The History of Denim

Posted on Friday, September 16th, 2011 at 1:48 pm

We know you all love your denim as much as we at 7 For All Mankind do, but do you know anything about its origins? Denim jeans have a history as rich and textured as the fabric itself — read on to find out a little bit more about where it came from and how it came to be one of the world's most popular textiles…

Denim was around as far back as the 1900s, worn by workers throughout the centuries for its durability and hard-wearing qualities. The name itself is thought to originate from a fabric called serge, which was made in the town of Nimes in France — commonly known as serge de Nîmes, this was soon shortened to the word denim. Denim trousers were first made in Genoa, Italy, and the French name for the town, Gênes, gave birth to what we know today as Jeans.

7 For All Mankind | The History of Denim

In the following years, despite their European origins, denim jeans became synonymous with American culture, thanks in no small part to their appearance in countless Westerns and Cowboy movies in the 1930s. Indeed, in many countries, the word for jeans reflects this association — cowboybukser in Danish, vaqueros in Spanish, and niuzaiku in Chinese.

7 For All Mankind | The History of Denim

During the Second World War women factory workers also began to wear denim jeans, with the zippers located down the side instead of at the front like men's jeans. In the 1950s, James Dean heralded a generation of youth rebellion whose uniform was blue denim, thanks to his role in the film Rebel without a Cause. The 60s and 70s introduced flares and helped cement denim's role as a fashion item, worn by people of all ages and genders.

7 For All Mankind | The History of Denim

Fast forward to 2000, and the birth of 7 For All Mankind in California signaled the rise of premium denim, capitalizing on the popularity and inimitable qualities of denim and elevating it to high-fashion status. Through innovation and development, we've started a new chapter in the long and rich history of denim, and we can't wait to see what stories it will tell.