First and foremost, look at these new riding gloves that I came across over at Harley Davidson. Wow.
Stunning, if I do say so myself. A perfect find for me to come across to wear out on summer rides and worth the little splurge. This past weekend I was out shopping and brought back a few goodies to share with y'all to help fellow LadyVespas, or other women riders, gain a better idea of what your options are for riding gear and creating your own style within the basic gear choices (jackets specifically).
Personally, I think riding with a jacket is the only way to ride. I try to make sure to spice up a relatively boring "riding" outfit with a little flair and pop. A good jacket won't need much help if it already brings "the bling" itself, but sometimes your riding jacket doesn't appeal to you as much as it once used to and needs something added to refresh your look. This is where you can bring in little accessory pieces to spruce up an old, worn look that doesn't suit your style and help you get away with purchasing another jacket altogether. My favorite accessories to play with and mix for different looks are: sunglasses, scarfs, shoes, bags, and gloves. This gives you almost unlimited combinations and saves you from needing to buy a more fashionable jacket that suited your updated style.
The main idea with purchasing a riding jacket is to spend time looking for one that you really like and once you find it, know that it will be worth it to spend a bit more if it meets all your requirements for gear and style. It will be something you wear every day and want it to last. Yet while it can prove to be a difficult task, if you choose a fundamental piece of your riding gear wisely (your jacket, helmet, boots), you won't regret it.
Although, having a few options can prove to be a good thing too.
Sure, you want a jacket that fits your needs and give you the protection you crave, but sometimes having a few options to pick from in your closet will help if you get a little jaded with whatever your current riding look is. It is always nice to have options. Below I have a few jackets that I plan to bring back with me to Israel, that I will show to you and point out the benefits of having a few different options for your ever-evolving riding style. But first, back to those lovely gloves:
I wouldn't recommend them unless I thought they were worth the splurge, and I believe they are worth it! I already have the full leather (black) gloves for night and colder weather driving, but out in the scorching summer sun you want something that allows a little more air flow in, so that your hands don't get all sweaty and gross during rides. (Just make sure to put sunscreen on the areas of your hands that are exposed to sun, as you'll have one strange tan after that day out on the road.)
If you also liked the rather fabulous gloves above, check them out here at the Harley Davidson site: Women's Embellished Fingerless Leather Gloves
I cannot wait to try them out on my first ride back in Israel. Gloves are another way to incorporate your own style into your riding gear and something you can play with to see what you like the best. There are many different styles that are made for both form and function. I have really wanted to go leather glove shopping in Italia even since I purchased my 'pa, but for now these little beauties shall do.
The gloves really do look amazing paired with my skin tone and red nails, plus they are really sassy and eye-catching. This fashion choice is the overall style I want to further create and foster as my own as a female rider: a women that is both tough and classy. Girly, but with rough edges.
Something to think about: What adjectives would you use to describe your own personal sense of style? Do you believe that your clothes reflect those words and descriptions? If not, how can you change-up your clothes to designate the ideals you want to summon with your personal style?
The next purchase was a deal I could not pass up: 80% off of the price tag for this edgy BCBG jacket. This is exactly what I missed about shopping in Israel: here in the states, if you know how to look, you can find some great deals for great prices:
The details of the BCBG Jacket: "Moto-inspired styling brings edgy-chic appeal to this city-chic jacket. Round neck. Long sleeves. Classic fit. Front slash pockets. Shredded detail at back. Asymmetrical front zipper closure." And, as I said above, completely cute at such a steal: 80% off original tag price. Nice. If you look around for jackets during the off-season
, then you'll be amazed at the deals you'll find and the wide variety of options you'll come across. It is worth the time spent looking too, if you are in need of a newer riding jacket and don't want to part with too much of your hard-earned cash. Oh, and with this jacket once you see the back you'll understand its true appeal:
Edgy, isn't it?! Something different (for sure) and not really something you'll see out on the road too often in the same style. With the gloves and some nice black pants, I've pulled together myself one hell of a rocker outfit. It is a city jacket, for sure, but it might be used as a lighter summer jacket as well. To note: the gloves and this particular jacket are more "vanity" gear items than protective items, per say.
Next jacket is one that I bought a few years back at Harley Davidson that I had to buy because once I saw it, I couldn't leave the store without it. Unfortunately back then I was a bit bigger so the jacket is pretty big on me now, but I think I can still pull it off since it was made so well:
Beale St. Leather jacket from Harley Davidson
It is the only leather jacket from Harley that I have ever owned, as I don't really like the size of their logos and where they place them on most of their garments. I think I was so attracted to this jacket because it was pretty subtle with the HD logo, but was still high in quality and style. As I was shopping there this past weekend, I tried really hard to see myself in one of their current jackets but was turned off with the blatant logo display. There was a very lovely black leather jacket that I really did like, but then I turned it to view the back design and was disgusted with the extensive logo design that took so much away from the jacket itself. I don't know about you, as personal taste differs from one to another, but if I am going to pay that kind of money for a jacket with a logo that big, then I expect them to pay me a little back for the constant advertisement they get from me wearing it around all day. (I really don't like being a walking billboard, or at least an unpaid walking billboard.)
While this jacket is amazing in its details, I really don't like labels on clothes in general. That is something that can be especially difficult now with all the branding fashion labels do for their own lines and image, but with some patience you can avoid these tacky styles. This is where shopping at second-hand stores comes in excellent use. You will have to look, and might walk away more times with nothing than that one time you come across an "amazing find"
, but once you do find something it will all be worth it
. I found just such a buy at a local second-hand store to use as another riding jacket,
Guess how much this nice little suede leather jacket set me back?
Yes, second-hand stores are a big reason I miss the USA when over in Israel. The deals and unique items you come across are priceless, even at such a great steal. I may even like it more than my other jackets. It may show a bit of wear, but it is still a great jacket full of life: ready to be used once again and ready for the open road.
Don’t limit yourself to new items when searching for your riding gear! Check out your local second-hand shops and be ready to sift through the piles to find the one item you can’t live without! It’s like a treasure hunt and you’ll be glad you chose to search for your treasure. (Of course, items like your helmet are best left to buying new, as the specifics are just too varied for the used market in most cases.) These stores are great places to find all the various little accessories to change-up your look out on the road without wasting much money at all.
I am not sure if those among you reading would agree with my choice to wear Harley Davidson brand items while out on a Vespa. I admit to feeling a bit sheepish while shopping in the store this past weekend, but as long as you are confident in your choice then who cares? Vintage, second-hand, new, sale items- whatever you choose, wear it with confidence. If it suits your taste and makes you feel sexy (or beautiful), then that is the only thing that matters.
Oh yeah: don’t forget to bring it when you ride.
Happy riding, y’all.