New York City’s hottest luxury brands are coming under pressure to produce more expensive leather jackets.
A recent study by Bloomberg News found that a $600 leather jacket can be made in under two hours, while a $900 jacket can cost between $10,000 and $25,000.
With the rise of online shopping and the availability of cheap materials, leather jackets are now a necessity for everyday wear, and for the middle class.
But the leather jacket’s price is falling as a result.
“We’re seeing more and more people looking at a leather jacket as an everyday thing, rather than a luxury item,” said Michael Cappella, the chief marketing officer at H&M, the world’s largest luxury retailer.
“They’re looking for a product that’s going to last them a while, and they’re not looking to spend $10K on a jacket that they can’t wear on the beach.”
To get a better idea of what to look for when shopping for a leather-clad companion, Bloomberg used a new study that tracked the demand for a premium leather jacket.
The study looked at the number of purchases made in the past two weeks, how many purchases were made on social media platforms, and the demand across the U.S. For instance, in March, the study found that sales of premium leather jackets jumped nearly 50% compared with the same period in 2016.
“What’s interesting is that these are the same companies that are making the products,” said Cappello.
“There are companies that have been around for a long time that have become very popular over the last five to seven years, but they have not been making high-quality products.”
H&M is no exception.
The company started out making premium leather leather jackets in the early 2000s, but now sells them exclusively through its website.
“I think we’ve gone from a niche into a more mainstream company,” said H&m president, executive vice president and director of global sales, Mike Rieger.
H&mar recently introduced a new leather jacket for men, which includes a removable lining that can be worn with a belt.
“It has to be comfortable, it has to have a premium feel to it, and it has a leather that’s very high-end,” said Riegler.
“For women, it’s a little bit more casual, a little more formal, but still the same leather.
We still have that classic look that people are looking for.”
A leather jacket isn’t just for women, either.
For men, it can be a stylish addition to a formal outfit.
A $300 leather jacket might be made with a leather lining, while $500 leather jackets can be crafted with leather, corduroy or other materials.
“Our goal is to make the best quality leather jackets available to the consumer, and we have a lot of work to do,” said Gail McElroy, head of product at H &m.
“But with the advancements in technology, we’ve made great strides in the last 10 years.”
A $1,000 leather jacket is priced at $1K on Amazon, and a $2,000 jacket can fetch a little over $1 million on the site.
But it can get expensive, too.
The best-priced leather jacket in the U, for instance, can be sold for as much as $4,000, while some of the cheaper brands can be found for $1.5, $2 or even $3,000 a piece.
“People who buy a $1 leather jacket will buy a leather vest, a $3 leather vest or a $4 leather vest,” said McElry.
“If you’re going to spend money on leather, you’re paying for quality.
The leather is just a premium item.”
It’s not just the price that matters.
When it comes to quality, McElro said that a high-tech lining is also crucial.
“In terms of comfort, the lining helps you feel secure,” she said.
“You can wear the jacket with gloves on and be comfortable.”
For women, leather can be very soft, but it’s not the most comfortable material, as some women find the material too stretchy and uncomfortable.
But if you’re looking to go with a higher-end product, then the $1 to $2 million price tag is a lot less of a dealbreaker.
“Women have been looking for the best-quality leather jackets for a while now,” said Vicky Gorman, the president of fashion and luxury for H&am.
“The trend for women has really been towards more luxurious products.
But I think it’s because we are so connected, and so comfortable in our own skin, and with our own bodies, we feel comfortable.”