Buzz Rickson’s MA-1 flying jacket, Pattern Recognition edition from the Buzz Rickson’s William Gibson collection.
From Pattern Recognition:
The Rickson’s is a fanatical museum−grade replica of a U.S. MA−1flying jacket, as purely functional and iconic a garment as the previous century produced. Dorotea’s slow burn is being accelerated, Cayce suspects, by her perception that Cayce’s MA−1 trumps any attempt at minimalism, the Rickson’s having been created by Japanese obsessives driven by passions having nothing at all to do with anything remotely like fashion.
Cayce knows, for instance, that the characteristically wrinkled seams down either arm were originally the result of sewing with pre−war industrial machines that rebelled against the slippery new material, nylon. The makers of the Rickson’s have exaggerated this, but only very slightly, and done a hundred other things, tiny things, as well, so that their product has become, in some very Japanese way, the result of an act of worship. It is an imitation more real somehow than that which it emulates. It is easily the most expensive garment Cayce owns, and would be virtually impossible to replace.
William Gibson on how Buzz Rickson’s actually came to make the jacket:
Some time after the book was published, I recieved a very puzzled letter from the folks at Buzz Rickson’s, who had been getting requests for black MA-1’s. Once I had explained what was happening, they amazed and delighted me by asking my permission to make a repro of *Cayce’s* jacket, to market as their Pattern Recognition model. Yes indeed, I said, and while you’re at it, cut me one with an extra four inches in the back, please. Which they did, and it’s over the back of a chair nearby as I write this. I love this jacket. It reminds me of the title of a Surrealist sculpture, “An Object From The Other Side Of The Bridge”. It’s real, but it emerged from a work of fiction. (I’m not positive, but I think they all may be a little longer than the USAF pattern.)
The jacket is now available in the US through History Preservation Associates, along with a lot of other fine products from Buzz Rickson’s and other similarly detail-obsessed manufacturers.