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Vintage Clothing Trends

Leather Jacket Coolness?

Leather Jacket Coolness?
Leather Jackets. Can a leather jacket make you cool? Let’s dive deep into this. We all know the history of the leather jacket and if you’re short on your history lessons - here’s a very brief leather timeline. Leather jackets arrived as military-wear and carried over into post-world war fashion as a work wear staple. They kept you warm. They kept you safe when you crashed your motorcycle. They held your stuff. Irvin Schott’s foresight thrust the jacket into motorcycle culture by selling his jackets in Harley Davidson dealerships. Leather designs evolved over the years - 1930’s jacket cuts are recognizable as are the 1950’s, 60s, 70s, 80s etc. Many leather designers actually started out making shoes and boots and were able to capitalize on the huge market boom for leather jackets. We will argue that the leather jacket is the single most importantly appropriated garment that the fashion world has ever seen. No other piece of wearable anything has been given so much attention, veneration, fame and exposure as the simple leather jacket. Everyone - movie stars, musicians, sports personalities, models, politicians and activists all wear them. And they’re all cool. Herbert Huncke? Very Cool. (Oh, Google him!) Brando? Cool. McQueen? Cool. Ramones? Cool. Lennon? Cool. Muhammed Ali? Cool. Debbie Harry? Cool. Madonna? Cool. Kate Moss? Cool. Calvin Klein? Cool. Alexander Wang? Cool. Bill Clinton? Well…. Leather jacket/saxophone cool. (Barack and Hillary wear them, too.) Etc. Etc. Etc. You see, the leather jacket is multiple things. While there certainly is no magical leather coat that provides super hero like protection or invisibility, there is however an edge, a degree of protection that comes with that stitched and zippered jacket that will however, give you a cool attitude. Undoubtedly, the jacket is insulation. Leather jackets imply protection from danger, from the harshness of fast life. After all, they were introduced to keep soldiers safe in battle and evolved to protect battles on stage and screen and the streets. So while the piece itself is just a jacket, what it embodies and represents with it’s history and exposure is without a doubt, very, very cool. Continue reading

What's the value in a Vintage T-Shirt?

What's the value in a Vintage T-Shirt?

What is a Vintage T Shirt? (I mean, really.)

So you’re into vintage? We’re going to assume you probably fall into the a late GEN-X category since you’re still digging for those killer vintage scores.

You probably started out as a youngster watching classic shows, subconsciously identifying with eras that tapped into your soul. The 1970s just seemed so cool. Chicks had feathered hair and wore bellbottoms. Dudes wore boots and corduroy and rock t shirts. They drove cool cars. They did what they wanted. Life was simpler. And you understood that, (well, you kind of understood it). Lets skip past the 80’s - that’s a conversation for another time - and slam right into the 90’s when grunge rock had oozed into the mainstream. You wore flannel and converse and shredded Levi’s 501’s. You bought CDs. Or maybe you were too young for all that and the emo wave hit you during the late 90s. Did you wear girls jeans and vintage kids size XL t-shirts? If that was you, thats fine. We understand. Every generation has their youthful peak and it doesn’t much matter whether you stood in line to see Black Sabbath at the palladium or stood outside of some church hall to watch at a shoe gaze band.

You see, the point here is where the iconography falls in the spectrum of your formative, teenage years. And, for you reading this, you know that the number one item in every vintage wardrobe is (and was) your favorite vintage t-shirt.

The vintage t-shirt is an icon. It’s not just a thing. And it’s certainly not just a shirt. (John Cusack did not simply hold a “boombox” above his head in the rain…)

Vintage Tees mean something because they basically fall into two categories:

1. It was Given to you and/or Stolen from your EX.
i.e. You totally stole his favorite Soundgarden T Shirt to sleep in and kept it for years even after the stupid break up. Yes, you did. And we hope you still have it.)

2. You found it in some obscure/dumpy/thrift-hole and considered it the score of a lifetime. There are two categories within this section -

First - While looking for kitschy wall art at the local Value-Village you decided to peruse the mens clothing bins. Inside said bins was a original, 1978 Neil Young Tour tee with a whopping price tag of .99 Cents. You forgot about your art.

Second - after scouring all 7 Goodwill locations in your hometown in a day-long thrift marathon, you finally found your perfect irony-laced-somewhat-smart-assed-goofy-logo tee from bank/sports team/elks lodge that probably said something like “We Finance Love Affairs” or “I’m So Horney, The Crack of Dawn Looks Good.” You wore that shirt every day, to every show and through every mosh pit until you - (Choose honestly!)

A. Got a real job and were forced to grow up.
B. Got a girlfriend who didn’t get your taste in music/films/fashion.
C. Got a little fat for it to fit.
D. Wore it out.

You see, those of us who lust after what seemingly looks like dirty old clothing are just reliving the same sentimental uniform attachments that every generation has had. The leather jacket, the poodle skirt, the flapper dress and the varsity sweater all relished in their eras. For us, the T-Shirt was king.

So now, by todays measurement, anything produced before 1999 is vintage. Which is a scary piece of context as most of you were either in or just out of high school at that time. Here’s something to try at your next trip to Whole Foods - dig out one of those old tees and wear it. See how many nods and looks you’ll get. It’ll give you a nice feeling that there are more of you out there than you think, and those times were the greatest, fashion choices and all.

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