I bought a black leather motorcycle jacket, so trendy that the fashion magazines have nicknamed it “moto jacket.” It makes me feel badass whenever I slip into its soft embrace.

I do not ride a motorcycle. But I have begun a new journey: semi-retirement in a new city.

What to wear on this trip? I know stilettos are not required, but neither am I ready for Birkenstocks or Crocs. No one knows me here in my new city, and I have the chance to reinvent myself.

It is a much smaller house in Charleston, SC, a funky 1840s single with a tipsy porch and an appalling lack of closet space. Back in northern Virginia, in my big, walk-in closet, I felt like Heidi Klum on Project Runway. Spike heels that drove spikes of pain into the balls of my feet? They’re out — can’t walk on cobblestones in those. Well, maybe just the metal-and-blue ones that always get me noticed. Beautifully-cut business suits in funky colors? Out, save for a couple of tweed jackets that pair well with jeans.

A few hours later, it was clear that I wasn’t just shedding clothes, I was shedding layers of my identity; some of them stung, and some of them clung. Would I really never stride into a client meeting clad in power colors? Would I even need power colors in my new life? Yes, I am retiring, but I am still young. I’m not ready for sensible shoes and a large purse.

So, although I need the closet space desperately, I bought a black leather motorcycle jacket. Because what I needed most of all was to land in my new life feeling badass.

The badass moto jacket

The badass moto jacket