Review: Women’s Escapism Stow Away Jacket from Pas Normal Studios

The Escapism Stow Away Women’s Jacket from Pas Normal Studios is a lightweight, packable shell and, although not fully waterproof, it beads well in light rain and dries quickly. It could be smaller when stored, but the integrated hood and overall quality impress.

Although the Stow Away Jacket is designed for use on the bike, I found it easily transformed into daytime wear due to its high quality design and understated look. In fact, it has often replaced my usual jacket because it’s so comfortable to wear – it even goes over my puffer jacket.

I tested this jacket in a size small, although I’m between an XS and an S on the PNS guide, and it gave a relaxed fit that fits in all the right places without any pulling or restriction when you’re on the bike. However, it swells towards the rear during road rides.

> Buy now: Women’s Escapism Stow Away Jacket from Pas Normal Studios for £170

The sleeves are a nice length, ending just below the wrist, and the body length is excellent too; neither too short nor too long. It is elasticated and adapts easily to my size and does not climb on the bike.

For me, the hood is the key feature of this jacket: it protects but doesn’t get in the way. It’s finished at the front with a very high collar, zipped down to below the nose, which creates a feeling of protection when the weather turns bad.


Excuse my blank expression there… boom chish. The hood is cut to keep peripheral vision clear, and it works – I didn’t notice it was there that way. It slips under your helmet and there’s a toggle in the back for adjustments (although I didn’t need to use it to get a good fit).


2022 Pas Normal Studios Women's Escapism Stow Away Jacket - shoulders.jpg

This is water resistant, not waterproof. The DWR treatment continuously sheds water in light rain, but water penetrates (rather quickly) in heavy rain. It’s windproof and dries very quickly, and I found Pas Normal’s claim that it doesn’t cling to your skin when wet to be true – at least until it’s completely wet. soaked, anyway.

The silky-feel ripstop fabric has tiny raised squares to make it more durable, and after two months of heavy use and washing, there are no abrasions or signs of wear. The smooth finish also makes it attractive to wear – some packable jackets can feel like carrying a glorified bag.

> 10 of the best windproof cycling jackets – packable outer layers to keep out the cold

The Stow Away jacket packs away into its built-in back pocket, which is zipped on both sides so you can pack it quickly from the inside out. Packed up, it measures about 17 x 14cm – not terribly small, although it still fits in my slim jersey pockets. There’s a stitched-on logo that sits in the center of the packaged jacket…it’s not functional, but it’s a nice touch.

The front of the jacket is double-zipped so you can also zip down from below for ventilation, and both are finished with a fabric and rubber toggle.


2022 Pas Normal Studios Women's Escapism Stow Away Jacket - zip detail.jpg

The two main pockets – one on each side – are frankly roomier than you’d need or want for riding. The single rear pocket is also roomy but only zipped to the side meaning it’s not very accessible on the bike and also off center.


2022 Pas Normal Studios Women's Escapism Stow Away Jacket - pocket.jpg

Assess

At £170, that’s very expensive for a jacket that’s water resistant rather than waterproof. All the packable raincoats we’ve tested recently are at least £40 cheaper. The Pactimo Women’s Divide Jacket (now £100) performed well in our test, but you don’t get the hood with this and there’s no rain protection.

MAAP’s Draft Team jacket gets DWR and costs £130, although it doesn’t have a hood and the DWR doesn’t work very well. The Northwoods 7 Mesh Windbreaker is £130 for what appears to be very similar features to Pas Normal’s offering here.

Globally

While this oozes quality and style, if you’re looking for a tiny road layer when packed or flapless, this isn’t for you – plus it’s hard to ignore the price when you can get it. full waterproofing for the same money. Personally, I love this jacket anyway, but it’s definitely better for casual commuting, commuting and off-bike use rather than serious or fast commuting.

Verdict

High quality windbreaker with effective DWR and integrated hood, but not so small and very expensive

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Brand and model : Pas Normal Studios Women’s Escapism Stow Away Jacket

Tell us what the jacket is for and who it is for. What are the builders saying? How does that compare to your own feelings about it?

PNS says: “The Escapism Stow Away Jacket is a lightweight outer layer that provides exceptional reliability in unpredictable weather. Constructed from a lightweight ripstop fabric, this piece incorporates a subtly grainy internal structure to provide contact points that maintain stability. The tightly knit nylon fibers naturally block wind from penetrating the fabric and are highly resistant to rips and tears. The jacket is there for you when you need it most and packs away easily into your its built-in back pocket when you don’t.”

Tell us a bit more about the technical aspects of the jacket?

PNS Lists:

– Ripstop fabric

-DWR

– Packable

– Adjustable hood

– Nylon / Polyamid

– Made in Vietnam

Rate the jacket for build quality:

10/10

This jacket is beautifully made with exceptional attention to detail. Seems built to last and so far no wear and tear (worn and washed extensively for two months).

Rate the jacket for its performance:

8/10

Weatherproof without getting too hot.

Rate the jacket for durability:

7/10

So far so good, and the ripstop fabric should help.

Rate the waterproofness of the jacket based on the manufacturer’s rating:

8/10

Water beads off easily thanks to the DWR treatment.

Rate the breathability of the jacket based on the manufacturer’s rating:

7/10

Although PNS makes no claims about the breathability of this jacket, it does not appear to retain heat.

Evaluate the fit of the jacket:

8/10

Better than other jackets I’ve tested. It’s definitely a relaxed fit, though, and waves in the wind.

Rate jacket for size:

9/10

Perfect for a relaxed fit.

Rate the jacket by weight:

8/10

Very well; it’s a nice light jacket.

Rate the jacket for comfort:

9/10

The super soft fabric is comfortable to wear, and the high zipper and hood are comfortable in inclement weather.

Rate the jacket for its value:

5/10

Is the jacket easy to maintain? How did it react to the wash?

Easy to wash and dry.

Tell us how the jacket performed overall when used as intended

Impressive in bad weather given that it’s water resistant (not waterproof) and easy to store – although it might be a bit smaller.

Tell us what you particularly liked about the jacket

The beautiful look, the fancy zips and the stand-up collar.

Tell us what you particularly hated about the jacket

Could pack smaller. Oh and the price!

How does the price compare to similar products on the market, including those recently tested on road.cc?

It’s expensive – at least £40 more than its recently tested competitors, and up there with the full raincoats.

Did you enjoy using the jacket? Yes

Would you consider buying the jacket? Yes

Would you recommend the jacket to a friend? Yes

Use this box to explain your overall score

It performs well in light rain, packs away nicely, and is comfortable to wear. However, you can’t get away from this price, especially since you can get a real raincoat for that.

Age: 38 Height: 172cm Lester: 60kg

I usually ride: My Scott Foil My best bike is: Oldie but the goldie, CAAD 8

I have been riding since: 5-10 years I ride: A few times a week I would classify myself as: Experimented

I regularly practice the following types of riding: road racing, cyclo cross, commuting, touring, club rides, sports, general fitness riding, mountain biking, triathlon, Audax