Why can’t we look good when we ride bikes?

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Conventional motorcycling wisdom states, “Dress for the crash, not the ride.” But why does being safe have to involve dressing up like a DayGlo sausage, a European hairdresser or a large nylon pillow? Why can Dainese make an airbag racing suit that can tell the difference between a high and low-side crash using a GPS sensor, three gyroscopes and three accelerometers, but not offer a jacket I’d be seen dead in?

You know what, screw it, we’re going to show people that it’s possible.

Here’s our safety gear philosophy. If we’re going to go out and break some serious laws on a sportsbikes, we’ll wear head-to-toe racing gear. That means a one-piece leather suit, racing gloves and racing boots. That means the best armor we can buy in the shoulders, elbows, back, chest, hips, knees and shins. If we’re going to ride long distances we’ll wear a two-piece suit with most of the above. If we’re riding off-road, then it’s MX gear. Basically, if we’re taking chances on a bike, we try to be responsible and offset as much of that risk as possible with good gear. But, we also use our bikes for riding around town, going to meetings, going to the store, meeting friends and just getting around. That means jeans and a leather jacket. Why aren’t the kind of clothes available that’d look equally good in that meeting, in that store, at the restaurant, at the party or at the bar as they would on a bike? Why can’t we dress well, yet be safe?

Grant “Adventure” Ray.

There really isn’t a reason. The technology exists. New armor from Alpinestars and D3O is both slim and safe. That means it can be incorporated into clothes without making you look like you’re on the way to football practice. A jacket doesn’t need to be bright pink or covered in logos to protect you from abrasion. It makes no sense to us.

So here’s what we’re going to do. We’ve got this huge pile of armor from Alpinestars and D3O, we’re going to use it to take some perfectly nice-looking jackets and make them safe. We’ll be covering the whole project on a regular basis as it develops. We’ll be explaining how the armor works, how it manages to be so thin, yet still safe (the thicker of the D3O back protectors is just 18mm, yet meets CE level 2, for instance), picking jackets that’ll protect us against abrasion, then installing the armor in such a way that it’ll actually stay in place during a crash. We’ve got enough armor to do three jackets, so we’ll be doing three levels of protection — a jacket that’s as safe as anything on sale at a bike dealer, yet will still look great; a jacket that incorporates just enough protection that we’d feel safe riding around town in it, yet you’ll never be able to tell that it’s anything more than streetwear; and one that splits the difference.

Damn I look good. Damn, I better not fall off.

Then, we’re going to wear them along with our Dethkillers and Iron Heart jeans and be two relatively well protected, very well dressed, bad ass bikers. The point? Someone needs to start making you gear like this. Let’s demonstrate that there’s a market for it.

Included below is a mood board of stylish men on motorcycles so you can see what we’re thinking about. What we need from you guys is a little help with a name. Grant suggested The Clark Kent Project, but that just sounds like a terrible boy band. Ideas?

  • Glenngineer

    This is a good idea. I feel like a dipshit every time I clunk into my office in boots that look like snow mobile boots, nylon pants, and a fucked up black leather jacket.

    • David

      Actually that makes me feel awesome, especially coming in from the rain and watching my coworkers’ faces…

      • aristurtle

        Exactly what I was about to say. I feel like a BAMF every time I’m walking into the office wearing touring boots and an armored leather jacket, watching my co-workers sprint from their analgesic Toyotas to the building so they don’t get much rain on them.

        Don’t be ashamed of it, own it.

        Something in the same vein that I’d like, though, are boots that are comfortable to wear and walk around in, but that I can still ride through the rain in. I can never seem to get a good balance: either my feet are soaked or I can’t walk comfortably.

        • http://hellforleathermagazine.com Wes Siler

          Alpinestars Scout WP. Seriously.

          • Jason

            I’ve got the SMX shorties and they work great but they get too hot to wear in the office and have a little bit too little padding. Are the scouts that comfortable for all day wear?

            Ive taken to keeping sandals at my desk at work I can change out too

            • Kirill

              I keep a pair of shoes in the office, sitting around in sportbike boots all day isn’t comfortable. And mine squeak.

              • DAVID

                I keep a pair of sandals at the office to change in to. but a hot girl here just said to me ‘dave, white socks with sandals, really?’

                • Jason

                  Haha I have the same problem. Of course they look at me more strange when I wear my vibram five fingers

                • Kirill

                  She’s right. Socks with sandals? Really?

                  The above-mentioned FiveFingers look more normal, and I say this as someone that wears blue/black/orange KSOs.

                • http://www.thisblueheaven.com Mark D

                  Yikes, socks and sandals?

                • nymoto

                  Wearing sandals with socks is another way of saying “I have no clue what I am doing with my life” – the dos equis man

              • http://pinkyracer.com pinkyracer

                I just wear fashion boots and hope I don’t drop a bike on my foot again. that kinda sucked. had to hobble around Valencia SBK on crutches and whine about how much I wanted a pit scooter.

          • Glenngineer

            Not available in 14s :G

          • aristurtle

            Those look durable and waterproof as hell, but can I really get off the bike and hike a couple miles through the woods without changing my shoes?

            • http://hellforleathermagazine.com Wes Siler

              No, you’re not hiking in them. Grant and I both ride in combat boots around town. I like the 8″ height for ankle support and a steel toe for protection in traffic.

              • kidchampion

                Steel toes are considered a hazard in motorcycle boots. Planting a foot on the ground at speed can transfer energy into a guillotine action. There’s a reason they aren’t used in real MC boots.

          • Tim

            I have the Astar Scouts and like them. Wes, given your well-documented love of skinny jeans, how do you get your pant legs over them? I have trouble even getting boot cut jeans to go over. I am assuming you aren’t tucking the pants in, since that would defeat the goal of looking good?

        • Jason

          Going to work I don’t mind walking in looking like a power ranger or a storm trooper. But on a nice day in southern california especially living near the beach nothing would be nicer than bombing down to the local lunch/dinner/hangout spot on a bike. But since I am an ATGATT guy and parent of an infant I feel obligated to make that extra effort which quite honestly does reduce my desire to go anywhere in public.

          Having some tweener gear that might not be my choice for dual sporting/sport riding/touring but still offered maximum protection and was still socially acceptable would be pretty awesome.

          • T Diver

            I did not realize I was ATGATT until someone here told me what it means. Now, I spend quite a bit of time thinking about it. My friends, who don’t even ride, bust my balls that I am ATGATT. I am all about safety but there has to be a balance. If you are doing something social (and not smashing canyons), it seems like non-full gear should be ok. A big part of it for me was accepting my own abilities on a bike. Although I can’t prevent getting hit by a shitty car driver, I feel I can ride responisbly enough to not need all the gear all the time. (I hope). You have a baby though. If you don’t wear full gear all the time then it means you hate your baby. sorry.

