Leather is a premium material and is considered a long-term asset mainly due to its durability. Leather jackets as a whole have many aspects, starting from different hides and skins to various styles, colours, hardware, details and closure. Choosing the right leather for yourself can be hard as there are many mistakes individuals make, when shopping for leather jackets. This is a guide on mistakes to avoid before buying a leather jacket.
Getting the Right Quality of Leather
As we all know leather has numerous qualities and finishes. Starting from the highest; full-grain leather to the lowest bonded leather. Faux leather though popular; is not even close to real leather as it is synthetic. Full-grain leather is the best of all. But everything comes with a price as our ancestors once said. The full-grain being the finest and best is expensive. It is more durable than top grain which is softer, or genuine leather, or even bonded leather. Bonded leather being the cheapest of all as it is a combination of both synthetic and real leather. Genuine leather which is mostly used as low-grade leather. You can easily identify the quality just by the smell and touching the surface of the leather, is third in line on the basis of quality. The fireproofing and an unsmooth drift of your fingers can easily identify the quality if no labels are present. When we talk about the finishes of the leather, there are many leather finishes available in the market as of now, which distinguishes leather from one and other. After that, the craftsmanship of the jacket needs to be checked closely as most leather goods are handmade for utmost quality. Lastly, a premium quality of hardware play a vital role too, when opting for the perfect leather jacket. These main points combined together cover the overall quality of the leather that the individual needs to go through thoroughly before buying a leather jacket.
Choosing the Right Hide
Real leather comes from animals and every animal has its unique proposition. Choosing the right skin for yourself is what also matters as every leather is different in nature. Like if you prefer your jacket to be soft then you should go with lambskin or calfskin. If you want it to be tough and bulky, cowhide and buffalo are good options. If you want it to be textured and embossed then crocodile or snake leather is to go for. However, being exotic, means more expensive.
Look for the Right Colour
Colour basically defines a lot about a person’s personality, choosing the right color in outerwear or apparel is basically the first thing that comes in the appearance of an individual. Black and brown are known to be universal colours that suit almost everyone, but there are countless coloured leather jackets available in the market. When you want to choose between those colours there are various things you need to look out for.
If we talk about the interaction between age and the right colour to wear, there might be and also might not be one. The colour choice is totally dependent upon the wearer’s nature but if we go deeper into the choice factually, then for youngsters, the brighter as well as bolder colours are to go for, for the working age the monochromatic shades work best. And for the elderly the earthy tones are the go to. However, just as leather jackets have evolved tremendously over the years, so too have the links between vibrant colours and age. Case in point, classy, colourful 40+ individuals looking just as stylish as those who are in their 20s sporting classic to trendy leather jackets in bold, bright colours.
The height of the individual does matter when it comes to choosing the colour of the leather jacket, earthy colours often work best with individuals having a tall height, like charcoal grey, burgundy, tan, brown etc. For people with a relatively shorter height, monochromatic and analogous colour schemes work well.
Complexion is another aspect to consider while choosing an asset for your wardrobe. First determine which skin tone you possess, pale, medium/olive or dark.
If you have pale skin, surround yourself with darker coloured leather jackets. Colours like shades of blue, grey and charcoal. Or deep shades of maroon, rust or tan.
For medium complexions, warmer tones have a variety of colours to choose from, which includes; darker or brighter shades of most hues itself. The lighter shades work best with warmer complexions. Last, but not least for the darker tones, bold and brighter colours are the go-to. Brighter colours like azure blue, cherry and red look fantastic.
Look for the Right Fit
Most people we see wearing a leather jacket are either wearing one loose enough to fit a whole other man inside or tight enough to make his breathing difficult. The right fit for a leather jacket is, as it is outerwear it should just fit like a glove. Not too tight and not too loose. Some types of leather have a degree of stretch that enables it to expand a bit over time, having the jacket roomy is not what you want. The excessive fabric apart from the body shouldn’t be more than 2 to 3 inches as the jacket needs to feel like it’s hugging you closely. The sleeves should be just above the base of your thumb. The jackets with a good fit, need to be able to house a layer of two inside, especially during winter. As some individuals may choose to wear something chunkier inside. Much like a knit sweater.
Getting the Right Length
The length of the jacket does a great job when it comes to completing the overall look of the leather jacket, the jacket should be long enough to hit your belt. Not above it or even below it. For example, in long coats, the best length of the jacket is right on top of the knee cap. For overcoats the right length is 3 inches below the knee cap.
Have It Custom Made
If you have a unique type of body, maybe long arms or a broad chest and the basic sizes do not fit you right, then don’t binge on buying what you see, take out time and invest in the right jacket. Get the jacket made custom just like you want it. Right for your body, too bulky, too skinny or anything. Having the perfect fit is what matters. Aside from fit, custom leather jackets also allow you to choose any colour you’d like, any type of design, print, detailing, all to give you something truly one of a kind.
Getting the Right Closure
Jackets mostly come with 2 closure options, a buttoned and a zippered one. If you are buying the jacket for winters and its performance in keeping you warm, then you should always go for a zippered closure as it seals the insides, whereas in a buttoned closure the chilly winds can easily escape the jacket and make you feel chilly. The buttoned closure is the most suitable for springs, the main reason they are mostly used in lightweight leather jackets.
Weather You Want the Hood or Not
Most leather jackets do not come with hoods but many come with a detachable hood. Having a permanent hood is never the right choice as leather is a material that is not only worn as outerwear. It is also a style piece that completes the ensemble. Buy a jacket with a detachable hood, so you can enjoy the hood when the heavy winds reach you outside, or enjoy the jacket when you just want to go out on a calming, spring day.
Getting a Jacket from the Right Place
As said earlier the qualities of leather are numerous and so are the quantities of frauds. So find a place that is legit and has good reviews before spending $300 on faux leather.
Leather being a premium material needs to be sought with high attention, most buyers overlook these factors before buying any leather jackets that would be with them for a great number of years. If one is investing good money he should opt for something that is ‘value for money.’ The quality, size and hide are the main aspects to look for before buying a leather jacket. Building up on this foundation; enter colour, style, fit and function of a leather jacket that brings out the best in you.