Leather weather: how to rock this winter classic
Cody Chesnutt has some advice for you this winter - you can do anything you want because you look good in leather.
Much like animal print, faux fur and knit, leather and faux leather are fabrics that make a long-awaited return to retail shelves and wardrobes as the temperatures drop.
Issue 1 boutique's Brooke Raven says she's already flaunting her two wintertime designer leather staples - a timeless purse and comfortable boots.
"For winter my everyday bag is my Dylan Kain Rodriguez bag. It's black with silver hardware,” Brooke says.
"It wears well, it lasts a long time, it softens and moulds to your body. It's developed a beautiful patina over time - that's the term for a way a natural fabric or fibre wears.
"My other staple would be leather boots. This season I'm wearing an Alias Mae combat boot.
"Leather shoes get softer with time, become more slouched and worn-in looking.”
If you're looking to add some edge to your appearance with the sturdy textile, the first step is choosing between leather or a vegan counterpart.
Many leather appearing garments on display in shop windows will actually be polyurethane, vinyl or PVC faux leather, which are less expensive, human-made alternatives designed to offer the same feel as animal hide.
Real leather is made from cow skin and can take years to produce, hence the standard $300-plus price tag on a leather bag or jacket.
Leather and faux leather both have their pros and cons. Animal lovers tend to prefer the imitation cloth, however there can be a lot of environmentally unfriendly chemicals used in its production. Natural leather is a durable material that can last up to 20 years, but this usually entails upkeep with cleaning and conditioning.
Brooke says it's excellent to see both options available in high quality in retail outlets everywhere.
"I think it's fantastic that in the market in Australia now, we have an option to be able to source a faux product that performs in the same way,” she says.
Whether you're team real deal or replica, Brooke says you can't go wrong with a timeless biker jacket to add some rock star vibes to your facade.
"The classic biker jacket is still very much a thing,” Brooke says. "If you've got a good leather jacket you can wear it as an 18-year-old or 60-year-old. You could have worn it in 1984 or 2004.
"Invest in a good quality staple jacket that's quite classic, without too many bells and whistles, and you can style it back with silk slip dress for nightwear or denim and a T-shirt for a daytime look.”