          • http://hellforleathermagazine.com Wes Siler

            If you’re commuting a long distance and you can change at work, then wearing real gear isn’t a pain. But our “commuting” is like riding to a cafe to meet someone for a quick meeting or dropping by someone else’s office for a meeting or similar. It’s cases like that where you don’t necessarily want to be this guy:

            http://hellforleather.blip.tv/file/4045107/

            • Jason

              Exactly, if I want to blip down to Pipe’s in cardiff for a breakfast burrito I don’t really want to look like that, if I am going to work to spend all day there I don’t mind it

              • x

                mmmmmm. pipes.

        • jonoabq

          I’ve got about 20k miles on a pair of Sidi Canyons. Waterproof, comfy, easy on/off, and armor.

          • Toby

            +1 for the Canyons. Mine took ages to break in but are now pretty comfy. Totally waterproof – last summer I waded into a freezing cold creek in them to cool my feet off. It worked – cooled me off without leaking a drop ;)

  • eric

    something like which brooks bros. suit will survive a 45 mph slide?

    • Dan

      Brooks Brothers suits crash pretty well, actually. I had a 10mph get-off wearing a Fitzgerald (with safety jacket over the top) – hit the deck, rolled twice, got up, chased offender down, still looked great.

      • Steve

        My long lost brother?

        The Fitz fit is great for winter, but for Houston summers I like the Brookscool line (those years they carry it).

        Bates Fastlanes boots look great under a suit, but I’ve been tempted to try the Alpinestar Parlor boots.

        I just had the thought that perhaps a bow tie makes sense with a motorcycle?

    • Jonathan

      Grab some of those kevlar lined suits that companies make for security guards.

      Insert armor, profit??

  • Brant

    #1 is Mert Lawwill?

    Is #14 Malcolm Smith on a Husky?

    • JonB

      #1 is Mert, yeah!

    • http://hellforleathermagazine.com Wes Siler

      And yeah, 14 is Malcolm.

      • Pete

        Where did you get #4?

  • stabmaster

    do you have any suggestions on how to carry camera gear on a bike?

    • http://hellforleathermagazine.com Wes Siler

      Otterbox + bungee cords?

      • JaHo

        I have medium North Face duffel bag that I put on the passenger seat and lash down at either side. It’s got a fairly waterproof zipper, and the material itself is waterproof. This bag also takes any extra layers that I’m not wearing, and serves as a bit of a backrest.

        If I’m on a touring bike I reserve the trunk for the camera gear and put other things in the duffel.

        I’ve had good luck so far with my Nikons, though I did have a Sigma 24-70 f/2.8 zoom go all broken-like during a 3,000 mile trip last summer. Second time it’s gone tango uniform. Needless to say I won’t be buying any more Sigma lenses.

        Now the real dilemma: Do I carry the new Leica M9 with me when I tour? I’m considering a small Pelican case, a security system, and a convoy of armed guards. But the image quality will be worth it. Grant, any guidance on how Leitz’s finest holds up to motorcycle travel?

        • http://hellforleathermagazine.com Grant Ray

          Stop worrying. Throw the Leica, 2 lenses, a spare battery, the charger, a microfiber clothe in a bag and go. Buy spare cards as needed on the road. Don’t be afraid to use the clothe on the sensor if it gets dusty. It’s that easy.

          • http://worldof2.com/ jpenney

            Balls of steel right there.

            I felt bad after breaking the AF motor on my wife’s Nikon D50. I couldn’t imagine the shame if I trashed a camera worth more than my bike.

            • x

              he just wanted to brag about having a leica.

        • Toby

          Get a personal articles policy and forget about it. I have total replacement-value coverage (loss/theft/damage/whatever) for >$5k worth of photo gear and it costs something like $12/mo.

  • JonB

    Dude I totally forgot to mention Giovanni Bussei. Though his tasseled race leathers have to be forgiven.

    Instead of pret-a-porter/ready to wear call it sur-a-porter/safe to wear.

  • Devin

    I support this 100%. This isn’t the first time in motorcycling where something I want isn’t phsysically for sale (both gear and bike wise).

    Can’t think of a witty name though.

    • Devin

      Wait – no legs? That’s a market that is even more left out as far as protection / good looks is concerned.

      • aristurtle

        Yeah, a jacket is easy to take off at a restaurant; overpants are always a little awkward.

        • http://www.karinajean.com karinajean

          +10. I’m really excited about the kevlar pants/strap on knee armor (does one call it that?) but I would like some hip protection too without having to wear crazy bike shorts under my jeans. I’m ok with the mad max/power ranger on the bike, but I don’t want to take 10 min. undressing when I get to my destination if I’m just there for a short stay.

      • http://pinkyracer.com pinkyracer

        Schoeller does a lot of really awesome textiles that are abrasion resistant to 120km/h. But would you pay $500 for them? If so, I will gladly make you a pair. You won’t even be able to see the knee armor, unless you’re into the skintight jeans look.

        Most motorcycle clothing companies aren’t using Schoeller because it’s made in Switzerland to the highest environmental standards. And everyone knows motorcyclists hate the Swiss and hate environmentally responsible manufacturing.

        Oh, I’m sorry. You said you want all that but at the same price you’d pay for some toxic shit from China? Yes, and I’d like to travel the universe with Dr Who someday.

        kvetching aside, there are two main reasons bike gear sucks so bad. 1) it’s designed by people with no fashion sense, for people with no fashion sense. 2) in order to get any sort of payback on the astronomical cost of product development, one must sell as many units as possible, or sell units at an extremely high price. Which means selling to the masses (see point 1) also, point 3, being that the masses are both broke and cheap (and I’d add delusional) so they expect everything at Walmart prices. Or it means selling to the luxury market. And that, my friends, is where my expertise lies. So if you want high-end, high-class gear, and are willing to pay what it’s worth (more than you’d spend on off-the-rack Dainese), and I can find a few hundred of you, I might be able to break even.

        And people wonder why I laugh at them when they suggest I start a women’s motorcycle clothing line…

        • ursus

          The Schoeller corporate offices for the U.S. are in Seattle. They are friendly. Among many things, they make stuff like stretch kevlar.

