Sunday, July 05, 2009


Do you ever think about jeans? Like, why can you pair them with anything, any color, any pattern and they will match? For one thing, they are blue, not exactly a neutral color. Black, white, beige and brown can usually match to anything, but blue? Seriously, it doesn't make sense. I could never wear a blue skit with just any shirt! Make that a jean skirt and it will match anything! Could even be the same color blue! I guess the jean material makes all the difference.

Makes me wonder, where did jeans come from? What makes them so special?

Here is a great snippet, it doesn't explain how they can match everything, but it is interesting:

The word "jeans" comes from the French phrase bleu de Gênes, literally the blue of Genoa. Jeans fabric, or denim, originated independently in two places: the French town of Nîmes, which 'denim' owes its name to; and in India, where trousers made of denim material were worn by the sailors of Dhunga, which came to be known as dungarees.[2]

At around the same time, denim trousers were made in Chieri, a town near Turin (Italy), during the Renaissance, and were popularized in the 16th century. These trousers were sold through the harbour of Genoa, which was the capital of the independent Republic of Genoa which was a naval power.

Early examples of these trousers were made for the Genoese Navy, which required all-purpose pants for its sailors. They required pants that could be worn wet or dry, the legs of which could easily be rolled up to wear while swabbing the deck. These jeans were laundered by dragging them in large mesh nets behind the ship, and the exposure to sea water and sun would gradually bleach them to white. They were especially worn by Genoan sailors and stevedores who worked in France.

Traditionally, jeans were dyed to a blue color using natural indigo dye. Today, it is more common to use synthetic indigo dye or sulfur dye.

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