- Sophie &Friends
Every now and then someone will approach me to try out their product and give an honest review. It doesn't happen often, but when it does it's always a treat. I love seeing what creative people are producing. The good folks over at Wind Passion sent me a couple of their handmade nautical bracelets. They arrived last week. I've been wearing them non-stop since then. Truth be told, they take me back to my childhood, when the best thing in the world was to get one of those sailor knot bracelets and literally wear it all summer until it finally rotted off your wrist sometime around October.
Unlike those bracelets, which shrunk to your wrist size after your first dip in the ocean, these are tied with slip knots that allow you to loosen and tighten the fit. The bracelets are made for both men and women, and come in two styles; with a "thimble" (a little branded plastic loop that looks a bit like a sailboat block) or simply tied with two slip knots. They also make a few accessories like keychains, cufflinks, and interestingly, bow ties. I wish they had sent me a key chain...those looked very intriguing.
As I said, they arrived on Wednesday and I promptly slipped one of each style on each of my wrists. The bracelets are waterproof, so showering was not an issue. They are very well made, although on a couple occasions when I was lugging a bunch of boxes, the double knot version did loosen and slip a bit. Having worked with lots of paracord in my day, I can tell you that they use a high quality cord. One of the nicest features is the way they finish off the bracelet ends - each one is heated to ensure there is no fraying, but then they are also wrapped with individual threads to form a very solid endcap. I must admit to being extremely impressed with that feature.
After wearing them for 4 days straight I figure I have a pretty good sense about these bracelets. Here is my honest opinion. I like the double slip knot - the "Victory" braided rope bracelet . It reminds me of my childhood. It is easy to adjust and can be slipped off and played with like a nautical fidget toy. It can be worn on my watch arm without interfering with my telling time. The second style, the "Black Pearl" Paracord Bracelet is not really my cup of tea. The thimble slipped around on my wrist and caused a bit of chaffing. It's a bit clunky, and the knots stick out (unlike the double knot bracelet where they lie flat). The rope ends are stiff and have a habit of getting caught on things. The bracelet itself also tends to ride up the arm a tad. Now possibly this is because it's a man's bracelet, but I was able to tighten it easily to my wrist size, so unless the women's version has a smaller thimble, I don't think I would see much of a difference between the two.
All in all, I can honestly state that it's a sturdy, well-made product. I can see it being a great gift for hiker, surfer or sailor in your life. The bow tie and cufflinks are quite whimsical, although I'm not sure who, except die-hard sportsmen might wear them. The item that intrigues me the most is the keychain, that looks both practical and sporty. In the neverending search for ways to accessorize, these certainly fit the bill for those that are nautically inclined. I definitely suggest checking out their site for yourselves. It might just be the perfect gift to yourself, your spouse, or your favorite "buoy" and "gull".