          • http://pinkyracer.com pinkyracer

            they are indeed friendly. I just wish they could sell me less than 50 yards of Cold Black abrasion resistant stretch nylon…

  • JTourismo

    Excellent Idea.
    I am tired of having to provide everyone who gives me an invitation to bring my bike somewhere with the caveat that I will appear on time, dressed as a power ranger, and you will hear the noise of wrenching leather on leather every time I move.

  • Jack

    Amazing how the smartest ideas are often the most obvious ones. A little padding in the jeans wouldn’t be the worst idea either.

  • http://www.thisblueheaven.com Mark D

    The Clark Kent Project sounds like a horrible college jam band.

    How about Operation Ghillie Suit?

  • Ben

    I get the whole Clark Kent name thing (I think). As in Clark Kent is still superman (superman = protection) but looks normal and average. So, the Clark Kent reference is saying this shit is protective as hell but no one will know you’re anything but a regular guy. I like that a lot. It’s clever, but kind of obvious. Maybe something along the lines of a hint at Superman instead? Like Phonebooth Clothing (I know that’s dumb).

  • http://www.muthalovin.com the_doctor

    Hell For Leather Limited (HFLL)

    This is going to be awesome, and I hope it works out. Do you kids have a budget in mind?

  • Mike

    Not that I’m entirely certain that they fit the “looking good” criteria to a T, but I’m interested in what folks think about the (Australian) Draggin Jeans gear:

    http://www.dragginjeans.net/

    • http://hellforleathermagazine.com Wes Siler

      Eww, gross.

      • Ben Rowland

        A few of their styles look decent. The American website leaves much to be desired. The Australians have a better selection.

        • a hipster

          not a fucking chance.

    • Jeremy

      Check out the next gen jeans – real comfortable, look like regular jeans http://www.dragginjeans.net/product/next%20gen%20for%20men

      • http://pinkyracer.com pinkyracer

        even better, check out what GoGo Gear is doing. Oh wait, you can’t yet. But trust me. Their kevlar jeans are hawt. For men and women. I know because I did their product development.

        But they’re not out yet. They may actually even be made right here in LA (crossing my fingers!). Tell your local dealer to order some, so they can start making them.

        http://www.gogogearla.com/categories/Kevlar-Jeans

        • http://www.karinajean.com karinajean

          WAIT YOU DID WHAT?!

          dude. I am so excited. this is me giving you an internet high-five.

          • http://pinkyracer.com pinkyracer

            well, I won’t believe it until they’re actually in stores. so please, tell your dealer to order some! :-)

  • Ben

    this is a fantastic project – and one the market is way overdue for. you should maybe talk to the guys at “Epaulet” in brooklyn (http://www.epauletshop.com). they did a little collab with vanson and made some great waxcloth jackets last year. they might be interested in helping out…

    “the selvedge yard” also has some great imagery to be inspired by:
    http://theselvedgeyard.wordpress.com/2010/02/03/steve-mcqueen-hollywoods-own-true-son-of-liberty/

    • Roman

      Wow, those McQueen pics are epic. And the man crush grows…

      • Ben

        +1 Mine started when I was ten with Papillon. And then Bullit… and then The Great Escape… and then The Thomas Crown Affair.. you get the idea.

    • Gregory

      Nice link. Thank you~

      -gceaves
      Portland, OR
      2008 KLR w. milkcrate

  • dan

    yippie-kai-yay-motherfuckinglookingood-wear

  • http://mansgottado.tumblr.com/ gregorbean

    The McQueen Hypothesis

    or

    The Dean/McQueen Experiment

    • Jason

      Sort of the angle I was thinking of too

  • aadmanz

    I know exactly what you guys mean, I am trying, but it is not easy and can cost an arm and a leg.

    I wear these jeans:

    http://www.sierrabmwonline.com/images/city_pants_denim_sierra_bmw.jpg

    With one of these jackets:
    http://www.motocard.com/Soporte/MontaImg.aspx?Image=M-0372761T.gif&Width=330

    http://www.motocorse.com/foto/19255/1.jpg

    And these boots:

    http://www.ascycles.com/images/products/Puma/300840-01-42.jpg

  • T Diver

    Hell For Fashion. Good idea. Gear that looks like normal clothes is long over due. Although I may hang out with urban bikers, I don’t wear hip-hop riding gear (whatever that is). I don’t get baggy clothes on a bike. I’m a 35-year-old portfolio assistant at a bank. I’m not a rapper/stunter. Less logos makes better gear. I don’t want to wear gear with branding all over it. It makes no sense unless someone was paying me. (And I suck so that’s not going to happen anytime soon.)
    My friend painted his Monster Ninja white, then proceeded to buy all the Monster stickers and reapply them. I don’t get it.
    One last thing. Given that you folks seem to have a pretty good understanding of what gear people want, hurry up and make it. We will buy it.

    • aadmanz

      I tried developing some nice looking rider gear (for the European market) in a previous job. Guess what? The bright, flashy, logo filled gear outsold the classy gear by a (very) long shot..

      • T Diver

        It does not suprise me. I have pretty much come to accept that I’m anti-establishment in my desire not to have logos all over my gear. I think they are onto something with this “Hell-For, we think we can operate a sewing machine, Leather” project. Lets see what happens.

        • http://hellforleathermagazine.com Wes Siler

          Don’t worry, we’ve brought in an actual woman to operate the sewing machine for us.

          • http://www.karinajean.com karinajean

            just a tip: girls think it’s crazy hot when dudes know how to sew. pick up some lessons while you’ve got a pro in. drop it casually when you’re on a friend- or first-date, and she’ll swoon.

            signed, an actual woman who is partnered up with a dude who sews.

            PS. JUST ASK SHOVELHEAD. just sayin’.

            PPS. Shovelhead is not my partner. for the record.

            • http://hellforleathermagazine.com Wes Siler

              Ha, I was being snarky. One of my fashion designer friends (J Crew) is helping us.

              • aadmanz

                Aha, there is method to your madness.. :-)

              • http://pinkyracer.com pinkyracer

                awww, cute. my first job out of fashion school was at J Crew. I love what Jenna’s done with the line since. Ask your friend if Nick Gjovik is still running the sample room. He was a great boss.

        • http://pinkyracer.com pinkyracer

          actually, I think that’s the best name yet.

          “Hell-For, we think we can operate a sewing machine, Leather”

          But Hell for Fashion was good too…

          • T Diver

            I totally forgot about Shovelhead’s sewing skills. If not the title of this project, how about a new line of gear? (Dethkiller Shovelhead Skinnys – made of Kevlar panties)

            • http://pinkyracer.com pinkyracer

              kevlar panties are alright. but not as cool as the carbon fiber banana hammocks I was gonna make a killing with when I joined the Ducatisti and discovered their lust for all things CF.

