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Thread: New Good Wear Leather A-1 (size 46) - early 1920s pattern

  1. #11
    Incurably Addicted Baron Kurtz's Avatar
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    For my taste, the fit is too long on the model above, with the waistband on the hips rather than the waist. I assume one can specify the length of the jacket?

    I prefer the fit on this guy


    rather than this guy


    But that's just personal taste. Lovely jacket and beautiful leather!

    Quote Originally Posted by Joel Shapiro View Post
    I like the pattern better than the leather. Having handled this leather, I can tell you it's very thin, almost sheer and stretches too easily for my taste. I wonder what other leather would be good for this jacket? Goatskin? Horsehide? Because the pattern is stunning and unique.
    Yep, that's the problem with lambskin, and the reason so many British leather jackets of the era are toast.
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  2. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by Joel Shapiro View Post
    I like the pattern better than the leather. Having handled this leather, I can tell you it's very thin, almost sheer and stretches too easily for my taste. I wonder what other leather would be good for this jacket? Goatskin? Horsehide? Because the pattern is stunning and unique.
    The cape is the one aspect of the jacket that I'd change Joel (in an ideal world) as I was also very skeptical when I handled the samples.

    It's better when made up and lined and doesn't feel frail, but is inferior to the thicker 2008/2009 cape that John used, although thicker than the Italian cape that he tried.

    It's just a little thinner than the ELC cape, but this pattern in the ELC cape/Himel sheepskin would be my ideal.

    Personally, I wouldn't go for horsehide (unless it was much thinner than the norm), but goatskin would work.

  3. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by Baron Kurtz View Post
    For my taste, the fit is too long on the model above, with the waistband on the hips rather than the waist. I assume one can specify the length of the jacket?
    Yes, Baron, John's jackets are usually tailored to your dimensions/taste (mine is a test jacket), but I'm a little longer in the torso/short in the leg so the pattern sits a little higher on me.

  4. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by Baron Kurtz View Post
    Yep, that's the problem with lambskin, and the reason so many British leather jackets of the era are toast.
    There's a telling passage in Gary Eastman's new book on the A-2, in which he shows original source material detailing the shortcomings of capeskin and putting the case for more robust materials (initially horsehide, then latterly goatskin and steerhide) to be used in the construction of the A-2. During the A-1 procurement process, only limited replacement knits were ordered as the authorities felt that the A-1 wouldn't have the working life to justify a greater outlay; reasoning that the jacket wouldn't really outlast the knits.

    On the other hand, outside of the open cockpit, cape is a great hide for summer use (or layered under a heavy coat in winter as a jerkin)

  5. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by Baron Kurtz View Post
    For my taste, the fit is too long on the model above, with the waistband on the hips rather than the waist. I assume one can specify the length of the jacket?

    I prefer the fit on this guy


    rather than this guy


    But that's just personal taste. Lovely jacket and beautiful leather!



    Yep, that's the problem with lambskin, and the reason so many British leather jackets of the era are toast.
    One of the things I love about "the correct A1" is that it simply doesn't exist.

    There are as many differences as there are similarities in these two jackets.

    Collars are completely different shapes. One button waistband versus two. And quite differently contructed and positioned pockets.

    The top one also looks to be made of much stiffer hide than the lower one.

    I think Gary Eastman's next book needs to be just A1s!!
    Last edited by majormajor; 12-28-2012 at 05:31 PM.

  6. #16
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    very cool jacket .... I loved Johns prototype A1 in capeskin ..... I think the fit is ideal, a jacket which fits the waist is a bit impractical without the high waist trousers of yesteryear.

    Got to agree there is NO ONE A1 ... like there is no ONE A2 .. each to his own and the major's looks mighty fine

  7. #17
    "A List" Customer 2jakes's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dr H View Post
    There's a telling passage in Gary Eastman's new book on the A-2, in which he shows original source material detailing the shortcomings of capeskin and putting the case for more robust materials (initially horsehide, then latterly goatskin and steerhide) to be used in the construction of the A-2. During the A-1 procurement process, only limited replacement knits were ordered as the authorities felt that the A-1 wouldn't have the working life to justify a greater outlay; reasoning that the jacket wouldn't really outlast the knits.

    On the other hand, outside of the open cockpit, cape is a great hide for summer use (or layered under a heavy coat in winter as a jerkin)
    I always thought that the type A-1 leather jacket being labeled "summer issue", was just that. What I notice when
    I view vintage photos of pilots wearing them & also watching the film "Only Angels Have Wings"('39)…it appears
    that most of the A-1 jackets have a soft texture , not rugged at all , but more like a sweater style. And this is the
    thing for me that I would like to have. I already own the rugged horse hide ,steer or goat in the A-2s…
    The A-1 cape may have it's shortcomings…but it sure looks nice , the way the originals were made. 2



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  8. #18
    One Too Many Fanch's Avatar
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    To me the body length is perfect. The sleeves could be slightly longer on the model (JC) and still work. So, maybe your fit is 99% which is good enough. BTW I have heard great things about John Chapman And find it somewhat ironic that I am buying from the UK and you, from where I live.

  9. #19
    Practically Family thor's Avatar
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    High waist pants + 5% body fat + snug fitting waist length jacket = the "ideal" quintessential leather-jacketed aviator look.
    "We live on an island of ignorance in the midst of black seas of infinity, and it was not meant that we should voyage far." H.P. Lovecraft

  10. #20
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    I have several pairs of the high waist period trousers and the jacket - going to have to come back to you on the 5%?body fat... :-(

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