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Denver Leather Store: The History of the Leather Bomber Jacket

February 14, 2018

The bomber jacket is one of the most iconic jackets in modern day history, as it’s been able to maintain popularity from its inception in the early 1900s. Leather bomber jackets are still in demand to this day, and can come in a variety of colors and differentiating style. Let’s dive into the history of the bomber jacket from your Denver leather store!

History of the Bomber Jacket

In the late 1910s when the United States was taking part in the first World War, most airplanes did not yet have an enclosed cockpit so something to keep pilots warm was incredibly important. Heavy-duty leather flight jackets were created for the U.S. Army pilots that featured large wraparound collars, zippers, wind flaps, tight cuffs and waistbands, and lined with fur. Flight jackets always used classic sheepskin because of the lightweight and insulating fur. Wool, shearling jackets were warm enough to keep Lt. John A. Macready warm when he broke a world record in April 1921 where he reached an altitude of 40,000 feet in an open-cockpit airplane.
As years went by and the United States entered World War II, airplane technology improved so the planes could fly higher than before. This meant that the cabin got even colder than it did in the last World War, so warm flight jackets became essential pieces of equipment that every crew member needed!
Throughout history, there were two main types of American flight jackets: the A-2 and G-1. The A-2 is the most recognizable and sought after bomber jacket, even though it was discontinued after only 12 years of use in the Air Corps. The G-1 was designed by the U.S. Navy and was in use until 1978 after the U.S. Congress cancelled it. The Navy’s supply system was overwhelmed after the G-2 jacket was incredibly popular across the nation, due in part to films like Top Gun, making bomber jackets fashionable and collector items.
After the success of the G-2 bomber jacket and it’s popularity, bomber jackets, or flight jackets, were popular throughout the country for anyone, and everyone. The late 1980s brought out a baseball styled bomber jacket that was popular with baseball players and fans alike, which branched out to be popular for all types of sports and their fans. For the early 2000s, bomber jackets were a hit in hip-hop fashion for casual wear and street wear. Police departments across the country started using leather bomber jackets for the design and warm insulation.

The Bomber Jacket Today

Leather bomber jackets are hitting a popularity surge again in the 2010s due to celebrities sporting them out at appearances. Leather bomber jackets are a timeless classic that will be popular for different age groups for years to come.
At Jonval Leather, we have tons of bomber jackets for you to choose from and if you don’t find one you like, we can custom make something just for you! Contact us today with questions!