  • http://worldof2.com/ jpenney

    Damn I look good. Damn, I better not fall off.

    Excellent caption.

  • http://vtbmwmov.org Eben

    If I was single and lived in a city, I’d probably ride a Bonneville and care about how I looked. Belstaff already makes the jacket. I’d just need basic some knee and hip armor in a pair of jeans. I’m getting too old to crash without armor.

    • Roman

      Belstaff stuff is nice, but it’s super duper, make-$200-jeans-look-reasonable pricey. I’m definitely curious to see where this goes.

      • http://vtbmwmov.org Eben

        I wore my dad’s original Trialmaster jacket all the time as a teenager. My mom threw it out (along with the pants) because she thought it made me look like a thug. He recently saw what they’re asking for a new one (or vintage one, for that matter) and won’t let her hear the end of it.

        I don’t think $500 is all that bad for the Mojave, actually. It does have armor and is pretty inarguably cool-looking.

  • DAVID

    i want some really thin strap on kneepads that work under my jeans. (ok, that came out wrong). but i don’t want to wear them outside the pants.

  • vegetablecookie

    Where can I find a frameable version of #18?

    • http://hellforleathermagazine.com Grant Ray

      I think Pommier took that shot of Max, but I’m not certain.

      • vegetablecookie

        Thanks. I’ll start there. That’s just such a great photo. I think the rain is what makes it perfect.

  • Phil

    Thanks for doing this. Alpinestars’ City Collection is trying to do this (I own the Messager jacket). Can I make a suggestion for one of the jackets – how about something for the summer that isn’t black, doesn’t look like chain mail, and doesn’t make me look like a superhero?

    • Toby

      Good idea. Living in Thailand, I’m desperate for good warm weather gear. I have a Rev’it Air jacket and pants, but they lean Power Ranger for sure.

      What I’d really love to see in the rainy season is a pair of waterproof but UNinsulated gloves. Some places are both hot AND rainy…

      • http://pinkyracer.com pinkyracer

        again, Schoeller has the fabrics. but nobody (I know of) is using them. They have a treatment that makes BLACK reflect light! And they have a breathable water-resistant abrasion-resistant nylon which can be treated.

        • philn

          @pinkracer – I looked at the Schoeller site, and that coldblack® finishing sounds neat. Their fabric is being used in gear (a quick search with “motorcycle gear schoeller” will get a few leads), but nothing really cool.

          @Toby – I had to go to Rev’it for my warm weather gear, as well – definitely alot of Power Ranger going on with my Tornado jacket.

  • dan

    The Peleus Project

  • Ray

    Sidewalk Moto Wear.

    I like the idea of walkable, everyday. Reminds me of the scene at Sidewalk Cafe in the EV in the 80s and 90s.

    Heavyish 50s tan windbreakers made sense to me in Texas; be great with armor and protective fabric: pavement and sun protection for hot weather.

    Blundstones and Red Wings work pretty good on and off bike too. Protective gloves on the DL without visible plastic’d be a good thing too.

    • http://www.thisblueheaven.com Mark D

      Moto-safe normal looking boots would be a plus.

      Ankle protection in a pair of Doc Martins, and D30 in a pea coat, would let me look the same on and off the bike 95% of the time in Boston.

    • http://pinkyracer.com pinkyracer

      sidewalk! And the Isle o’ Manhattan run every new years’ day! ah, the memories…

  • pavinguire

    ‘Practically There’; it’s practical, and it’ll get you there… sans roadrash and other embarrasments…

    • Ben

      That’s genius but almost too cutesy. It’s like one of those super cheesy craft shop names you’d find on a small-town square.

  • Brad W.

    I’m in. This needs to happen.

  • Dylan

    Power Rangers and Pirates: Armor for the Rest of Us

  • MG

    Finally! Amen! Hallelujah!

    I commute on a motorcycle every single day (have been for years): rain, snow (very light) or shine. I have to go through this “Power Ranger” to “Normal” routine every day.

    Would love to see the gear manufacturers take a page from your book/blog/site and develop some low-key, effective solutions.

  • Tom

    being and feeling safe is all that matters to me. dont give a sh*t what the cagers and hippies think of me! theyre the ones that look wierd!

    • http://vtbmwmov.org Eben

      Definitely. Do something cool and you will look cool to anyone that matters. Do something TO LOOK cool and you will look like a poseur.

  • Frosty_spl

    DMQ – Dean McQueen.

    • Roman

      How about “On Any Given Day”? Don’t think it needs much explanation.

  • http://cynic13th.livejournal.com/ cynic

    Where did you guys get the armor? Is available to purchase or was it just a promo thing.

    My Lovely Wife designs and makes clothing, and HATES that there is nothing out there that looks good.
    She’d love to get some to add to something for her around town riding. She might even commute on her bike more often if she didn’t have to change before she went into work.

    • BMW11GS

      Yeah after all this reading about D3o i want to start replacing some of my jackets’ armor with the stuff.

    • http://www.facebook.com/beastincarnate BeastIncarnate
      • BMW11GS

        unfortunately…its not that easy.

    • Nick

      I would try the Knox flexiform armour instead. I’ve just changed my jackets to this and it’s so comfortable.

  • jeremy

    Such a good idea. Hit me up once it goes from “cool project” to “we need financing”.

  • nymoto

    Just call it “Godzilla”
    No McQueen , no dean, no HFL industries, just Godzilla. Because Godzilla rules and kills everything, power rangers, shit Godzilla wrecks shit. And owning a bike makes you feel like Godzilla (well to me it does anyways).

  • Terry

    I think it’s a great project. I don’t mind going into work in my gear, they’re used to seeing me in it. I do feel funny stopping at the store on the way home dressed like an astronaut.

  • Tony

    Folks, there’re TONS of tasteful, fashionable, great-looking riding jackets, pants and boots. Dainese, RevIt, Sidis, etc… It’s all out there, already.

    • http://hellforleathermagazine.com Wes Siler

      Are you a European hairdresser? It’s ok, Italians need haircuts too.

      • http://www.muthalovin.com the_doctor

        Hey, Tonay.

        /seinfelded

    • a hipster

      no. there isn’t. we’re stuck looking for leather jackets and boots in vintage stores and flea markets and then praying no one hits us.

      the only hang spot you fit in at is the rock store and that’s just downright embarrassing.

    • Nick

      Have you see the new McQueen and James Dean jackets that Triumph have? They look really good but you can ride in them too. It’s the best thing I seen in ages.

      • a hipster

        those do look pretty cool, i wish the removeable collar on the dean removed the entire collar and not just the faux fur part. the problem is still how they are cut. needs to be longer and narrower.

