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Fringe on an adult leather jacket

Seb Lucas

I'll Lock Up
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7,573
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Australia
Not sure what specifically you are looking for. I typed Western jacket with fringe into google and options came up. As expected, Sheplers came up with suede Western fringed jackets in 25 styles.
 

Edward

Bartender
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23,130
Location
London, UK
Not a look for which I ever cared. I remember this sort of thing: https://www.bikersparadise.co.uk/Mens-Elite-Fringed-Classic-Motorcycle-Jacket.html being big among (usually older) metal heads in the eighties, and even at the height of my eighties-Alice-Cooper phase thinking they were a bad idea. Most often sported by men rocking anything from a thinning mullet through to a full-on skullet, and smelling vaguely of weed and disappointment. More rarely seen were Western wear suede types, which were mostly worn by guys trying to fool themselves that they looked like Denis Hopper in Easy Rider, when in reality they were more Doris Day in Calamity Jane. Hell, even Dennis Hopper only got away with it because Fonda looked so square next to him (plus Hopper's bike was by far the cooler of the two).

As I mentioned a few years ago in the Rocker jackets thread - https://www.thefedoralounge.com/threads/british-rocker-jackets-c-1956-1969.82375/ - among the original Brit Rockers, fringed jackets were rare, if not entirely unknown. As far as I know, they came in around the late sixties when that sort of ringing thing was considered fashionable (Jimi wore suede fringed at Woodstock, of course). One very famous rocker jacket was the one bought second hand by a young Tim Curry, and later worn, both on stage and on screen, by him in character as Dr Frank'n'Furter (Rocky Horror Show - London 1973, LA Roxy 1974; Rocky Horror Picture Show, 1975). Tim's jacket was just some old Rocker's jacket until he wore it with his fishnets - then it became a legend. It's not known for certain what his was, though Lewis is a possibility, as they did bring in fringed versions of their shirt style collar / centre zip jacket (as well as the Lightning cross-zip) later on. The one fringed model they still do - likely for Rocky Horror fans who believe Tim's was a Lewis, in the main - is known as the Plainsman 313. Notably, Tim's had had the fringing on the chest and back trimmed off, leaving only that on the arms. Always possible that Tim's jacket was a Highwayman (by Rivett's of Leytonstone), though, as they were making them too (Rivett's was actually doing a straight zip, shirt collar jacket under the Highwayman brand in 1959, a full three years before Lewis introduced one). You'll see other examples from other British 60s brands too here - http://hi-star.co.uk/ . It's a look that had its fans, but never mass or sustained popularity.
 

tropicalbob

My Mail is Forwarded Here
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3,956
Location
miami, fl
I was wondering when this question was going to come up. You see a number of the brown suede ones on Etsy and Ebay going for dirt-cheap prices. They really caught on in the later '60's, especially after Neil Young started wearing one when he played with Buffalo Springfield. A friend of mine, a tall thin dude, wore one constantly and it earned him the name "Birdman," which he's still called to this day. I always kind of wanted one.
 

Big J

Call Me a Cab
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2,966
Location
Japan
Just my opinion, but I think that unless you're a grizzly trapper in the wilds, this look is way too hard to pull off. I'm no expert, but like modern stetsons, it's a kind of got pop culture image of cowboys associations that make it feel like a costume to me.
And by that, what I mean is that it's a look I've seen in Hollywood movies from the 50's and 60's that makes me wonder if real cowboys wore them back in the day. I know that the Derby/Bowler hat was allegedly the most widely worn hat back in the 'Wild West' era, but Hollywood has given us the perception that it was all stetson style hats. Like those button up bib shirts that LW sells, I don't know how accurate these are, or if it's a 50's invention. You see these things in The Duke's movies all the time.
I've got a Stetson which I love and wear for BBQ's, and a straw Stetson which I wear when we go fruit picking or out on picnics so I don't get sunstroke, but I'm kind of conscious that I'm playing around with that image, I'm not seriously saying 'this is who I am, I'm a cowboy'.
I don't know if I could do that with a fringed jacket.
Hopper can pull it off coz he's so batsh1t crazy!
It's like wearing a Guards tunic. Hendrix could pull it off on stage but unless you really are a super thin, super young musician with a wasted look, it's pretty hard to wear to the supermarket.
 

Superfluous

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3,995
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Missing in action
Doesn't work for me. A bit too western for my taste and style. I can't pull it off.

