In the world of jeans, Levi’s has a reputation for excellence and legacy. It is one of the most trusted global brands of jeans, and it is so popular that there is a likelihood that you might have worn it once in your lifetime.
In India, wearing Levi’s jeans was once a great deal and regarded as one of the most expensive jeans one could wear. But, that was long ago. Still, however, Levi’s has a solid reputation despite an increased number of jeans brands across the globe.
Considering the massive popularity and consumer satisfaction the brand enjoys, it seemed fitting to write an article dedicated to it. In this article, however, I decided to write about those things which you might not know about Levi’s but should know.
So, here are 8 such facts that must be known about this international brand.
- Levi’s Strauss Never Wore his brand
Crazy it may sound, but the founder of the brand, Levi Strauss never did wear his brand. Back in the time when the brand was launched, jeans were, interestingly, meant for laborers. Businesspersons, especially the successful ones like Levi himself, did not wear them. Levi Strauss, as a matter of fact, wore his quintessential dark suits and white shirts.
- Oldest Levi’s Jeans in a vault
Levi’s kicked off in the 19th century so evidently, it has a long history behind it. Imagine the volume of jeans it must have produced until now!
However, the oldest pair of jeans from the brand can be traced back to the year 1879. The estimated worth of those pair of jeans is around $150k today. Just in case you are wondering where those pants are, they are safely stored in a fireproof vault based in San Francisco.
- That Zipper Fly was not cool once
I do not think we can imagine jeans without a zipper fly. But, you should know this that when Levi’s started there was no concept of zipper fly. In fact, it was only in the year 1954 did the brand introduce to the world zippers. Interestingly, and quite unexpectedly too, this new introduction was not well-received.
- Levi’s provided apparel to prisons
Yes, this may surprise you but back in the year 1875, the company entered into contracts with the government for the supply of clothing to a number of prisons. These prisons were the California State prisons located at Folsom (near Sacramento), San Quentin (near San Francisco), and Yuma (in Arizona).
- Levi’s jeans were known by another name once
It might interest you that Levi’s jeans were not called ‘jeans’ for a long time. It was only in the 1950s that ‘jeans’ was used for the brand. For the most part of its early days, Levi’s jeans were actually called “overalls” which is now an archaic word for workwear. These “overalls” became popular in the entertainment industry and a change of name was felt considering the connotation attached to “overalls”.
You must already know by now that Levi’s is named after its founder Levis Strauss. But, do you know that was not his original name? Levi was born as Loeb Strauss in Germany. He left the country in the year 1947 to move to America to join the family business and subsequently changed his name to Levi.
So, there you have it—Loeb’s could have been what Levi’s is today, but I prefer the latter.
- Lady’s Levi’s.
Initially and for a long time indeed, Levi’s produced jeans only for men. It was only in the year 1934 that the company decided to launch jeans specially for women.
The decision to introduce jeans for women was socially revolting to many but brought along a massive overhaul in the women’s fashion industry. These jeans were a major hit, considering the fact that in the follow-up to World War I many women were employed in manual labor, and jeans were common workwear then.
- Where were the belt loops?
Levi’s jeans did not originally come with belt loops. Instead, suspenders and cinches were commonly used by men to keep their jeans up and in place on their bodies. It was only in the year 1922 that the brand introduced belt loops, and this marked a gradual switch from suspenders to belts.
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