The Bronc’s back! Mister Freedom® BRONCO CHAMP Type II, veg-tan cowhide leather, natural & black tea-core edition. Made in USA.

 

Aaaaai…

 

 

My MF® Bronco Champ Type II today (August 2023), natural veg-tan cowhide, with sunshine exposure, conditioning and some miles.

MF® BRONCO CHAMP Type II, veg-tan cowhide, natural & black tea-core edition.
mfsc FW2022 HOOPER Collection
Made in USA

Mister Freedom® OGs may remember our first 1960s cafe racer style leather jacket, the MF® Bronco Champ Type I.
A heavy hitter in the “Speed-Safe Clothing for Modern Riders” line-up, the Type I was produced in Japan in 2009, and released in several horsehide options and color combinations.

Sonny Hooper called and said he’d like to see a comeback of that bad boy for a new stunt, so we listened.

We decided to have the Bronco Champ Type II made in the USA this time around, at the same small factory that has been producing our Mister Freedom® leather classics since 2013. That team of expert craftsmen is responsible for the MF® Campus, Ranch BlouseRingo”, “Randall” and “Bison”, the “Baloo”, and the “Lawrence”. They know what they’re doing.

The original design of the MF® Bronco Champ was inspired by 1940s~1970s motorcycle jacket styles (vintage Block-Bilt, Buco, Bates etc…), when leather was the best thing available to protect riders from spills, should one forget the old “Keep the rubber side down” biker’s adage.

The body pattern/fit was adapted from a vintage 1950s “Taubers of California” single rider’s jacket from my closet, a cut also referred to as cafe racer (as opposed to the “Brando style” double rider’s jacket.) Early advertising sometimes promoted those as “leather shirts” or “competition shirts”.
Another source of inspiration for the original MF® Bronco Champ was a 1960s racing jacket from the “ABC Leather” maker, a snazzy cream and red little number with stars on the sleeves I used to wear around, which also made an appearance in Japanese fashion magazine “Free & Easy” (the original “Dad’s Style” reference for round eyes) in 2005, back when I thought inhaling smoke was a good idea.

At the drafting table, I decided at the time to do the unthinkable, and mess with the timeless minimalist front panel design of single rider’s jackets by adding a D-pocket! Heresy.
It is commonly accepted that D-pockets have their design/purpose origin in early aviator clothing (1920s-30s), and made their way to double rider’s motorcycle jackets sometimes in the 1940s, as clothing companies probably figured there will always be less flyers than bikers as potential customers.
D-pockets are not found on classic single rider’s jacket, usually designed with one or two small chest zip pockets. Intended as glove-fitting racing “shirts”, a chest pocket the size of a pack of smokes was all one needed on the racetrack.

I remember sewing together a prototype D-pocket, and positioning it on my 50s Taubers to find the sweet spot… After a bit of visual acclimation, I thought the tweak could qualify as another one of those vintage design “might have been” (aka “didn’t exist but could have”, our Mister Freedom® design motto to this day), and we went for it.
Turned out that not only does that utility pocket (map/gloves + coin pocket combo) work visually, but the extra storage definitely helps with EDC when going for a casual ride. Little did I know I’d be tethered to a small computer everywhere I go 15 years later. That D-pocket is perfect to carry a cel phone.

The addition of a “teardrop” bottom snap fastener tab also comes from the MF® mad lab, a detail lifted from a 1930s workwear jacket throat latch, if I remember well, and I don’t. That tab not only looks pretty cool with its attractive curves, but it also serves the very useful purpose of limiting stress on the bottom of the front zipper. Vintage leather jacket collectors with busted zipper cotton tapes will appreciate.

