The essential leather jacket

leather jacket essential acne studios

Everlane u-neck t-shirt, Dr Denim skinny jeans, Acne Studios leather jacket

By far my favourite of the lot – when it comes to essentials, that is – is a well worn in leather jacket. It’s one of those quintessential pieces that I feel no woman should be without, whether you opt for a high quality faux leather, or the real deal.

My love affair with the leather jacket started pretty early, at age 14, when I somehow managed to convince my mum to spend an arm and a leg on a beautiful cream leather jacket that was a good two or three sizes too big for me. From there, it snowballed. There were the cheap and cheerful faux leather moto jackets which never really quite hit the spot; the Mike & Chris leather jacket obsession in 2005 (which I never ended up buying, to be fair); the Whistles moto leather jacket, with its slightly exaggerated shoulders; and finally, my Acne Studios mape leather jacket – a solid wardrobe investment and an absolute staple in my closet come winter time.

While I’ll occasionally throw mine on with a skinny jean and an ankle boot, I love a leather jacket most when worn with juxtaposing elements. A little bit of lace here, and floaty feminine dress there, and always, always a strappy pair of heels.

I’ve still been wearing sleeveless tanks and skirts about the knee without even a hint of a pair of tights, but I get the feeling that come June, this leather jacket will be finding its way back into regular rotation. I’ve made a quick video featuring a few of my favourite ways to style my leather jacket (which is by no means an exhaustive list!) which you can check out here! x

Investing in luxury

In my late teens and early twenties, I was hooked on fast fashion. Give me a cute top that didn’t break the bank and I was all yours (figuratively speaking, of course!). They were bargain buys which were giving me a quick fix, but even the most basic of t-shirts wouldn’t last more than a few cycles in the washing machine before getting a small hole, or completely losing its shape.

It wasn’t until I discovered Dead Fleurette that I started to think a little more about not only what I was consuming, but how I was consuming. I started to think about a more sustainable closet. One that was free of throwaway fashion which would only last a few wears or so, and the all too casually thrown around – and cliché – phrase, quality over quantity.

Since then, I’ve made a concerted effort to invest in quality, and scrap the urge to buy something that I just know won’t last the distance.

For me, it’s alllll about the basics; the key pieces that I’ll reach for day in and day out. They’re the workhorses of my wardrobe, and need to last me longer than just a couple washes (because who has time to be buying something new all the time anyway). Things like a simple black blazer, a great pair of skinny jeans, a nice pair of court shoes, a beautifully constructed everyday bag, a relaxed linen t-shirt, and a crisp white shirt for work and for play.

Knowing where to start is the tricky part, and weaning yourself off the high street probably even trickier still, but trust me when I say your wardrobe will thank you for it (and your wallet too!). I find fabric feel tends to play a huge part in my own decision, along with natural fibres, and even stitching.

Some of my favourites include Helmut Lang and Theory for suiting (you might balk at the price but my HL blazer is four years old and it is still going strong), Acne Studios and Isabel Marant for t-shirting, J Brand and Dr Denim for jeans, Equipment for silk blouses, and Lover for something special. At the more affordable end of the scale, I love Everlane and Grana, for their high quality and transparency – it never hurts to know just where your clothing is coming from.

So I guess what I want to know is, do you invest in high quality wardrobe essentials, or are you a 3-pack of Hanes t-shirts kind of girl?

Think pink

samuji pink coat

image source; pinterest

Convinced more than ever that a petal pink coat needs to get into my closet ASAP. Let’s leave thinking about the impracticalities for later…

The essential pencil skirt

karen walker slanting frill top lover lace pencil skirt

Karen Walker slanting frill top (similar), Lover the Label lace pencil skirt

Over the last couple of months I have been slowly making my way through my list of wardrobe essentials, and today I’m talking about a classic; the pencil skirt. While it’s fair to probably say that pencil skirts are generally reserved for the office, I’ve found mine to be a key piece that I reach for over the weekend too – it’s the perfect piece for dressing up an otherwise casual look.

It was one of the first things that I added to my wardrobe at 17 when I got a summer job working in administration, and I have to say, I haven’t looked back since.

My favourite has to be this Lover number; it’s a major workhorse in my closet, and one of the few pieces I loved enough to buy in two colours – black and white. As a girl with a very narrow waist (in proportion to my hips, that is), I’ve often found that finding the – perfect – one can be a journey. In the past, I’ve had skirts taken in at the waist to get the perfect fit, and will typically go for anything in a stretchy cotton, jersey or wool as a first port of call as those fabrics tend to be a lot more forgiving.

If you’d like to take a peek at how I like to style my pencil skirts three ways, then you can hop on over to my YouTube and check it out here.

Engineered

t by alexander wang engineer stripe dress cameo collective cardigan proenza schouler ps11
t by alexander wang engineer stripe dress cameo collective cardigan proenza schouler ps11
valentino black leather tango pumps
t by alexander wang engineer stripe dress cameo collective cardigan proenza schouler ps11

T by Alexander Wang stripe dress, c/meo Collective cardigan, Valentino tango pumps, Proenza Schouler PS11 satchel

As you’ll probably know, it’s not often that you’ll catch me in anything that hugs the body quite so much as this little number from T by Alexander Wang, but those stripes just had me at hello. It’s definitely a little shorter than I’m used to, but I think it makes for a nice change of pace, and is one of the newer additions to my wardrobe that is helping to keep things fresh. And if anything, it’s a reminder to continue to step outside of my comfort zone every so often.