put into words, but there’s just a good vibe there. Laid back, carefree, and secure in what they do and who they are. There’s no efforts to convince you how great their products are, and truthfully, there doesn’t need to be.
I love what the brand stands for. And for anyone wanting that laid-back look with a relaxed fit, Linksoul should be your go-to brand. A few pieces I love (and actually do own) are the versatile Boardwalker short (great for “land & sea”) and the Coast Highway Classic Knit Polo.
I could go on and on about each and every company I chatted with, but these are some of my favorite brands and styles from the 2018 PGA Show. Looking for some thoughts on a brand I didn’t mention? Drop me a line here. Always happy to dish out my opinion!
Hopefully you found some inspiration for the upcoming golf season — I can’t wait to get my hands on a few of these pieces myself! Until next year Orlando…
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