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Field Leathers

Will Zach

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It's been a couple of days wearing this jacket for several hours and as I won’t be able to make a real review until after a longer period of wear I can already tell you guys some of my first impressions.

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Getting a jacket from Greg was something that has been on my list for a long time. I recommended Field Leathers to a friend of mine who was looking to purchase his first “good” leather jacket and didn’t want to risk his money on getting something expensive off the rack because he wasn’t sure about the fit. He went with it last year and when he finally got it we met up for a drink and I saw his new Manhattan in person. I placed my order that same evening.

Honestly, I was in shock with the finishing, I've never handled a Rainbow Country which is supposed to be the world's top 3 in that sense, but I've seen Freewheelers and I own and have owned Real Mccoys, Buzz Ricksons… I think Greg beats them all in terms of finishing. Maybe I haven’t seen enough high-end jackets yet but I've seen enough to convince me. I also know that finishing is not everything in a jacket, we have the design, the pattern, the fit, the leather… I will try to go through all these on my own jacket.

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In terms of design, one thing I like about Greg’s styles is that they are contemporary jackets with a vintage twist. Mainly because of the fit and proportions. I don’t think Field Leathers is the place anyone would go for a 100% true repro jacket unless that is your specific project and you take it to the next level as some people in this forum have done with excellent results, at least for now. For the rest of us is either choosing one of his standard models as they are or choosing one and tweaking it, which is what I did.

View attachment 483668

I wanted a 30s deco-inspired aviator piece. I went through a lot of catalogues, internet photos (thanks Marc) and through some modern companies that make vintage styles and created a mashup of references of all I liked, I also drew a sketch of the final piece in my head and created a mood board with all that and sent it to Greg with the message: Can we adapt this to a Manhattan? And that’s exactly what he did.

View attachment 483669


When I received the test jacket I barely made any changes. The shoulders were too wide but that was my fault because I mentioned, after the measurements, I sent him based on my RMC Buco, that I would like more space in the shoulders because my Buco feels a bit too tight in that area. He added that extra cm and turned out it was too much, because the problem with my Buco is probably not about the shoulder length but about the way the pattern is structured, and that’s why it feels too tight. The other thing I asked him to change was the front drop, I wanted it to be an inch longer, and the last one was the back design, I wanted the central piece to be not completely rectangular but shorter in the base, as well as a thinner waistband. That was all.

View attachment 483663

Now, I know that Greg’s signature shoulders are an issue for some people here. That is fair enough. I don’t think they are a flaw tho. The rest of the jacket is on point in terms of pattern and construction, he has years of experience and works with professionals in the industry, so why would the shoulders be an accident? I think they are a decision, one that I particularly appreciate and enjoy. I like fashion in general, and I like shapes and silhouettes, I like how they block proportions and give the garments a character. I understand that that’s not what a lot of people are looking for in a leather jacket. In my opinion, there is no right or wrong in this particular matter, I know that tailoring works differently than jacket-making. I am not saying that I went with him for this reason, or that I prefer it over a more conventional design, I have plenty of these, I'm just saying that I like it as it is. I consider this jacket an author piece.

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Picking up the leather was a bit of a struggle just until the moment I got the samples. I wanted a brown leather and I did consider the Shinki pony, but 2 things were happening at that point, even though it looks insanely beautiful I wanted something darker and less reddish, and second, well, he didn’t carry that stock anymore. The only brown option was the pigment Shinki horse and a mysterious yet-to-be-branded "shitty" Italian Cowhide. I liked the cowhide shade a lot in the pictures, but I wasn’t sure if it would be as good as Shinki… I was even considering going black, either tea core or full aniline even though that’s a colour I don’t associate with a 30s jacket… That kept me up all night (not really) until, as I mentioned, received the samples.

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The cowhide was gorgeous. Not only had the right tone and shade I was looking for, but it was smooth and prone to create a lot of grain over time, and also had a beautiful distressing, very natural and easy to create. It was also supple which was something I was really looking for after most of my jackets being Shinki horse. That said, I fell in love with the black full aniline. That's gonna be one for the next one for sure.

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For the lining I allowed myself a bit of eccentricity, I've always liked vintage military patterns and I have a soft spot for the Vietnam tiger stripe. I asked them about it because I saw it in a picture months ago and they told me they didn’t have it in stock but they would be able to get it, and I'm so glad they did because I love how it looks and works with the brown.

