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Bought my first leather jacket

Discussion in 'Outerwear' started by David Conwill, Oct 10, 2018.

  1. David Conwill

    David Conwill Call Me a Cab

    Messages:
    2,660
    Location:
    Bennington, VT 05201
    Front 01.jpg

    Well, second if you count the "mall" jacket my dad bought me back in high school. I wasn't even looking for one, but found this in a local shoe-repair store. It's a bit musty from storage, but looks essentially unworn. It's styled after the A-2 with hand-warmer pockets concealed behind the patch pockets (and so far back as to be essentially useless), but a single-piece back.

    Back.jpg

    It has a Golden Bear patch sewn over an old Banana Republic patch, which leads me to believe it's probably a jacket Golden Bear made under contract for Banana Republic (similar to what they did for L.L. Bean at one time) and returned unsold. The tag indicates it's real leather, with wool knits, and if I'm reading the old FL threads correctly, the leather is probably goat.

    Tag 01.jpg

    Tag 02.jpg

    Materials Tag.jpg

    It's timely, as I'm acquiring a motorcycle at the beginning of next month, so it will make a nice windbreaker for my upcoming open-cockpit work. I'm looking forward to watching it age.
     
    Mercer, Windsock8e, handymike and 8 others like this.
  2. Worf

    Worf I'll Lock Up

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    4,494
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    Troy, New York, USA
    Nice score... depending on what you paid for it. You did better with your first "real" leather jacket than I did. At least it's not a Wilson LOL. Welcome to the club... be warned however this leather thing can lead to a VERY expensive obsession... trust me... I know.

    Worf
     
    Last edited: Oct 11, 2018
    David Conwill likes this.
  3. Peter Bowden

    Peter Bowden A-List Customer

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    united kingdom
    Very nice-Looks like a comfortable jacket and the sleeve length looks spot on.At least I think that's how sleeves with cuffs should look.
     
    David Conwill likes this.
  4. David Conwill

    David Conwill Call Me a Cab

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    Thanks to the savvy negotiating skills of my wife, I ended up paying $42 on a $50 asking price!
     
    Worf, El Marro, AeroFan_07 and 2 others like this.
  5. belfastboy

    belfastboy Call Me a Cab

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    Definite score!
     
    David Conwill likes this.
  6. Gamma68

    Gamma68 Practically Family

    Messages:
    871
    Location:
    Detroit, MI
    I find the Golden Bear tag sewn over the Banana Republic tag odd. The BR tag indicates this jacket is from the older incarnation of BR, when they were well known for offering well-made clothing for travel/outdoor adventures (safaris and such).

    I just came across this exact same jacket at a thrift store that had the same BR tag inside, but nothing sewn over it. Makes me wonder if someone was trying to pass off a BR jacket as a Golden Bear.

    When I think about the BR jacket I handled, I'm not sure if it's goatskin or something else. It is made to appear distressed but it didn't feel like my goatskin G-1 or the A-2 I recently sold.
     
    Last edited: Oct 10, 2018
  7. Gamma68

    Gamma68 Practically Family

    Messages:
    871
    Location:
    Detroit, MI
    Just found this page from a 1985 BR catalog. Made from cowhide.

    [​IMG]
     
    Michael A and David Conwill like this.
  8. David Conwill

    David Conwill Call Me a Cab

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    Reading the Golden Bear histories, the reason they started manufacturing some of their jackets in Korea is because they had trouble filling Banana Republic orders from their San Francisco factories, so there's definitely a connection and it's certainly a Golden Bear at heart. As to how, or why, the Golden Bear tag was sewn over the BR tag, I have no idea but unless this came up out of NYC, fraud seems an unlikely motive.
     
    Gamma68 likes this.
  9. Gamma68

    Gamma68 Practically Family

    Messages:
    871
    Location:
    Detroit, MI
    Your theory makes sense. I didn't realize that Golden Bear had a connection to BR. Until now, I'd never seen one tag sewn over another like that.
     
    David Conwill likes this.
  10. AeroFan_07

    AeroFan_07 One Too Many

    Messages:
    1,560
    Location:
    Iowa
    Regardless where it's made/what it's made of and who originally made it, it's yours, for quite a deal, and appears to fit perfectly! :) Congratuations indeed!

    Also just have to say, like the glasses, same type I wear daily, Ray-Ban Clubmaster They go great with your hat, jacket, etc. May this only be the first of many leathers in your future.
     
    David Conwill, Monitor and Gamma68 like this.
  11. Peacoat

    Peacoat I'll Lock Up

    Messages:
    4,220
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    Middle Tennessee
    Great fit and a great deal. Unless it has been distressed, I doubt it is goat. I haven't seen goat develop much if any patina, certainly not that much. Probably steer. I would get a coat of Pecard on it if the hide feels dry. It certainly looks dry.

    You did well on your first leather jacket purchase.
     
    David Conwill and HoosierDaddy like this.
  12. TREEMAN

    TREEMAN One Too Many

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    1,029
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    Score !! +2 on the Pecards...........
     
    David Conwill likes this.
  13. Gamma68

    Gamma68 Practically Family

    Messages:
    871
    Location:
    Detroit, MI
    As per the catalog copy above, it's cowhide. The jacket is distressed in appearance, just as the one I found at a thrift store. It may look dry but thats likely due to the distressing. Pecards won't hurt it but it will likely appear similar once it dries again.
     
  14. Seb Lucas

    Seb Lucas I'll Lock Up

    Messages:
    5,397
    Location:
    Australia
    Interesting - I had heard that the jackets made for Banana Republic , Golden Bear and Gap, I think, were all made by the same Asian outsourcer of leather clothing.
     
  15. David Conwill

    David Conwill Call Me a Cab

    Messages:
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    Location:
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    Thanks, these are Shurons. I've had them a long time now and the quality is top notch. I even replaced the arms once!
     
    AeroFan_07 likes this.
  16. David Conwill

    David Conwill Call Me a Cab

    Messages:
    2,660
    Location:
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    Based on some older news articles I read about Golden Bear, it would appear that the outsourcing occurred immediately after this jacket was produced (early 1980s), when they contracted with a Korean manufacturer to better handle the Banana Republic order. Probably around the time they were acquired by Gap, but before Gap ditched the safari theme.
     
  17. DaveProc

    DaveProc Familiar Face

    Messages:
    78
    Location:
    Rhode Island
    If you google Golden Bear and Banana Republic A-2s from the 1980s, they both have identical hand-warmer pocket layouts.
     
    David Conwill likes this.
  18. Seb Lucas

    Seb Lucas I'll Lock Up

    Messages:
    5,397
    Location:
    Australia
    Not that it's relevant but Schott leather currently make US Wings Indy jackets and A2's. I heard that from Ros Schott herself.
     
  19. Edward

    Edward Bartender

    Messages:
    18,879
    Location:
    London, UK
    I think Schott make quite a few jackets that get relabelled for others.
     

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