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How to wear the motorcycle jacket

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Jackets are essential as they let you develop a variety of looks around one unique piece. Whether you have generous collection or a carefully curated one, the motorcycle, or moto jacket is a stylish way to extend your wardrobe. In Austin, jackets are needed year round, for a night out or warding off the air conditioning's chill.

The moto jacket's flattering lines can make you sleek and polished or an avant-garde rocker. Its form fitting cut creates an hourglass figure while the zippered collar adds a rough edge. It's the ultimate juxtaposition between hard and soft.

Choose your jacket's materials based on your needs and budget. Jackets can be found in leather, PVU, knits, and even suiting for a variety of looks. Leather will mold to your body, personalizing your jacket. If you tend to get overheated, leather is more forgiving as it's a natural fabric. PVU, or pleather, is great if you're vegan, on a budget, or tend to get cold easily. The man-made fibers will help keep you cozy. Want a pleather jacket but don't want as much warmth? There are many jackets that mix knit panels with the pleather ones. This provides an interesting design element while better maintaining your ideal temperature. Knit jackets can be worn as regular substitutes for leather or as a replacement for a zippered sweatshirt, depending on the finish. Suiting versions can be worn anywhere from the board room to Austin City Limits, and will be easier to clean.

A precise fit can make this jacket attractive on a variety of body types, including petite, curvy and tall women. The two places to check fit are at the shoulder and the bust. If the jacket does not fit in the shoulder, you will want to go to the next larger size. Also, check your bust carefully to ensure that your chest isn't being pushed in and over the cups of your bra. The jacket should support, but not constrict your movements. The weight of the fabric will also determine style. Try to avoid extra stiff leathers or suede styles for this jacket for a fresh look.

Wear a pleather/leather/knit jacket with:

  • skinny jeans, boots or oxfords
  • boyfriend jeans and a tank top with sparkly high tops
  • tailored wide-leg trousers and a slinky top
  • an above-the-knee dress, with an ethereal scarf
  • tailored shorts, tights, and combat boots
  • a bandage or body con dress in radiant orchid, the new pantone color for 2014
  • skinny gray and black camo pants and a thin cashmere sweater

Wear a tweed or suiting jacket with:

  • trouser jeans, a colorful skinny belt, and short sleeves t-shirt blouse
  • a pencil skirt and patterned sweater with shooties
  • a traditional suit, shell, and heels
  • a midi dress with a flared or gored hem
  • a pleated skirt and men's t-shirt, tucked in with platforms
  • the classic little black dress (LBD)
  • tweed shorts and over-the-knee boots

You can find versions of the moto jacket at most major retailers, but in Austin, you can also explore resale shops and independent stores by district. Details are available at ABIA Austin (yes, the same abbreviation as our airport, unfortunately). Their site establishes the atmosphere for each district and provides interactive maps to locate businesses. Don't forget to bring your Austin Go Local card with you when you shop. Online, Etsy can also connect you to craftspeople who have vintage jackets or create singular designs. Your moto jacket will become a go-to finishing piece for your wardrobe.

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