I wish I had invented blue jeans: the most spectacular, the most practical, the most relaxed and nonchalant. They have expression, modesty, sex appeal, simplicity… —Yves Saint Laurent
On May 20, 1873 Levi Strauss and Jacob Davis received a patent to manufacture utilitarian denim work pants and the blue jean was born. Little did Strauss and Davis know that, in addition to embarking on a wildly successful business venture, they were igniting America’s ongoing love affair with this deceptively understated garment. Although the original model was created for men (miner and farmer types) even 19th century fashionistas coveted the ultimate “boyfriend jean.” Whether the impetus was fashion or function, being a consummate businessman, Strauss created the first pair of women’s jeans, Lady Levi’s®, in 1934.