Leather evokes decidedly masculine imagery: men on Harleys wearing fringed leather jackets, smoking rooms with leather ceilings, and businessmen toting no-nonsense briefcases. But there’s another side to leather, and it’s far softer and more sensuous than these clichéd ideas would suggest.
Have you ever put on a pair of high-quality lambskin gloves? It’s the feeling of luxury. Leather bags have been coveted by everyone from Hollywood starlets to 19th century doctors to Native American chiefs in the 1500s. And leather accents in a home add texture and visual interest to any room. Here are four home accents and personal accessories that look better in leather.
It’s so hard to find a classy picture frame. Even expensive metal frames seem cheap or flimsy, and they’re impossible to keep clean. Wood is nice (especially if it’s handmade), but there are so many shades out there that you can end up with an eclectic grouping rather than a cohesive collection. Leather is the perfect solution, especially if you’re giving a framed photo as a gift. Leather frames come in all colors, but black or white are the height of sophistication. They seamlessly integrate with any current picture frames or decorating schemes, and whether it’s a present for yourself or someone else, a leather photo frame exudes class.
Mirrors are a must have. They make your rooms look bigger, reflect more light, and open up your space. (Don’t believe us? Check out this gorgeous French apartment for evidence!) For a mirror to be worthy of hanging on your wall, it should double as a piece of art. A leather mirror frame will have even the most reluctant gazers wandering over to examine the intricate textures and patterns in the border.
A voyage abroad is reason enough to break out your nicest luggage, but why not give your passport some love, too? Leather passport covers tell the rest of the world that you’re not some American buffoon – we have taste and class, too! Up the ante by coordinating with your luggage, springing for a leather luggage tag, or getting your passport cover monogrammed. This is one travel accessory you’ll never misplace. We love the classic, hand-stitched appeal of [client product].
We know we mentioned this earlier in the context of burly men riding “hogs,” but the leather jacket can also look sophisticated and even (dare we say?) debonair. Leather jackets can be the height of fashion if they’re tailored and suit your personal style. Designs for men range from snuggly warm bomber jackets to tightfitting motocross jackets (á la Justin Theroux) to the ruggedly handsome style favored by Indiana Jones. Women can go for shorter, more tailored looks, often with double-breasted collars. Just steer clear of too many metallic accents – you’re going for finesse, not flash.
Any animal hide can be considered leather, so familiarize yourself with the different types. Steerhide is durable and tough and works well for any of these accessories or accents, although it may not provide the suppleness you want in a jacket. Deerskin stretches well, which is good if you aren’t sure on your size. Goatskin and lambskin are smooth and silky with a pebbly finish, so they’re the perfect choice for your home décor.
Leather says luxury, but it doesn’t scream it. If you’re not enticed by the glitz and glamour of crystal or polished metal, leather is the perfect way to add understated refinement to your outfit or room. The best part about leather? No two leather items are alike, so you’re buying a bespoke item you’ll cherish for years to come.