Runway Style

Could there be a more iconic pairing than denim and leather? Whether it evokes James Dean or Easy Rider, the combination of sturdy cotton twill and tanned hides has made an indelible mark on American style. The rugged duo enjoyed prominent placement at several key shows this spring, including Alexander Wang and Givenchy, where they combined to convey a casual-cool vibe. While these materials are not new, the way they were deftly mixed together-often in the same outfit-feels fresh. Though the runway looks can seem extreme in both price and style (take Givenchy's Denim Leather Leggings ($2081) for a hot example), it's easy to translate them into everyday outfits. Just follow a few simple rules (outlined below) and check out a few of the budget-friendly pieces we found to help you get the look!

Before we get to the well-priced goodies, we must offer some formal guidelines on how to wear the denim-and-leather combo in the most current way. We love the idea of juxtaposing denim staples in interesting washes with leather separates, but please make sure you add a few neutral pieces to balance the ensemble. Additionally, we encourage you to pick pieces that are embellished with spikes, studs, and swingy-fringe, as these details add a cutting edge and luxurious air to whatever you wear. Another way to incorporate this look into your day-to-day style is to seek out timeless silhouettes in these rough and tough materials. A leather pencil skirt or a crisp camp shirt in a pale denim wash will help you achieve a sophisticated yet sexy vibe.

After surveying all denim/leather options out there, we're thrilled to report that there are many pieces that are both cost-effective and chic. We've gathered the best together for your guilt-free shopping pleasure and promise that while nothing breaks the $100 mark, everything looks like a million bucks!

1. Silence & Noise Satellite Moto Vest ($88)
While we were crushing on the motorcycle-inspired leather pieces, the high price tags can be a turn off. Thankfully, we found this leather vest from Silence & Noise at a more reasonable price-point; we're so completely smitten.

2. Levi's 631 Skinny Premium Jean ($68)
Some of the chicest tastemakers have been testing the waters of acid-washed denim, and are making a serious sartorial splash. We love this classically cut Skinny Premium Jean, which beautifully balances out the more radical wash!

3. Cheap Monday Caroline Leather Skirt ($78)
Cheap Monday, the Swedish purveyor of reasonably priced quality denim, doesn't disappoint with this leather pencil skirt complete with zipper detail for added attitude.

4. BDG Short Sleeve Chambray Button Up ($48)
The perfect denim shirt is an elusive creature, but we managed to track down what might be the ideal example. The perfectly pale wash offers a subtle entré to this look, while the subtle sleeve details are a thoughtful touch.

5. Hot Topic Shiny Black Rubber Bracelet 20 Pack ($6)
Stack these sleek and shiny bracelets on your wrist to add a touch of tough-chic to your outfit.

6. Topshop Washed Denim Stitch Sling Bag ($55)
This spring, we're falling hard for a bucket-shape bag! Topshop's Stitch Sling bag, with its perfectly classic wash and multi-purpose handles and body strap, is at the very top of our list!

7. Forever 21 Fringe Open Toe Boots ($35)
These faux-leather fringe booties are as chic as Alexander Wang's Alexis Fringe Boot (which are $525, and sold out almost everywhere), but at a fraction on the price!

8. Topshop Denim Cup Corset ($65)
Thierry Mugler and Dolce & Gabbana would surely approve of this sophisticated silhouette, while the light denim wash keeps the piece looking fresh, young, and ever so modern!