This week, I spent some time in Las Vegas to attend the fall PGA Expo for the first time. I've been going to the winter show in Orlando for years; it's the Mecca of the golf industry for a few days each year.
Vegas, however, is a smaller show. How small, I didn't realize until I got there. While it might be one-tenth the size of the Orlando show, I still got to see some equipment - particularly on the fashion side - that interested me.
The top award for my brief experience at the show has to go to this new Velcro golf shoe from adidas.
Velcro isn't necessarily the sexiest way to design a shoe, but it sure is convenient - particularly when golf shoelaces tend to come (a) way too long and (b) untied way too easily. This shoe solves that problem. Certainly, it's for the lazy, but I'm fine with that.
Apparently, the shoe was not supposed to have been publicly introduced yet, but the cat was out of the bag in Vegas.
Kentwool, who makes the most comfortable golf sock in the world in my view, has some exciting news as well:
- They're going to once again do a limited release Masters sock again this year because their supply from this year sold out quickly
- They're coming out with a knee-high compression sock in October. The sock will be made of cotton, maintain the trademark padding on the sole and, the company says, will be great for people who stand all day, travel a lot, etc.
Finally, here are some companies that I had never seen in person, but liked:
- Royal & Awesome: Consider these guys to be somewhat similar to Loudmouth Golf. They have wacky pants, caps and shorts with some outlandish patterns. The pants all run about $75, while the shorts are $60 and caps are $30.
- High 5 Gear: This small fashion company has one easy promise - their outfits match. Pair a shirt with their shorts, skirts, etc., and it'll look good. The shirts are 100 percent polyester, which might deter some, but they also have ultraviolet and antibacterial protection. The shirts in their summer line blend multiple colors seamlessly on shirts, creating some fascinating patterns not seen elsewhere. The shirts run about $85.
- Switch Golf: This company imported a belt technology from China, thinking kids would like it. Turns out, golfers might like them more. The belts have no metal, are biodegradable and fit any waist up to 44 inches. There are 14 colors available for the belt and buckle, creating 196 possible combinations. Buy for $30, cut to fit and you're on your way.
- Horn Legend/Skins Game: I had heard of Skins Game before, but the Horn Legend apparel line really captured my attention. From a variety of unique collars, in the same style as Alial Fital and Bert Lamar - both designers I love even if they're not in my closet, Horn Legend fits in with the nouveau preppy look that seems to have proliferated with some Tour players.
- Linksoul: You may have heard of Linksoul. It's the new baby for John Ashworth, who got back in the game. He's designing simple, comfortable, beautiful clothes that use cotton and other natural materials to create the feel and performance of other golf clothing made with synthetic fabrics. I have a shirt in my closet and it's in the regular rotation.