12/27/2010 05:35 am ET | Updated May 25, 2011

Mitch Alfus, 'The King Of Leather,' Shares His Closet (PHOTOS, VIDEO)

As I was revisiting Mitch's interview, I found myself melting over the story of his days in college, working to win over "the most beautiful girl in the world." With the money that he made selling African beads on campus, Mitch rented a gold lame jumpsuit and red leather three inch heels, took his guitar in hand, and went to serenade her at her home. The only problem was, no one was home. Today, Mitch's style is almost the exact opposite of the flashy, glam rock look he sported back in those days.Keep reading below. This was originally posted on

Mitch Alfus from

With a passion for the raw and natural, his style is much closer to a flea-market-scouring Keith Richards. Mitch is an avid collector of perfectly worn hides, from baseballs to western saddles and everything in between. In addition, if he can't find one, Mitch will make it himself. In fact, his career is dedicated to making leather "look like it has been out in the fields... very natural looking and honest to the skin." He is the founder of Libra Leather, a company that was highly influential in the popularization of the distressed leather mania and is a supplier to some of the world's most influential fashion designers (Chrome Hearts, Rick Owens and Henry Lehr, among some.) In what he describes as his most formal outfit, Mitch certainly doesn't need to serenade me to win me over with his charm. The outfit alone is an impeccable and edgy combination of a Galliano glitter tux jacket, a cropped, white Prada button-down, black, embroidered leather pants of his own design and lots of Chrome Hearts accessories that include a top hat, chunky silver jewelry and a belt. Despite the cool, "Easy Rider"- inspired appearance of his head scarves and Rick Owens' muscle tees, the innocence and the charm of the college jock in his chinos still remains.

Material things and success do matter to Mitch, but for him they pale in importance to the "honest and pure" experience of being with his kids. Genuine and bonafide could each be Mitch's middle name. Just take a look at the endless, state-of-the-art bottles of cologne he has lined up on his desk, the abundance of fringed American Indian bags hanging in his closet, or the fact that he would rather travel to small villages and towns to stomp grapes with winemakers than spend time in any big European city. He says of the rural experience: "I love to see how they wear their aprons, how they age, how they step on [the grapes] and how [the juice] goes through their fingers. I simply gravitate towards these people. I guess I look a little different than they do and they are starring at me and I am starring at them and we feed off of each other."


P.S. With this kind of sincerity and sensitivity to life, maybe someone reading this can help Mitch out with one of his life-long goals. He would like to get over his abandonment issues and find a life long partner who appreciates him for who he is. He says that he is at the peak of his decline, so there is still time. You would no doubt end up with some killer leather pants and a possible carol at your window.

If you like Mitch, you may also enjoy Nick Fouquet, Freddie Leiba and Kristine Barilli.

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