The MilanStyle.co.uk Belstaff Jacket and Bag buying guide in association with Belstaff
Belstaff. Since 1924 – The style of heroes!
Belstaff jackets go back to the 1920s as the jacket of choice for the man of action and have since become iconic, covetable pieces which inspire everyone from motorcyclists to Hollywood action heroes today. Like the rest of the Belstaff menswear range, the jackets appeal to those who want to invest in premium clothing and accessories for their lifestyle but do not want to spend money on items which will quickly go out of fashion. There will come a point in any man’s life who is serious about his clothes at which point he will require a Belstaff jacket to complete his wardrobe. ‘Period’, as they say.
MilanStyle.co.uk partners with Great Britain and Europe’s finest boutiques for the best selection online.
There are many different Belstaff jacket models. What do the different jacket names mean?
Belstaff Panther Jacket
The crème de la crème of Belstaff jackets and dating back to 1966, the Panther model is styled after the brand’s original and iconic Trialmaster model, but in heavy, durable leather – just in case you ever fall off your Triumph motorbike. The Panther jacket is also sometimes called the ‘New Panther’ jacket.
Panther jackets come in several colours each season, typically ‘Antique Black’, ‘Burnt Brown’ and ‘Black/Brown’. More recently we have seen an ‘Antique Red’ version which seemed to be a one-season only, limited edition offering.
If you are buying a Belstaff Panther online, you should expect to pay between £800 – £1100 if the item is full price (e.g. not end of season sale). If the jacket costs any less than this, it is very likely to be a fake and we recommend you would avoid buying it and that website altogether.
Belstaff Trialmaster Jacket
The legendary Trialmaster, introduced in 1947 and immortalised by Che Guevara and Steve McQueen, has come to symbolise an unusual combination of rugged practicality and rebelliousness in its wearers.
This jacket is always in heavy waxed cotton, perfect for the open road, off or on bike. There are many different colours each season and importantly, different finishes to the fabric, a particular favourite being the ‘Distressed’ version, which gives the jacket an authentic, almost vintage feel. If you are new to Belstaff and are starting out we recommend a basic colour: ‘Black’, ‘Black-Brown’ or ‘Military Green’.
Special Edition Belstaff Trialmaster Jackets:
Trialmaster Legend, Che Guevara Replica, Steve McQueen Replica
The Trialmaster Legend which Will Smith, or Dr. Robert Neville to be precise, wears in the ‘I AM LEGEND’ film is actually a Belstaff ‘Trialmaster Legend’. The Belstaff Legend jacket is basically a Trialmaster with an antiqued and distressed finish. The jacket was cut a little longer in the film for Will Smith to suit his personal preference, therefore the replica models are actually a little shorter than the one you see him wear in the film. To our knowledge, these jackets are a limited edition each season. However, in our opinion, the best and most authentic versions were available at the time the film was released (2007). The Belstaff Trialmaster Legend jackets normally start at around £600 depending on which retailer you buy from.
Similarly the Belstaff ‘Che Guevara’ and ‘Steve McQueen’ jackets are also actually Trialmasters, with different emblems, logos and badges replicating the styles those two men wore at the time.
Belstaff Roadmaster Jacket
Similar to the Trialmaster in style, the Roadmaster can trace its pedigree back to 1960, with Belstaff being the only garment manufacturer at the time still producing high technology jackets in 100% natural fabrics.
Belstaff Racemaster Jacket
This classic motor-biking style jacket dates back to 1970 and to this day remains made of 100% waxed Egyptian cotton.
Shorter on the body, sitting just above the waist, you’ll also notice that the jacket has a different coloured thread (normally gold) to the main fabric colour.
Look out for the Union Jack tab, just underneath the left breast pocket.
Other iconic Belstaff jackets:
The sizing on Belstaff jackets runs from ‘S’ to ‘XXXL’
The first thing to say is that the sizing is really Italian.
As you probably know, Italian brands tend to fit a lot slimmer than British or American brands. So, actually, a ‘S’ (small) is more like an ‘extra small’ and an ‘XXXL’ is certainly more like an XL or maybe XXL.
Because there are different size systems, we recommend that you use these size charts as a general guide to help you determine the right size for your Belstaff items.
Please see Belstaff’s official size guide for jackets here:
What does ‘Replica’ leather mean?
This causes a lot of confusion and we feel it may be down to Belstaff’s marketing being ‘lost in translation’ once the descriptions are translated from Italian into English. (Belstaff has been Italian owned and made since the 1990s).
The jackets described as ‘Replica Leather’ are indeed made of genuine leather! We guess what Belstaff mean by ‘replica’ is that they are replicating ‘vintage’ and ‘antique’ style finishes on the leather.
Indeed, the leather used is of the highest Italian quality leather possible and creates the most durable leather jacket you are likely to own in your lifetime.
Tell me about Belstaff shoulder bags?
