Fashion trends come and go. But there is one piece of clothing that is a permanent staple in many closets. We are talking about denim jeans.
In a world of ever-changing fashion, denims are the only constant. Denim jeans come in different and interesting styles that many loves. While the construction of denim jeans are common, it is the style and cut that varies depending on the trend. This has given birth to the popular cut of denims that we come love through the years.
The evolution of denim jeans is fun and interesting. We have witnessed the rise and fall of baggy jeans, and we’ve had our low-rise and tight jeans moments too. Those are just snapshots of how a particular style of jeans defines an era.
Denim Jeans through the Years
Our beloved jeans first made an appearance in the mid-1800s as the de-facto uniform of miners. Jeans were inspired by the West. It is a quentissential workman's clothes - sturdy and reliable.
For several decades the jeans stayed like that, a staple of the common folk. The denim became a household item in the 1930s when it busted the Hollywood scene through Western movies. Back then, the jeans were worn by cowboys and associated with the actors who played them.
Jeans slowly became a fashion trend in the 50s thanks to stars like Marlon Brando and James Dean. It was Marlon Brando who elevated the jeans status to a cult favorite, the bad boy look. In the 1950s, Marlon wore Levi’s “The Wild One” line.
It established not only the jeans but also the brand as a fashion icon. Suddenly, everybody wants to wear one and be cool. These jeans were still boxy and cuffed and worn by men until Marilyn Monroe wore a pair of denim in the movie "River of No Return" in 1952.
This was the start of jeans becoming a fashion staple for women too. It was also in this decade that the jeans and T-shirt combo was born, thanks to the likes of Brdiget Bardot who made them fashionable.
The 60s & 70s
It was not until the 60s and 70s that people became more liberated with their denim jeans. Cuffs were freed, giving us the flare and bootcut jeans. Flare has become the defining moment in jeans in the 1960. Different washes and shades of denim were also introduced during this time.
The jeans in the 70s are more fashionable than ever. They were more fitted at the waist, and the flares and bell-bottoms were the biggest trends. With rock ‘n roll and rock glam dominating the scene, jeans were raggy and embellished. They were more fitted and sexy with hardly any room to breathe. Towards the end of the 70s, jeans became more tapered towards the end, signaling the beginning of a new era for the beloved fashion item.
Up until the 80s, jeans were not considered couture. It only made its first appearance on the catwalk in this decade. Designers were trying to outdo one another with newer styles as jeans became sexier and baggier. It was also during the 80s that acid-washed jeans became popular.
To say that the 80s is the heyday of denim jeans is an understatement. Aside from appearing in high fashion, many styles were popular in this era. A case in point is the debut of ripped and high-waisted jeans that keeps coming back decades after. Jeans were also baggier, as the rise of hip-hop changed the way jeans are worn.
In the 90s, denim jeans were still baggy like the 80s, and another trend made a resurgence, the bell bottoms. This time they are called bootcut jeans, and everybody seems to be wearing them. The younger set, however, has their denim style of choice, the low-rise jeans.
The New Millenium
With the last decade crisscrossing between baggy, bootcut, and low rise, the new millennium ushered a new trend in jeans. After a decade - jeans move from loose to skinny.
Yes, that’s right. The decade was defined by skinny jeans, but not exclusively. There was power-sharing between bedazzled and embellished jeans and boyfriend jeans with frayed cuffs.
Aside from that there were high-waisted skinny jeans taking over the low-rise in the 2000s. There is practically every jeans style for everybody.
Are We Bading Skinny Jeans Goodbye?
Last year some fashion bigwigs were saying we are witnessing the beginning of the end for skinny jeans. The trend is leaning more towards wide legs, straight legs, and flares. These stocks are going up while skinnys were lagging behind.
With the recent pandemic, most people are forced to stay at home. As such people, jeans took the back seat. When buying one they prefer a more relaxed, baggier jeans. Some of the popular styles were focused more on comfort and displaying their great physique.
There is a great divide between the young and old shoppers when it comes to jeans. The former favors the tight, skinny jeans while their counterparts are going for the opposite.
What we are seeing is not the end of the skinny jeans yet. As jean trends would go, there is still an affinity for shoppers who look good on these tapered bottoms, and they tend to stay away from trying out new styles.
The denim jeans has come a long way since their first appearance in the mines in California. It is safe to say that there is no one in this world does not own a pair of jeans. The next time you are choosing your fresh pair, why not try the latest trend you have not worn before. Who knows, maybe it's the best you’ll ever have.