Jeans were first designed for men but women have been wearing them for almost just as long. From the North American plains where ranching families and towns-folk alike wore these durable and comfortable trousers for everything other than church and formal occasions, jeans were worn in urban towns and cities too as their qualities suited casual wear as well as work-wear. The brands built their empires on this original farming heritage and advertising campaigns always contained strong references to the life outdoors, depicting cowboys herding their cattle and horses or adventurers living under the stars. The women of the families to wore denim garments, either jeans or dungarees, for the same reasons. Surprisingly this image has stayed with us and has become part of the denim jean heritage.
Although the origin of the original denim jeans goes way back, it is the last fifty or sixty years that have seen them reach peak popularity and generate millions of dollars worth of sales for the brand owners. Even today new brands are jumping on the denim bandwagon, so the momentum looks safe for another fifty years to come. Almost every element of popular culture and every fashion trend have seen some inclusion of denim jeans. Leisure activities such as skateboarding, BMX riding, and surfing all feature jeans and images of musical eras such as “rock and roll”, punk and grunge all included stars wearing jeans.
While many will reminisce about the colour and exuberant style of fashion in the fifties and sixties, there were also sections of the female market that wanted something more casual, more comfortable and less attention-grabbing. Jeans wear the perfect solution and on the right figure they were quite flattering too. They were easy to care for and easy to adjust, making a perfect fit possible. In the seventies drainpipe jeans became popular too and the mainstream manufacturers expanded their ranges to take advantage of the increased demand.