(Image: Even Callan can’t resist a look at Aaron’s new shirt!)
When you think of the best looking darts shirts, your mind jumps to Ricky Evans, with his black, blue and pink Target shirt, or Wayne Mardle, with his unique Hawaiian style shirt. For me, the new Loxley Aaron Beeney shirts trump them all, taking, in my personal opinion, the crown for best looking darts shirt in the game at the moment!
A new addition to the PDC circuit in 2020, having won his two year Tour Card at Q-School Day 3, Aaron looks to turn heads in his time at the PDC, and with new sponsor Loxley Darts at his side, he has every chance of establishing himself on the tour, as he looks to progress up the rankings to retain his status as a PDC professional. His new shirts, developed by Loxley, will look to help him do just that, with two stylish and unique designs tailor made for Aaron, to his exact specifications.
A key theme for the shirt is “Yin and Yang”, an Ancient Chinese philosophy that Aaron revolves his life around. The philosophy itself is a concept of dualism – opposing forces create balance in the world, complimenting and interconnecting in order to rise to each other. The symbol has been utilised within Aaron’s shirts, with the colour scheme matching up on both shirts, with each taking a primary colour for the symbol itself (one shirt is primarily black – to symbolise Yin, whereas the other shirt is primarily white – to symbolise Yang). On the back of both shirts, the Yin and Yang symbol has been overlaid, with dots of the opposing colour in each colour section. This reflects how neither force can exist without the other, with Yin ingrained within Yang, and vice-versa.
Both shirts feature a triangular pattern design, with varying darkness of colour creating a more defined effect within the shirt. This theme remains consistent throughout both shirts, drawing inspiration from the shirts worn by 2020 PDC World Matchplay champion, Dimitri van den Bergh, with his diamond design. The only parts of the shirt not not featuring the triangular design are the collar and zip, which are simply plain white/black, the opposite of the colour of the main body of the shirt.
The sleeves are coloured, in contrast to the rest of the shirt – with the right sleeve coloured red, and the left sleeve coloured blue. This has been designed to keep consistent with the tattoos on Aaron’s arm, which further utilise these colours, creating the effect of a one-piece shirt, with the tattoos acting as a continuation of the sleeves. Along the side of the shirt, a trim has been added in the same colour as the sleeves, running all the way to the bottom of the shirt.
Unlike the other shirts in the Loxley range, Aaron’s shirt soley features Loxley’s logo on the left of the shirt (from the wearer’s perspective), though with plenty of space for additional sponsorship patches to be added on the torso and sleeves of the shirt.
On the rear of the shirts, the same consistent design from the front has been continued, with designs added to truly personalise the shirt to better represent Aaron, and what he stands for. At the top of the shirt, Aaron’s surname has been added in a quirky, freehand font matching his style of tattoo. Reminiscent of vines on a plant – something Aaron has tattooed on his left sleeve, the design helps to reflect Aaron’s attitude, and presents himself in the best way possible. The bottom of the shirts feature the aforementioned Yin and Yang symbol, with only the alternate colour of the shirt shown. The colour of the shirt itself within the symbol simply blends into the shirt, furthering the philosophy that both Yin and Yang rise to each other, and compliment each other within.
I found the shirts to be extremely comfortable and light to wear, owing to the material they are made from; 100% polyester. This means that the shirt will continue to retain its shape, colour and style every time it is worn and used, and that, thanks to the material, it will keep you both cool and dry in the heat of a tough match – just what Aaron requires as a PDC professional. With so many bright and bold colours, I expected some overrunning of colours during the manufacturing phase, and so was delighted to find that under close examination, no such overrun was evident.
Appearance: 10.5/10 – The black shirt? 10/10. The white shirt? 11/10. For me, these are the two best shirts in PDC darts at the moment. But personally, the white shirt is on a different level. The red and blue sleeves compliment the white body of the shirt perfectly, coupled with the black logo and text… I cannot fault it. My hat goes off to all involved in designing these shirts – a true work of art!
Feel: 9/10 – As I’ve said with all Loxley shirts, the main body of the shirt is un-faultable. The shirts feel light and thin, keeping you cool in the middle of a match, while offering no restriction over the shoulders while throwing – a common occurrence in some dart shirts. My only complaint, again, is the collar, which can feel tough when first worn, which can provide a distraction while throwing. After a couple washes, the collar tends to soften up, but for those initial few uses, expect some very slight discomfort.
Quality: 10/10 – Excluding what I mentioned in the ‘Feel’ section, these shirts were of optimum quality. After analysing each shirt closely, I could find no loose threads, no tears or rips, no overrunning or faded colours… the strictness of quality control from Loxley means that every shirt to come through your letterbox will be in pristine condition, ready for you to take straight into your next darts match when called upon.
Value for Money: 10/10 – These shirts both retail at a reasonable £37.95, which is very reasonable for a player branded shirt. While expensive considering basic Target, Harrows or Winmau shirts can be purchased for around £24.99, for a player branded shirt, and one of this style and quality, you’ll be hard pushed to find a better deal on the market. Should you wish for a signed shirt, for just £7 extra you can have exactly that! Hand signed by Aaron, these would make an ideal addition to any collection – I reckon they wouldn’t look half-bad framed either!
Update: The price of these shirts has been reduced to an incredible £34,95 which comfortably sits top of the value for money pack.
I’d like to say a huge thank you again to Loxley for sending these amazing shirts out to try, and to review – I really appreciate the continued support with my reviewing career! Best of luck to Aaron in the upcoming PDC Winter Series – keep an eye out for future blogs, as I’ll be covering Aaron’s – as well as Matthew Edgar and Ryan Searle’s – progress throughout the tournaments.
Author – Joe Reid