How you can get the leather look for winter

Leather is the material du jour as fashion takes on a more dominant look, says Emma Harrowing.

My leather biker jacket is a key piece in my wardrobe all year round. It toughens up a pretty floral dress, it's perfect for layering over smart attire when I want to add a little edginess to my look and it is my saviour on those days when I feel that I look below par as it instantly adds style to my look. And yet leather clothing has always had a schizophrenic quality. On one hand it has a rock 'n' roll personality with the ability to toughen up even the most girly looks with one fail swoop of a cow's hide. On the other it oozes the traits of a dominatrix when worn head to toe; resigned to the bedroom or taken out of the closet for a fancy dress night out - an all-in-one leather Catwoman outfit anyone?

Over the past few fashion seasons the latter version of this leather self has become increasingly dominant. Kinky style leather belts and braces, faux-leather corsetry and thigh high leather boots, takes leather to new heights. It's a trend that looks set to rock Spring and Summer next year too with neon and bright coloured leather coming into the mix.

It's all very Fifty Shades of Grey with a bit more colour and finesse. For now though it's all about the leather skirt in hues of black or burgundy. Whether you choose a A-line style - perfect if you have a bigger top half than bottom or you are conscience of your tummy or hips; or a pencil skirt style - ideal if you are curvy and in proportion, wear with a cosy knitted jumper, a prim blouse or collared shirt and layer with a long coat or even a cropped leather biker jacket. The look gives leather yet another face, this time prim and poise is key.

Before you balk at wearing a leather skirt, you might want to try one on. This season leather and faux leather has taken on an easy-to-wear softer style as new technologies enable leather to be cut thinly. In some cases this makes the fabric more forgiving on your figure and less likely to squeak or stick when you wear it. All in all, like the trusty leather biker jacket you could be surprised what this fabric can do to revitalise your wardrobe.

Get more fashion news in your Evening News tomorrow (Thursday November 8).

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