  • nymoto

    I always looked for better leather jackets that I could put armor into, or wear underneath. And now with this d30 stuff I think it’s a great idea. Like a classic Schott leather jacket with some actual protection from impact would be great.

    • willmeyer

      +100 (schott owner who doesn’t wear it on the bike)

      • Jeff

        YES! I called Schott to inquire about this a couple months ago. I already knew they didn’t offer any armor so it was more to encourage them to start offering armor in some of their classic Perfecto and Cafe Racer jackets. They said they offered armor inserts in a couple of their jackets in the mid-2000′s but I guess they didn’t do very well. They also said they have no plans to introduce armor (optional or built-in) to their jackets any time soon.

        Oh well.

  • casey

    my icon tactical vest + flea market leather jackets, and iron hearts are making me feel safe and “stylish”

  • Gene

    Hm. Do people really give that much of a crap about what other people think about what they wear? I only care if it’s comfortable and fits.

    I have a seam ripper to get rid of all the ugly logos and the ton of excess velcro.

    I do find sweaty noisy plastic-bag rainsuits annoying, so I was happy when Frogg Toggs came out.

    However, can someone make motorcycle boots that A) fit me, and B) are ventilated/not waterproof? At 104F in Florida, waterproof boots are not what I want.

    • a hipster

      so you wear nothing but sweats everywhere? use that seam ripper to pull the nike logo off your warm ups and wear those and a hoodie to work? that’s what i would do if i “only cared about what was comfortable and fit” and “used a seam ripper to get rid of all of the ugly logos.”

      you can care about how you look and enjoy having style and it not be just about what people are going to think of you.

  • http://www.firstgenerationmotors.blogspot.com Emmet

    So you’re gonna sew D30 armor into more fashionable jackets, for example, a Schott? I’m listening…

  • Critter

    I’m in. But can we get safety and nice looking for under $500 for a jacket and under $200 for jeans? I can’t spend more on my clothes than i spent on my bike….

    • http://worldof2.com/ jpenney

      This.

      I’ve got three kids, a mortagage, two car payments, student loans, etc … As much as I’d like expensive stuff it’s Levi’s, band T-shirts and closeout gear for me.

    • F

      +1 I understand that some people pay $200 for regular jeans, so $250 for protective ones is not a big jump. 1 pair won’t do if you ride daily so you are looking at nearly a grand just in jeans.

  • http://www.muthalovin.com the_doctor

    Project Papillon. One of McQueen’s non-motorized films. Sure, its also a silly looking dog, but those who are in the know will get it. Maybe. Not.

    • Ben

      First Steve McQueen film I saw and still one of my favorites.

    • Steven

      butterfly jeans?

      whatever you say, Kaitie Ashlyn!

  • solidaridad

    Those Alpinestars Scout WP boots are badass as far as I’m concerned. I’ve been working on my wife for a couple weeks trying to convince her that my Redback steeltoed boots just don’t cut it any more. She ain’t buyin’ it so far…I will have those boots dammit. (And please don’t stop making them or change them to orange-green and black leather).

  • John

    I don’t see any reference to Bohn body armor; any reason they’re not under consideration? Seems like that would go under normal-looking shirts and pants. I’m ATTGATT, too, but all the armor is in the outerwear.

    • http://hellforleathermagazine.com Wes Siler

      We’re looking for real armor, not shitty foam.

      • John

        I’m ebarrassed to be thick, but is there a reason you call it shitty? I dimly recall a dustup a few years ago about claims of CE rating between Bohn and a competitor but no detail. I’m with you, though, something that spreads the load reliably, dissipates some of the energy, and stays where it’s supposed to be would be favorite.

      • John

        …and whether Bohn material is NFG or not, the under-suit concept seems like it would allow you to choose a range of outerwear. Forcfield and others make them too.

  • FFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFF

    I got stupid and sprung for the Dainese Verbier jacket last year. It looks good enough and it’s fantastic to wear. Why are jackets like that the exception? And when will pro shell leather cost less than $1000 per garment?

  • Brendan

    Everyone should ride in a suit at least once.

    You’ll feel like a secret agent. Those Mods were onto something.

    If you can make a suit safe to fall in I’d love you forever.

    • markbvt

      +1 on this. I was about to post a comment that the British knew how to look classy on a motorcycle back in the ’30s and ’40s. What we need is an update on the classic riding tweeds, Belstaff jacket, etc. In more colors than just tweed. Like black.

    • kat

      Dainese made an AWESOME riding jacket, that apparently not too many people bought, as it was discontinued too fast. Maybe no one knew about it, even though Wes tried to tell everyone.
      http://hellforleathermagazine.com/2007/11/dainese-milano-jacket-perfect-for-city-riding/

    • http://pinkyracer.com pinkyracer

      I rode in a suit (and Dainese jacket) today and received gushing praise from a guy in a car rockin’ Wes’s hairdo. That was amusing.

      But yeah, if I fell, I’d have ruined a really nice Italian suit that cost me more than my custom Vanson. I already ripped it a little on the sharp edge of what was once a hero blob. Plus I kept the jacket in my Givi to keep it fresh. Again, it can be done, but if Dainese can’t even sell it, who can? In Europe it’s safer to ride around in nothing because cagers are actually paying attention.

      • http://hellforleathermagazine.com Grant Ray

        Dainese couldn’t sell it because they never marketed their stuff worth a damn. Frankly, they still don’t. I’ve seen lines discontinued “because they didn’t sell” that never even got a press release. Their kevlar/denim that was cut like just like a G-Star tapered straight leg being a prime example. And getting the US office to send samples for review? Call me Sisyphus.

        • http://pinkyracer.com pinkyracer

          wow, that sucks. I guess they figure everyone’s just gonna schlep on over to the Dainese store every month to see what’s new? sad.

  • ursus

    Espresso grade protection.
    Double if you have leg protection.

  • http://www.flickr.com/photos/1962_cb77_restore/ Scott Pargett

    Where did you guys source the D30 armor from? I’d love to upgrade a jacket I have.

  • http://www.youtube.com/user/Adeysworld adeysworld

    Save some armor for me, I have a sample jacket coming in a week to me.

  • willmeyer

    Not to be the Triumph neo-retro guy, but I will say that Triumph, usually through some partnership with somebody, does actually make a fair number of well-styled protective gear. Some of it is a bit too retro, but much is just classic and understated styling. The Balham jacket is a good example I think.

    • markbvt

      There’s also always Vanson and Fox Creek Leather.

