New Guy Into Leather?

Leatherdude1I have received a few emails in the last week or so from younger guys who have said that they like the appearance of leather garments, and want to get some. However, they have tight budgets and have expressed concern that they don’t think they can afford new leather goods from a reputable leathercrafter.

A couple of these guys were asking what gear they should get to wear to a leather bar, or if they did not have leather garments, could they go to a leather bar at all?

Here are my thoughts on both issues.

From one of my email replies:

The main lesson is, if you want good quality leather garments that will last a long time and are well made, then you should save your money and purchase new leathers from a quality retail establishment like Mr. S, 665 Leather, or Northbound.

There are retailers that sell leather garments at lower prices. But their leather goods are inferior, and not well-made. The leather can change color, break at the seams, or otherwise fall apart with ordinary wear. And if you “play” in your gear, then forget it. Rips, tears, and bad stretches will happen with cheap low-quality gear.

Retrochaps37Men know who is wearing “the good stuff” and can spot someone wearing cheap inferior gear from a great distance.

For example, I see that among the straight dudes who I ride motorcycles with. Their chaps are usually poorly-fitted and cut at the bottom, not hemmed. Also, cheap chaps have snaps at the bottom which easily become oxidized and stop working.

However, I realize that you are on a tight budget. You may consider looking through eBay and buying used gear. It may not quite fit the same because used gear molded to the man who wore it previously as it broke in.
However, used quality gear is far better than new inferior gear (such as any gear made in Pakistan and imported to the US or other countries.)

RelaxedRegarding your other question about being a new guy and going into a leather bar — these days, most leather bars are general-purpose bars and do not enforce or otherwise monitor a leather dress code. Most bars are hurting for business that they will not turn away any customer no matter how he is dressed.

You may consider checking out leather-friendly bars by simply wearing a black t-shirt, denim jeans, and a pair of black boots. This type of clothing is very common and well accepted anywhere. Just dress comfortably, don’t wear flip-flops or sneakers, be friendly, and take your time. Being accepted in a bar or anywhere has much to do with a warm and friendly personality — not with what a guy is wearing.

For those who are interested in leather garments, I have two different tutorials that can help.

1) For motorcyclists (straight audience): Guide to Biker Leather Gear

2) For gay men considering fetish leather: Guide to Fetish Leather Gear

Both of these tutorials have common elements, and yet each one is different because the application of how and where the leather will be worn is considered in laying out the content.

Generally, my “priorities” with leather gear (biker or fetish)?

1. Quality, durable black boots.
2. Chaps
3. Jacket
4. Vest

Other stuff? these items can wait: leather shirt, leather pants, leather gloves, and other accessories.

Hope this helps.

Life is short: ’tis the season — wear leather!