Planning my first jacket

Discussion in 'Outerwear' started by scurvyfreedman, May 1, 2020.

  1. scurvyfreedman

    scurvyfreedman New in Town

    Messages:
    31
    First, this website is awesome. It's such a great resource and there's so much collective knowledge. I've been lurking for a few months trying to figure out what I want and I think I have an idea.

    Wanted to run some details by people with knowledge and experience before I begin the order process, which may not actually start until the summer or later. I'm a long deliberator on big purchases.

    I think I've settled on an Aero Sheene in Dark Seal Vicenza.
    I am shorter 5'7", so I was thinking of going with the August collar to create more balance.
    I don't ride- so no zipper hand warmer pockets.
    Delete the chest pocket. I want a clean chest and don't think I would use a chest pocket.
    Back - standard Sheene, but I don't think I need/want gussets - any advice on this?

    What is the purpose of an internal kidney panel? Does it help the jacket drape in the back? Does it help with internal wear against a belt?

    Zipper - I was thinking of antique brass Talon. I don't want something shiny. Does anyone have pics of antique brass against Dark Seal Vicenza?

    Thread color - I have no idea. I don't want anything that stands out. What do people recommend?

    I like the look of a windflap. I saw people recommending starting it at the bottom of the zipper and ending it between the chest pocket and top of zipper. Any suggestions?

    Lining? What's something that would be good 45-60' F. I might like to go with a custom tartan featuring orange or purple. What's the difference in insulation and durability for light compared to medium weight? Does heavyweight make it too warm? Should the arms be lined differently, with something more durable or more slidey?

    What else am I missing?

    Thanks so much for your guidance and wisdom.
     
  2. Will Zach

    Will Zach One Too Many

    Messages:
    1,925
    Location:
    Northeast USA
    Welcome. My $0.02: ff you want a simple front you'd want a simple back. No gussets. No kidney panel either. I think even though internal, it may be visible after w while. Sheene is a great choice.
     
    scurvyfreedman and MrProper like this.
  3. Seb Lucas

    Seb Lucas I'll Lock Up

    Messages:
    7,575
    Location:
    Australia
    Nice. Do it and get out while you still can. Make your choices, no right or wrong.

    Only suggestion is get drill lining - indestructible. The tartan stuff wont last as long. If you want warmth, wear a fleece underneath.
     
    Fanch and scurvyfreedman like this.
  4. MrProper

    MrProper One Too Many

    Messages:
    1,825
    Location:
    Europe
    Brass is certainly good with seal brown. I have brass on my black Cafe Racer and I like that.
    I also have no gussets and no hand warmer pockets.
    But I think breast pockets are quite nice because in my opinion too clean could be a little boring.
     

    Attached Files:

    Fanch and scurvyfreedman like this.
  5. Fifty150

    Fifty150 One Too Many

    Messages:
    1,194
    Location:
    The Barbary Coast
    Safety.

    In the old days, bikes used rigid motor mounts, and hardtail frames with no rear suspension. The bike would shake and rattle even at a standstill. It was like sitting on a Sybian, only much more powerful. Some say that your teeth rattle, and that you should bite down on something made of silicone rubber, like a mouth guard used in sports. You also felt every bump on the road. A properly fitted motorcycle jacket, with the side laces tightened, was sort of the same idea as wrapping your hands for boxing or wrapping your wrist for weight lifting. It supported your upper body. Sort of like a soft body cast.

    You are not riding a bike. Don't worry about. Another biker in a biker bar, isn't going to stab you from behind, and pierce your kidneys.

    You won't ride a hardtail, rigid mounted engine motorcycle for hours, then go to the bathroom, and pee blood.
     
    scurvyfreedman and Monitor like this.
  6. Monitor

    Monitor

    Messages:
    14,114
    Hi! Welcome.

    Lining: At 45-60f it all comes down to what have you layered under the jacket. There won't be any difference between the light and mid weight tartan, warmth wise. Same thing.
    If you want warm, go with something heavier, like the alpaca or the quilted, wool backed liner.

