Like many style enthusiasts, I like clothes with unusual details. I just often prefer mine to be hidden. So, sport coats with poacher’s pockets, boots with unseen straps, and pants with an unnecessary number of buttons. The newest project is a leather jacket with a special Japanese lining. I got the idea from Greg at No Man Walks Alone, who was working on a similar project last year until it fell through. Since I won’t be able to get one from him, I’ve been thinking about buying a jacket elsewhere, and then taking it to an alterations tailor to have the lining replaced. Ideally, the jacket would be a café racer, black and austere, constructed from a heavy cowhide, and accented with silver zips. It’d look tough and mean, but also have a special lining inside that no one would see. The only question is what fabric to use.
At the top of the list is boro, a Japanese folk fabric originally used by thrifty farmers and fishermen. Here, a large piece of cloth is repaired with scraps and rags over the course of a few family generations. The result is something that looks like a Japanese version of an American patchwork quilt, where hundreds of indigo patches are pieced together with roughhewn stitches. I imagine those various shades of blue would look fantastic next to black leather.