Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Any way you cut it, denim is here to stay

The origin of denim has been attributed both to cloth  made in the French city of Nimes ("de Nimes" or "denim") or from Genoa in Italy ("Genes" in French, thus "jeans" in English). A group of paintings by a Neapolitan artist dubbed "The Master of the Blue Jeans" assembled for an exhibit in Paris demonstrated clearly that jeans skirts, pants, and jackets were the duds of choice for 17th-century common folk in Europe. Unlike garments worn by the gentry, theirs were used until shredded, leaving no trace. But the 10 extant paintings by this artist show how prevalent the tough fabric was. In addition, its blue tint was achieved with the same indigo dye used for denim today!
A circa 1890 pair of Levi Strauss "201" jeans was listed at one time on e-bay for a reserve of $35,000. This battered example of 'Lot 201' (the less expensive version of the 501 because of the linen patch and inexpensive buttons) was discovered in a mine in Montana with fragments of gold in a pocket. The ID was possible because the rivets say "May 1873," so experts say the pants were made between 1886 and 1890.
I can't conclude this little synopsis without showing these two Hollywood icons in jeans. By all means, please share your favorite jeans or jeans story!

1 comment:

  1. If anyone is interested in buying these they are still for sale.. I am referring to the ones pictured above.My email is