How to Wear a Leather Jacket Without Looking Like Everyone Else

Like a beautiful, magical wizard-slash-mussel still in its shell

10.18.16

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Leather jackets belong, in spirit and reality, to cool, bad kids who sit in the back of high school classrooms, Converse-wrapped feet on their desks, audibly snapping bubble gum. They have such an attitude of cool. Yet these days, it seems like every single person has one. So here’s a question for you to mull: How does one wear a leather jacket and not end up looking like everyone else?

I suggest that you wear the thing with conviction — and in outfits that are a little grown up, a little spooky. Channel people you’d (or at least I’d) like to be someday: one, a Wizard Before Bed; two, a person who spends post-dinner evenings in their wood-paneled library filled with emerald-green desk accessories and leather furniture; and three, a sort of um — well, you’ll see.

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Acne leather jacketDries Van Noten top, The Row pants, vintage bag — another here, Marni necklace

Let’s begin with the Wizard Before Bed look, and then the rest of the looks can materialize within the wizard’s dreams. Wizards usually wear, what, velvet robes? Bedtime is no exception! Toss one on; this wizard loves Dries. Climb into your headiest, jewel-iest jewelry. Fill your silk drawstring satchel with more jewels. Under the robe and leather, wear liquid trousers or some ancient purple fabrics.

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Acne leather jacketBalenciaga shirt, Chloé pants, Gucci shoes, Céline bag

The weather is turning, so now we’ll focus on being the person with an in-home library whose house also resembles the mansion in the movie Clue. Grab a tumbler and splash some scotch into it, roll a newspaper under your arm, put some jazz on the record player and slide into your reading chair.

Wardrobe: a leather jacket, a pair silky of trousers and your work-is-pleasure top, which, I might point out, could easily belong to the wizard.

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Acne leather jacket, vintage T-shirt — another hereASOS shoes, vintage bag — another here

The third look is evocative not of a specific person but rather a few distinct images: an introspective and mysterious character in a balletic performance; mussels still in their shells; a blackened matcha whisk; Sarah Jessica Parker in Hocus Pocus. Swathe yourself in a bundle of tulle, top with a small band of fabric and get in that leather. Have you heard of the Enneagram? It’s “a model of human personality which is principally understood and taught as a typology of nine interconnected personality types.” This is an outfit for Enneagram personality number four.

Photos by Shelby Duncan.