Perseverance, dedication, courage, and devotion—these four words describe Jennifer Chaffin, who created Leather amp; Lace women’s motorcycle club in 1983 and remains at the helm as the club’s president today. This year the club is celebrating a big milestone—30 years and still going strong!
She put ads in various motorcycling magazines across the United States. After a few weeks, her mailbox was chock full of letters from women from every part of the country wanting to be a part of her dream. Over the past 30 years, that seed of an idea has grown into an international women’s motorcycle club that’s broken barriers and changed attitudes about women riders.
Jennifer founded Leather amp; Lace MC as a way to bring together women who share a common interest in motorcycling and in helping others.“We are a rare and unique breed in that we’re not only women, we are family women,” Jennifer said. “We share the feel of the wind in our face and the excitement of the thunder and power beneath us as we ride. As our name depicts, ‘leather’ is for the inner strength as well as the physical strength we share to be able to handle our machines. ‘Lace’ is for our femininity, which is important to each of us.”
These fun photos show members of Leather amp; Lace during its first decade in existence. The club has grown to include chapters in Pennsylvania, Alabama, Florida, North Carolina, and California, as well as a presence in Canada and England.
“We do enjoy each other’s company,” said Blythe Joslin, a club member in Alabama. “We find ourselves trying to figure out how to work in a trip here and there to go see each other. Being a few hours’ ride from each other is nothing really; it gives us a chance to blow some wind through our brain and get back to feeling like ourselves once we get to our destination. It is a monumental feeling akin to a religious high when we do all ride together—it still sends shivers through me!”
“It took a year to be sure I had found the right club for me,” said Sharon Long a club member from North Carolina. “Today, there is no doubt I made the right choice. Lace is my family. The wind builds strong bonds, unbreakable bonds. It is amazing every day those bonds become stronger. Thirty years of women coming together, building each other, helping their communities, and showing that we are as strong, as powerful, as the machines we ride.”
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