The scene in Notting Hill where Julia Roberts collides with Hugh Grant and his orange juice is memorable not only for starting one of the most enduring love stories in ’90s film history, but also for immortalize one of the most definitive looks of the time.
Dressed in loose jeans, a white (later orange) t-shirt, beret, tiny sunglasses and a long black leather blazer, Roberts – like Anna Scott – was the epitome of the nonchalance of the 90s.
More than a fictional actress uniform, Roberts ‘androgynous leather blazer was a staple of’ 90s It girls, models and actresses, with Reese Witherspoon, Cyndi Crawford and Winona Wyder among the fans.
And now, cult cover-up is experiencing a renaissance in fall 2020.
Social media super heavyweights Bella Hadid and Kaia Gerber rocked theirs with crop tops, baggy jeans and tiny sunglasses while Hailey Bieber and Irina Shayk rocked theirs over skinny minis and stomper boots with notched soles. A scroll on Instagram reveals that every minimalist fashion influencer worth his salt has ever invested, which is part of why Google has seen searches for “leather blazer” increase 152% since the same period last year.
Best worn sleek and oversized, with minimal zippers and hardware (if any), these are jackets that look more like a silhouette than a pointy suit than anything we’ve worn in the Kate Moss years for Topshop. .
“It’s a trend we’ve definitely embraced,” says Heather Gramston, women’s clothing purchasing manager at Browns Fashion. “We’ve seen a growing number of designers add leather blazers to their collections as an evolution of tailoring and an extension of the classic leather biker jacket. When you mix leather with a blazer, it can only give a chic result.
Libby Page, editor-in-chief of the fashion market at Net-a-Porter, agrees that the appeal lies in the loose but structured fit: enough to provide warmth, but not as heavy as a coat.
The versatility of the leather blazer and its ability to fit perfectly into your wardrobe is really its trump card. Wear it over turtlenecks and sliding-door-era Gwyneth Paltrow jeans for outdoor social engagements, or pair it with a satin dress for an easy look with a roommate. For the sartorial daring, a full leather jacket and pant set is Fall 2020’s extravagant answer to double denim. Brands to choose from include the black single-breasted leather jacket from Italian brand The Attico (£ 1,305, BrownsFashion.co.uk) and the longer version from Danish brand Stand Studio (£ 635, BrownsFashion.co .uk). Alternatively, Arket, & Other Stories, and Weekday all offer great oversized iterations at more affordable prices.
For the truly dedicated fashion enthusiast – with deeper pockets – Gucci’s shiny red blazer (£ 3,100, Net-a-Porter.com) is quite the level 2 statement piece that brightens up the blue. . Arguing over the ethics of leather production? Luxury vegan brand Nanushka, the benchmark for faux leather, offers a glossy black wood button-up option (£ 650, Net-a-Porter.com) while other brands The Frankie Shop, AWAKE MODE, Anouki and Materials have all added excellent cruelty-free cover-ups to their range.
The more durable options are of course to be found on resale sites such as Vestiaire Collective and DePop, where those willing to hunt a bit will unearth plenty of ’90s originals. And for anyone wary of committing, the Rental platform Rotaro offers a cute long pink blazer from Material Tbilisi and a mint green belted number from House of Sunny, both available for hire for £ 35 and £ 15 per day respectively. Whatever skin you are plump for, a leather blazer is an investment piece that will work hard in your wardrobe throughout this bleak winter and spring – just watch out for that handsome man with the juice. orange.