Posted Wednesday, May 11, 2011 By worldgolf.com Author Jason Deegan

Jason Deegan: An already good Antigua Golf fashion line getting better

My first true introduction to the wonders of Antigua Group Inc. golf shirts was a random one. I was drinking beer in a hospitality tent at the 2008 PGA Championship at Oakland Hills Country Club when a guy approached me. (The working press, right? It was after a practice round, mind you.)

"How do you like that shirt?" he asked.

I told him I loved how it felt but I hadn't paid much attention to why. He introduced himself as an Antigua rep for the region and proceeded to reveal the secrets of why my black PGA Championship logo shirt was so comfortable. Ever since, I've sought out Antigua clothing as one of the first I look for at pro shops. I know what I'm getting.

The Desert Dry and Desert Dry Xtra-Lite lines of shirts have been so popular over the past few years that the company hasn't messed with success. They continue to be sold nationwide.

When the Desert Dry concept was first conceived, the focus was to sell the polos in warmer climates. But the lighter weight fabrics that are cooler on the body and wick faster than most material are also ideal in traditionally cooler climates, say steamy summertime in Michigan, Canada, East Coast and beyond. The light, almost airy fabrics don't restrict golf swings at all.

The men's shirts come in classic colors -- powerful reds (think Tiger Woods on Sunday pre-fire hydrant) and soft baby blues (think Carolina powder blue). The women's pieces lean toward fashionable jewel tones. Some styles offer more than 20 different shades.

In testing shirts, I found the Whisper Extra-Lite, the Exceed and the Elevate all to be cozy enough to wear to bed like PJs and sturdy enough to handle anything Mother Nature can dish out. The retail price for any of the three is $60, a bargain for this kind of technology.

Antigua is now setting its sights on enhancing its performance outerwear.

"We're featuring updated styling designs on our outerwear," said Sean Gregg, Head Designer for Antigua. "Among those updates are the pockets in those pieces are more use able for what men like particularly in golf outerwear."

Antigua is focusing on pieces versatile enough to be worn as part of a layering look or as stand-alones. One of the tweaked styles for 2011 is a stretchable fleece that allows golfers to move freely during the swing, while providing the warmth of fleece. Greg said the Hero, a micro-fleeced back jersey mock shirt, can stand alone or be worn under the Exceed polo, paired up with a pullover such as the Succeed, or even provide another layer of warmth under the Resilient or Highland, two water-resistant and wind-resistant lines.

"The focus is now on developing product from the base layer up," Gregg said.

Watch for Antigua's lineup of pros -- including Billy Mayfair and Kevin Streelman on the PGA Tour; Brittany Lang, Stacy Prammanasudh and Wendy Ward on the LPGA Tour; and Tom Pernice, Jr. and J.L. Lewis on the Champions Tour -- showcasing the latest looks on TV. Antigua will also outfit all 12 U.S. players for the Solheim Cup in September in Ireland.

You can't miss that eye-catching shaped 'A' embroidered on the chest. It's become a symbol of excellence.

For more visit Antigua.com or shop.antigua.com.

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