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Leather Jackets: Post Pictures of the Best You've Seen/Owned?

Discussion in 'Streetwear and Denim' started by RatherAnOddball, Jul 17, 2008.

  1. ChrisGold

    ChrisGold Well-Known Member

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    The timing of this conversation is ironic as I am getting ready to order a new black cafe racer for Fall delivery and so I took stock of my black jackets and it turns out I have 6. (I'm going to sell a few to cull the herd.) Black is just so easy, especially if you also own a motorcycle, you end up with more black than anything else. Brown takes much more thought... what will I wear it with? Which shade? Something that will become more complex in color or hold its original shade? Plus, the designers that are favored for leather jackets on SF don't offer much outside of black, and they are sold primarily as off-the-rack. Work wear, military and moto jackets are much more made to order, so you have some time to think about what you might do if you stray from black.
     
  2. ChrisGold

    ChrisGold Well-Known Member

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    Well done Ktown, the Board Racer is a very good slim design. Fit looks perfect.
     
  3. Synthese

    Synthese Darth Millennial

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    Can we call them the "naughties?"
     
    1 person likes this.
  4. HeavenResign

    HeavenResign Well-Known Member

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    Ktown would you mind taking a fit pic with the sleeves and jacket zipped up. Thinking about this as an alternative to the Vanson sf collab that never came to fruition

    Beautiful jacket though
     
    Last edited: Jul 18, 2015
  5. LA Guy

    LA Guy Opposite Santa Staff Member

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    Looks really good.

    ToJ is a funny phenomenon. A few hundred dollars more, and you have any number of choices (that Aero costs $1099, if anyone cares.) and significantly better quality, including in areas that you wouldn't see unless you have taken leather jackets apart and really broken them down - consistent tension, straight stitching, leather that is skived at the edges.)
     
  6. LA Guy

    LA Guy Opposite Santa Staff Member

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    Aero and Vanson are completely different companies with completely different styles. Truth be told, Vanson is much more of a "pure" motorcycle leather specialist, while Aero is a fashion company, albeit one that specializes mostly in historical repros. It sits in the same space as say, Himel Bros or The Real McCoy, but with a big catalogue of styles.

    If you go with the Board racer, you are probably going to come closer to a fashion jacket than you would with a Vanson, unless you have a custom pattern with custom details.
     
    1 person likes this.
  7. ChrisGold

    ChrisGold Well-Known Member

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    A month back I posted on another board some numbers on the Aero machinists, who make each jacket in its entirety after it's been cut. (and from seriously heavy leather in most cases) I always wondered who was actually making the TOJ jackets and how much experience they had in producing leathers at those price points. Julie, Aero's top machinist, has individually produced over 12,000 jackets, and there are three other women that are over 6,000. Julie's number is even more impressive when you realize she does most of the really complicated patterns (like RAF sheepskins) and jackets that are rarely produced. There's a good chance that she'll be making a certain Trucker very soon.
     
  8. HeavenResign

    HeavenResign Well-Known Member

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    Yeah, that's actually preferable to me - the vanson was going to be the junya moto pattern with the shoulders brought in like the daredevil, anything else from vanson I don't think would really work for me. I still love the zipper layout of the junya moto though, which would be the only thing I would see if I could change for the aero. But at this point it's not a dealbreaker
     
    Last edited: Jul 18, 2015
  9. LA Guy

    LA Guy Opposite Santa Staff Member

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    If it's the trucker I am thinking of, it would be awesome to have such a qualified set of hands on it, especially since I specifically asked for "the heaviest hide you can find", which means that it will be a beast to work with. I'm hoping for something 1.6mm or something insane like that, and working with leather like that is not easy, especially on things like armholes.
     
  10. ktown

    ktown Well-Known Member

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  11. ktown

    ktown Well-Known Member

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    I don't know how you guys handle the super thick leathers. My fit jacket was steerhide and that thing was almost uncomfortably thick and heavy for me. The jacket I posted above is in Italian Vicenza, one of their more malleable leathers.