The zipper models of the Type II have also been updated, after the 1930s “Hookless” replica of the Type I proved unreliable. We stuck with 100% cotton tape (didn’t cave in to modern shiny poly-cotton tape) but opted for a sturdier slider/teeth construction with a vintage 1950s-vibe bell-shaped “Universal” pull tab (with extra leather pulls a gloved rider will appreciate.)
We had considered the chunkier heavy duty aluminum alloy Talon zipper style of 1970s single rider’s jackets in R&D  (featured on some of the “sunshine” prototypes photos here), but wanted to keep the sleek look of earlier zippers.
Struggling to zip-up an old leather jacket? The trick is to always make sure the insert pin is fully lodged in the retaining box (look up zipper parts) before gently zipping up. Do not yank on the pull, as you often see the uninitiated do in vintage clothing stores, when trying on a perfectly-preserved 80 year-old jacket, and jamming the zipper or tearing the tape… Routinely rubbing the teeth (both sides) with bees wax is also good maintenance habit for old school metal zippers.
The chest pockets and D-pocket feature classic 1950s-style chain type pulls.
The double snap stand collar (also referred to in vintage paper ads as “turtleneck collar”), double chest zip pockets, and zipped cuffs are borrowed from traditional single rider’s motorcycle jackets.
The generic snaps of the Type I have also been upgraded to our own mfsc branded brass fasteners.
The one-piece panel back made selecting the hides and figuring out yield more challenging for the expert cutter, but is visually more pleasing than the cheaper spliced back option.

Now for the leather…
We went with veg-tan cowhide for the Bronco Champ Type II, same sturdy grade as our current Campus jackets that we have developed years ago with a local tannery, about 3-4 Oz weight.

The Bronco Champ Type II is released in a natural color option (un-dyed white/pinkish leather that will develop rich golden tones overtime, with normal wear/exposure to elements/conditioning – see the evolution potential of our “Sunshine” specimen -), and a black tea-core version (also exclusively developed with a local tannery) featuring a black topcoat on a natural-color flesh side that will also age and patina gracefully.

Spoiler alert: For those into stealing the show out on the racetrack, and as a nod to the 2009 Type I, we are also working on a fancy two-tone black/bison “racing” model, release TBD.

For the lining, our signature classic red 1950s-style all-cotton brushed flannel with a printed plaid pattern brings a splash of color and an authentic vintage vibe to the garment.

The MF® Bronco Champ Type II is made and designed in California by Mister Freedom®, in collaboration with Sugar Cane Co.

SPECS:

PATTERN:
An original Mister Freedom® pattern, freely inspired by 1940s to 1970s motorcycle jackets, in the classic single rider’s style.

SHELL:
Two color options:
a) Natural vegetable-tanned (veg-tan) full grain cowhide leather. This white/pinkish leather will develop rich golden tones and patina overtime.
b) Black veg-tan “Tea-Core” full grain cowhide leather, black topcoat with natural-color flesh side, milled and supple, about 3-4 Oz weight.
Lining:
Our signature classic 1950s-style red printed plaid brushed flannel, 100% cotton, for a splash of color and an authentic vintage vibe.

NOTE: The Mister Freedom® Bronco Champ is made of genuine leather. We use full-grain, and not top-grain leather (aka “corrected” or “buffed” leather, sanded to level surface inconsistencies). No two hides are alike and each panel may feature slight variations in texture along with natural imperfections.

DETAILS:
* An original pattern blending vintage motorcycle jackets styles.
* Trim glove-fitting single-breasted cut, 1950s-1960s vibe.
* Original “D” pocket design (zipper utility pocket for map/gloves + snap coin pocket combo)
* Double snap fastener stand collar.
* “Universal” nickel zipper front closure, 1950s style bell-shaped pull.
* Extra leather zip pulls for easy grab when wearing gloves.
* Double chest pockets with “Universal” nickel chain pull zippers.
* Gusseted zipped cuffs for wind-tight sleeves.
* Fully lined with soft 100% cotton printed brushed flannel.
* Original mfsc branded brass snap fasteners.
* Waist snap fastening tab.
* Single panel back.
* Mister Freedom® “Sportsman” rayon neck label.
* Designed and produced in California in limited quantities.

SIZING:
The Bronco Champ is designed to fit close to the body, as classic single-breasted leather racing jackets were intended to.
This garment is ready to wear as-is. No pre-conditioning needed. Wear and ride.
I opted for a MEDIUM, to allow layering during winter. The SMALL fit me better with a simple T, but I intend to wear the jacket more during colder months. I’m 5’7 ~145 Lbs.
Proper fit is subjective so please check our measurements (and how we measure), and compare with a similar garment you own and enjoy the fit of.
Any questions, please contact sales@misterfreedom.com as the MF® Team will have feedback and proper knowledge to help you dial in your size.