      I still think the classic slanted-zipper motorcycle jacket adopted by everyone from 1%ers to punk rockers is the most versatile, functional jacket there is.

    • http://hellforleathermagazine.com Wes Siler

      I’ve got a Triumph jacket right now that I stole from their product sample showroom like 8 years ago. It’s nicely styled, but just not made terribly well. The armor sucks too and the pockets are too small to fit real stuff.

      • F

        Do you know which jacket you have? I love my Camdem jacket, though I wish it had better venting and was factory waterproofed.

        • http://hellforleathermagazine.com Wes Siler

          God knows what it’s called, it’s sorta Barbour International style, but without the map pocket and in leather.

          • wes’s soon-to-be LA roomate

            i think you mean I have a trumph jacket that was stolen from their product sample showroom ilke 8 years ago.

            …because you left it here.

            sucker.

            • http://hellforleathermagazine.com Wes Siler

              Goddamnit.

  • http://rohorn.blogspot.com rohorn

    If road bicyclists can dress the way they do (I’m talking about the 99.9% who dress like sponsored racers but are neither), I don’t see what the problem is for motorcyclists.

    • http://worldof2.com/ jpenney

      Because those guys are as/more lame than the logoriffic powerrangers.

      Though I’m glad you brought up bicycles. I tend to base my gear level based on “what vehicle travels at these speed”.

      Bicycle speed is my crossover point. I’ll run to the local CVS on 35 MPH road with a helmet and gloves along whatever street clothes I have on.

      More that that and the boots and jacket come out. And jeans that aren’t already ripped.

    • a hipster

      they wear that shit to go exercise in, not to ride their bike to a party or date or meeting in. we’re not talking about fashionable gym wear, but clothing you can wear on your mode of transportation that you can keep wearing when you get where you want to go.

      if we accept that people have different styles and like to dress a certain way, how is it really that hard to believe that they would want to keep that style and be safe?

      no one is saying that all gear should now be a different style, just that there are more options to meet different demographics and styles.

      • Devin

        You need to dress like Lance Armstrong on a road bicycle. I did a bike marathon for charity last summer, 100 miles day one, 100 miles day two. Great example of function over form. Tshirts act like a parachute pretty quickly.

        But yeah, if I ride my bicycle to the pub, I am switching to people clothes.

        • a hipster

          that’s my point. bicyclists can look like idiots because the purpose of getting on the bike isnt to just get to the destination and when it is, you wear street clothes.

          same reason its ok to dress like a power ranger if you’re going to ride a motorcycle on a track or carve some canyons or dress like an ATTGAT nazi if youre going to be touring…BECAUSE IT FITS THE PURPOSE OF THE RIDE.

          if im riding to work or to meet friends or to go out to lunch or dinner, i’m gonna dress how i want to look when i get there and it’d be awesome to have some safety apparel that could make the cut.

          • philn

            +1 This reminds me of when I was between motorcycles, and got around mostly on a steel, lugged 10-speed. I went all over San Diego on my bicycle as a means of getting around – not for fitness or racing. There are several companies that have cycling gear for the urban commuter (like Outlier and Nau … both too pricey for me). I see this project as something similar. I’m not touring or racing my motorcycle, so why do I have to dress like I am?

  • mcfaite

    I’m definitely in the fewer-logos-are better camp. One of the major attractions of the Shoei X-11 was that you could peel the sticker off the front – I think that actually factored into my decision to pay more for that helmet.

    I have a Vanson Model A (no armor, no logos), but if I were ever to get an armored Vanson, I’d order it without the patches (or the black-on-black patches.)

    • Archer

      When you ride your Vansons as long as I have, the yellow logo and black background of the ovals fades to a dull brown that blends in quite well…

  • paul

    Looking Good on the bike ? as long as it’s more Steve McQueen than Alexander McQueen I’m all for it :)

  • CalamariKid

    This is the gayest thing I’ve seen all week.

    • Devin

      Gayer than 100+ comments on skinny jeans? At least these comments are staying mostly bike related :P

  • th3w3s

    here’s your whole mood board on one page:
    http://theselvedgeyard.wordpress.com/2010/02/03/steve-mcqueen-hollywoods-own-true-son-of-liberty/

    of course, you could save yourself the trouble and buy a belstaff jacket, if you’re willing to cough up!

  • http://www.lgdm.fr stempere

    I personnaly wear an Aero jacket all year with a dainese full back protector underneath. From the day i saw this video (a while back) i tough about the posibility of buying some raw or preformed D3O and sewing it in my jacket…
    Great projet guys!

    Regarding boots, has anyone else tried Vitesse Moto? Their Hunt model is pretty styllish with a jean over it.

  • Nicholas

    I’ve spent far too much time thinking about this very subject and have come up with what I feel is my best compromise for commuting/going on client visits/meeting friends.

    A Belstaff Brooklands waxed cotton jacket: Sean made a good point about waxing jackets up as I have heard others say that it helps with sliding if you come off. It also makes it a bit more waterproof and the removable armor is easy to get in and out and fits in a helmet nicely.

    Alpinestar S-MX2 boots: short so can be worn under jeans comfortably. Matched with a pair of sealSkinz they can be cool in Summer and waterproof and warm in winter. The only downside is that the toe slider is a bit obvious so generally have a pair of shows in my Kriega tail pack.

    Jeans: still wearing standard Levis et al. but I am continually looking for a pair of motorcycling jeans with the right cut.

    Alpinestar GPX gloves: nice lightweight short glove with plenty of protection, but I am glad when on the BMW with heated grips: Not so much fun on an unfaired Norton.

    My phone and wallet go in a waterproof pouch I got with my last pair of swimming shorts to be on the safe side, and I have a Sparco helmet bag I can put everything in and sling over my shoulder when I am off a machine.

    I am very excited about this project as I have a Barbour Antique International that I wear off road, but it would be fantastic if it have the same armour as the Belstaff so I had some security on the road.

  • Tracy

    Now imagine your gear predicament doused in pink hearts/flowers/swirls/cursive/ugly, matched with the most offensive shoes on god’s green earth, and welcome to the women’s show. I’m talking about this this and this into infinity.

    (Love the DIY project, boys.)

    • http://www.karinajean.com karinajean

      and at that women’s show you’ll find either clothes that are incredibly petite, or basically scaled down from a man’s item and boxy as hell and STILL doesn’t fit your arm length. I hate the women’s show, because it apparently hates me.

      • http://hellforleathermagazine.com Wes Siler

        Yeah, the boxiness is my biggest issue with motorcycle jackets. My beer gut is not larger than my shoulders, I need some taper!

        • andy727

          Word.

