Living For Leather (and Pleather)

I’m a big fan of leather. Don’t get any ideas, I’m talking about trousers and jackets here, not some kind of kinky undercrackers. Doesn’t even have to be real leather anymore because there are a lot of great pleather alternatives these days that no longer look like they are fashioned out of a Tesco’s heavy duty bin bag. I wonder if my love of leather stems from my teenage years. Like those women who insist on having the same hairstyle and make-up their whole life because it suited them when they were 16. I feel the same about leather..

I was big into rock when I was 16, before raving took over my life the following year. Before I was in the back of car, clad in Kickers and Dungarees,  hurtling around the M25 in search of the Spiral Tribe, I was dressed in black and going to gigs at the Marquee Club. I bought my first leather biker jacket at Kensington Market with the money I won from a textile art competition (caravan curtains with ice cream motives, genius). It cost £50 and was my pride and joy for years to come.

Later on in life, when I moved to London and went to fashion college, I bought a pair of leather trousers from H&M. That was big money on the very small salary I earned from my part time job at the Hammersmith Apollo. I got a LOT of wear out of them. Pretty sure I never washed them either. I wore those leather trousers to a job interview at a Heavy Metal Record label, along with a vest! A vest to a job interview? Yes. It was the 90’s, we wore vests a lot!  I was hoping if I looked the part they would overlook my lack of experience. Totally worked. I was there for 4 years bluffing my way through Death/Prog/Harcore/Emo/Goth/Delete as appropriate.

Today, I still wear leather. Who says at 47, you can’t? Not me. Here’s what I found for you this week…

LEATHER JACKET

If you can find the right one, a black leather biker jacket will last you forever. They never go out of style and you can wear them with anything. So my advice would be, don’t skimp on this one. Go for the best you can afford, as quality is key. My £50 first leather jacket was not top quality, I also painted the New Model Army logo on the back of it, so it lost its appeal a touch once I decided I was more into Soul To Soul and Adamski. I wish I still had it though, just for old times sake.

1. Jigsaw Clean Leather Jacket
2. H&M Green Floral Print Shirt Dress
3. ME + EM Dot Swing Dress
4. Boden Emily Navy and White Trainers 

LEATHER JOGGERS

A friend of mine recently asked the group chat if at 42, she was too old for a pair of pleather joggers. Of course not! I would say you are never too old for anything, if you like it, then wear it. What’s the worst that can happen? Maybe some teeangers may give you the side eye, but what do they know? P/Leather joggers are great alternative to your regular jersey tracky bottoms. Still keeps it casual, but elevates the look a bit.

1. On The Rise Parisienne Sweatshirt
2. Maison Labiche Bonjour Stripe Top
3. H&M Short Hooded Jacket
4. Mint Velvet Black Faux Leather Joggers
5. Converse All Star 70s Hi Tops 

LEATHER SKIRT

Something about a leather skirt just screams sexy sophistication to me. I’m getting those Gillian Anderson vibes again. Wear with a pussy bow blouse, a decent blazer and (whisper it) a pair of heels for work or anytime you’re feeling in a high class bizness mood. Of course you could also dress it down with a pair of Vans and a band T Shirt, but I’m into the smarter look with this one.

1. Kin Tie Neck Yellow Check Top
2. TopShop Black Herringbone Blazer (20% off TopShop today use code LEAP20) 
3. The Outnet Each x Other Faux Leather Skirt
4. Azurina Valencia Super Soft Clutch
5. Whistles Hayes Suede Block Heel Sandals 

LEATHER CULOTTES

So, this is essentially the item of clothing that inspired this post. I bought these Mango Culottes last week and I can see myself wearing them all through Spring. They will go with all of my trainers. I can wear with a sweatshirt now and knee high socks now, like I did this week, and with a denim shirt or striped T Shirt and a touch of fake tan on the ankles when the weather gets warmer. And the best thing is, they will just wipe clean! I love not having to wash things.

1. Anine Bing Ramona Sweatshirt
2. Hermosa London Midi All Rounder Bag
3. Mango Leather Culottes
4. H&M Checked Shirt Jacket
5. Veja Roraima B Mesh Mid Top Trainers 

LEATHER TROUSERS

I genuinely think anyone can pull off a pair of classic leather trousers. These ones from M&S are pretty much perfect. Slim fit, but not too slim and ankle length. Leather trousers need to show a bit of ankle or they become a bit Suzi Quattro/Bonnie Tyler. Also, I should have mentioned sooner. NEVER go double leather with these. Unless you want people shouting ‘Turn around Bright Eyes’ to you in the street. Sidebar, these John Lewis Trainers that I have but sold out last summer are now back in stock for this season. They were probably my most worn trainers last summer as they are SO comfortable.

1. H&M Amour Printed T Shirt
2. By Pollyanna LOVE Sweatshirt
3. M&S Cropped Leather Trousers
4. Hush Gillian Trench Coat
5. John Lewis Edna Flatform Trainers 

You know what’s also good about leather? It’s waterproof (sort of) so perfect for this godforsaken weather we seem to be stuck with.

K x