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How should a leather jacket fit?

Finding the 'perfect fit' for a leather jacket can be challenging - there are just so many variables.

Tastes (and thus design choices) differ from country to country and from one manufacturer to the next. Two different leather jacket styles may have a vastly different intended fit, and that's before you account for the various body types and personal tastes of the individuals who'll actually be wearing the jackets.

Even the standard perceived 'correct fit' for a leather jacket has fluctuated drastically over the years to fit the trends of the time - as is reflected in the wide range of jackets available from Aero Leather Clothing.

As such, trying to pin down how a leather jacket 'should' fit is like trying to run a race without a start or finish line!

However, we have over four decades' experience of designing classic jackets and helping our customers to find the right fit, so we do have a few good general rules of thumb that we can share with you to help determine how your leather jacket ought to fit.


How should a leather jacket fit?

When buying a leather jacket, you might be tempted to size up in order to 'play it safe', but wearing an oversized jacket can cause your silhouette to appear boxy and unflattering.

A leather jacket should fit snugly on the shoulders and through your chest and waist - but it should still allow for comfortable movement.

The shoulder seam should sit either on your shoulder or slightly below it, but definitely not above.

The chest should be more fitted than a regular overcoat, but you may need to allow for a bit more space depending on the number of layers you're planning to wear underneath your leather jacket.

The end of the sleeves should rest no higher than on the joint where your wrist bends.

The length of the hem very much depends on the style of the jacket, but a well-fitting leather jacket will usually stop no higher than your hips and no lower than the top of your thigh.

Please note: these recommendations are somewhat dependent on the jacket's intended use. For example, a jacket that's designed to be worn on a motorcycle will normally have extra length added to the back and sleeves.


How to achieve the best possible fit

First of all, be sure to measure yourself accurately before you purchase your leather jacket.

Accurate measurements are important even if you're buying a jacket off the rack, but the benefit of ordering a jacket from a company like Aero is that we use these measurements to create a jacket that's entirely your own. The lengths will be correct for your height, and we can also taper the waist or bring the shoulders in / out to get as close as possible to your ideal fit.

Next, try on as many examples as you can and note the best-fitting ones. As is the case with our extensive range here at Aero Leather Clothing, leather jackets come in all sorts of different styles, and examples from different periods can fit totally differently (e.g. the 1930s tailored cut vs the 1950s relaxed cut). Trying on a variety of distinctive styles can help you find the one that fits you best.

And while there really isn't a substitute for actually trying on a jacket, do check online for sizing and fitting advice on the style you're interested in. If you're still unsure, consult with the manufacturer or retailer.

Also, this tip may seem obvious, but many people don't consider it: when trying to determine whether a leather jacket is a good fit for you, you should always try it on both undone AND done up!


Are leather jackets supposed to be tight?

A leather jacket should be snug, but never tight.

It should be said that a new leather jacket may feel a little rigid at first (especially if it's made of high-quality vegetable tanned leather as many of our jackets are). But with wear, the leather will begin to relax, soften, and adapt to fit to the shape of your body. Movement, body heat and time will result in a more comfortable fit.

A good leather jacket needs time to be 'worn in' the same way a good pair of leather boots do!

SEE ALSO: Breaking in a leather jacket


Should I get a made-to-measure jacket?

When you order a high-quality handmade leather jacket like an Aero jacket, you're making a lifetime investment, so naturally you'll want to make sure that your jacket fits you correctly.

Here at Aero Leather Clothing, we've been helping customers get their perfectly-fitted dream jackets for decades. We take your measurements in order to select the correct size of jacket in your preferred style; we then customise the lengths to make sure the jacket fits you perfectly length-wise, and then we check if any further minor alterations to the style would help to achieve the best fit possible.

You can check out our extensive range of expertly-handcrafted vintage leather jackets below.

Made-to-Measure Leather Jackets

We also have a wide range of jackets ready to buy, which have their measurements listed - our team is on hand to advise you on the sizing of these jackets.

Please contact us if you'd like expert advice on taking your measurements to ensure the best fit for your Aero leather jacket - we do offer a measurement and sizing guide on our website featuring some general advice, but if you have any further questions and would like to speak to a member of our team, please feel free to get in touch.