Review – Darth Vader jacket

Her Universe first released a preview photo of Ashley Eckstein wearing the Darth Vader jacket in late October, and it was instantly on my wish list. A second preview photo showed the lining, which only added to it’s appeal. The Her Universe x Star Wars collection for Hot Topic finally launched on November 16th – it was the final day of Hot Topic’s 50% off international shipping promotion, so I quickly placed an order. Only 6 days later and it has arrived – so quick! Fast shipping is great when you’re eagerly awaiting an item like this.

The jacket is made in sizes XS to 3X – and is available from both Hot Topic and Her Universe. Hot Topic’s regular price of US$69.50 is a little higher than Her Universe’s price of US$65.00 – but Hot Topic has almost-continuous online sales, and they can ship internationally (whereas Her Universe does not). I paid US$52.12 during a 25% off sale – a great price for a licensed and detailed jacket like this.

Her Universe - Darth Vader pleather jacket (front) Her Universe - Darth Vader pleather jacket (back) Her Universe - Darth Vader pleather jacket (front detail)

The jacket is sewn from black faux leather (100% PU front, backed with 100% rayon) and a matte black polyester stretch fabric (95% polyester, 5% spandex), while the lining is 100% polyester. I like the faux leather, it keeps the look and feel of a leather jacket but without the high price tag. The jacket is of course inspired by Darth Vader’s outfit, and there are lots of great references to the original costume design –

  • Vertically-quilted faux leather panels – inspired by the quilted leather suit
  • Top front panel of contrasting black panels – inspired by the shoulder armour
  • Quilted faux leather shoulder ‘caps’ – inspired by the shoulder armour
  • Matte black side panels – inspired by the wool robes
  • Horizontally-quilted faux leather sleeve cuffs – inspired by the quilted leather gloves (A New Hope version)

Additionally, the horizontally-quilted panels for the pockets remind me of the chest box, and the faux leather band around the hem could be the belt. All of the faux leather is top stitched, so it’s sits flat – the stitching is tidy and even. All in all, a lot of thought has been put into this jacket’s design – but in subtle way, leaving the unnecessary elements like chest box buttons completely out of this design. I love that this is an obvious Darth Vader inspired item to Star Wars fans who recognize the design, but just looks like a cool jacket to anyone else. Of course there is the Imperial symbol embroidered high on the back – but again, this is subtle (or completely hidden, depending on your hairstyle).

Her Universe - Darth Vader pleather jacket (interior lining) Her Universe - Darth Vader pleather jacket (interior lining detail) Her Universe - Darth Vader pleather jacket (back detail)

The lining is a dark red colour – a perfect choice, as red is always associated with the Sith and the Empire. The quote ‘You Underestimate The Power Of The Dark Side’ is printed in black on the back lining, so it’s completely hidden when wearing the jacket. I love this detail – a way of adding another Star Wars element to the garment without disturbing the outer design. The jacket is fully lined – down to the sleeve cuffs and even the front pockets, for a little glimpse of contrasting colour.

I bought my jacket in size XS – it measures approximately 38.5cm across the chest (underarm to underarm), 49cm from sleeve seam to hem, 43cm across the lower hem (straight across, side seam to side seam), and 51cm from front neckline to front hem (the length of the zip). There is slight shaping through the bust, so it’s hard to get an accurate chest measurment when the jacket is lying flat. The side panels do have a lot of stretch, but the lining does not – the lining is slightly gathered at the hem, so there is some give. Also, the sleeves are fully sewn from faux leather, there are no stretch panels on the underside – something to consider when choosing your size.

There are a couple of other black Star Wars inspired jackets coming soon from Musterbrand and Matchless London – but they use real leather, so the prices are many times higher (and some people prefer not to purchase real leather products). I really appreciate all the design elements that Her Universe has incorporated into their jacket, and kept it affordable and stylish. I have recently been shopping around for a black jacket to add to my wardrobe – this is exactly what I have been looking for, and what better inspiration for a black jacket than Darth Vader! 🙂

Her Universe - Darth Vader pleather jacket (sleeve lining) Her Universe - Darth Vader pleather jacket (pocket lining) Her Universe - Darth Vader pleather jacket (front) Her Universe - Darth Vader pleather jacket (sleeve detail)