The Belstaff 554 and 556 bags have become very sought after, especially after being featured in the recent ‘Batman’ films and also of course, ‘I AM LEGEND’. Belstaff officially supplied jackets, trousers and bags to the costume departments on both films.
The bags are available in several different colours each season, but the core colours are the ‘Mountain Brown’ and ‘Black’ options.
Belstaff 554 bag
This is the large shoulder bag and is ideal for storing a laptop and also can act as an overnight bag. This is the bag featured in both Batman and I AM LEGEND films in the ‘Mountain Brown’ colour and because of this, it tends to sell out very quickly.
Belstaff 556 bag
This is the medium shoulder bag and many use it as a camera bag, or bag for smaller items.
Magnets or buckles?
Opinion is divided about this, but the official line is that Belstaff introduced the magnet closure on the bags so that cyclists and bikers could open the bags quickly.
Others prefer the genuine buckle closure. In our experience, there is little difference between the two types and the magnet versions hold just as well as the buckle version.
These bags sell out quickly each time are in stock. We repeat: These bags sell out quickly each time are in stock.
We strongly advise you not to try and wait for ‘end of season sales’ or ‘discounts’ if you are planning to buy these bags as Belstaff only produce limited numbers – they always sell out quickly in our experience and on top of that, we have seen that the price tends to go up every few months.
MilanStyle.co.uk has partnered with Great Britain and Europe’s most exclusive stores and we can vouch for the customer service and offer a ‘cast iron guarantee’ of authenticity on all products featured on this website and sold through our partner stores.
Where are Belstaff products made?
Belstaff products are all made in Italy.
There is some confusion about this, as Belstaff was originally a British owned and manufactured brand up until the 1990s.
In the 90′s, the brand was bought by the Italian ‘Clothing Company’ who moved the entire operation to Italy, including the manufacture. However, fans of the brand will have noticed the British flag still remains on many new Belstaff products – the Italians have kept the brand’s heritage alive and respect its British ancestry.
You may also see in the jackets that the large label at the collar says ‘Made in England’ – this is perhaps misleading as the products are definitely made in Italy (and you will find a smaller tag elsewhere inside the jacket confirming this) – however, Belstaff are making exact replicas of many of jackets from Belstaff’s historical archives – which were of course, all proudly made in England.
However, many of the wax jackets use fabric made by the British fabric house ‘Millerain’, a family owned company established in 1880 who make specialist cloths for the military and other practical uses.
Where is the best place to buy Belstaff jackets, boots and bags online?
MilanStyle.co.uk has partnered with several handpicked retailers throughout Great Britain and Europe to offer the absolute widest range of Belstaff jackets, clothing, boots, bags and other accessories you will find online.
We can recommend all of our partner stores for the quality of the customer service they offer and of course, they are all authorised Belstaff stockists. Please head to the Review section of our website where you will be able to read the official MilanStyle.co.uk review of each of our partner stores and also, the completely independent reviews of other MilanStyle members who have shopped online through these stores.
How do I avoid fake Belstaff products?
There is an old saying. “If it looks too good to be true, it is.”
Genuine Belstaff products, like other premium brands made in Italy and Europe, cost premium prices.
Unfortunately, there are many hundreds of websites operating claiming to sell ‘authentic Belstaff goods’ at knockdown or giveaway prices. What they are actually selling are knock-offs made in the Far East.
The problem is that anyone can set up a website, use photographs of genuine Belstaff products from an authorised stockist and create a convincing looking website which will fool people into buying knock-offs.
If you buy from these websites, you will not know you are buying a fake until the product arrives and you will be deeply disappointed in the inferior product. Unfortunately a more recent problem is that the fakes are sometimes passable, so you may not even realise you are wearing a fake until someone innocently asks you ‘is that jacket real mate?’ The doubt sets in and the illusion is shattered.
Do not cheat yourself – if you do plan to treat yourself to a Belstaff, do not buy from these ‘too good to be true’ websites, save up a little longer and pay for an authentic one – and sleep peacefully knowing you have the real thing.
Tell tale signs of a fake Belstaff website:
• The prices are ‘too good to be true’.
• The website uses the phrase ‘Belstaff wholesale’ or ‘Belstaff outlet’.
• The English, spelling and grammar on the website is poor.
Of course this does not mean that Belstaff products never go on sale. But it is rare to see discounts of more than 30%. And it is even more unusual that a website should have such a large amount of Belstaff ‘sale’ stock all year round.
MilanStyle.co.uk works with Europe’s leading stockists of Belstaff, including reputable dealers such as Harrods, so that there is no need to worry that you are buying the real thing. Buy with confidence and shop through MilanStyle.co.uk where you can read our reviews and our members’ reviews.
Which Hollywood films has Belstaff featured in?
I AM LEGEND
BATMAN: The Dark Knight
Special thanks to Belstaff™