Since 2016


August 14, 2019 8 min read

by Sarah Makhluf

Sarah is a freelance content writer from Boston, MA. She loves traveling, fashion, and the beach.


Hand Crafted Leather Jackets - Should You Go For It?

For decades leather jackets have been a staple in men's wardrobes all around the world. The effortlessly cool pieces help to showcase personal style, add a sense of class or sophistication, and make getting dressed easy. Finding the perfect, one of a kind, leather jacket is no easy feat. Men have fewer options than women when it comes to fashion choices. Many brands slack in offering men enough colors, styles, and sizes to choose from. So, what are clothing companies trying to do to provide men with more options when it comes to leather jackets? A lot of mainstream brands are not doing much. Men are tired of boring options and standard sizing when it comes to their clothing, especially leather jackets. In the last decade, more custom jacket brands have been popping onto the scene. What are men saying about custom leather jackets? They're saying that they are here to stay! If you ever dreamed about owning the perfect leather jacket, this article is for you.

What are handmade leather jackets?

From start to finish, a handcrafted jacket is made solely by a human without the help of manufacturing machines. Think of it like in the old days, before mass production was possible, seamstresses had to hand craft each jacket with just their sewing machine. The process is not much different today, while the sewing machines we have are more advanced, the construction of a jacket is the same. A hand made leather jacket is created, especially for one owner with the style and size at the discretion of the buyer. From creating the pattern, cutting the leather, to every last stitch and grommet, a handmade leather piece is truly a work of art. While it's a difficult project, the final outcome is unparalleled to what you can find in a mass-market shop.

Factory vs. Hand-made

Mass-produced jackets are cut from a standard pattern with the help of machines. Handmade leather jackets are crafted by humans from start to finish. Remember back in the day before textile machines were invented, only hand-made clothing existed! Today, more people are missing the quality craftsmanship and human touch on their clothing.

Creating a jacket from start to finish is laborious and time-consuming. Jacket makers check every small detail, make sure each measurement is exact, and ensure the hardware is set in place perfectly. A machine will never take that much time and effort for you, no machine can look at the intricate details of an article of clothing to ensure each stitch is laid correctly, the zipper is perfectly straight, or all the hardware is up to standard.

While you can hand make a leather jacket at home, most of us don't have the time, resources, or the knowledge of how to use sewing to take on such a project. The good news is that there are several custom made leather jacket shops that do the work for you. So you can still get the look, and quality of a handmade item without the hassle of doing it yourself. Have you ever dreamed of designing your own clothing? With the help of bespoke leather jacket makers, consumers can now play the role of a fashion designer.

Pros & Cons of buying a custom made leather jacket

Like everything in life, purchasing a handmade leather jacket comes along with some positives and negatives. Check out our pro and con list below to see if buying a custom leather jacket is right for you. If you're not a standard size, meaning you fall into the plus category or petite, going custom may be the only way to ensure your jacket fits properly.


  • High-quality materials
  • Long-lasting jackets
  • Tailored to your exact measurements
  • Perfect fit guarantee
  • 100% size inclusive
  • Have something completely unique


  • Custom pieces can be pricey
  • They may take up to 4 weeks to complete
  • Some handmade retailers don't offer returns (some still do)
  • Don't have the option to try on the jacket before purchasing

Where to buy a handmade jacket

Are you ready to go custom? While we have covered a number of custom jacket retailers, we have a whole new list of players, plus a few old favorites. Also, be sure you know what to look out for when choosing a retailer. Do you know the difference between a zipper marked with YKK and one with no markings at all? Check out our quick guide below to ensure you know what to pay attention to when choosing/designing a custom leather jacket.

  • Type of leather - Should you choose cowhide, lambskin, or sheepskin? The type of leather you decide should match your specific needs. For anyone looking for a tougher jacket that is heavier and can withhold harsh weather better, cowhide is for you. Another perk to cowhide is the price; it's usually the cheaper option. Lambskin is best for those looking for a lightweight leather jacket, preferably worn in the fall/spring. Lamb hide is much softer, supple, and buttery than the others on the list, but also the most expensive. Sheepskin is more of a happy medium between the two, its ultra soft but a bit more durable than the lambskin. The price point of sheepskin also falls right in the middle of the three.
  • Hardware - Your hardware on a leather jacket is the zipper, grommets, buttons, and any other metal ornaments on the jacket. When it comes to zippers, trust YKK. The Japanese company is famous for creating the best quality zippers available for purchase. Do you prefer gold or silver? When going with a handmade piece, the choice is up to you. Be sure to check the company is using high-quality hardware that will last.
  • Lining - The lining on your hand made leather jacket should feel comfortable. That's the most important thing as it's what will be in direct contact with your skin. Try looking for a lining that is made from viscose or silk; those will feel the best on your skin.
  • Details - The devil really is in the details. While small things like a misplaced stitch or string of thread poking out may not seem like a big deal, it's actually a huge indicator of the quality of the garment. A handmade leather jacket should be sewn perfectly.
  • Options - Before deciding on a leather jacket maker, be sure they have enough options to choose from. Let's say you want a lambskin leather jacket with gold hardware; not all custom shops will be able to deliver. Make sure to do research or contact customer service before you have your heart set on a specific retailer. Don't worry though; you'll find stores below that have the if you can dream it we can create it attitude.