    I too recommend cotton drill over tartan. It's simply a very tough material you don't need to ever worry about. Not as pretty as tartan but definitely my favorite by Aero.

    Windflap: Best it backs the entire zipper. Don't see what good would it do to cut it short?

    Kidney panel: Great explanation by @Fifty150. Kidney panel is just two leather panels stitched together. Meaning it won't crease or fold a lot since it's that much rigid. Other than that, not much effect on the jacket. I personally like it.
     
    scurvyfreedman likes this.
  7. Tom71

    Tom71 One Too Many

    Messages:
    1,153
    Location:
    Europe
    Welcome.

    Everything you said makes perfect sense. As others have mentioned, it’s all personal preferences. Follow your instincts.
    Vicenza is a good choice, if you are after a midweight, all weather jacket. With CXL Horween hide, it’s either love or hate. I do love it.

    The only point I would like to make is re windflap. My very first Aero had it, and I would never go for it again. Aeros zippers are slightly fiddly to begin with (nothing you cannot handle, of course), and the windflap always created an additional hurdle. Really bothered me after a while. I guess even that is down to personal preferences. Pls. treat my comment as a remark, not an advice.
     
    scurvyfreedman and El Marro like this.
  8. lina

    lina Practically Family

    Messages:
    756
    Location:
    Washington DC
    I always like shoulder gussets in a leather jacket. Even if you're not riding a motorcycle every time you reach for the handle on the subway, or bend over to pick up something, etc, you'll be glad you have them.

    I find windflaps to be a pain in the neck.
     
    scurvyfreedman likes this.
  9. AeroFan_07

    AeroFan_07 I'll Lock Up

    Messages:
    4,278
    Location:
    Iowa
    As has already been indicated, the Sheene is a Cafe Racer with a shirt-style collar. You are on a great track for a first jacket, and I think there is wisdom in Vicenza for a first jacket personally, as CXL FQHH or Steerhide could be overwheming for the first-time purchaser.

    Haveing owned a Sheene in the past with the lightweight wool tartin lining, which is not as durable overall as cotton drill, I found the internal kidney panel helpful for protection for the lining against the waist/belt area of my jeans. I would keep it. I prefer the smoother and more uniform look without shoulder gussets, however my 4-pocker Aero CR has them and they are fine.

    Biggest suggestion if this is your first time and you are based in North America: Hit up Carrie at Thurston Brothers and order through them, she will not steer you wrong, and she will help you nail the fit, which is the most important aspect. Search for her thread here in the Outerwear section.

    Welcome to FL!
     
    scurvyfreedman and El Marro like this.
  10. El Marro

    El Marro Call Me a Cab

    Messages:
    2,850
    Location:
    California
    Welcome to the lounge!
    I think that a Sheene in dark seal Vicenza is a great choice for a first jacket. I would keep the chest pocket because it provides a visual balance to the jacket that I find pleasing. Having said that I have seen some jackets around here where people eliminated the chest pockets and they looked just fine as well.
    I am not a fan of wind flaps on jackets because I find them clunky and odd looking when the jacket is unzipped. again this is merely my opinion.
    regarding the stitching I find that olive drab works well as a subtle contrast with almost any hide you could think of. If that seems like too much then dark brown stitching would probably blend in and be almost invisible.
    I would also second AeroFan in recommending Carrie and Thurston Brothers. At the end of the day none of the small and large details on the jacket are important if it does not fit well, and Thurston will help you get the fit you want.
     
    Fanch and scurvyfreedman like this.
  11. Carlos840

    Carlos840 I'll Lock Up

    Messages:
    4,343
    Location:
    London
    Welcome,
    I have something that is almost a Sheen, the regular cafe racer with a collar.
    It's a nice jacket:

    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]

    Couple observations:

    -Like you i didn't want shiny zippers and went aged brass. It's my biggest regret on this jacket.
    Fake aged brass doesn't look as good as real aged brass, it looks fake.
    Now that i know what i know i would always reccomend going fro real brass. It will dull down within a year, and the result will look much more natural/better than fake aged brass.
    I will never again order aged brass zippers.

