Thursday, February 27, 2014

Half-Belt Buckles

A sampling of buckles from side adjuster belts on leather jackets, mainly 1930s-1940s.

Tuesday, February 11, 2014

Genuine Native Deerskin

Here's a button front version of the same basic pattern as the "New Jersey Frozen Foods" labeled jacket I posted a few days back.  Same manufacturer?

Monday, February 10, 2014

Two-Tone Fringe Jacket

One last parting shot in the deerskin jacket spotlight.  This is my favorite of the fringed models. The two tone really sets it off. Main zip is a Conmar.  Unfortunately, no tags have survived, but it would be a safe bet to think it came from the Wisconsin area. 

Saturday, February 8, 2014

Mid 1930s buckskin half-belt leather jacket

When you think of deerskin jackets, you probably think of products from the 1950s - 1970s.  You think of western yokes and fringe.  You think of the hippies and cowboys.  But deerskin lends itself just as well to other styles.  Just look at the 1930s A.T. Hendrick buckskin I posted a few months ago.

This jacket is a nice example of a 1930s leather jacket.  It's from the first wave of half-belt cossack jackets.  Generally, leather jackets from the early 1930s had a full leather waistband, like the ones seen on Dave's "Heron" jackets. By the mid 1930, the pleated half-belt started to become more popular, but still retained the leather waistband on the front of the jacket.  This was quickly simplified into a plain front, like the one seen on the Hendrick above.  This one's currently up on eBay for a low starting bid: 

Mid-1930s sunburst Talon. The "grommet zipper" was introduced in 1930. The sunburst stop box came in around 1935. The two designs were produced side-by-side for several years. The early ads for this style show the wide array of colors you could buy it in. This one was originally gold.

Although it's still in progress, I've been doing a lot of research to more accurately use snaps as a tool to date vintage jackets.  This is an early United Carr design, with the spring portion of the snap on the male end, rather than the female. More to come on this once I'm able to narrow dates down a bit more.

Friday, February 7, 2014

Uber Buckskin fringed leather jacket

Uber was one of the big makers. Based out of Owatonna, Minnesota instead of Wisconsin like most of the deer tanneries, this was one of their higher production models. While many jackets of this type are butter soft, this one was heavy, thick and somewhat stiff. Someone wore this one particularly hard, and stored it badly, as evidenced by the field of stretch marks on the shoulders. Main zip is a Coats Clark. 

Thursday, February 6, 2014

Gransfors Garments - Superior, WI

I can't seem to find anything on Gransfors Garments of Superior, WI. This one has some of the softest deer of any of the deerskin jackets I've owned.  Not only are the pockets and yokes fringed on this one, so are the shoulders and the collar. Someone cut the sleeves off this one at some point to make it into a vest.

Wednesday, February 5, 2014

Mid-Western Sport Togs

This leather jacket was made by Mid-Western Sportogs in the 1950s or 1960s.  It is their "model 30" made in cream deerhide.  Like many of the Wisconsin makers, you could send your deer, elk, antelope or moose hides to Mid-Western, who would tan them and custom make a jacket.

Tuesday, February 4, 2014

WB Place fringed deerskin jacket

WB Place was a deer leather tannery and jacket and glove maker based out of  Hartford, Wisconsin.  This jacket probably dates from the 1960s, although the styles made by these companies really didn't change much over time.  Western fringed yokes front and back with contrast detailing. This one shows the flaking that can happen with poorly done deerskin. I'm not wild about the color. 

Monday, February 3, 2014

New Jersey Frozen Foods

More deer. While most of the deerskin jackets you see out there are fringed or somehow otherwise western in design, this one is a fairly straight-ahead 1950s surcoat length leather jacket. The horseshoe belt buckle and back yoke are the biggest nods to western style.  I have seen this model made under a variety of labels, and am not sure who actually produced it.  I can almost guarantee you that it wasn't New Jersey Frozen Foods.

Sunday, February 2, 2014

James Lee fringed jacket

Focus on Fringe - I'm kicking off a week long fringe-fest with a Hong Kong custom tailored jacket from the 1970s.  This one mixes western fringe with high buttoning English inspired double breasted suit styling.

Saturday, February 1, 2014

Hippie Leather / Country Western Suit

The influence of westernwear and of the stagewear of earlier Country/Western bands is obvious in this 1970s suede leather hippie jacket. With contrasting stud trimmed scalloped yokes and applied scenes on the back, this jacket came from an unknown maker. It is simply constructed and unlined. If it didn't have a commercial size tag sewn into it, I would guess that it was home-made. It probably came out of a small shop rather than a factory.

For stylistic comparison, an original 1960s stage suit from my collection.