I feel similarly about cowboy hats and boots. They look good on others, but are not my personal style. I have been called a lot of things over the years, but "cowboy" is not one of them.

Real McCoys recently offered this "western" jacket:

superdenimthermc0116170530.jpg
 

Dr H

Call Me a Cab
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2,004
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Somerset, UK
Not for me at all - too 'costume' unless you're trapping in the woods (and even then, I imagine that you'd be disentangling yourself from the thorns and twigs...)
 

Dickie Teenie

A-List Customer
Messages
367
Location
Iowa now Athens Gr.
I quite like a gal in a fringe jacket. I had one in the early 70's and they seemed to like mine if I remember correctly.
The Pioneer brand fringe jackets go back to the 1940's thru the 70's.
 

Edward

Bartender
Messages
23,130
Location
London, UK
I never was much of a fringed suede jacket fan, but that Scully looks fantastic to me. These type jackets were popular here in the states mainly during the late '60s and early '70s. Worn by Hippies.
HD

I can't quite imagine you were ever a hippy, HD... ;)

Just my opinion, but I think that unless you're a grizzly trapper in the wilds, this look is way too hard to pull off. I'm no expert, but like modern stetsons, it's a kind of got pop culture image of cowboys associations that make it feel like a costume to me.
And by that, what I mean is that it's a look I've seen in Hollywood movies from the 50's and 60's that makes me wonder if real cowboys wore them back in the day. I know that the Derby/Bowler hat was allegedly the most widely worn hat back in the 'Wild West' era, but Hollywood has given us the perception that it was all stetson style hats. Like those button up bib shirts that LW sells, I don't know how accurate these are, or if it's a 50's invention. You see these things in The Duke's movies all the time.

We can get some idea of what the 'real' Old West was like from the early photo era (civil war onwards was when the real developments in early photos happened), though of course a photo was a rare and tortuous enough process in those days that people tended to make much more of an effort for it, and it might not necessarily reflect everyday wear. Best as I can make out over the years, the White Man in the Wild West for the most part didn't dress significantly differently to his Victorian English counterpart. River Junction seem to have the look about right, if perhaps a touch more stylised than many folks would have been.

You make a very good point, though, that so much of what we think of as 'Wild West' is complete Hollywood fiction; if anything, the movie business has taken more liberties with that than any other period in history. And that's an industry which made Virgil Hilts the most famous man ever to escape from Stalag Luft III, despite being entirely fictional, and which told the world that John Bon Jovi in a submarine cracked the enigma code....

I read somewhere that the original purpose of the fringe was to shed water off the clothing.

I wonder how that works? I've often wondered if it was practical, decorative or even ceremonial. It's not something I'm aware of having seen in quite the same way anywhere other than its US origins, and at that it seems to have started with the Native American / First Nation tribes, before becoming associated with the "gone Native" Grizzly Adams type look.
 

Peter Bowden

Practically Family
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593
Location
united kingdom
I may have read this at some point-I rather like these jackets but only got as far as reading about them.The fringe might shed water in the same way as Japanese farmers used straw capes as rain wear.
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Buckskins

Buckskins are often trimmed with a fringe – originally a functional detail, to allow the garment to shed rain, and to dry faster when wet because the fringe acted as a series of wicks to disperse the water – or quills.[1]
 

Big J

Call Me a Cab
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2,966
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Japan
@Edward, yeah, there's something about Hollywood re-inventing the cowboy for the common consciousness and re-affirming concepts of American exceptionalism, but I can't quite put my finger on it. I think it has to do with coming out of the dust bowl and Great Recession, and the emergence of America as a great power after WWII, but I can't quite fit all the pieces together. I need to read more. But it's a kind of 'origins myth' for the Atom age I think.
Never heard of River Junction myself. Quite fancy a beige duster coat now!

@Peter Bowden, are you the guy in Nagano? I seem to recall that from somewhere...
Yeah, those straw rain capes. You ever worn one? I haven't. I've seen a couple hanging up in temples, but I've never seen anyone wearing one. Only in ukiyoe and jidai geki.
I think they work like thatched rooves; only the ends are exposed to rain, and are pointing downwards, so the rain runs off them. That is 'wicking', but so is a wick in an oil lamp 'sucking' up oil as it burns. I wonder if in this case, the fringes might not be working more like wicks in oil lamps? What do you reckon?
 
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