    P.S. Many thanks to @ChrisGold and @proteinnerd for answering a bunch of questions for me via PM when I was planning out my order.
     
  12. UrbanComposition

    UrbanComposition Well-Known Member

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    I've been stopping by Johnson Leathers in Russian Hill where they make everything in-house. Pretty nice stuff with a huge choice of leathers, including a certain cafe racer jacket that fits great right off the rack. I'm wondering if I'm starting down an expensive road here...

    Fok, did you happen to stop by there when you were last in SF? Alan (the owner) is a really great guy. He showed me a varsity jacket they did for Comme de Garçon that was pretty amazing.
     
  13. ChrisGold

    ChrisGold Well-Known Member

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    It was my pleasure, I'm glad it turned out as well as it did. The Vincenza is a super hide and it's very easy to break in. The heavier leathers can take some time to get used to, but once you do, it's hard to describe... like a soft suit of armor once it's broken in.
     
  14. ChrisGold

    ChrisGold Well-Known Member

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    The good thing about Johnson is that if you can keep from buying a bunch of jackets from him, then you won't spend very much as their prices are more than reasonable. On the other hand, once you realize they can make almost anything, then keeping to one jacket might be an issue.
     
    1 person likes this.
  15. ChrisGold

    ChrisGold Well-Known Member

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    Yes, and you've got some serious layers to sew around those top pockets. I can't wait to see how it turns out. It's definitely a challenge to put that jacket together.
     
  16. sinnedk

    sinnedk Well-Known Member

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    congratz on the jacket!

    what is Italian Vicenza exactly?
     
  17. ChrisGold

    ChrisGold Well-Known Member

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    It's a vegetable tanned Italian horsehide, sourced jointly by Thurston and Goodwear, and now also available from Aero directly. (was briefly a Thurston exclusive with Aero) It's slightly lighter than Horween's CXL FQHH, more pliable and showing more grain right away. It has a ton of character and looks especially good on vintage styled jackets.
     
  18. sinnedk

    sinnedk Well-Known Member

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    awesome, i really dig that jacket, may ditch my Toj :p for it
     
    Last edited: Jul 18, 2015
  19. cyc wid it

    cyc wid it Well-Known Member

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    I think for most people, turning to a Johnson (or any other repro maker) for a fashion jacket isn't going to turn out very well. There's nobody to provide the taste/design required, much less spec-ing. If you want reprowear type stuff it's a good option, but most posters here are not capable of producing something good on their own.
     
    Last edited: Jul 18, 2015
  20. LA Guy

    LA Guy Opposite Santa Staff Member

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    As important as physical comfort is psychological comfort. I take my clothing through a beating, and not only that, but I feel constricted if I feel like I can break my clothes. So for me, it's either heavy denim and heavier leathers, or abrasion resistant tech fabrics that have a ridiculous amount of stretch in them so I can literally do a fly jump kick and have room to stretch. Or things made from military tents that are reinforced at all the stress points with additonal material. Or materials that are made to be grabbed and pulled with all the strength a 280 lb man (about the biggest guy I've sparred with) who is trying to separate your arm from your shoulder. I hear about these guys who squat down, and split the seam of their pants. To me, the very fact that the pants could split that way makes me uncomfortable wearing them. Even on non-jeans, I asked for a felled seam on the seat and crotch.

    tldr; I dunno - you just get used to it, and after that, anything light (for me, anything under 3.5 ounces or so) feels uncomfortably flimsy.

    Yeah, I was there, and had a jacket adjusted. Nice guy. Alan.

    I'm going to have him make me a suit of armor for my next project. I am going to get 4.5 ounce leather sleeves with zips put on a 21 ounce denim vest, and then have the yoke and front panels of the denim vest covered in the same leather.

    I dress for the zombie apocalypse. Either it's so tough that the meanest zombie just gives up, or it's made so that I can run at top speed away from those brain eaters.
     

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