Its almost Fall & my cold weather dread has set in already. Being cold makes me less active. I think twice before going outdoors / exercising. A cold home makes the chores like cooking and cleaning a pain. I could be wrapped up in a bundle and cozy on a couch, but I have a strong dislike for lounging. The only good part about Fall is the clothes – leather jackets, wool sweaters, cashmere scarves, … When you live in California, there is no bad weather. Just the lack of right clothing. My aides for transition weather – leather jackets.

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The Philosophy

Leather jacket is more than an item of clothing.  ( Like heels? You need to learn to walk in them or else you will look like a fashion victim unable to walk in her shoes. A leather jacket can easily overpower the person wearing it. ) Leather jackets are intimate. They mould to their master. The more wear they get, the better they look. You need to find the right one and learn to wear it well. Finding the right one is a treasure hunt of sorts. And finding the perfect one is like coming home. That is only one side of the story.

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Can people who can’t even ride a bike wear one ?

The recipients personality and how it’s worn, contributes to the stylish quotient. They look great on some women and sit on top of others. A cry baby/unadventurous soul wearing the most perfect one, is not nearly as stylish as a thrifted moto jacket on a daring woman. Who wears it and how it’s worn, makes a world of a difference. But much like everything, it has been democratized. The ones who wear yoga pants all the time are the ones who never do yoga. Hipster clothing can be found at Urban Outfitters. Leather jackets went from reserved-for-the-renegade to a must have for everyone. And I sort of have mixed feeling about this transition. I want it to keep its original badass-meets-cool element. But I wear them, so I should not complain. Before they became biker uniform, they were exclusively reserved for the men in the army. Sometimes, homogenization of style is a good thing.

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The worn in

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“Long hair minimizes the need for barbers; socks can be done without; one leather jacket solves the coat problem for years; suspenders are superfluous.” – Albert Einstein. 

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Very few materials get better with age. Leather is on top of my list. No two leather jackets remain the same with wear. They patina and personalize to the wearer. They continue to remain functional . They don’t wrinkle easily and are travel friendly. You can trample on them and they surprisingly look better after the beating. Depending on the choice of leather, they can be very insulating. They are easy to clean but look good dirty. Minor discolorations are welcome. It was the choice of clothing for pilots, travellers, the bikers, the rockstars and the rebels. Today, you can go into any store and purchase the tough look. The fashion bloggers of course wear the shiny new ones, preferably from Rick Owens, Balenciaga or Acne. I like the worn in ones. It took me a year to grow into mine and make it perfect for me.

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Ode to the ‘badass’.

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“Owning cool Leather Jacket more rewarding than raising Children” – The Onion

SEATTLE—A study released Thursday by the Pacific Parenting Institute found that owning a seriously cool leather jacket is significantly more fulfilling than raising a child to adulthood. “Our research suggests that the feeling of purchasing a really amazing leather jacket and then proudly watching over time as it gradually becomes broken in and forms perfectly to your body is, by a very wide margin, more rewarding than conceiving a child and then raising it from birth to 18 years of age,” said lead researcher Dr. Marcus Aiello, adding that it was on average 63 percent more gratifying to regularly condition a leather jacket that had awesome vertical zippers on the sleeves than it was to read nightly bedtime stories to a son or daughter. “When study participants also obtained just the right pair of faded jeans and some vintage harness motorcycle boots to go with their badass leather jacket, these enormous feelings of pride and satisfaction reached levels that caused similar feelings stemming from attending a child’s college graduation to become statistically irrelevant.” Aiello also noted that the average cost of raising a child is estimated to be $400,000, an amount researchers pointed out was much higher than the price of a mint-condition 1971 supercharged Plymouth Barracuda.

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I was going to write a love letter. But leave it to the Onion to put me in place with its mockery. Thanks for breaking my bubble. Ofcourse, this is all meant to be taken with some humour and a pinch of salt. Its just a jacket. Or is it ?  Yes, there is the bigger picture. Clothes are meant to be nothing more than props. And a leather jacket is a very good prop.