Discover the history of leather biker jackets – Peter Sign

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Discover the history of leather biker jackets

Discover the history of leather biker jackets

Like everything has an origin story, biker leather jackets have one too. The first biker jacket was spotted in the late 1920s, while the first official biker leather jacket was designed by Irving Schott in 1928 And, like everything exceptional, it took some decades to get some recognition truly. It’s only in 1953 when biker jackets became a genuine sensation when Marlon Brando wore it in his debut movie, “The Wild One.”And after that, it had no looking back.

The 1920s, Modernist Era

The year was 1928, an era that has been famously known and remembered as the post-war times wrapped in a fashion revolution, exuding with glitz and glamour. Amidst the world war after-effects and jazz age, this revolution of an outfit was born, which changed the world of fashion, and the world of leather jackets as well when the first biker jacket was created for Harley Davidson.

Jack and Irving Schott. Two brothers hailing from a Russian immigrant family were making fur-lined raincoats in their low east side apartment building’s basement. Their company went by Schott bros, pioneered by Irving and his brother jack. Being in the business of making raincoats already, Irving was looking for inspiration to create something remarkable. As it happens with inspiration, it can strike out of nowhere like a lightning jolt from the most mundane of things. In Irving’s case, it occurred in the form of his favorite cigar, “perfecto,” from which the biker jacket inherited its name first when it was created. Interestingly, the word perfecto originates from Spanish, which literally means perfect. While it might be subjective if referred to Schott’s favorite cigar, but it would not be wrong to say that his perfecto jacket lived up to its name, and 90 years later, Schott’s beloved biker jacket was lauded as a fashion icon at the Museum of Modern Art and won many accolades as the classic piece of clothing around the globe.

The Reason Behind Creating Biker Jacket

The Reason Behind Creating Biker Jacket

The initial reason behind creating the biker jacket was to provide safety to bikers and motorcyclists in the most stylish way. The biker jacket is indeed like armor. Its thick textured exterior protects against bruises, and the close-fitting and asymmetrical zippers keep the wind out. So a biker jacket is not just a fashion icon but a safety gear too, which has provided comfort against the cold weather and on the road.

Surge To Fame, 1953

The biker jacket soared to fame in 1953 when Marlon Brando wore it in his hit Debut movie “The Wild One,” where he played the role of Johnny Strabler, a rebelling and brooding leader of an opposing gang.

Marlon Brando wearing Schott’s jacket in his movie rendered it a renewed image drastically. People who idolized Johnny Strabler, played by Marlon Brando, also idolized the biker jacket in the film. It would not be wrong to say that the biker jacket and Marlon Brando’s character went hand-in-hand.


1953 was an era of punk, rock, burgeoning fascination with pop culture and the bad boys. The biker jacket became an essential staple in everyone’s wardrobe, who looked up to any of these cults and aspired to find resonance with them.


After the epic Wild One success, the jacket became a solid fashion aesthetic in every Hollywood movie in the 1950s, and various fashion statements made their way to the public’s eye. One of the other icons who contributed to the jackets’ success and eventually immortalized them was James Dean, who wore it offscreen and died in a fatal car crash of his Porsche.


The 70s And 80s

Later the biker jacket became synonymous with all things cool and badass. It was everywhere from Hollywood to pop culture enthusiasts and fashion icons, and its reach trespassed the gender norms, and women also jumped on the bandwagon. The biker jacket was sensationalized further among women when iconic figures like Blondie and Joan Jett wore it.

Why Choose a Biker Jacket?

Now that you know the iconic history of leather jackets and all the outstanding qualities it has to offer, you do not have to wonder about why, to begin with. A biker leather is a sentiment that ricochets with true-blue and literal savagery and appeal. Apart from all the appealing aspects, it also provides comfort in the traditional leather jacket sense and reverberates with a rich, heritage-worthy backstory.


Whether you are a fashion enthusiast looking for something new, something edgy to experiment or a true-blue biker rider, in either case, this biker jacket can go exceptionally well and fits perfectly in any scenario. So If you want to channelize your inner Marlon Brando or James Dean, choose this biker jacket.


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