Cortech Bella jacket
Coretch Bella jacket in Vintage Brown.

Leather jackets are perfect for the cooler fall weather, and Cortech’s Bella is an attractive and affordable choice. The Bella is made of top grain 0.8- to 0.9-mm cowhide leather that has been aged for a soft, vintage, broken-in look. In fact, when I wore it to the Honda Rebel 500 launch earlier this year, the Bella was so supple right out of the box that it required no break-in. The vintage styling was a perfect match for the retro-hip Rebel cruiser, but it’s subtle enough to look good on just about any type of bike.

Rather than using zip-out liners, the Bella goes with the simple-is-more-comfortable approach. The dark red fixed liner has two sewn-in inner pockets, each large enough for a smartphone or a pair of sunglasses, and the removable CE-approved elbow and shoulder armor rests in mesh-covered pockets for breathability and comfort. Because the main liner is fixed, the armor stays right where it should be; one of the quickest ways to relegate a jacket to the back of my closet is to have armor that slides around and doesn’t stay in place. The soft back protector pad is accessed via a large zipper along the bottom hem and can be removed.

Honda Rebel 500
Stretch panels at the hip are visible in this photo.

While there are no stretch panels at the shoulders or sides, the Bella is soft enough to allow some give, and there are small accordion panels at the hips along with waist straps that snap into one of three positions for fit adjustment. The Bella uses quality YKK zippers throughout, including the decently sized hip pockets and fuss-free cuffs (hooray for no awkward snaps or hook-and-loop that’s hard to adjust with one hand), with a single snap closure at the neck. Heavy-duty canvas material lines the main zipper and the first couple of inches around the bottom hem for durability.

With no vents, the Bella is best for cool weather style and comfort, and adding a warm mid-layer or heated liner would extend its temperature range even further into colder temperatures. It is available in women’s sizes XS-XL and Plus S-L in Black or Vintage Brown, for $274.99.

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