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Your High School Jacket - if you could go back

AeroFan_07

I'll Lock Up
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5,333
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Iowa
Simple but complex idea here. Have fun with this!!

Knowing what you know now, recalling the timeframe you were in high school, and the general "culture" of your school/town/area, what jacket would you choose to wear if you were able to have one favorite jacket for the whole time?

I realize there are a lot of factors going on with this idea, high school is a huge intersection of change for nearly everyone, and many of us started sorting out a lot of our identity in those years. It's often turbulent times (and certainly was for me). So if you just wished you could go back, and had different circumstances, what jacket would you wear for the bulk of your time? Bear in mind that high school probably also invovles a lot of "rough" use, being stuffed into lockers (maybe even with the wearer still in the jacket), carrying bookbags, generally getting tossed around a lot.

For myself - it's likely the Vanson Model "E" would have been the right balance here. It would have been period correct for the time I was in school - the later '80's. That was also when Berman's (Later Wilson's) was at it's peak of popularity.

I would chose the "E" as it's functional, somewhat fashionable, but durable and comfortable to wear all day if needed. I was not really a "biker dude" in those days. It's a bold but not 100% in your face sort of jacket. It may have given me some confidence in those years - that I really needed. However the fact I went from 4' 10" to nearly 6' 0" while in high school. So anything "nice" I would have outgrown in very short order.

Suprisingly, I still have a jacket from high school: My FFA (Future Farmers of America) jacket. Made of blue cordoroy. I'll get some photos of it. It is a "size 34" so it's never going to be tried on again! :)
 

El Marro

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3,485
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California
Cool thread idea @AeroFan_07, i’ll take a swing at this one.
If I had it all to do over again I would probably pick something like the Freewheelers Mulholland. For me that jacket has just the right blend of understated coolness. I’m not sure if the 17 year old me would have agreed but I think so.
One thing I know for certain though is that I would have worn it at least two sizes too large because that is what we did in 1993.
 
Messages
10,985
Location
SoCal
Mine would be a Schott Perfecto. I remember the punks/goths
wearing them at The Cuckoo’s Nest and down at the 32nd Street Lifeguard station. They were always painted up with band logos and they were pretty cheap (by today’s standards) from the Army surplus store. In my conservative town (think Lacoste shirts, Khaki pants, and Top-Siders) of Newport Beach, in the mid-80s, these really made a statement. :) If you go back to Jr. High, it would have been a Mod Parka- always loved when the guys would gather with their awesome customized Vespas and Lambrettas. I was still wearing red parachute (Bugle Boy) pants and neon shirts, but the mods were the cool kids.

@AeroFan_07, I was just looking at FFA jackets on eBay last week. What a cool design- especially the older ones!
5D72B6AC-9EE6-42EB-8D51-0EC57672126C.jpeg
 
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Salmosalar

A-List Customer
Messages
414
Simple but complex idea here. Have fun with this!!

Knowing what you know now, recalling the timeframe you were in high school, and the general "culture" of your school/town/area, what jacket would you choose to wear if you were able to have one favorite jacket for the whole time?

I realize there are a lot of factors going on with this idea, high school is a huge intersection of change for nearly everyone, and many of us started sorting out a lot of our identity in those years. It's often turbulent times (and certainly was for me). So if you just wished you could go back, and had different circumstances, what jacket would you wear for the bulk of your time? Bear in mind that high school probably also invovles a lot of "rough" use, being stuffed into lockers (maybe even with the wearer still in the jacket), carrying bookbags, generally getting tossed around a lot.

For myself - it's likely the Vanson Model "E" would have been the right balance here. It would have been period correct for the time I was in school - the later '80's. That was also when Berman's (Later Wilson's) was at it's peak of popularity.

I would chose the "E" as it's functional, somewhat fashionable, but durable and comfortable to wear all day if needed. I was not really a "biker dude" in those days. It's a bold but not 100% in your face sort of jacket. It may have given me some confidence in those years - that I really needed. However the fact I went from 4' 10" to nearly 6' 0" while in high school. So anything "nice" I would have outgrown in very short order.

Suprisingly, I still have a jacket from high school: My FFA (Future Farmers of America) jacket. Made of blue cordoroy. I'll get some photos of it. It is a "size 34" so it's never going to be tried on again! :)
Lewis Leathers Dominator in black - no hesitation! If I had to have just one jacket for the high school years, this would be the one….
 
Messages
10,985
Location
SoCal
^^yeah, you’re right on! If I’d ever heard of LL back then- this would have been it. Still might be someday. It would’ve gone really well with my NaNa skull boots (the pointy ones).
 
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Turnip

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Europe
As an 80´s highschool kid i used to wear a relative plain, no name leather jacket most of the time, very similar to the one in the pic below.
It´s been though pretty rugged and survived some nice action those years, booze, blood and vomit...:D...so looking back from today i would not see a need for some other type of jacket.
Sometimes in winter i wore an orange lined, dark blue bomber jacket instead, combat boots anyway all year round.

97080_006.JPG
 
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AeroFan_07

I'll Lock Up
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5,333
Location
Iowa
Here is the FFA jacket - which I recenlty had dry cleaned and now hangs on my office wall:

upload_2021-8-4_11-26-42.png


It suprises me a little that these are selling on ebay as they seem to be. These are essentially uniforms. There is actually a whole protocal for thier wearing, documented here:
https://www.menifeeheritageffa.com/ffa-official-dress.html

On Edit: I just created as seperate thread for these - I suspect we have some FFA members on here...
 
