Denim Through the Decades

Denim Through the Decades

Blue jeans (baby), you’ve come a long way! Take a look at where denim has been, and where it’s going….

Since Levi Strauss introduced the first pair of “waist overalls” in 1877, denim has remained at the heart of accessible American style.

More than two decades later, Hollywood Westerns of the 1930s fueled a Levi’s craze. In the 50s, denim became synonymous with rebellious American youth. By the 60s, jeans were flared and funky, and Levi’s finally got some serious competition from brands like Wrangler and Lee. That’s where Target came in.

As an on-trend retailer, Target has a denim history as rich as denim’s very own legacy.

In 1962, the brand first began selling denim under the private label “Tarval.” Wrangler jeans hit Target shelves in ’63, followed soon after by Levi’s jeans.

As the country fully embraced jeans in each and every style possible, so did Target. Jeans were stonewashed for a distressed look and accessorized with bling, embroidery and patches. The most popular styles at Target included hip huggers, jumpsuits, bell-bottoms, dresses and even accessories.

No matter the style, jeans reigned. In August 1976, Target ran its first Levi’s promotional event, selling 60,000 jeans in just three days. The sale was duplicated a few months later, where style-savvy guests nabbed more than 140,000 jeans for only $10.99 a pair.

The “designer jean” craze of the 1980s was Target’s first taste of big name designers. Target aisles quickly transformed into runways when the store ran the first designer jean event in August 1979. In just 24 hours (we love those limited time-only deals), Target sold 21,000 pairs of jeans by sought-after designers like Gloria Vanderbilt, Calvin Klein and Diane von Furstenberg.

In 1991, Target’s own Merona brand debuted with a collection that included denim. Ten years later, Mossimo Red (the predecessor to Mossimo Supply Co.) introduced its first denim collection in 2001. Exclusive brands Xhilaration and Circo weren’t too far behind!

Today, you can still find amazing deals on denim at Target.

Since 2011, dENIZEN by Levi’s has outfitted guests in great-fitting (and looking) jeans available exclusively at Target. It seems only too fitting that Target’s denim history leaves off with the brand where it all began.

No matter the style, people have been hooked on denim for years and so was Target. Since doors opened in 1962, jeans have been featured in the famed Target weekly ad a total of 2,687 times. That’s a lot of deals on denim!

Take a look below…
















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