PUBLISHED : Monday, 08 December, 2008, 12:00am
UPDATED : Monday, 08 December, 2008, 12:00am

Unless you've been hiding under a rock, you'll know that a leather jacket is a must-have for the fashion cognoscenti. Since the biker jacket came back into fashion a few years ago every brand has displayed its version on the runway - from John Galliano to Alexander McQueen. A leather jacket is also a great investment for practical reasons - it goes with everything in your wardrobe, from jeans to a cocktail dress, and it's also perfect for layering. When choosing a style, I tend to go for softer leathers that look worn in and distressed. It adds a cooler edge to your look.

I spotted Catherine (near right) in a vintage leather jacket shop in Tin Hau and immediately loved her Rick Owens-inspired style. Her black quilted jacket has a gold trim and a crepe collar that falls in ruffles around the neck, adding a feminine touch. The faux snake patches over her shoulder and at the waist offset the feminine ruffles. I also like how it fastens with a hidden leather string to keep it in shape. The best thing about a jacket like this is that it can instantly transform a simple outfit into a look that is pulled together, no matter what you are wearing underneath.

If Catherine's style is a bit too cool for you, look at Danielle (far right). I spotted her on a Friday night and loved her bomber-style biker jacket. The orange-brown colour is attractive and the jacket fits snugly on the body. The thick, sweater material at the collar and waist make the look more casual. Her contrasting long sleeved white T-shirt is a nice touch because the jacket's sleeves end at the elbow. She's finished off the look with a colourful crochet scarf, boot-cut jeans and leather high heel boots that balance out the boyishness of the jacket.

Most people can wear a jacket with almost anything, but I've also spotted girls wearing theirs with boy-cut trousers and heels, which looks elegant but hip. One girl I also spotted accessorised her jacket with a slim tie. For fashionistas who are more body conscious, forgo stiffer materials and opt for a style that is loose or has a detailed collar. A zip front style is also good for creating curves and looks cool matched with a tartan scarf for a punk rock look.

Local brand Blue Heroes has a wide range of styles, including a zip-up classic style in unusual colours such as white and purple (Dmop, 11-15 On Lan Street, Central, tel: 2840 0822). If you want a more elegant and styled leather coat, I also saw some patent leather trenches at Agnes b. (Shop 1098, IFC, 8 Finance Street, Central, tel: 2805 0611). Midwest (Shop 58, G/F Victoria Centre, 15 Watson Road, Tin Hau, tel: 2802 6886) is the right place to go for some worn-in, vintage leather jackets or suede coats at reasonable prices.