CARE:
* MF® Bronco Champ natural veg-tan:
Because of its initial un-dyed light color, the MF® Bronco Champ is prone to get soiled, water marked etc easily. Don’t panic with your first stain, scratch or grease spot, this is part of the tough life of a leather jacket, your second skin. Almost anything applied to light-colored leather will alter its appearance permanently.
For those desiring to kick-start the patina with sun exposure and natural tanning of the leather, please refer to our “Sunshine” process inspired by our friend John VEB V.
Pecard offers quality leather dressing.
Remember the good words of Sonny Hooper: “A brand new leather motorcycle jacket will always feel its worth and look its worst on day one.”

* MF® Bronco Champ black tea-core:
On the same note, embrace the fact that the “Tea-Core” leather is prone to get nicked and scratched, revealing the natural color under-layer, unavoidably showing signs of wear. Occasional conditioning when needed (according to actual frequency of wear and activities) will contribute to an attractive natural patina, and a healthy-looking leather.

Available from www.misterfreedom.com, and our Los Angeles red brick HQ.
Email sales@misterfreedom.com or call 323-653-2014 with any questions unanswered above.
Thank you for your support,

Christophe Loiron
Mister Freedom®
©2023

Mister Freedom® x Sugar Cane msfc FW2022 FROGSVILLE-HOOPER LookBook Preview

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MF® Chino Utility Trousers ©2022

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MF® L/S Skivvy ©2022

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MF® PT Henley, R&R and M.A.S.H. edition ©2022

MF® PT Henley, R&R edition ©2022

MF® PT Henley, R&R edition ©2022

MF® PT Henley, R&R + M*A*S*H* edition ©2022

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Mister Freedom® x SugarCane Co FW2022 “HOOPER” collection

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MF® Dude Rancher shirt, corduroy ©2022

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MF® “Sonny” Puffer Vest ©2022

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MF® “Sonny” Puffer Vest ©2022

MF® Bronco Champ Type II ©2009

MF® Bronco Champ Type II ©2009

MF® Bronco Champ Type II ©2009

MF® Bronco Champ Type II ©2009

MF® Bronco Champ Type II ©2009

 

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MF® Californian Lot.674, corduroy edition ©2022

Mister Freedom® x Sugar Cane Co mfsc FW2022 Preview:

Dear Friends,

Hope this finds you well, healthy, and in good spirits.
It is that time of the year…
Here is a preview of our Mister Freedom® x Sugar Cane (mfsc) FW2022 collaboration, for your consideration.

Two main groupings this season:

First are a few additions to our “FROGSVILLE” theme, an original collection freely inspired by vintage UDT (Underwater Demolition Team) gear, Frogmen and US Navy SEALs, where we revisit US military rigger-made garments and exotic local-made garb. The mission is to translate 1940s-1970s references and vintage influences into modern day wearables. Our frogman is going on R&R (Rest and Recuperation) in-country this season!

This FW2022 chapter of “FROGSVILLE” consists of:

1) CHINO UTILITY TROUSERS, BR Chino twill (Japan)
* An original mfsc pattern introduced in 2015, revisited.
* Cut from Buzz Rickson’s vintage mil-specs 8.2 Oz. chino twill.

2) CRACKERJACK CPO Shirt (Japan)
* Inspired US Navy enlisted Dress Blue Jumpers recut and recycled by local tailors into civilian “souvenir” garments.
* 9.2 Oz. Melton wool.
* Navy blue / ivory white

3) MARINER SWEATER, roll-neck cable knit (Japan)
* Fisherman cable knit pattern.
* 100% cotton.
* Indigo blue / black

4a) PT Henley, original M.A.S.H. edition (USA):
* MF® original “Skivvy” knit tubular body, white.
* Contrast OD (Olive Drab) stitching, OD poplin button placket, green ox bone buttons.