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Messages
10,985
Location
SoCal
In the right leather, this design would be great though. Even in corduroy, they look a lot like the 30s souvenir jackets from National Parks, etc.
 
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16,464
Nice fitting cross zip. Pretty much what I wear now. I'd wear the Lewis Leathers Lightning my dad bought me when I was a kid, instead of being an idiot who was too afraid to put it on, due to having zero confidence. . .

But yeah, this. Don't matter what brand.

il-1140x-N-2836234344-hvgv.jpg
 

AeroFan_07

I'll Lock Up
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5,333
Location
Iowa
In the right leather, this design would be great though. Even in corduroy, they look a lot like the 30s souvenir jackets from National Parks, etc.

Absolutely! I see no reason why the design itself could not be copied (without the logos, etc) done up in say, Navy blue FQHH. The collar and the size adjusters, lower hem all look pretty neat to me, like a 30's or 40's work coat.
 

TheDonEffect

Practically Family
Messages
610
s-l1600.jpg


That one was pretty much the same one I wore in high school, I think the pocket style was a little different and I had quilted lining, but otherwise same jacket. My older brother handed that one down to me and I wore it throughout high school and college.

It was such a well made jacket, the leather really held up well considering the abuse I put it through during those years, I didn't have alot of nice things, wore mostly hand me downs and whatever I could find on the super cheap, but that was one nice thing I got to wear. I remember everyone else wearing cheap or fake leather jackets, in all their squeaky shiny glory, and I remember how mine was just different, and smelled good.

I actually still have it, (too lazy to dig it out of the closet to take a pic) one of those things I don't intend on throwing away. No remarkable patina, just drying out with age, and it's way, way too big (90s and early aughts, when clothes were comfortable, lol), sometimes I consider taking it to JL and getting it trimmed up so I can wear it again, but nah, some things are just better left the way they are.
 

Khilij

One of the Regulars
Messages
149
High school wasn't all that long ago for me, to be honest. I wore an old military surplus m65 that was covered in all sorts of paint. I beat the crap out of that thing and wore it until it finally gave up the ghost. I imagine I'd stick with it.
 

AbbaDatDeHat

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8,645
DC02EBE4-B908-4005-951B-36253C0A6C2C.jpeg
F025B87C-C45E-4145-8F0D-E9604D2F8E80.jpeg
B9665941-A836-4E20-A864-354DBF943276.jpeg
Pretty cool idea for a thread @AeroFan_07.
It’s an easy no-brainer for me.
One jacket, through high school....i’m choosing the first leather i ever bought the summer i graduated. I’d love to have gotten a 3 year head start on it because it was bitchin then and still is to this day.
Not bad for a @48 year old piece of cool me thinks.
B
 

dudewuttheheck

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4,277
Awesome idea for a thread! Even knowing what I know now, I would not pick a leather jacket.

Blasphemy!

I know.

However, I was not stylish enough in any way to pull off a leather jacket in high school. If it's OK to go back in time and dress completely differently then yeah, sure, I'd wear a black Freewheelers La Brea, jeans, and engineer boots and be done with it. However, I don't think that's actually realistic at all. It took me forever to develop any sense of decent style.

When I was in high school, I mostly wore zip hoodies exclusively. No sense of style whatsoever. I even wore shorts most of the time *shudders* so I think something that would have been a bit cooler would be a nice denim jacket. A Mister Freedom Ranch Blouse or a Levis Type II or one of the Japanese repros of those jackets would be perfect. It would be cool without completely changing the reality of the past.
 

Edward

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24,779
Location
London, UK
If I were back in secondary education today, I'd be wearing this jacket:

1009776_10151752212961278_831752992_n.jpg

994216_10151694632965138_1326342612_n.jpg


....obviously with the rest of the proscribed uniform. (Uniform is still now, as was the case back then, completely standard in UK schools, at least to the age of sixteen. In my day at least in NI we wore uniform until we left at eighteen. I have absolutely no complaints about that.) Had the 'honours' system been rolled out beyond mere sport in my day, it's possible I could also have ended up in a maroon 'honours' version of the blazer. I was awarded "colours" for my role in the school musical (a production of South Pacific) during my final year, but as these awards were always made retrospectively at the start of the following year, I never had the chance to wear an honours tie as was the case in my day.

The above is not my original school blazer (I'll never be a 38" chest again!), but a newer one I bought some years ago to wear as a form of boating blazer. IT's much, much nicer than the blazer was in my day - back they they were a very ordinary, navy blued with plain silver buttons affair, the sort you could buy in any department store, none of the class of this one.

On the rare "non-uniform" day (once, or very occasionally if there was a big charity event on, twice per year), I generally wore a pair of whatever jeans I had at the time, a t-shirt or a West German military surplus shirt, and whatever coat I wore socially at the time (as opposed to my regulation, plain navy blue school coat). The casual coats I remember wearing to school on those days were a knee-length, navy Crombie I had from about 16-18, a 60s or earlier, blanket-lined West German Navy peacoat (which I would dearly love to have in my size now; I did have another in the late 90s, but outgrew it and have never been able to find the same one again since - usually now they're all quilted liner, the ones I had were lined in the same wool as the outer shell was made from), and a Perfecto-style jacket of a brand I no longer recall, but it had "New York City" on the label along side the "Naked Cowhide" demarcation. The leather was bought new in late December 1990 for £72 (£168 in today's money). Cracking jacket, I wore it every chance I got until I grew out of it two years later. That was probably the coolest one I had in that era. I never dreamed of wearing any other leather at that age, because as far as I was concerned that was the only type of leather jacket there was.
 

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