    -Thread colour, iMO the whole "Thurston contrast thread" is a bit overdone and garish.
    I really don't like OD green thread, i can tollerate Tan on a lighter jacket, but to me the best will always be black thread on a black jacket and brown thread on a brown jacket. The RMC grey thread is kinda cool though...

    -The wind flap on mine is a custom design. Normaly it stopped short of the bottom hem like on a Brooks cafe racer.
    I didn't like that so had them finish it even with the bottom hem.
    I would not recommend having the wind flap go all the way to the top of the zipper as that looks crap when the jacket is zipped up 80% of the way.

    Brooks windflap:

    [​IMG]

    My windflap:

    [​IMG]

    -lining depends on where you live and how many jacket you have.
    If your plan is to have one leather jacket and wear it as often as possible then you can't beat cotton drill.
    If you think you might end up with a winter jacket and a summer jacket, then you might as well get alpacca or tartan on this one and cotton drill on the next.
     
  12. scurvyfreedman

    scurvyfreedman New in Town

    Messages:
    31
    Thanks. This is really interesting to know the function of different aspects of the jacket when they were designed.
     
    Fanch likes this.
  13. scurvyfreedman

    scurvyfreedman New in Town

    Messages:
    31
    Thanks. Seems cotton drill is a nearly universal recommendation among those with a lot of experience. In the cold I'll be wearing wool sweaters. In the warm, just buttoned shirts or t-shirts.
     
  14. scurvyfreedman

    scurvyfreedman New in Town

    Messages:
    31
    Thanks for the advice. Will definitely reach out to Carrie when I'm ready to begin the process. I will definitely need help with the fit given my short arms and relatively (for my height) broad shoulders.
     
  15. scurvyfreedman

    scurvyfreedman New in Town

    Messages:
    31
    Thanks for your advice. From my experience with tailored clothes, I get what you mean regarding fit and will definitely reach out to Carrie when the time comes.
     
    El Marro likes this.
  16. AeroFan_07

    AeroFan_07 I'll Lock Up

    Messages:
    4,278
    Location:
    Iowa
    Drill is a great way to go. I put a thread out here on it. The tartan linings, unless you go to full heavy weight, do not add much for warmth. They look amazing though.

    Also Aero is shut down for the time being, orders are still being taken, but with Corona-virus everything is just on hold. we'll get through this! :)
     
    scurvyfreedman likes this.
  17. scurvyfreedman

    scurvyfreedman New in Town

    Messages:
    31
    Thanks. Love your jacket. I think you have similar taste to what I was thinking for a lot of features. I get what you mean about naturally aged brass versus artificially aged. It does look good in your photos, but it's very uniform in color.

    Your find flap is exactly what I was thinking of. It looks great at the bottom and ends so that the jacket doesn't have to be zipped to the neck to cover it. I like the asymmetry and the function behind it.

    Do you find the windflap to be a issue with zipping as others have said?
     
  18. scurvyfreedman

    scurvyfreedman New in Town

    Messages:
    31
    I'm not in a rush to order myself. I need to make sure my family gets through this financially before I throw down cash on a luxury purchase. I'll check out your thread on drill linings.
     
    AeroFan_07 likes this.
  19. El Marro

    El Marro Call Me a Cab

    Messages:
    2,850
    Location:
    California
    Heresy!
     
    Carlos840 likes this.
  20. Carlos840

    Carlos840 I'll Lock Up

    Messages:
    4,343
    Location:
    London
    No problems zipping up whatsoever, but i can imagine how a Brooks style flap coule be a pain.
    Regarding the brass, honestly it doesn't take that long for the gold look to go away.

    Look at this, real brass that has dulled on the left, weird gold platting that never dulls on the right.
    Personally i think that the dull brass on the left looks much better than the weird brown of the aged brass.

    [​IMG]
     
    Fanch and scurvyfreedman like this.

Share This Page

  1. This site uses cookies to help personalise content, tailor your experience and to keep you logged in if you register.
    By continuing to use this site, you are consenting to our use of cookies.