4b) PT Henley, R&R edition (USA):
* MF® original “Skivvy” knit tubular body, white.
* Tonal stitching, blue chambray button placket, natural ox bone buttons.
Note: A two-pack PT Henley combo is available and comes in a special printed cardboard box packaging.

5) SHIP Cap, solid (USA)
* 6-panel pattern, snap-back, baseball cap profile, inspired by US Navy PX command ball caps.
* NOS Cotton/Linen blend selvedge denim, dark indigo blue.

6) L/S SKIVVY T-Shirt (USA)
* MF® original “Skivvy” knit Tubular body, white, long sleeve edition.
* Vintage style needle-out ribbed neckband & extended cuffs, ecru.

There it is.

Next grouping is “HOOPER”, an exciting new stylistic escapade for us, with visuals borrowed from the vintage world of motion picture stuntmen/stuntwomen, before CGI (Computer-Generated Imagery) replaced adrenalin highs and broken bones.

To briefly set our FW2022 stage, the two main characters in Quentin Tarantino 2019 “Once Upon a Time in Hollywood” (Rick Dalton played by Leonardo DiCaprio, and Cliff Booth played by Brad Pitt) were partially based on two Hollywood legends: actor Burt Reynolds (who actually started his career as a movie stuntman) and former paratrooper and professional stuntman Hal Needham.

Burt Reynolds and Hal Needham (1980)

In the 1970s, Burt Reynolds was one of America’s most popular comedy actors, and Hal Needham one of the highest paid Hollywood stuntmen. They were actually close friends in real life, and bachelor pad roommates for some 11 years.
After 46 broken bones, Needham, who often played stuntdouble for Reynolds, eventually got tired of jumping off buildings and crashing cars for a living. He decided to create his own  business (Stunts Unlimited), and dreamed of actually becoming a movie director. In 1977, he wrote the B-movie “Smokey and the Bandit”, and, to convince producers, enrolled his buddy Reynolds to star in it… Screen magic happened, and against all odds, the low budget “redneck buddy” movie became a hugely-popular hit in the USA. The flick remains today an iconic piece of period Southern culture Americana captured on film.
Following this success, Needham directed the movie “Hooper, The Greatest Stuntman Alive” (1978), a tribute to his profession: the stunt doubles, actual unsung heroes of the silver screen. Again, Burt Reynolds was the leading star, playing the fictitious stuntman Sonny Hooper.
Watch “The Bandit” documentary (2016) if you get a chance.

Our FW2022 mfsc “HOOPER” capsule collection blends vintage Hollywood professional stuntmen styles (yes, with an ounce of 70s macho men open collar shirts, aviators, sideburns and gold chains!), classic western wear, 1970s-80s automotive fashion (old school NASCAR garments, Wynn’s gear, 1980s “Auto Style” jackets etc), and classic vintage car/motorcycle racing promotional garments for gearheads.

To simplify things, the usual seasonal additions to our classic made-in-USA SPORTSMAN catalog have been incorporated into the HOOPER storyline, adding an earlier 1960s-70s McQueen in Palm Spring Desert vibe.
About a two-hour drive from Los Angeles, the actor’s Palm Springs home in the California desert was his get-away and escape from the busy Hollywood life. Hot days, cool nights, relaxing around the pool or desert racing, camping trips to the Sierra Madre Mountains… some of that lifestyle was famously documented at the time by photographers William Claxton or John Dominis (LIFE, 1963).
If McQueen often insisted on performing his own stunts, frowned by the studios considering risks and insurance liability, pros like Bud Ekins (the famous jump in “The Great Escape”, 1963) or Loren Janes (the moving train stunt in “The Hunter”, 1980) were never too far.

This adds a blend of cool 60s sportswear and vintage casual suiting to our action-packed HOOPER mix.

The FW2022 “HOOPER” line-up (made in USA & Japan) consists of:
1) SONNY Puffer Vest (JP):
* Reversible, quilted, 70s style synthetic fiber filling.
* Indigo corduroy x Blue denim / Indigo corduroy x brown denim.