The jacket wears like a glove. The range of motion it gives me doesn’t feel like the one you would get out of a thick heavy leather jacket. It is comfortable, either zipped or unzipped, you can sit down or do whatever you want in it and won’t feel any areas of discomfort or friction. The only thing I would change however is the hand warmers. I chose the design and I'm happy with it, but I didn’t think of their complete functionality. They wear like totally normal pockets when the jacket is unzipped, zipped up however, they end up being a bit too close, so getting both hands inside at the same time makes your fists push against each other a bit. Not a big deal and honestly, I wanted to have them for small storage and practicality mainly, because having my hands in there all the time would deform the shape and I wouldn’t like that.

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My favourite part of the final piece has to be the back. I particularly love 30s deco backs and I tried to design this one in a way that was different to any other I've seen, at least in general, but also in a way that it would feel authentic from that era. Well one thing is the design and a very different thing is the actual jacket, I see a work of art here, not only do the proportions work perfectly in my opinion but the laser straight stitching makes it even more impressive to look at.

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So in general, as you can imagine, I couldn’t be happier. I designed this jacket to be a beater, to be functional and easy to wear but also stylish and a bit of a statement, to be easy to integrate with my wardrobe and with details that most people would think are nice but jacket aficionados would recognise and appreciate, like the back or the 30s repro buttons (thanks again, Marc), and I believe it ticks all the boxes. As if that wasn’t enough Sam and Greg are a delight to work with. Easy to talk to, very professional, open to new ideas and suggestions and most importantly very efficient problem-solving people. Not only I would recommend getting a Jacket from them, but I will also get another one myself eventually.
Nice review, @Jaime . On a side note, what are the pants? Always on the lookout for non-dark pants to wear with leather. Great match, give some contrast and counterpoint to the jacket.
 

Jaime

One of the Regulars
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117
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Spain
^ Great post and review! The jacket looks to be an absolutely perfect fit and the hide is lovely! In thinking about the shoulders, they remind me of 50's leather jackets that had shoulder pads sewn into the seams, like this campus jacket:
View attachment 483679
I have always removed the padding but the square shoulder does remain. I don’t know if this aesthetic is by choice for Greg or not but is certainly not without precedent in vintage pieces.

Thank you! Absolutely, nothing's new under the sun. I really don't know either but he's proved a lot of times that he can make different shoulders and adjust the pattern to the client's taste so I can only assume that it is by choice. A gorgeous jacket you have there by the way!

Nice review, @Jaime . On a side note, what are the pants? Always on the lookout for non-dark pants to wear with leather. Great match, give some contrast and counterpoint to the jacket.

Thank you Will, they are a pair of carpenter pants by Dockers:

https://es.dockers.com/products/mens-straight-fit-carpenter-pants-a31340002

Got them because of the same reason you mentioned and even though they are nothing special they are comfy, sturdy and give a nice silhouette.

IMG_0166.jpg


He’s the Edward Sexton of leather jackets.

Greg is a master of his craft, the silhouette one either loves it or hates it.

He truly is! It is quite impressive to see the product of his craft, no matter if you are a jacket aficionado like us or just a civilian.
 

Marc mndt

I'll Lock Up
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5,388
Great review. I love the look of the brown cowhide, can't wait to get a jacket in that leather myself. I'm happy to see that - even though it's not full aniline- it does hold some nice sleeve creases.

I think Greg beats them all in terms of finishing. Maybe I haven’t seen enough high-end jackets yet but I've seen enough to convince me.

I like the finish on FL jackets better because it's more in line with how jackets were made back in the days. Rainbow country and other Japanese manufacturers use fancier construction techniques but like I mentioned in another thread therefore to me those jackets look over-engineered.

65DC1F35-2E55-4066-8716-DDB7E8F23658.jpeg

FL vs FW

Folded over halfbelt (how was done back in the days) vs flattened seam halfbelt.
 

ChewingWax

Familiar Face
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Buffalo
Great review. I love the look of the brown cowhide, can't wait to get a jacket in that leather myself. I'm happy to see that - even though it's not full aniline- it does hold some nice sleeve creases.



I like the finish on FL jackets better because it's more in line with how jackets were made back in the days. Rainbow country and other Japanese manufacturers use fancier construction techniques but like I mentioned in another thread therefore to me those jackets look over-engineered.

View attachment 483689
FL vs FW

Folded over halfbelt (how was done back in the days) vs flattened seam halfbelt.
What exactly are you referring to when you reference the “finishing”?
 