  • http://www.damiengaudet.blogspot.com damien

    Scrolling through the pages of jackets on Motorcyle Superstore, I usually stop and admire the Rev’it stuff. Then I see the back of it and there is a humongous REV’IT! yelling at me. Makes me not buy it.

    • slowtire

      +1 I hate that. I’m a cruiser moving into sport, so I’ve been looking at gear. What the F@#& is up with all the skulls, zombies, eight balls, starbursts, fake logos, cross’s etc. I see a jacket that I like and it’s plastered with that crap. I understand that wannabe skull people like that stuff, but I want a jacket free of it. Especially those damned skeleton heads – they frighten me.

      • http://rohorn.blogspot.com rohorn

        The best thing about fads is that they die. That tends to happen after they arrive in Denver.

  • Moto-Mucci

    Just wanted to get my 2 cents in and say that this is a great idea.

    There ARE a hand full of companies that make good looking, and CE certified riding gear (Belstaff) but the stuff is ungodly expensive.

    I’ve been searching for a padded jacket that I would actually WANT to wear out at night, and it’s been looking like I’m going to end up dropping $500+.

    Why is it I can get a head to toe power rangers suit for a few hundred and have to spend twice that on just one good looking and safe jacket? Do people actually like wearing that shit?

    • http://hellforleathermagazine.com Grant Ray

      The problem you’re having is the widely held and incredibly misguided belief that quality manufacturing and hardware should have nearly the same monetary cost as a 3rd world mass produced good that sells in chain box stores.

      Those ill-fitting power ranger suits are cheap because they are all made in Pakistan or North Africa for the lowest possible cost.

      Quality materials cost money. Quality hardware costs money. Product development and controlled manufacturing costs money.

      US companies like Vanson, Schott, Bates and Langlitz, British companies like Lewis and Barbour all charge the bare minimum for mark up to cover the costs of keeping their factories running. The same goes for Alpinestars gear made in Italy.

      You just can’t buy quality products at disposable pricing. It simply doesn’t work that way.

      • http://www.muthalovin.com the_doctor

        Also, mark-up the mass producers are sticking to the buyers is impressive compared to Schott and the like.

      • http://pinkyracer.com pinkyracer

        :-) yep. every word of it’s true, folks.

    • http://hellforleathermagazine.com Wes Siler

      I’m not a actually a fan of Belstaff’s styling, it’s too fussy and too euro hairdresser for me. I want something simple, classic and that won’t make it look like I get twice-weekly manicures.

      • Moto-Mucci

        Just dump the bike and go for a few slides and it’ll look way more bad-ass.

        I can agree with Belstaff gear being a bit too “hollywood,” and stylish. My main point is that there is a huge market gap on the price vs. style chart.

        I can go out and buy 300 different versions of colorful sport bike jackets, or leather riddled with studs and embroidery – where is the style and price conscious section of the market?

        I know you need to pay to get quality. I don’t have a problem with spending more on a jacket that will be used to prevent my skin from being extracted. There just isn’t a comparable selection of style/modern conscious gear to all the other genres.

        I hope you guys are able to get the word out that there is in fact a huge market for this.

  • F

    Here’s my wish list:

    -Textile jacket with easily removable armor and waterproofing

    -Breathable lighter-weight denim and khaki pants with some built in protection. Not Skinny jeans

    -Simpler styling that’s more classic and less fancy

    • Ben

      I wear a textile BMW Club 2 Jacket I got at a 75% discount. I’ve ridden an hour through a downpour and was still dry underneath miraculously. Someone linked Draggin Jeans further up. From Australia and a bit pricey, but I really like the look and they seem pretty protective.

  • F

    A questions about boots…

    What about a boot that comes with a separate piece that straps on? Think like a catcher’s shin-guards. Something that would allow a simple 7″ Kevlar toed hiking boot to give some extra ankle support and protection when riding.

  • Ed

    I like Duluth Trading Co. gear and wear their Firehose jeans to ride. Would be great if you could get armor in something like the Tanker Jacket ….
    http://www.duluthtrading.com/store/duluth-ingenuity/everyday-workwear/93111.aspx?feature=product_6

    Or FOM jean jacket.

  • JonB

    Just name it Bespoke. It is custom, it plays well off of spoked wheels etc.

    Hell & Bespoke.
    Project Bespoke.

    Who knows.

  • http://www.lgdm.fr stempere

    Regarding the name, there’s some pretty rad french biker slang words like Arsouiller (to go quickly around corners), Bouilleur (engine), Enfumer or Enrhumer (passing someone really fast, the first referencing to the smoke -from the 2 stroke era- the guy behind you gets in the face and the second to the act of passing someone so quickly he guest a cold -rhume in french-)

    Is our friendly neighborhood dead sheep going to be the logo?

    • http://www.muthalovin.com the_doctor

      I was thinking along the same lines. I was trying to scope out some Cajun-style words this afternoon, but I totally dig Enrhumer.

    • Steven

      Enfumer or Enrhumer (passing someone really fast, the first referencing to the smoke -from the 2 stroke era- the guy behind you gets in the face and the second to the act of passing someone so quickly he guest a cold -rhume in french-)

      like

  • Joshua DeRosa

    How about ‘The Darwin Project.’

    • wes’s soon-to-be LA roomate

      +1

  • Kirill

    Right now I’m wishing some of this stuff existed already and was in my closet because I’m riding to a playoff hockey game today and I’m going to look absolutely ridiculous in my race boots, textile overpants, and sportbike riding jacket.

  • David

    Name suggestions for the project:

    - “Make it work” Project
    - “Project Run-away unhurt”

  • http://www.thisblueheaven.com Mark D

    I’ve actually found a lot of scooter-specific gear is a lot more fashionable. The cuts are a little weird if you ride a sport bike, though. But if you’re on an upright standard or dual sport, you’d probably be fine.

    • http://www.karinajean.com karinajean

      corazzo is awesome in that they will pull a jacket and measure the arm length for you over the phone, so you know what to order. I’ve found the arms and the back are the places I’ve had to worry about most for the scooter-gear-on-a-sportsbike.

  • Gregory

    Bohn armour underneath a Steinmark leather jacket. Used denim pants from some used clothing store. Alpinestars Tech2 boots. Tourmaster gauntlet gloves.

    When I get to the location, I can put the reflective vest, the Bohn armour, the gloves and the helmet all in the rear box trunk. It may be toasty, but it’s all right for Portland, OR, weather.

