I’m writing much of this review on an airplane right now. And I’m wearing a Scott E Vest (SEV) Classic Men’s Travel Vest. Just a few minutes ago, I lost my free drink ticket in one of the 22 pockets in the SEV lightweight vest. I did manage to find it a few minutes later, buried deep in one of the outside side pockets. But let me tell you, having one of these multi-pocket vests on a trip and going through the airport is essential.
Traversing through security was a breeze actually. Instead of putting things into the plastic tray, I started loading them into the various pockets of my SEV. My belt with a big metal buckle went in the outside, my phone went into one of the inner pockets that are devoted to touch-screen devices. My boarding passes were put into the appropriately labeled “ticket” pocket. My sun glasses were stashed in the sunglasses pocket (which has a chamois attached to a bungee cord – I always show that off to people). And my car keys were attached to another bungee in another pocket as well.
Once I loaded up the vest with all of the items that were in my pocket, the rest was easy. I just put the whole vest into a tray and off it went through the X-ray. Conversely, I put my other gadgets into trays as well as leaving them in my big gadget backpack. So what happen next? Well, my SEV went through without problem but the backpack didn’t. There were just to many “high-density” electronics in it. I had to take out the laptop, the cameras, the iPad, etc. and have them go through separately. I have a feeling that if I had put some of those items into the SEV, that I wouldn’t have had to have put through the backpack twice.
I have reviewed a SEV jacket before, called the Expedition and I absolutely love it. It’s the jacket for geeks and gadget freaks. Unfortunately, I couldn’t wear the Expedition jacket year round simply because it is too warm for the summer months. That is where the Classic Men’s Travel Vest come into play. Obviously, it’s sleeveless and it is quite light-weight. But is still has the power of the multiple, carefully designed and laid-out pockets.
Let’s take a look at this jacket a bit more closely and count them off during the process. The numbers on the photos below refer to the pockets mentioned below.
#1 & #2 – There are two hand warmer pockets on the outside. One nice feature of these is that they have magnets to automatically keep the pockets closed after you take something out of them. Inside of the right hand one is a keychain bungee to ensure that you don’t lose your keys. Also, there is an elastic loop to hold a water bottle (or other beverage) upright in your pocket. Both pockets also have zippers. The left hand pocket also has an internal zippered divider to form a pocket-within-a-pocket (#3) called a Zip-PIP (Zippered Pocked-in-Pocket). And on the both sides, there are change pockets (#4 & #5).
#6 & #7 – Above the hand warmer pockets are two more pockets and within the right-hand one is another pocket-within-a-pocket (#8).
#9 – In the back of the vest is a large pocket that fills up practically the entire back. This is good for carrying a rain parka or newspaper or something like that.
Inside of the vest is where the magic lies. Not only are there a ton of different types of pockets with different functions, but there are also conduits for routing headphone cords from one pocket, up through the jacket and out near the collar. You can essentially leave your headphones attached to your jacket and just plug in the headphones in to your MP3 player or smartphone. The collar, by the way, is fleece-lined and because of the Velcro earbud holders, really should be popped up, otherwise the Velcro does scratch your neck a bit.
On the inside of the vest are the rest of the multitude of pockets. For starters, on the inside left, there is an PadPocket (pocket #10). It literally can hold a iPad or other large tablet (and I tried to put my 9″ MacBook Air and it fit just fine). When you do have something that large in there, it is a bit hard to sit but walking is just fine. Hidden inside the iPad pocket is a USB/Bluetooth pocket (#11).
Continuing on the left hand inside there is a phone pocket (#12) which has Velcro and a zipper to hold it in place. Also, there is a semi-transparent cover that lets you actually interact with your touchscreen through the cover. Next to the phone pocket, there is a pen pocket (actually, there are two of them on either side of the zipper #13 & #14).
Below the phone pocket, there is a Travel Documents pocket that is perfectly sized to hold your passport or other important travel documents (#15).
On the right-hand side is the matching counterpart to the phone pocket, namely the MP3 player pocket (#16). Also designed like the phone pocket, there is a clear-touch fabric there that allows you to interact with a touch-screen interface. And there are earphone conduits to guide your ear buds up to the neckline.
The eyeglasses/sunglasses pocket (#17) includes a chamois on a bungee which I always thought to be a nice touch. The chamois can also be used to clean your touchscreen devices as well.
Below the eyeglasses pocket is a travel camera pocket (#18) that even includes a flash memory pocket within it (#19) where you can store additional flash memory for your devices. The flash memory pocket has a Velcro closure.
In the collar of the vest are two “bud pockets” (#20 & #21) design to hold your earbuds in place when not in use. Also on the inside is a “Clear Touch ID” pocket (#22) to hold your identification. I actually use it for business cards which is helpful in case my vest gets misplaced, the owner, me, can be easily contacted.
But let’s be honest here, do you really need to have THAT many pockets? Probably not. But is it nice to have them should you ever need them? Definitely. For my airplane trip, one pocket was used for the current ticket, one for the next leg, and one held my drink tickets. They kept me relatively sane. Then in one of the semi-transparent pockets for touchscreen devices, I had 1 daughter’s iPod Touch and the other one had my other daughter’s iPhone. And I had my bluetooth headphones in one of the camera pockets. Remember, even if it is labeled one way, you can use those pockets another way.
The vest overall provides adequate warmth and is light weight and definitely not bulky, unless, of course, you load it up with gadgets. I must say that when I did that, it still hung quite well and it was a pleasure to simply take off the Scott E. Vest to lay it down, filled with gadgets and other metal objects, on the X-ray scanner at the airport.
The vest retails for $100 which is about what you would pay for a “standard,” non-tech ready/pocket-filled article of clothing. It is machine washable, which is definitely a plus. And, I must say that it integrates quite well into a family environment, especially when you are on a trip and have to carry a lot of different items like travel documents or entertainment devices to keep your kids happy. While I still sometimes get confused as to what is in which pocket, over time, and if you put the same devices in the same place, you definitely get used to it.
Disclosure Text : I have a material connection because I received a gift or sample of a product for consideration in preparing to write this content. I was/am not expected to return this item or gift after my review period. More information can be found in my About page as well as here.
HTD says: Once again, Scott E. Vest impresses me with their careful construction and thoughtful design to make this traveling dad much happier.