Each year dozens of magazines, stylists and influencers assure that the biker jackets come and go seasonally, but we confirm that these fabulous jackets have never been out of style and will never be. These jackets, which today are a cultural icon, have a long history and are not willing to be forgotten.
In Rock Renee, our fashion blog, we love the biker. We believe that it’s a piece that every girl should have in her closet thanks to its great versatility. Although we always think of it with its usual black color, over the years the bikers have been playing with different colors, reinventing itself throughout the years, and even changing its shape adding metallic zippers, flaps, appliques and different textures. With a shape that tends to be fitted at the waist, it’s a very masculine jacket that causes furor among men and women. In Rock Renee we want to make a brief review of the history of the biker jackets, a garment which we feel tremendously identified.
From the basement to the closets of millions of people
The biker jackets were created almost 90 years ago by the hand of two children of a Russian immigrant that bet for starting their American dream in the basement of a building in Lower East Side Manhattan. After spending 15 years fabricating raincoats which were later sold door by door by street sellers, in 1928 Irving Schott designed the first leather jacket in history to have a zipper as a closure, and that was destined to dress the new generation of bikers. Irving baptized the jacket with the name of his favorite cigar brand: el Perfecto, and started selling it retail at 5.50 dollars to a Harley Davidson distributor, forming a new family of crazy bikers for bikers, which thanks to its stubbornness and durability transformed into a symbol of adventure and danger for them.
The interest for the Perfecto was increasing over the years, reaching Hollywood by the hand of Marlon Brando, one of the most acclaimed icons in the industry that in the 50s was in the movie The Wild Ones posing in his bike and wearing a Perfecto. The jackets reached their peak after James Dean, in love with speed, turned it into a cultural object after wearing it during the movie Giant and adding it into his closet as a basic garment. After joining the punk rock movement in the 70s and 80s by the hand of The Ramones, Blondie, The Sex Pistols or Joan Jett, Irving Schott extended his brand outside America, expanding the obsession for the bikers all around the world.
But we shouldn’t forget that the bikers have always been linked to youth and rebellion, for so it was common to see it in movies like Grease in the year of 78, by the hand of John Travolta in one of his most pimp roles, in Mad Max wore by Mel Gibson in the 79 or in Cry Baby by Johnny Deep in 1990. Although it was considered this garment exclusively for men, Olivia Newton-John triumphed with it in Grease, in a final scene that still takes the sense out from us due to its great transformation. This movie showed us that a jacket made by and for men could also be very feminine and sexy.
Since then, the leather jacket has passed from being a garment exclusively for bikers to a basic in the wardrobe both of men and women. And we can’t forget that it even is part of the High Fashion, being Yves Saint Laurent the first designer that, in the year of 1960, included in his collection for Christian Dior his first jacket, provoking a great stir among his most staunch followers. It’s also thanks to him that this garment bit by bit was modernizing and being a perfect complement for a daily outfit.
In Rock Renee we’re great followers of the street style, and for so of the bikers. It’s a part of our wardrobe since we have memory, and it’s practically a lifestyle for us. To wear a biker give us an unexplainable transformation feeling, since we think they’re jackets that works with everything and they adapt both for day and night. You can add it in a grunge look as well as in a preppy one, or combine them with some jeans or a dress, adding to it a rocker touch to your outfit.
Although it’s a garment first made almost a hundred years ago, the bikers are still a must in the fashion world, a garment that should be in every wardrobe. If still you don’t have any in your closet, don’t hesitate in adding this garment into any of your outfits. Although, from Rock Renee, our fashion trends page, we recommend to you to look our updates. We’ll surprise you very soon!