A celebrity-en­dorsed leather jacket.

Emily Haines on de­sign­ing a leather jacket with soul.

ELLE (Canada) - - Insider - By Liz Gu­ber

i’m in an Uber driv­ing down Mon­treal’s Saint-De­nis Street, on my way to meet Met­ric’s Emily Haines, when the band’s hit sin­gle “The Shade” comes on the ra­dio. I in­form my driver of this co­in­ci­dence, but he doesn’t seem to care. Clearly, he hasn’t been a diehard fan from the mo­ment he heard “Com­bat Baby” or signed up for fan-club news­let­ters lov­ing­ly penned by Haines her­self.

When I sit down with the singer, she ra­di­ates the giddy en­ergy of a rock star fresh off the stage. But in­stead of bring­ing a crowd of thou­sands to their feet, Haines has just com­pleted her first de­sign pro­ject: a leather jacket for Rudsak. The col­lab­o­ra­tion is a nat­u­ral fit—who bet­ter than Canada’s in­die-mu­sic queen to lend her vi­sion to a brand rooted in rock ’n’ roll? Haines brought her dream jacket to life with the brand’s founder, Evik Asatoo­rian. The fi­nal prod­uct is top se­cret (to be re­vealed later at World MasterCard Fash­ion Week in Toronto), and the singer is so ex­cited to tell me about it that she nearly spoils the sur­prise.

“My first leather jacket takes me back to the early days with the band, when we lived in L.A. and played the Sil­ver­lake Lounge,” says Haines, get­ting nos­tal­gic. “I found it in a vin­tage store and then lost it some­where on the road; this jacket is an at­tempt to get it back—an up­dated ver­sion.”

Rein­vent­ing a clas­sic leather jacket had Haines turn­ing to the mod­ern woman for in­spi­ra­tion: “It doesn’t mat­ter whether you’re a stu­dent, a mother or a rock star; I al­ways see women deal­ing with all th­ese purses and pock­ets, feel­ing weighed down.”

I imag­ine a gar­ment built for util­ity—al­though Haines doesn’t say it out­right—with count­less pock­ets and com­part­ments. And, when I fi­nally get an up-close look at it at Rudsak’s spring/ sum­mer 2016 show, I’m pleased to be proven right.

When I pull open the long, sleek top­per, I no­tice pock­ets of ev­ery size and shape—for lip­stick, a tablet and a phone—lin­ing the in­side. In keep­ing with Haines’ splashy on­stage style, the in­side of the jacket is metal­lic. And, for a fi­nal touch, long leather fringe hangs down the sides. (Spend enough time watch­ing Haines per­form live and you’ll no­tice she has a thing for the swing­ing em­bel­lish­ment.)

Haines is, fore­most, a singer­song­writer, and the words she used to de­scribe her cre­ation dur­ing our chat that day were as lyri­cally poignant as any of her band’s al­bums. She called the jacket “soft armour,” adding, “If you’re a bit sub­ver­sive, there is just some­thing about throw­ing on a leather jacket that re­asserts your iden­tity; it says ‘I’m here.’” n

Rudsak founder Evik Asatoo­rian and Emily Haines

The lim­ited-edi­tion Emily Haines for Rudsak leather jacket is out in March at

se­lect Rudsak stores ($1,295, rudsak.com).

Looks from Rudsak’s spring/ sum­mer 2016


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