2) ROADEO Puffer Jacket  (JP):
* Quilted, 70s style synthetic fiber filling.
* Orange x Gold nylon / Black x Brown nylon / 7 Oz. denim x chambray.

3) Five-panel FEED CAP (USA):
* 1970s style trucker hat, snap-back.
* NOS denim/white mesh.
* Solid / Patched.

4) DUDE RANCHER Shirt, Corduroy edition (JP):
* Our popular original western snap shirt pattern.
* Black / Ivory / Ruby Red / Indigo Blue.

5) CALIFORNIAN LOT.64 “OUTLAW”, Midnight denim (USA)
* The popular fit of our classic Lot.64 Californian five-pocket jeans, with western-style “frogmouth” pockets.
* 16 Oz. Midnight denim, dark indigo warp x black weft.

6) RANCH BLOUSE, “Frontier” Duck Canvas (USA)
* The classic MF® Ranch Blouse pattern in a USA-milled sturdy and dry 12 Oz. brown duck canvas.

7) Leather RANCH BLOUSE, “Bison” (USA)
* A leather version of our classic MF® Ranch Blouse pattern.
* Veg-tan cowhide, tea-core with a cognac color top coat.

8) WORKMAN Shirt, “Americana” stripes (USA)
* NOS 100% cotton woven stripe fabric, white with blue & red stripes.

9) BRONCO CHAMP Type II (USA)
* 1960s style cafe racer rider jacket, a revisited pattern from our 2009 MF® Bronco Champ original, USA-made this time.
* Cotton printed flannel lining.
* Natural veg-tan cowhide / Black tea-core veg-tan cowhide.

10) CALIFORNIAN LOT.674 “Groovy”, NOS Cone denim (USA)
* Our slimmest five-pocket jeans, slightly tapered leg, 1960s vibe silhouette, button fly.
* NOS 14 Oz. Cone blue denim.
* Groovy NOS cotton printed canvas pocketing!

11) Cashmere V-Neck TERRENCE” Sweater (Japan)
* A classic menswear staple garment, revisited with 50s—60s style extended cuffs/waistband.
* Fancy cable knit pattern.
* 100% Mongolian Cashmere.
* NOT made in China, and in very limited quantities.
* Black / Yale Blue / Ice-Blu

12) CONTINENTAL Sportcoat & Trousers (USA)
* NOS 100% cotton “Bossa” 3×1 cross hatch denim, 11 Oz.
* Lining/Pocketing: NOS 100% cotton woven stripe fabric, white with blue & red stripes.

13) CALIFORNIAN LOT.674 and COWBOY Jacket, Corduroy Edition (USA)
* Our slimmest five-pocket jeans (slightly tapered leg) & classic trucker denim jacket pattern, for a 1960s-70s vibe silhouette.
* Vintage 60s sportswear-style 14 wale corduroy, T/C (20/80) blend.
* Brown cord: Lot.674 and Cowboy Jacket.
* Indigo Blue cord: Lot.674 and Cowboy Jacket.

Both our original FROGSVILLE and “HOOPER” FW2022 collections are designed in California by Mister Freedom® and exclusively manufactured in Japan and USA in collaboration with Sugar Cane Co, in limited quantities.
Please note that the lookbook/preview features show samples, not necessarily reflecting quality/details/labeling of the upcoming production.

Voila!

As always, besides the classic vintage style references, the common thread in all these original garments is the Mister Freedom® on-going commitment to ethical manufacturing, original designs, and resistance to fast fashion, with styles that will easily incorporate into any existing classic wardrobe.

Thank you very much for your renewed support.

Love from Sunny California,

c

🌞✌🏼👴🏼🌴

MFSC Fall09, the “BRONCO CHAMP”, Star model


d

Soon to be granted speeding tickets by your favorite local Highway Patrol Officer…

(This original garment is part of the Mister Freeddom® x Sugar Cane FALL 2009 collaboration “MFSC Speed-Safe Clothing for Modern Riders”. Starting late September 2009, it will be available at the MISTER FREEDOM ® store in Los Angeles, and other select retail stores worldwide.)