Vintage…some of the last great American made products.
I was shocked to read an article today on the American Corporation Sweatshops: The 5 Worst Offenders, as brought to my attention by my fellow vinties at Elsewhere Vintage.
While it does not surprise one to find out the majority of our modern clothing is made abroad, the fact that Levis was on this list sort of took me back. Levis is the true American success story, founded out of necessity more than fashion. They changed the way we ALL dress. At my “day job” as a graphic designer, I am always drawn to vintage ads. As a small town merchant, I was especially charmed by the sentiment on the above series of ads. If you can’t read that, it says “Patronize Your Hometown Merchant-He’s Your Neighbor”.
Hang on there….if someone in the Levis company at some point acknowledged that thought, then how far they have fallen since. The merchant is not your only neighbor. The laborer is also your neighbor. The folks that ran the machines that produced that once great product are OUR NEIGHBORS. It’s a shame that Levis forgot that when they abandoned American production in 2003.
As someone who used to wear Levis exclusively, I have to say also that right around 2003 was when I stopped wearing their product. The quality was no longer there, from the quality of the fabric, to the styling and finishing, to the consistency from one piece to another in sizing. Nice job, Levis.