Levis Strauss 100 Years Of Cone Denim

By | September 25, 2015

Levis Vintage Clothing has launched its new autumn winter 2015 collection.  This time around it’s celebrating “The Golden Handshake”. 100 years of partnership with Cone Denim.

Levis Vintage Clothing & White Oak Cone Denim 100 Year Partnership

LVC & Cone Denim White Oak Mills 100 Year Partnership

In 1915 Cone Mills were given exclusive rights to make the denim for Levi’s® Shrink-To-Fit 501’s.  This was a gentleman’s agreement struck by a simply handshake and it’s still in place today.  All Shrink-To-Fit denim is made at Cone Mills White Oak factory exclusively for Levi’s®.

Cone Denim has been making denim fabrics since it was established by two brothers – Moses and Ceasar Cone – in 1891, and production started in the White Oak Mill – named after the large oak tree nearby – in 1905.  Today the denim is still made in America, using vintage narrow “fly shuttle looms which date back to the 1940’s.  White Oak has set the standard for high quality denim and has become the world’s most iconic denim mill. While Shrink-To-Fit is exclusive to Levis, other many other brands use Cone Mills for their denim, including Tellason and J.Crew.

As way of a tribute to Cone Mills and to celebrate the longevity of the partnership, Levi’s® Vintage Clothing autumn winter 2015 collection is inspired by the local people of the Appalachia region in North Carolina – the location of the White Oak mill.

The two images below – taken from the Levis website ; the first shows a vintage pair of 501’s made by White Oak around 1902.  The second image shows a reproduction version of a 1915 501 and the detailing.

Levis Archival 1915 501® Jeans

Levis Vintage Collection AW 2015 - 1915 501

Levis Vintage Collection AW 2015 – 1915 501

While I love Levis Vintage Collection and have several 501’s from the different years of the Big E, I prefer the 501 once the braces buttons disappear so I start with the 1938 editions.  The brace buttons are removed but the cinch back is still present.  Will I buy a pair of 1915 501’s.  Well I like the idea but probably not this time.


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