When Katie Holm wore her distressed boyfriend jeans everyone was upset. However, the origin of the distressed jeans is in the Hippie culture of Flower Power. In this post, I tell you the story of my first pair of real jeans in the 1970s.
- Mom’s Fashion Choice Was Not My Choice
- Choosing the Type of Item Is Not Enough
- Jeans on the Holiday Gift List
- Fake or Look-alike Jeans
- My First Real Jeans in the 1970s Were a Hand-me Down
- No Jeans to School
- Today – Jeans in Fashion over 40
Mom’s Fashion Choice Was Not My Choice
When I was a 12 or so, every morning Mom would choose the OOTD. I hated most of them from the bottom of my heart. Did I mention she was colorblind? However, this handicap was just an addition on top of it. Mom loved ruffles, cute Laura Ashley floral pattern, full-on embroidery on clothes, lace, bright warm colors. Worst of all, baggy clothes – they have room for you to grow – she said. Gloves were on a crocheted band pulled thru the sleeves of my coat so I would not loose them! Worst of all, she loved comfy lace-up flat loafers!
Choosing the Type of Item Is Not Enough
Prior to the revolution, I had won some minor ground, but in principle, not real ground. I said “I want to choose my own clothes, and I want a word in what I wear. Please understand that I do not want to wear pom pom hats, but headbands or berets.” Well, I got a headband, but she picked it. As a result, my Ali McGraw style headband was orange with a beige flower and teal leaves. I only loved the color of the leaves and headband, but beige flowers?
Jeans on the Holiday Gift List
Every year prior to the holiday season my sister, brother, and I were asked what gift we would like. She expected me to name a toy. “A pair of jeans.” She looked astonished despite we always got clothes on top of one toy. She said I should not worry, I would get new clothes. “What else do you want?” “Nothing else, but a pair of jeans.” “No, you won’t get them.” she said. Needless to say I instead got a pair of egg yolk yellow jersey pants, as did my sister. However, she was lucky as Gladstone Gander, hers didn’t fit. Therefore, I ended up with both pairs. Yack! I was furious and complained to my Granny.
Fake or Look-alike Jeans
On my next birthday, I got a pair of wide leg pants from my grandparents. These pants were at least the right color and material, but the wrong cut and had the European weave. “Thank you” I said and pretended to be happy to make them happy. I was sure they were mom-approved as they were dress pants style! Moreover, they had red plastic buttons!
My First Real Jeans in the 1970s Were a Hand-me Down
The next weekend my mom’s friend visited with a bag of hand-me-downs from her son. Going thru the bag with my mom I got very excited. It included a pair of well worn-in, slightly distressed skinny Wranglers. My mom grasp them first and threw them on the trash pile. I quickly took them while my mom was excited about a pure wool sky blue wool sweater and handed it to me.
Despite I loved the color and cable knit I said “Wool is itchy and irritates my skin. I don’t wear that sweater.” “It is hand-made. Knitting a cable knit is very difficult, and wool is expensive. It’s a luxurious sweater.” “No way.” “Sure you do, and put that jeans back.” “No.” “Give it to me and take the sweater.” “I only wear the sweater with these jeans.” “No.” “I do. Promised.” “Ok, I allow you to wear those jeans, but only around the house and during yard work, but you wear that sweater to school.”
I rolled my eyes, then I smiled all over the face and said “It’s a deal, but I also want to put my outfits together myself.” “Then you will not wear the sweater.” “I will.” “Well if you don’t, I put the jeans into the trash bag.” “You will have no reason to do so” I said.
No Jeans to School
At that moment when I had rolled my eyes, I had realized she would not know if I would wear them to school. She would be in bed when I left for school, and I would just have to wear the Wranglers when school ended late as then she would be in bed again taking a nap when I would come back. Regarding the sweater, it looked so much nicer with a shirt underneath. Such layering of a shirt under the sweater solved the itchy problem. Ever wondered why acrylic is more cozy than wool?
Today – Jeans in Fashion over 40
I still love skinnies an Alaskan classic, distressed jeans, sky blue, and baggy cable knit sweaters with some sort of shirt underneath.
Did you have to fight for your fashion and style decision as a teenager? What was your battle? Were you allowed to wear real jeans in the 1970s, and if so also to school? Let me know, I am curious.
Get a subscription to High Latitude Style.
Photos: G. Kramm
© 2013-2022 Nicole Mölders | All rights reserved