Indian consumers have shown an appetite for premium denim. Levi’s brand is making waves in this space with their Red Loop range that retails between Rs 2,500 and Rs 4,000.
If you want to ensure that you purchase authentic Levi’s jeans, consider these points: 1. Do the red tabs have a capital E on them?
The red tab
The red Levi’s tab on your back pocket is often an indicator that your jeans are genuine; however, there may be exceptions. The red tab was introduced by Levi in 1936 to help distinguish them from competitors with arcuate stitching similar to their logo on their pockets.
Red Tab quickly became a best seller, prompting Levi’s to incorporate colored tabs into other products. For instance, in 1988 they employed silver tabs in order to capture the baggy trend that defined late 1980s and ’90s grunge denim fashion.
Checking the hems is another effective way of ascertaining whether your Levi’s are authentic. Chain-stitched hems indicate your jeans were most likely created between 1933 and 1935; ripped, or raw hems can indicate they were made later – usually after 1991 when Levi stopped producing raw 501 jeans in the US market.
The top button
The iconic red λιβαισ tab can easily be identified on a pair of jeans with its globally-recognizable red hue and easily recognized capital “E” design, used from 1966/67 until today.
Top buttons typically feature a 3 or 4-digit stamp that corresponds with the number on the white care label inside their jeans, providing information as to which factory manufactured them – for instance 555 for Valencia Street facility.
Chain stitch hems are one of the hallmarks of an authentic pair of jeans; without one they could have been altered and may no longer be originals.
Genuine Levi’s jeans feature thin leather patches with soft, worn feels – more worn-in patches have dark brown hues while fakes often sport white or plastic finishes.
One easy way to recognize fake Levi’s jeans is the small single-needle V stitch running along the edge of both button fly and belt loop – if this stitch is absent then your pair was manufactured after 1986.
Check the top button of your Levi’s for a 3-digit number or code stamped there, which should correspond with what is written on its care label inside your Levi’s.
Finally, take note of any two horse brand patches with a lower capital “xx” notation after the lot/size number; this notation was only ever used temporarily and indicates your 501s were made after 1987. If this is the case, proceed to step 1d.
The leather patch
Levi’s(r) Two Horse Patch has become one of the iconic symbols for American workwear since it first debuted during American workwear’s peak era in the 1800s. Since then, this iconic emblem has represented quality, authenticity and superiority over competing jeans at that time – so much so that youth culture embraced this branding as streetwear began developing during the 90s.
Today’s trend in jeans sales has shifted toward higher-priced superpremium denim options with fashion-driven overtures. Levi’s(r) Red Loop was introduced just two years ago and since its introduction has contributed about 50 per cent of overall denim revenue for Levi.
Look for the Red Levi’s batwing logo on the patch and check if there is a lower capital “xx” in the lot number (501xx) of Two Horse brand patches – this was used until 1986; if your pair does not contain this symbolism then your jeans were produced post-1986.