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Bomber jackets take off this fall

Turns out Amelia Earhart was at the height of fashion with her aviation ensemble.

Her leather jacket — cuffed at the waist and sleeves to protect her from the cold air at high altitudes — was practical, but she wore it with aplomb.

We've seen many a photo of her, often wearing a jacket over a shirt buttoned low and a scarf tied jauntily around her neck.

So how would Earhart dress today?

Bomber jacket over a dress to the office? Over leggings to the club? Over a ruffled blouse instead of a menswear shirt?

Would it even be leather? Today's bomber jackets come in silk, faux fur, nylon, polar fleece and even sequins. She'd have so many choices.

"When women wore them in the past, they would generally be their boyfriend's jacket, or their dad's or their granddad's. It was essentially a hand-me-down," says Macy's spokesman Kamal Bosamia in Chicago.

"It was a very comfy piece of their wardrobe, and they adopted it as their own. Now what we're seeing is that it's not just a comfort piece. It is a statement piece, especially this season."

Freelance stylist Cristy Guy owns a bomber jacket that she likes to pair with blue jeans and high heels.

"I think that, especially when we translate it into women's wear, it's very sexy," says Guy, who lives in Mission, Kan.

"And the leather adds a little bit of roughness so that when you wear it with very feminine pieces, it just has a really cool look about it. And it doesn't ever really go out of style."

Putting the oomph in the style this year are jackets with interesting pocket details — patch pockets, flap pockets with buttons — and edgy, exposed zippers, says Bosamia with Macy's.

Cropped bombers are also hot.

"The cropped ones generally lend themselves to a younger audience," he says. "So now the bomber jacket really can be for everyone."

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