Brought into the world in the 1950s through film, the leather jacket has evolved from a “greaser” look into a stylish fashion must have that’s both functional and edgy. An alternative to heavy coats and jackets, the leather jacket is unique in that it can keep your warm without the bulk. The style of the leather jacket has morphed into a more fitted version for women and a more tailored version for men.

Most Southern California weather doesn’t often require much protection from the cold. Hence, the leather jacket serves more as a fashion accessory than a necessity. For this reason, styles vary depending on current trends.

Mike & Chris Holiday '09 Collection  http://www.mikeandchris.com/#/collections/40/

Mike & Chris Holiday '09 Collection http://www.mikeandchris.com/#/collections/40/

Although those experiencing winter in New York would not likely step outside in a cropped leather jacket, So-Cal folk can pair this cropped, edgy style with a party dress and head out for a night on the town. Other styles include zip ups, overlapping versions, belted styles and the hooded style, which includes an attached hoodie.

http://www.cainefashion.co.uk/images/samples/Women/woodland/wd_hoodie_brn_exp.jpg

http://www.cainefashion.co.uk/images/samples/Women/woodland/wd_hoodie_brn_exp.jpg

http://fashionbombdaily.com/wp-content/uploads/2009/04/ciara-leather-jacket.gif

http://fashionbombdaily.com/wp-content/uploads/2009/04/ciara-leather-jacket.gif

The great thing about leather jackets is that they can be dressed up or dressed down depending on the occasion and your mood. Pair it with sneakers and you’ve got a casual look. Put some heels on and the leather jacket takes on an heir of sophistication.

For men, the leather jacket has become an essential fashion accessory that has the ability to take a rather boring outfit of a typical t-shirt and jeans, and transform it into a sexy, put-together, edgy and interesting look.

http://www.timberland.com/product/index.jsp?productId=3793740

http://www.timberland.com/product/index.jsp?productId=3793740

For women, the season is important for determining which leather jacket is “in.” The Mike & Chris collection shows that the wrinkled and zip-up looks are the top options for this winter. Although, if you don’t have either of these styles in your closet, any leather jacket would fit with the trend, if worn right.

Leather jackets are so functional that everybody needs to have at least one in their closet.

However, leather goods are expensive. Leather jackets can run from $300 to infiinity, depending on designer and quality. A more wallet-friendly alternative is pleather, or fake leather. Now, pleather does have the reputation of looking cheap. However, if you’ve been to the mall lately, you will have noticed that today’s pleather is a far cry from the plastic-looking, shiny mirrored pleather of bygone fashion eras.

Pleather DON'T http://shop.guess.com/ProductDetails.aspx?style=YI229MU657ℑ=YI229MU657-JBLK&mr:trackingCode=099EE69F-3484-DE11-8C0A-000423C27502&mr:referralID=NA#

Pleather DON'T http://shop.guess.com/ProductDetails.aspx?style=YI229MU657ℑ=YI229MU657-JBLK&mr:trackingCode=099EE69F-3484-DE11-8C0A-000423C27502&mr:referralID=NA#

Although it’s true that the less expensive the pleather, the more noticeably inauthentic it is going to look , pleather doesn’t have to cost too much to be a great looking knock-off.

Retailers such as ForeverXXI will probably not be your best bet. Retailers such as Bebe and Arden B., however, often offer great looking pleather without the leather pricetag. For men, a good pleather look can be found at SlickFit, Urban Outfitters and similar stores.

Pleather DO http://www.ardenb.com/catalog/product.jsp?categoryId=137&productId=24623

Pleather DO http://www.ardenb.com/catalog/product.jsp?categoryId=137&productId=24623

Shop with your eyes on the label. Check what the jacket is made of and if you find a good deal on a real leather jacket, don’t let it slip through your fingers.

**Miss Alice inspired me to write this blog**