When we speak of fashion we seldom address jeans or denim as they belong so much to everyday casual streetwear and used to be for working class people only. But Denim and Jeans represent much more. As a matter of fact, they are enshrined in all of our contemporary genes – yes genes, not jeans. At least that is what the shortly to be released short documentary on Levi’s 501 is telling us. Its protagonists are famous or ‘everyday people’ who express themselves by wearing jeans and who’s lives would have been different without them.
01 Sep 1895 — 1890s Factory Workers Seated Outside Of Building — Image by © H. Armstrong Roberts/ClassicStock/Corbis
Levi’s® Vintage Clothing reproduces each of the most historically significant 501® jeans from the past 122 years exactly as they were when they were first introduced. Every last detail—including the fabric, fit, sundries and even packaging—are obsessively recreated so that today’s fanatics can purchase and wear a pair of Historic 501® jeans as if they were living in a bygone era.
The film showed (The 501® Jean: Stories of an Original) at the Blueprint Denim Days in Amsterdam, tells of the legacy of two entrepreneurs, Jacob Davis and Levi Strauss, that started out making ‘jeans’ in 1873 for men that did hard labour during the gold rush in the USA. Later jeans became synonymous for being tough, rebellious and at the same time self-aware, trendy, sexy and fashionable. There were times that for anyone not wearing jeans meant you were for the ruling system and therefore did not belong to the avant-garde or left wing and its creative progressive thinkers. Or you simply were not wearing any pants at all like on festivals as Woodstock where freedom in its widest possible meaning needed to be expressed.
Denim is one of the fabrics that changed the face of the planet when people walk on it in such a way that it is undeniably an asset of universal human culture not to be omitted from having a priority ranking in our visual history.