The Layering King
Layering is key for unpredictable spring weather, so invest in a style with space for knits beneath.
This ASOS spin takes the classic MA-1 details – sleeve pocket, zip-up front and cropped body – but bolts them to an oversized fit, which ticks off this season’s silhouette trend and leaves space for layers underneath.
ASOS Oversized MA1 Bomber Jacket, available at ASOS, priced £32.
The Longline Length
The original bomber was cropped at the waist, to maximise manoeuvrability in cramped cockpits. But because you wage style war on the streets, not actual war in the skies above Korea, you can afford to give that silhouette a twist.
Casely-Hayford’s Crowe jacket has become a signature, with a knee-length cut that gives you an overcoat’s swagger with a bomber’s street-savvy. Style up with a hoodie to go full Yeezy, or over an unstructured suit to hit that high-low sweet spot.
Crowe Black MA1 Elongated Bomber, available at casely-hayford.com, priced £595.
The New Take On Old-School
Leather flight jackets lost out to nylon in the 1950s, since the man-made fabric was lighter, warmer and meant pilots could escape more easily should they need to.
But by coupling a modern shape with the OG fabric, you give tradition a different spin. It also adds that edge that only leather can, giving a dose of biker style to the pilot’s favourite.
Wear yours open over a classic blue denim shirt and with charcoal jeans.
AllSaints Kino Leather Bomber, available at AllSaints, priced £298.
The Downtime Uniform
Though the bomber jacket is a streetwear staple, switching from nylon to softer jersey dulls its edge, making it your default any time you’re not in the office.
Zip over a white tee and slimline joggers on days you’re bored of crew necks, or layer under a blazer with selvedge denim for a spin on the cardigan that strips away any fustiness.
Boohoo Ribbed Jersey Bomber, available at Boohoo, priced £12.
The Statement Maker
Florals are trending this season, but it’s a brave man who makes like Gucci with a suit that could have bloomed in an English country garden.
A floral bomber is a rather easier wear, especially if the pattern’s tonal. Pair with neutral separates in slightly different shades, for that all-navy-everything look.
And if you’re feeling self-conscious, this Ted Baker take flips inside out, so you can rock a block-colour option instead.
Ted Baker Cartwel Floral Reversible Bomber Jacket, available at Ted Baker, priced £119.
The Timeless Classic
As with anything military, you can’t beat a classic. Alpha Industries produced the original MA-1 bomber jacket for the US Air Force and in the ensuing half century has helped make the design an icon.
The reversible Blood Chit jacket features a multi-language emergency message, to help downed airmen escape enemy territory, and a bright orange lining for attracting the attention of rescue craft. Another reason to make it your new travel uniform.
Alpha Industries MA-1 Blood Chit, available at Alpha Industries, priced £103.57.
The Best Bomber Jackets (For Every Budget)
The first sign of spring is when your coat starts to make you sweat. It’s time to switch to a bomber: the perfect transitional jacket that will take you from winter to warmth with ease
Image: AllSaints SS16