Jaime

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117
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Spain
I'm happy to see that - even though it's not full aniline- it does hold some nice sleeve creases.
Big time, and I'm already starting to see more grain popping up in the areas where there is more creasing especially, it definitely feels sturdier and heavier than I thought it would be, but very supple.

those jackets look over-engineered.

I get what you mean and I totally agree. It wouldn't be a dealbreaker for me because I still like FW but it is a factor that definitely adds to the overall aesthetic, and if you go to that level of detail a decisive factor in terms of authenticity and recreation. In fact, that over-engineering detail is a very accurate example of the state of the industry nowadays, and a very contemporary metaphor if you will.
 

Jaime

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117
Location
Spain
What exactly are you referring to when you reference the “finishing”?
We are referring to the way the jacket is crafted in its "final" details, the way it is sewn, if there are any loose threads, the way the corners are folded up, the way the different pieces are joined together ... How fine (or not) all that work is.
 

dudewuttheheck

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@Jaime That is a gorgeous jacket and no you're not wrong, Greg has everyone beat in terms of stitching at the very least. Finishing with seems is sort of debatable based on what you prefer, but he is still incredible on that front as well.

I have owned and handled many Freewheelers and RC jackets and Greg's stitching is overall the best I've seen, so your hunch is right. However, from what I remember, he was planning on skiving his seems more in the vein of FW/RC.
 

Jaime

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117
Location
Spain
@Jaime That is a gorgeous jacket and no you're not wrong, Greg has everyone beat in terms of stitching at the very least. Finishing with seems is sort of debatable based on what you prefer, but he is still incredible on that front as well.

I have owned and handled many Freewheelers and RC jackets and Greg's stitching is overall the best I've seen, so your hunch is right. However, from what I remember, he was planning on skiving his seems more in the vein of FW/RC.
Thank you! And yeah, I guess it's easier for a one-man company that happens to be a world-class machinist to make jackets to that standard than it is for other companies that have to, not gonna say mass produce, but at least to make jackets at a higher pace for much more people. I can't wait to get my hands on a Rainbow Country tho! (and handle more Freewheelers as well)
 

dudewuttheheck

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Thank you! And yeah, I guess it's easier for a one-man company that happens to be a world-class machinist to make jackets to that standard than it is for other companies that have to, not gonna say mass produce, but at least to make jackets at a higher pace for much more people. I can't wait to get my hands on a Rainbow Country tho! (and handle more Freewheelers as well)
Very true. I still have to give Greg a lot of credit for actually doing it.

Your pattern definitely looks good. That was my one hangup on his jackets in the past. Makes me want to jump back in the queue for one of his jackets.
 

Jaime

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Very true. I still have to give Greg a lot of credit for actually doing it.

Your pattern definitely looks good. That was my one hangup on his jackets in the past. Makes me want to jump back in the queue for one of his jackets.
I know that in terms of aesthetic it is a matter of taste, but what I can tell is that it is very very comfortable to wear, I asked him to make it roomy enough for layering a thick sweater because winters in Ireland and Spain can be very cold, and even with a t-shirt it doesn't look like it is too big on me
 

dudewuttheheck

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I know that in terms of aesthetic it is a matter of taste, but what I can tell is that it is very very comfortable to wear, I asked him to make it roomy enough for layering a thick sweater because winters in Ireland and Spain can be very cold, and even with a t-shirt it doesn't look like it is too big on me
I know when I was talking to him previously, he was talking about doing new patterns so I know he wanted to improve some things. I should ask him if he's already made those changes. Yours definitely looks great and balanced.
 

Will Zach

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Thank you! Absolutely, nothing's new under the sun. I really don't know either but he's proved a lot of times that he can make different shoulders and adjust the pattern to the client's taste so I can only assume that it is by choice. A gorgeous jacket you have there by the way!



Thank you Will, they are a pair of carpenter pants by Dockers:

https://es.dockers.com/products/mens-straight-fit-carpenter-pants-a31340002

Got them because of the same reason you mentioned and even though they are nothing special they are comfy, sturdy and give a nice silhouette.

View attachment 483684



He truly is! It is quite impressive to see the product of his craft, no matter if you are a jacket aficionado like us or just a civilian.
Thx, sorry to be off-topic, but is the pants fabric substantial, or kinda thin? Thx again.
 

Aloysius

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I'm dubbing this beautiful leather Shitki. We must develop a special handshake or gesture to signal one another in the street, as those who dared to consider something better than the "exalted" Shinki when offered.

Very excited for my own Shitki jacket!
 

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