    -gceaves
    Portland, OR
    2008 KLR w. milkcrate

  • Joe

    “Skid Style” should be the name

  • Joe

    Urban Armor

    No Logo Motorcycle Wear

    SNNA (Squids Need Not Apply)

    Full Metal Jackets

    Cagerproof Motorcycle Apparel

    Dethdodger Gear

    Ride, Crash, Repeat

    .5%er

  • http://www.anotherdamndj.com evilbahumut

    Brendan said it. Secret Agent. I loves it. I know I mentioned it before, but since we’re talkin’ Astars, I just bought a Team-Win jacket, and I think it looks pretty boss without looking Super Biker. And I’ve owned their tech hoodie with the bio armor inserts for a while. Both were bought with the same idea: Casual looks for a quick zip down the street. http://bit.ly/hBOzZn

    • http://www.thisblueheaven.com Mark D

      Very Q. “Now look here, 007. It appears to be a normal sport coat, but if you look closely, you’ll notice the double stitching and abrasion-resistant fabric. The elbows, shoulders, and back contain hidden, lightweight, flexible armor that hardens on impact.”

      “Oh, and the cuffs shoot poison gas” (Can you work that in somehow?)

      • http://www.anotherdamndj.com evilbahumut

        Ha! “And the motorbike. Well press this button and it turns into a helicopter!”

        Ahh, memories. Remember the Condor from M.A.S.K. ? http://bit.ly/g4mP0m

  • robotribe

    As someone who’s made a real effort to do exactly what you’re trying to do (yeah, I am a dude who knows my way around a sewing machine and needle and thread) and failed, I wish you better luck and better results than I arrived at.

    • ursus

      How about design teams – readers v. editors?
      Anyhow, retrofitting armor is a worthy challenge, especially since it can easily change the way something drapes and moves – possibly taking away the overall goal.
      I am glad you have a designer helping. It will be great to see what comes out of this effort.

  • Scott

    The Emperor’s New Clothes Co.

    Just spit-balling here.

  • HammSammich

    - Image Armour

    - HideShield

    - Hidden Motive

    - Shadow Shield

    - Raw Motogear

    - Threadbare Armor

    I also think that a good tagline would be “Casual Moto-wear by HFL”

    • Eric

      Forget tagline, that should be the name
      Casual Moto-Wear by HFL

  • Ax

    Takes me about 15 seconds to get into or out of my Aerostich Roadcrafter. I wear whatever I want beneath it. Then again, I look better in riding gear than I do in hip, stylish clothes anyway.

    • BMW11GS

      Isn’t this the best of all worlds? stash that road crafter wherever your going and your set.

  • Stephen

    name for the project
    how about

    Kiss the Road Gently

    sounds nice to me, has that moto conotation and sounds a bit off kilter

  • http://www.facebook.com/beastincarnate BeastIncarnate

    Tailored (by HFL). DONE.

  • Michael

    Project Hell For Pleather?

    Stitch

    Project Sew + Go

  • Michael

    Or Gel for Leather?

  • Ducky

    Hell for Road Rash

    • Ducky

      Squid for Leather?

  • Tim

    Queer Eye for the Moto Guy?
    No, I guess not..

    seriously, great idea and an untapped market..

    • http://www.urbanrider.co.uk UrbanRider

      Untapped? Not so sure…

      Great idea. YES!

  • http://www.urbanrider.co.uk UrbanRider

    Urban Rider Apparel ;)

  • ursus

    Daily grind.

  • Denzel

    “FGATT”

    Fashionable Gear…All The Time

  • Denzel

    …or for high end, euro branding implications:

    “Schafschädel”

    ..as in “Thanks, it’s a Schafschädel” ;)

    aka sheep skull

  • Ali

    A few years back I found a pair of freestyle Vans snowboard boots that are my favorites for urban tooling.
    Good armour, stiff soles, and they look like a fatty pair of Native Americans. They also breathe really well and are somewhat comfortable.
    I think this concept is what ICON and it’s knock-offs were going for. Instead we get a bunch of squids looking like washed up KISS bass techs! “FGATT” lol.

  • http://www.facebook.com/justin.c.knapp.3 Justin C Knapp

    hey grant. the pants and the jacket are actually not bad standing in front of the bike what kind of pants and jacket is that? Also have you heard of ugly bros? kevlar lined pants with CE padding!!!!

    • http://www.facebook.com/justin.c.knapp.3 Justin C Knapp

      in front of the bmw

      • http://RideApart.com/ Wes Siler

        That’s a Rukka Merlin suit. It was crazy expensive, Grant had to sharpie out most of the logos and I dont’ think it’s made anymore.

        I have yet to see a pair of Kevlar-lined jeans that don’t look they belong on a 350lbs woman who lives in a trailer park in the Ozarks.

        • socalutilityrider

          Revzilla has had the Merlin for sale, at least lately. I looked at all the Rukka range before before investing in a Held Carese jacket and pants. Great gear, and very fitted. Still, the color choices make me look like a desert racer or something-and this was the most muted adventure style jacket I could find. Why won’t manufacturers use solid colors apart from black? The Belstaff Long Way Down jacket and pants are a great example, but they’re only available in odd sizes and seem to not be made anymore. It makes me just want to say f-it and get a roadcrafter.

  • F H

    I am not exactly all about safety gear, I do like the security it gives me if I am going out to ride a long distance or harder than normal commuting. That being said, some of the (way) earlier posters mentioned feeling a little BA rolling into work and getting looks from people on a rainy day or what have you. This is what I would like to avoid most. I feel like the “biker” look is the first thing that the average visitor to this sport goes for, HD riders mostly in my area. I like, on the other hand, walking out of a joint with a chick as she looks around for which vehicle I drive, shocked when I throw a leg over and hand her a helmet.

    This is my one issue with Bellstaff, besides pricing i can’t afford. I feel like I would like like I’m begging for attention or just posing as someone who rides.

    I got an Armadillo coat this summer that isn’t quite as breathable as I’d hoped for and is a bit too fitted in the sleeves (I’m being picky here,) but I love it. The armor in it does not stand out and 99% of people would never know that jacket is armored. Prices in the US are really high, but I had a friend pick me one up on a trip to England for what I thought was a very reasonable price. I want more of this. Not trying to be overly fashionable or subtler biker look or Thuggish (i’m looking at you Icon), just normal simple coat that happens to be a deterrent to severe injury.

  • Robbie Minnis

    Finding fashionable leather jackets can be difficult sometimes, especially justifying their cost. I personally love the Belstaff jackets from here – http://www.mainlinemenswear.co.uk/section.php?xSec=282 i’ve had a couple over the years and they have done me proud, plus i’ve not managed to come off my bike wearing one yet – always a bonus!