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Patagonia Light Farrier's Shirt

rated 5.0 of 5 stars
photo: Patagonia Light Farrier's Shirt hiking shirt

An excellent and sustainable work-shirt for days in the sun and other weather. I was comfortable in non-summer conditions in the southeast US. This is not a hiking shirt, but a functional shirt for those in outdoor jobs also suitable for casual office situations. Excellent design with functional pockets and a good fit, along with what initially seems like solid durability. Best thing I can say is I am about to order two more after testing this one.

Pros

  • Comfortable against the skin
  • Layers well
  • Works well tucked and untucked
  • Sturdy buttons
  • Sized accurately
  • Durable (so far)

Cons

  • Collar a bit floppy (no button)
  • Not for warm weather use
  • Rather large hanging loop

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Patagonia Light Farrier's Shirt

I began testing the Patagonia Light Farrier's shirt in Fall 2023 through the winter for work outdoors as a natural resource consultant in the southeast US.  My uses included field reviews, wetland delineations, and species surveys in all sorts of terrain, vegetation and weather.  I can honestly say it is now my favorite field shirt between October and April in my area (when days are typically not higher than 70's (deg F).  I am planning on buying two more this summer, which is the highest recommendation I can make.

Fit & Comfort

I vary between M and L for most companies and often end up with a large as medium is too snug. The Patagonia size chart had me at M and it was a good fit with adequate room, so very accurate sizing. 

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Ready for a day in the field

 The shirt may be too long if you have a shorter torso, but was perfect for me - never came un-tucked but didn't bunch up either.

The Patagonia Light Farrier's shirt is very comfortable whether worn as part of a layering system including a merino wool t-shirt underneath

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Merino wool T and Farrier's shirt on a 50-degree F day

 a fleece or other warmth layer on top

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Comfortable as part of a layering system on a 30-degree F day

 or worn directly on the skin.

The arm length is perfect for me and the sleeves can be rolled up if preferred when not in sunny weather.

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My favorite length rolled sleeve (but can roll past the elbow too)

 I experienced no friction or abrasive areas, and no tightness when performing physical activities in the field. 

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Comfortable when measuring tree diameters

 Basically, I never noticed the shirt, which is absolutely the way it should be.  Occasionally I did notice the rather large hanging loop behind my neck,

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Hanging loop a bit too big for my taste (to be removed!)

 but that was rare and I plan to cut it off anyway as I put my shirts on hangers.

Buttons

The buttons are sturdy - made of metal with four-hole secure stitching.  A couple of extra buttons are sewed into the fringe near the bottom of the shirt. 

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Sturdy metal buttons

 Collar

The collar is the only thing I would like to see improved...a couple of buttons to help hold its shape would be nice, but that may take away from the intention of Patagonia to have it easily flipped up for extra sun protection. 

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A bit floppy on the collar without buttons, but can be used for neck protection if you don't want to wear an umbrella like I do!

 I never trust collars for that, thanks to the oversized Tilley hat I use for work so can't really speak to that.

Adjustability

There is not much to adjust on this shirt, which is fine.  It can be worn comfortably tucked in

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Perfect amount of tuck in the pants so it doesn't work its way out

 or untucked (which I only did in evenings on the road for field work hopping out for dinner).

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Heading out to dinner after checking email and a short rest

Sleeves are comfortable full length or rolled up to below the elbow (I tend not to roll sleeves any higher than that - would switch to a t-shirt then).  The longer sleeve plackets allow rolling above the elbow if you prefer.

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Easily rolls up past the elbow and cuff adjusts to two settings

 Water Resistance/Breathability/Moisture

The 9 ounce shirt is made from lightweight and durable hemp/recycled polyester/spandex plain weave according to Patagonia.  I found it breathable in relatively cool weather (in the 60's and low 70's) when exerting myself, but it definitely held sweat more than a pure sunshirt would and I would not count on it to stay dry too long in a rainstorm. 

However, for a general work shirt (not for overnight backpacking etc) I think it fits the balance.

Warmth/Layering/Temperature

This is not a warm-season shirt.  I used this shirt in work conditions from the upper 20's to mid 70's (deg F). At the upper end of that range I was wanting to switch to a sun-shirt but soldiered on in the name of testing.  I would probably switch to a sun shirt in the mid to high-60s.

As part of a layering system, this shirt is warm and comfortable as mentioned above.

Construction/Durability/Abrasion

This shirt is well made, and I expect it to last. It is made of 4.5-oz 53% industrial hemp, 44% recycled polyester, and 3% spandex plain weave.  Washing is easy - care instructions say to machine wash warm (no bleach), and tumble dry low, then warm iron.  Frankly, I just threw it in with the rest of my laundry and never iron, and it still looks great.

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No noticeable wear after a full field season

 I have not noted any abrasion on the shirt after a solid four or five months of use in all sorts of conditions including traipsing through disturbed sites with briers etc. 

On inspection while writing this review, I cannot see any loose threads or worn areas.  Since I haven't used much hemp clothing in the past I will have to revisit this review after a couple more field seasons to update.

Features

I really like the pockets on this shirt.  While front pockets are often useless in field shirts (either too finicky or shallow to be of use or too difficult to open), the two pockets on the Light Farrier are deep enough to hold my glasses and other items if needed, including small notebooks. 

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Pencil and notebook contained!
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Here's what was in the chest pocket in the photo above

The icing on the cake for these pockets is the small pencil holder sleeve adjacent to the pocket, which for field work is priceless unless you are already wearing a field vest with multiple holders.  While most of my photos are from full field days requiring a field vest, when I had excessive pocket storage, there were many other occasions in the field and office visits where my trusty pencil and notebook came in handy.  I may never buy another work shirt without this feature.

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Front pocket with pencil sleeve

 The Light Farrier comes in a variety of colors including mangrove red, utility blue, buckhorn green (this test), stone blue, and huck tan.  All look great for work - not too bright and yet not dull.

The style of the shirt with pockets made it easy for me to visit a field site, and also stop by clients' offices for meetings the same day. As mentioned earlier, on easier days when it wasn't dirty or sweaty I often untucked it and went out for dinner from the hotel.

I really like the hemp construction and recycled polyester, and the fact that it is made in a Fair Trade Certified factory.  This means, according to Patagonia's website, that the people who made this product earned a premium for their labor.

Testing Conditions

I tested this shirt from October 2023 to March 2024 in a variety of conditions mentioned above.  Temperatures ranging from 20's to 70's (deg F), in sun, wind, and rain.  My work takes me into less than ideal terrain and vegetation including swamps with large thorny vines, and disturbed sites with brush and blackberry (there are a lot of good days in nice forests too!).

 

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Yes - I took the shirt through this and we both came out unscathed!

 Thanks to Trailspace and Patagonia for the opportunity to test this shirt, and discover my new favorite work shirt for Fall-Spring.  Apologies, though for the delay in getting to this review as it has been a busy work season!

Background

I have been working in the natural resource industry for 30 years, wearing similar medium weight work shirts in office and field.

Source: received for testing via the Trailspace Review Corps

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Specs

Price Current Retail: $89.00
Historic Range: $89.00
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