Every once in a while, or Principal at school gives our small world a boost and sends out a “please read” email.
It amazes me that she has to ask. Or thinks she does. As the Captain of the Ship, everyone reads everything she sends out.
No, seriously, they do.
But, the Please Read ones are especially intriguing.
The Boost is “wear jeans tomorrow”…and we love it. It’s usually on Fridays, but on a rare occasion, really rare, it’s a weekday…which for some strange reason is even better.
Personally, I’d wear jeans every day if I could.
I love the comfort, casual, and carefree ease they seem to bring.
And Jeans, as we know them, are Iconically American, aren’t they.
Well, maybe not so much.
I did some digging. Jeans, in America are a fairly modern phenomenon. Well, at least the way we view them now.
So, I wondered, who created jeans?
There is no one “inventor” of jeans. They are really the result of over 400 years of evolution. Sailors wore them because they were versatile and rugged. Now they are an “everyday uniform” worn by millions worldwide.
Jeans are made of denim which is a durable woven cotton fabric. It is a fabric, which for many reasons has universal appeal. Comfort, ‘dyeability’, versatility, and for everyday wear, it’s usually not very expensive.
Denim jeans can be worn for hard physical labor, out to dinner, or any type of activity in between.
Denim as we know it was first popular in Europe, but the Indians on the Sub-Continent had been making it since the 1600s. The Indian fabric was called dungaree – which is where we get the term many use today. The fabric there was dyed blue and sold near Dongari Fort outside Bombay.
Since Bombay was a major port, the dungarees caught on with the shipmates and spread worldwide. The Portuguese were the first to sign on.
Soon it was made in Europe. Those Fashion Frenetic French picked it up and started weaving it near a city known as Nimes. It was called serge de Nimes. Shortened to ‘de Nimes”, it was anglicized once it hit the shores of the Good Old USA, hence: denim. No fancy French names for us!
Jeans weren’t called jeans until sometime in the 17th and 18th centuries. Genoa, Italy was a major naval base and their navy was dressed in blue denim. The French word for Genoa is Genes. Ergo – jeans!
But alas, this international effort to dress mankind in hearty, comfy trousers was perfected by none other than Levi Strauss. Levi and his partner Jacob Davis patented the rivet when US patent #139121 was approved May 20, 1873.
It’s it kind of funny that we call them Levis and not Jakes or Strausses or Davises?
So, to all those Indians, Sailors, Textile Workers, and Inventors…thanks for making life a little easier, and a lot more comfortable.
I’ll just be “Forever In Blue Jeans“.