Trend Alert: Light Technical Outerwear

Americans' penchant for mobility, travel and activity means their apparel has to keep up with their busy schedules. For the most active demographics, including athletes, college students and those with an affinity for the outdoors, lightweight technical outerwear – those items that provide warmth without the bulk – is an ideal investment.

Common attributes of performance outerwear include moisture-management technology, sealed seams, built-in stretch, water-repellent treatment and flexible, breathable layers. Retailers like Oakley, Patagonia and Eddie Bauer cater to numerous demographics looking for a fashionable piece without the bulk, and you can bet the promotional apparel vendors are catering to them as well. With slim fits and enviable performance qualities, lightweight performance outerwear makes a great canvas for showcasing embroidered logos and brands.

 Charles River Apparel currently offers the new Axis Soft Shell jacket that features a lightweight and flexible single-layer soft shell and naturally breathable and water-resistant fabric. "Right now, we're seeing high demand for these jackets that reduce bulk while still featuring warmth properties," says Kate Souza, public relations specialist for Charles River. "Demand for this type of jacket is on the rise and will continue to be a hot item in the future." Popular markets include hunters, hikers, campers, college students, travel and especially corporate wear.