By Jessica Conway, GalTime.com
A leather jacket is a simple, stylish staple that's here to stay! From rich, bold hues to flattering cuts and lines, Michelle Williamson, Editor for New York Girl Style, fills us in on 6 stunning trends this season.
Eye-Catching Cobalt: Bold blue was all over the fall runways this year, sashaying down the catwalks of Balenciaga, Dries Van Noten, Haider Ackermann and more. If you've always stuck to black motorcycle jackets, now is the time to take cobalt for a spin. This suede version from Mango ($169.99) has the classic details of the motorcycle jacket, but the fun hue makes it fresh and playful.
Ladylike Lines: If the tough edge of the typical motorcycle jacket isn't your look, try a sportier style on for size. The Airla Biker Jacket ($1,195) from J Brand has a sleek, sophisticated fit, but its curved zipper and twill sleeves gives it a refined punch. Styles like this can take you anywhere, from a shopping adventure to a night on the town!
Rustic Reds: Oxblood is another hot alternative to black right now, so make sure it's on your radar. This deep burgundy was spotted in the collections of Yves Saint Laurent, Fendi, and Derek Lam, making it a hue that is guaranteed to turn heads. Rich in color, the Ruffle Leather Jacket ($1350) from 3.1 Phillip Lim is right on trend, perking up even the simplest of outfits without going over the top. This style gets an added dose of femininity with tiered peplum, a detail that's holding strong throughout fall.
Perfect Patchwork: Mixed media is another current trend in leather, so get ready for mismatched materials and contrasting textures. This Pascal Jacket ($795) from Rag & Bone demonstrates the look beautifully, juxtaposing a leather torso with woven sleeves. The pairing gives this style depth, while the monochromatic color keeps it chic and office-ready.
Color-Blocked Couture: Why pick between two classic, versatile colors when you can have both? With a two-tone leather jacket, you can have your cake and eat it too! A black and tan combo, which was seen at Jean Paul Gaultier and Givenchy, will help you "fall" forward without looking too heavy. Zara's Leather Biker Jacket with Zips ($249) delivers big on style, and is reasonably priced to boot.
Related: Blazer Madness: Our Freshest Picks
Motorcycle Mania: When it comes to getting the look for less, H&M always delivers. A classic motorcycle jacket never goes out of style, and can easily be one of the most versatile items in your wardrobe. This season's update features a cropped length and quilting at the sleeves, another runway-ready detail. And the best part of a cute, cropped jacket like this one? At $49.95, it won't break the bank!
No matter which style you choose, remember...
Almost every leather jacket looks better if you're wearing it with ease, so keep it loose by leaving the closures undone and the sleeves pushed up. This also allows you to show off what you're wearing underneath - think fun layered sweaters or a chic, crisp blouse!
The quality of imitation leather has drastically improved in both look and feel, so don't shy away from a great piece simply because it's faux. However, the perfect time to splurge is when you find the complete package: fit, color and quality. Definitely save your splurge for a perennial go-to item, something you can wear year-round, rather than one that's super trendy this season. For instance, you can never go wrong with a classic motorcycle jacket. It can be worn year after year, and only gets better with age!
Although it's tempting to throw on a new purchase, always keep in mind that with leather items, it's best to protect them first. Have your leather goods weatherproofed and stain-proofed before they hit the streets. If your fave jacket every gets dirty, wipe the area off immediately and allow it to air dry while laying flat. In a true SOS moment (or if you're hesitant about your cleaning skills), send your piece to a leather-cleaning specialist. Though it can be pricy, consider it an effort to get the most out of your investment.
More from GalTime.com: