While leather bomber jackets are now a must-have in our wardrobes most seasons, you might not be aware of their history. It all started here, on the backs of WWII pilots — and it wasn’t (necessarily) a style choice. Standardized as part of the pilots’ uniform and given out upon completion of basic flight training, leather bomber jackets were then decorated by the pilots themselves.
Flashing the name of their plane, the jackets also sported additional treats such as victories, rank, status, and an unseen degree of personalization. Thanks to Retronaut and the US National Archives, we can take a good look at them. Enjoy!