It’s bundle season where we all strut the streets with layer upon layers. To top every article of clothing, coats of all styles are making appearances this fall to shield us from decreasing temperatures. Our favorite coats reappear every cold weather season, but did you know that World War I and World War II are the reason why they are hanging in your closet today? Here are three popular coat styles that were introduced to the US by both World Wars.
1.) Trench Coats
This elongated piece is a classic for fall. It has been associated with generating a sense of mystery as it has been commonly portrayed as being worn by detectives on TV. Even though the trench coat was worn by British and French soldiers in World War I, it was officially introduced to the US during World War II. The coats were used to help defend against windy or wet weather. The style usually consisted of ten buttons hugged with a belt, double breasted and long in size. They usually appeared in black and nude colors. After World War II, they were worn more casually and became pretty popular in the 1960s as it was part of mod attire. Today they are still a statement fashion piece that add a sophisticated look to any outfit.
2.) Bomber Jackets
These jackets were originally known as “Flight Jackets” which were created by the Army Aviation Clothing Board in 1917. Earlier versions were developed in World War I but became known as “Bomber jackets” in Word War II. They were used to keep pilots warm while they were in the cockpit of the airplane. They were made with sheepskin leather and were often lined with fur. They consisted of zippers, high collars that wrapped around the neckline, wind flaps, and tight cuffs and waists. During World War II, the style of the jacket evolved due to high demand and different subcontractors making new designs, this birthed the modern bomber jacket style we still see today. Civilians started wearing these jackets in the 1950s and 1960s. They became pretty popular in 1980 with a variant version made with wool, these became known as letterman jackets which were given to reward high school and college students in sports. In the early 2000s, these jackets continued to expand beyond sports and became apart of hip-hop culture. Today, they have become a bold piece in streetwear.
3.) Leather Jackets
This popular jacket style was also derived from “Flight Jackets.” The design variation of all leather was developed by designer Irvin Scott in 1928. He named it “The Perfecto” and it became closely related to the modern motorcycle jacket we see today. It increased in popularity in Hollywood in the 1940s, 50s, 60s where it became associated with a cool and dangerous look/persona. In the 1970s and 80s, rock and roll started to dominate the music industry and leather jackets became trendy attire for rockstars such as Blondie, The Rolling Stones, Bon Jovi, etc. Today, leather jackets are still associated with an edgy rebellious look and now even extend outside of those borders. They are now worn more casually in street fashion and have been seen worn with softer looks.