Sunday, March 11, 2012

Weekend Wear: The Biker Jacket

Here in balmy 85 degree LA, I tend to forget what season it is supposed to be.  Then we get a one or two day cold snap (a chilly 56 degrees!) and I remember that it's winter!  So for some seasonally-appropriate weekend wear that is Lezsquire approved, let's take a look at a Lezsquire favorite: the biker jacket.

Joan Jett in Lewis Leathers (source)
A brief history on the leather biker jacket:  Did you know that the original bikers who wore leather jackets were former fighter pilots?  After retiring a need for speed and dangerous activity still pulsed in their blood, so they donned their leather flight jackets and took to the highways on motorcycles - perhaps the closest grounded approximation to hurdling through the air at hundreds of miles per hour.  How cool is that?  

I have a deep and abiding love of the biker jacket.  Though I am a professional Lezsquire by day, I have been known to occasionally moonlight as lead singer/guitarist for an all-female rock band (a calling which has sadly been put on hold since moving to LA).  I also have a slight motorcycle fixation.  The leather jacket works double duty as pure rock and roll and a wink and a nod at our lesbian leatherdyke foremothers. 

The classic American biker jacket is the Schott Perfecto.  This is the black leather jacket that was worn by the likes of Marlon Brando and James Dean.  I have to admit, I'm not as big of a fan of the Schott Perfecto as one might guess.  Reason being the wraparound waist belt and the tiny front pocket that diverts my attention from any of the other magnificence of the jacket (seriously, that tiny front pocket is bothersome).  On the bright side, the stars on the epaulets are awesome and the jacket is an American classic.  

Schott Perfecto - Available at
In my opinion, the ultimate biker jacket is unequivocally the Lewis Leathers Lightning.  The Lightning is a British take on the classic American leather biker jacket.  It's a more streamlined while still classic "biker" look because it eliminates the weird tiny front pocket and replaces the large wraparound belt with 2 smaller side belts on each side. This allows for adjusting the fit around the waist without any awkward dangling.  Also, one of my favorite features about the Lewis Leathers jackets is the red inner lining and it's contrast with the black leather.  Pure sex.  Worn by members of The Clash and the Sex Pistols, this jacket also appeases Lezsquire's love of British punk.  (Leather non-wearers take note, Lewis makes a canvas version.)

Lewis Leather Lightning - available at
Also - how awesome is this - if you visit their London store or send in your measurements, Lewis Leathers will literally create a made-to-measure leather jacket just for you!  Sadly, I am not yet at the point in life where I can in good conscience spend over $1,000 on a leather jacket.  My biker jacket is a vintage (and probably knock-off - the brand labels are missing) take on the Lightning from the late 70s that I got off of ebay.

Kate Moss in Lewis Leathers (via)
I suppose I'll know I've really made it in life when I book a flight to London to be measured for the jacket of my dreams.  It's good to have ambition.

Looking for the perfect leather jacket for you and want Lezsquire's advice?  Curious to learn more about the history of the motorcycle jacket?  (I seriously know an absurd amount about this stuff.)  Submit your verdict below!


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  4. Wonderful coats however red 1 picture is too good.Lovely jacket men.nice post love it.
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