THE POP EXPOSE – Blue Jeans an American Cultural Tradition!

Story by Mitchell Smith

Created in 1873 by Levi Strauss and Jacob Davis, Blue Jeans were created for cowboys and miners for there rugged wear. Jeans later became worn by kids for their durability as play cloths, they became a rebellion, a revolution, and something to wear to any occasion.

In the 50’s the teenage and young adults started wearing jeans as a rebellious act mainly do to James Dean who wore them in Rebel Without a Cause and a fashion trend took off and made jeans what they are today. Jeans were frowned upon do to their rebellious nature and most public places would not allow you to wear jeans.

The 1960’s and 1970’s paved the road to acceptance. Jeans were accepted and worn as an every day garment, and who can forget the bell bottoms, originally used in the 1800’s by the NAVY, the late 60’s and 70’s made bell bottom jeans a must have for any daily wardrobe. They were made wildly popular by TV shows such as the Brady Bunch.

THE 1980’s jeans were worn around the globe and there was a need for different styles and colors. Acid washed, stone washed, black jeans, and the ever popular ripped or torn jeans were worn by teens and adults. The ripped jeans became a symbol of the pop and rock culture. You didn’t have to wait for those jeans to get ripped and worn, you could just go to the local department store and buy them that way.

The 1990’s jeans were sewn back together and loose fit and carpenter jeans made a wide spread serge. Jeans were so common that wearing them to Christmas Eve Mass was cool. Jeans were popular and marketable, people paid big bucks to get a pair of those B.U.M.’s, Mudd or the 90201 popularized Pepe Jeans, and who didn’t roll them up at the bottom like Brandon Walsh.

Into the new millennium, skinny jeans became popular and now there were many companies designing and producing various colors, shapes, and even accessorizing with jems, patterns, and pictures on them. Now a days the average person owns 7 pairs of jeans, ranging from those ever popular bell bottoms to a standard pair of jeans. I’m right around that 7 mark and I think the most I ever spent myself is about $60.00 dollars for a pair of Ralph Lauren tan jeans. After about ten years owning them, I still ware them to church. So the next time you are out shopping for a new pair of jeans think about how they have changed the American culture over the past several decades, and think about what you would wear out if there were no jeans.


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