This weeks Gear Guide features a stunning cafe racer leather jacket, some lovely oil to it fed through the wind and rain, a shiny retro lid, a pair of 70's driving glove inspired summer wear for your digits, and a great pair of socks to keep your toes warm on these still brisk early mornings.
ALEXANDER LEATHERS CAFE RACER CUSTOM JACKET
The Alexander Cafe Racer Custom is a classic 60’s style bike jacket. It features four zipped pockets, all lined in cotton. The Back features a bi-swing back for better movement, and comes with standard zip sleeves and lined with cotton drill. This is a slim fit classic.
It is available in a wide array of hides and made to order from a choice of Horween Chromexel steerhide, Horween Warhawk horse hide, goat skin, smooth steer and Bison: and is available in black, burgundy, brown, havana brown and chesnut. It can be ordered without the stripes if preferred.
For the perfect fit, choose your exact measurements from the easy to use menu on the website, but if you are unsure on how to measure they have a really useful online measurement guide.
A team of seasoned master craftsmen, all specialists in the art of re creating vintage leather jackets with over 262 years experience between them came together in 2012 to form the Alexander Leather Company. Alexander leathers method of manufacture is very labour intensive, each and every jacket they produce is individually hand cut and crafted by one person in Selkirk, Scotland.
"Our commitment is to ensure that each and every jacket that leaves our factory will become a valuable companion, built to last a lifetime of wear for a customer who values the highest quality craftsmanship over inferior materials and cost cutting production processes."
This is a stunning jacket that is as tough as it is handsome, and like everything that Alexander produces, this will last for generations.
DMD VINTAGE HELMET
It may be true that all that glitters may not be gold, but this sweet little lid is very glittery and very gold.
The DMD Vintage Helmet is a remake of the iconic and famous 70’s shell with all the modern safety standards. DMD worked very hard on the dimension of the helmet in order to get what they assure us is "....the smallest homologated (ECE) shell existing on the market with a perfect fit and a maximum compactness."
There is a vast range of other colours and designs to choose from.
It has a fibreglass shell, and different shell sizes for a good fit and maximum compactness, and has a removable and washable Liner. It features integrated snaps for visors and shields and a double D ring closure.
This is a very pretty lid.
GOLDTOP SEABOOT SOCKS
Navy issue socks have been used by motorcyclists since the First World War to keep their feet warm astride their machines. In the 1950's the seaboot sock tucked over engineer boots became synonymous with the cafe racer rocker culture.
Goldtop, the classic 50's and 60's bike glove brand recently revived by East Ender Kessie Cullen, make a terrific 80% off white wool seaboot sock that is faithful to the classic styling. The sock is 24inches high, made of 80% wool and 20% nylon thermal fibre. The socks are made in the UK and come in three sizes.
Whether you're going for the cafe racer look, or just want to keep your feet warm on a brisk blast, these socks are perfect. They retain their shape and thickness through repeat washing, and allow your feet to breathe whilst fending off the early morning spring frost! A classic staple.
BLAUER ROUTINE GLOVES
Now that spring has arrived and summer is around the corner, its time to put the leather gauntlets away, and put on something a little lighter that allow your hands to breathe. The Blauer Routine (very odd name I know - as there's nothing routine about these) are a great solution. They have a distinctly retro driving glove feel, but are tough enough to wear on a bike.
They are made from soft nappa leather with double leather reinforcement on the palm. Inside there's a soft polyester laminated fabric and ventilation holes around the fingers to circulate the air. The gloves also have a branded poppered wrist strap with elastication to keep the gloves in place.
A simple and stylish option for those breezy warm rides at a reasonable price.
DUKE & SONS THE DUKE LEATHER OIL
Those of you who have been to the Bike Shed shows in Paris and London may well have had the good fortune to meet Jan from Duke & Sons. A designer by trade and a great bloke to boot, Jan eventually became tired of staring at a computer screen all day and decided to put his hands to work. Jan creates the most intricate yet rugged leather goods from wallets to braces, belts to aprons, and of course tool rolls to mention a few. His designs are classic, and crafted to exacting standards entirely by hand.
Jan has now perfected his own blend of leather oil to care for and preserve the goods he crafts, that can equally be used to maintain your leather jacket, boots or gloves. Easy to apply it soaks in easily without the "gloopiness" of other leather oils.
I've recently used it on my Aero Barnstormer jacket, which has taken another battering keeping me warm all winter on the bikes. It drank up Jan's oil like a thirsty sailor, and was put away until next winter satisfied and content with not a crack in sight.
Contact Jan via his website and he'll sort you out!