Big news! As of today, the new Women’s Silver Sonic Convertible-Top Waders are available for pre-order, with shipping dates expected in mid-February.
For years, female fly fishers have complained that waders simply don’t fit them and that too many companies have used a “pink it and shrink it” strategy for creating women’s products from existing men’s versions. But with the introduction of the new Silver Sonic Convertible Top Wader, Orvis product designers have gone back to the drawing board to create a new sizing system that offers better fit and comfort for women of all shapes and body types.
In a process that began more than a year ago, product developers worked with women in the Orvis offices and testers in the field. Orvis manager of technical design Margaret Eisenhauer and product specialist Molly Urquhart started by putting the women into our existing women’s waders to see where they didn’t fit and then cutting the waders apart to reshape them. The idea was to base the new sizes on the system used for Orvis women’s clothing, in which the “grading” from size to size doesn’t just make everything bigger, but actually accounts for how women are shaped, as well. For instance, whereas the widest part of a man’s body is the belly, women tend to be wider at the hips, and taller women usually have a different torso-to-leg ratio than shorter women. Men’s waders don’t take these measurements into account.
The results are 13 sizes, from X-Small Petite to X-Large Regular, along with a new sizing chart that includes measurements for body size, bust, waist, hip, inseam, and bootie. The chart is easy to follow and women should be more accustomed to this system. If you pay attention to the measurements in the chart, you will discover what you’ve been missing all along: the perfect wader fit.
The designers didn’t stop at sizing, though; there are also some styling differences that make the waders more flattering. Sculpting at the top edge allows for more bust room, the finished trims are cleaner, the strap spots and cord lock have been moved for comfort, the belt placement is higher and angled to create a contoured waist, and the color blocking is designed to make the hips look slimmer. The lower body curves have been re-proportioned and re-aligned to further visually slim the hips by eliminating the “ballooning effect.”
Of course, all of this means nothing if the waders don’t work well on the water. Here’s what several of our testers had to say about them:
- “These feel like they’re made for me.”
- “They are very comfortable. It’s easy to forget that I’m wearing them. I don’t feel like I’m wearing a tent!”
- I had a women’s outing on Saturday and got a lot of complements on their looks. One of the women said it looked like I was wearing a pair of nice khakis.
- This is the first time a pair of waders actually fit, wow. They fit my feet and also my inseam and the suspenders are also right. I never realized how awful the fit was with men’s waders.
So check out the new Women’s Silver Sonic Convertible Top Waders, and you’ll discover the on-the-water comfort you’ve been waiting for.