Your summer clothing guide
Outfit yourself for the great outdoors with a Norwegian clothing expert
As the temperatures warm and parts of our society begin to reopen, Americans are heading outside in record numbers. We are hiking trails instead of marching to the movie theaters, going for a run instead of heading to a crowded gym, and taking a picnic to a park instead of munching at a busy bistro.
As we spend more time outdoors, it’s a good time to be reminded of the old Norwegian saying, “There is no such thing as bad weather, just bad clothing.” But while most of us think of bad weather as cold, wet, and windy and most of the United States doesn’t see any cold in the summer, wet and windy are daily occurrences. What follows are a few suggestions for outfitting yourself to conquer the outdoors in comfort and style.
Regardless of whether your preferred trails wind around a lake, through a forest, or up the side of a mountain, hikers should outfit themselves in layers that are easily added and removed and designed for movement.
For men, the Bitihorn Flex1 shorts by Norrøna are light and airy with zipped pockets to secure your phone and other valuables. Up top, we love the Bitihorn wool shirt for men and women. It is long-sleeved to ward off the cold, the sun, or mosquitoes, but the sleeves push up very easily if you get too warm.
For women, we think the Ava Hiking Shorts by 8848 Altitude are amazing. Four-way stretch with zipped pockets are a perfect match for anything the trail may present. One of our favorite items to bring on a hike is a vest, and Norway’s Skogstad Sports has two fantastic ones. The Ågotnes for women is snug and comfortable with a hood if the skies open up on you. With its sleek practicality, the male companion, the Nærøyfjord, sets itself apart from the rest.
The quarantine 15 is a real thing, and many of us are looking for ways to work out while gyms and studios are not at normal capacity. That has led folks to running.
Two of the very best running lines (also known for skiing) are Bjørn Dæhlie and Kari Traa. For women, Kari Traa has sleek leggings built for speed and loose tops meant for movement. A few of our favorites are the Louise leggings (both standard and three-quarters) with the Nora Singlet top.
For men, Dæhlie has great options upstairs and downstairs. Some men don’t like to run in shorts, and the Tights Intense and Pants Run are great full-length options. They pair nicely with Dæhlie’s Singlet Gear or Focus T-shirt. If your guy prefers shorts, the Oxygen are amazing, as are the Base 2 Layer and Base Trail shorts by Newline, a Danish running company.
Summer doesn’t need to be all about movement, however. Time is well spent on a picnic blanket in a park or around a bonfire at night.
Amundsen Sports, based in Oslo, has fabulous items that bridge the gap on style and function with subtle nods to Norwegian heritage. For shorts, our favorites are the 7 Incher Field Shorts for men and the 5 Incher Field Shorts for Women, both by Amundsen.
On the T-shirt front, we are really into merino and the organic wool and silk shirt by Northern Playground for women and men is exquisite.
If cotton is more your thing, Norrøna has comfy Viking T-shirts for men and women that will have you wishing everyone a healthy skål!
When the sun sets, long sleeves are preferred to ward off the coolness and mosquitoes, and Amundsen’s Vagabond shirts for men and women are built for this. Pair them with a vest from Ivanhoe of Sweden like the Beata for women or the Kurre for men, and you are all set.
Enjoy your summer in the great outdoors—ha det bra!
Nate Axvig lives in Denver, Colo., now but resided in Oslo for a spell. He and his wife, Leslie, run aktivstyle.com, which brings the very best of Scandinavian clothing to the United States.
This article originally appeared in the July 10, 2020, issue of The Norwegian American. To subscribe, visit SUBSCRIBE or call us at (206) 784-4617.