From World War II to James Dean to Madonna, the leather jacket is the ultimate symbol of rebellion and style badass-ery. Maybe it’s leather’s military and Harley Davidson roots, but the tough sexiness of a good leather piece is inextricable. Whether you're wearing jeans and a white tee or a flowy feminine dress, adding a leather jacket on top just makes everything better. And if black feels a bit too harsh for the earliest days of fall, brown leather jackets make for the perfect transitional piece.
It’s been a long, hard summer full of boozy brunches and sweaty undersides, but honestly, who isn’t excited for more reasonable walking conditions and aesthetically pleasing foliage? I have sweat through more bras this summer than I care to admit. Needless to say, I am counting down the degrees until I get to retire my well-worn white Birkenstocks in favor of my knee-high boots. Leather jacket season is only a couple months out of the year, and I plan to take full advantage of it before we have to get wrapped up in scarves and fur-lined coats.
In celebration of the change of the seasons, here are 11 of the best brown leather jackets for every budget. Later, summer. Leather jackets are here to stay.
1. The Classic Moto
This soft cognac color is the best transition into brown shades. Can’t you already picture it over your favorite cozy cableknit?
Quilted Moto Jacket, $37.90, forever21.com
2. The Leather Hoodie
It’s like a hoodie, except for grownups. Wear this ModCloth jacket to toughen up your Sunday morning brunch.
Terrain and Simple Jacket, $69.99, modcloth.com
3. The Minimalist Piece
Every wardrobe needs that one coat that goes with everything. This Joe Fresh jacket is a great fit for a minimalist wardrobe.
Moto Jacket, $89, joefresh.com
4. The Zips & Buckles
Wear this one with flats in the early fall and tall boots as it gets colder — some spikes and rugged jeans wouldn't hurt, either.
Faux Leather Jacket with Buckles, $109.95, lanebryant.com
5. The Faux Fur Lining
I've you so, faux fur. Go full-force fall with this leather jacket with fur trim and your darkest denim.
Brown Leather Jacket, $170, riverisland.com
6. The Vegan Leather
Good for animals AND good for your closet. I call that a win-win.
Vegan Leather Bomber, $188, anthropologie.com
7. The Quilted Details
This jacket makes me want to strap on a helmet and hop on a Harley.
Leather Biker Jacket, $339.99, mango.com
8. The Colorblocking
Double the tone, double the fun. This Lucky Brand contrast jacket will go with with everything — and it’s the perfect day-to-night transitional piece.
Lucky Brand Contrast Leather Moto Jacket, $449, macys.com
9. The Reddish Hue
If you’re looking for the ultimate sleek completer piece, add this buttery leather jacket to your stylistic repertoire.
Collection Leather Motorcycle Jacket, $550, jcrew.com
10. The Vest Version
OK, so this one isn’t a jacket. But aren’t vests just as good as jackets? Aren’t they just as cute and popular? I could revel in the glory of this leather vest alllll day.
Lafayette 148 New York Plus Inez Long Leather Vest, $1,028, bloomingdales.com
11. The Investment Piece
Leather jackets will never die, so they really are worth investing in. This Pam & Gela pick uses a classic channel quilting and a timeless luxe lambskin leather.
Quilted Leather Moto Jacket, $1,100, nordstrom.com
Now go forth and feed your inner biker chick.
Images: fervent-adepte-de-la-mode /Flickr; Courtesy Brands