PHYSICAL - The Admiral Moto

PHYSICAL - The Suede Double Rider

PHYSICAL - The Technical Bomber

Independence Brothers

These guys know what high-quality leather jackets should look like. The family-owned and operated company is dedicated solely to leather jackets. While they do have some ready-made for purchase, their bespoke leather jackets are the real gems. Chose the color, style, lining, and hardware you want while ensuring the jacket will be a perfect fit. All of their custom leather jackets are hand made to order, and their customer service is unparalleled. The guys at Independence Brothers are dedicated to offering high quality, beautiful bespoke leather jackets to all. No matter your shape or size.


Lusso Leather

The cool thing about this company is they really take the art of creating bespoke leather jackets seriously. They can recreate a leather jacket from a movie or magazine, or replicate a vintage, or worn-out leather jacket you already own. Just by sending in several pictures, the team at Lusso Leather can create a custom piece from scratch tailored to your exact body measurements. They're one of the only companies right now to offer so much creative freedom to their customers. If you have ever felt the desire to be a fashion designer, don’t miss the opportunity to show with Lusso Leather.



Do you want artwork, graffiti, a logo, or embroidery on your leather jacket? If you answered yes to any of the above, Jacketism is the shop for you. They have managed to fuse their old school craftsmanship with new technologies to create jackets that are indeed a work of art. If you need inspiration for your perfect jacket, check out their site. They offer plenty of pre-made leather jackets that will inspire you. Plus, you can customize a leather jacket you already own. If you want to breathe new life into an old jacket what better way than to amp it up with patchwork or graffiti.

How to correctly take measurements for a bespoke leather jacket

Grab a tape measure and measure your chest width, sleeve length, shoulders from tip to tip, and your back lengthwise. You may need an extra set of hands here to ensure you're getting the exact measurements. Once you take a measurement be sure to jot it down on a piece of paper so you have something to refer back to while placing your order.

  • Chest - Wrap the tape measure around the fullest part of your chest.
  • Sleeve Length - Measure from the top of your shoulder to the bend in your wrist.
  • Shoulders - Wrap the tape measure around your shoulders from tip to tip.
  • Back - Beginning from the back of the neck, measure until the end of the back.

Styling a jacket made specifically for you

Since your jacket was handcrafted just for your body, shape, height, and personal style, the options for outfits are endless. Do you have a hard time finding a jacket that's wide enough or long enough? Or maybe all of your jackets are too short and look boxy. The best way to avoid any fashion faux pas is by ensuring your clothing fits you like a glove.

Should you go for a handmade leather jacket?

Still trying to decide if going handmade is best for you? Maybe you think trying mass market first is the best option. While the decision is entirely personal, anyone looking to add a personal touch on their jacket should go with handmade. If your size falls under the standard XS-XL, you may have luck in retail stores. It may be worth driving over to the mall to try on some styles. 

Who should go the custom made route?

  • People who don't fall under standard sizing
  • Anyone looking to add a personal touch to their wardrobe
  • Someone looking for a high-quality jacket
  • Folks who want a one of a kind piece of clothing

Thanks for reading! As someone with a sewing background, this article was especially fun to write. Creating a one of a kind custom made item of clothing from scratch is something many of us won't experience in our lifetime. Choosing the right company to make a handmade leather jacket for you will not only be an addition to your wardrobe, but also something that will last with you for years to come. I personally have felt 'left out' while shopping in mass-market stores. As someone on the smaller size, I get having clothing look unnatural or like it was not made for my body shape. I am so excited the handmade clothing trend is taking off, and I am looking forward to seeing where it will go. If you enjoyed this read don't be shy to pass it along to family and friends! We love hearing from you, feel free to leave us a comment below.

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