Let’s be honest, you know I love Fairfax & Favor. Not just the products that the company produces, but the branding, the team, the prosecco… I mean ideas. No. There are a few companies in the equestrian and country industry I admire, and I have to say that Fairfax & Favor fall well into this category. So you can imagine my delight when the opportunity to collaborate with them on a project involving the Imperial Explorers came up.
How did the collaboration start?
Well, it all started at Blenheim Horse Trials, although I didn’t realise it had started then! I was having a chat with a friend of mine about the Imperial Explorers, Fairfax & Favor’s award winning boots. I’d had these on my wishlist for a while but was really on the fence. Why? Because I was sure they were water resistant and not waterproof. And my friend thought they were waterproof and not water resistant. Umm. I’m a complete product geek, and I was pretty sure, but still, if they were waterproof, my dilemma was over! Anyway, I wandered past the Fairfax & Favor stand and Ben (if you’ve been to any Fairfax & Favor stand, Ben is the head of brand and retail and is usually clad in tweed) was there. So I went over for a glass of prosecco and took the opportunity to quiz him about the Imperial Explorers…
And what did I find out about the Imperial Explorers?
They’re water resistant. So you might be thinking that that wasn’t a good thing, but actually, after my chat with Ben, they moved from wishlist to must-have. Why? Well, although they are water resistant, actually, when you really delve into how these boots are water resistant and why, you might realise, like I did, that you don’t actually need a waterproof boot. And when you do need a waterproof boot (as in, wading through and standing in water for prolonged periods of time), you should probably opt for wellies, because leather, being a skin, doesn’t really love being submerged in water for long periods of time – even if it is has waterproof membrane behind it. When I spoke to Ben and thought it all through, it actually made a lot of sense. I think we’ve been ‘trained’ to believe waterproof is the only option in a country boot, and in some situations it 100% is, but think about when you’d wear the boot. Are you hoping to stand in water for long periods of time? If so, you’re going to need a waterproof boot – get some wellies. And I’m not saying that in a dismissive way. The boots, at £375, aren’t cheap, in fact, I haven’t met that many high quality leather boots that are cheap. So why spend your money on them and then treat them in a way that could limit their life? You’d be much better investing in wellies too, and using both for their ‘best’ jobs, and both will last longer.
So – about this collaboration with Fairfax & Favor?
Oh yes – I made a video about everything I’d learnt from my chat with Ben. Well, actually, I made two. Being a product geek, I also made a video about the Vibram soles. It was another feature of the boots that ticked a box and one I wanted to tell people about. Both videos below – please enjoy and feel free to comment and subscribe too (!).