Dionna Young, Contributor
Thought leather was just for biker chicks? Well, think again, as it looks like leather accessories and garment staples are making a return for this season. The likes of Alberta Ferretti, Fendi and Helmut Lang, to name a few, all give a nod to the extremely ultra-feisty and ultra-cool outerwear.
Over-the-knee-high leather boots, leather corset belts, leather biker jackets, leather fitted trousers - seeing a pattern here? Leather has fly-kicked its way on to the catwalk for this fall and only the fashion rebels need apply to this take-no-prisoners trend.
In the late '70s-'80s era, leather garments made the ultimate statement. If you were able to own a leather piece in your wardrobe, you were awarded an invisible badge of honour and included in any social gathering that believed they were the definition of coolness. In the '90s, leather was put to sleep and anyone seen wearing leather was considered as trying to hold on to their youthful nostalgic past, or it was or left to be worn by the die-hard bikers and try-hard, so-called rock chicks. Fast forward to 2012 and leather has once again made its debut, and what a comeback it has made. Time to dive back into your wardrobe or start investing in some leather staples; leather is recruiting once again this autumn; and if it's edgy, sultry fashion that you desire, then this trend has your name written all over it and signed on the dotted line.
Alexander Wang, Ann Demeulemeester, Givenchy and Rick Owens were just some of the designers that took their fashion queue from leather; as their models were seen strutting down the runway.
Mugler indulged the audience by almost recreating the scenes from the Matrix and you would be excused to think that Versace was paying homage to the blockbuster adaptation The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo.
The new fascination
So what is our fascination with leather that keeps it fighting for a well-earned space in our wardrobe? Is it the combination of leather's effortless chic, timeless cuts and shape, finished off with sharp, dark signatures? Is it the go-to outerwear staple that automatically spices up the rest of your attire? Or are we looking for pieces that channel our subconscious rebellious psyche? Maybe it could be all the options combined, but whatever the answer is, there is one thing ... maybe two ... we can be clear on, and that is leather is to be indulged in, regardless of the climate and that every trend-worthy woman should own a piece of leather luxury whether accessory, footwear or garment.
This is not a trend to be taken lightly and neither is it a trend to wear hardcore. Basking in head-to-toe leather works on the catwalk, but for the likes of the ordinary civilians, that is you and me, over-indulging in the leather get-up would have landed you the job for Halle Berry's stunt double for the movie Cat Woman. But don't expect to win any brownie points in the social arena.
If you want to revel in the leather trend but not drown yourself in the ocean of leather, then note designers such as Jean Paul Gaultier who always celebrates women's curves and this time focuses on the waist, using leather corset belts. And note Narciso Rodriguez, who uses leather half boots and leather gloves as the finishing touches to his collection.
Team your favourite fitted jeans with a leather jacket or team your jeans with your favourite over the knee-high leather boots to give you a quick on-trend look. And if you're daring, team either looks together, sealing your attire with a leather clutch bag, or swap the jeans for a leather skirt for the evening.
You can't go wrong with the leather trend; just remember not to overdo it and have some fun with turning your outerwear into your statement wear.