In the 17th century, weavers in Nimes, France, accidentally made denim while trying to replicate the process of producing another popular fabric called serge. They called the new material “serge de Nimes” meaning literally “serge from Nimes.” Over time, merchants shortened the name to “denim”.

Denim: A Mythic History

In our “A Buyer’s Guide to Denim” we tried to provide you with all the information you need to make an informed decision about your next pair of jeans. But, all that research and discussion has gotten us a bit nostalgic for the origins of modern day blue jeans. As usual, we were curious.

If you go anywhere in the world, chances are that you will be able to spot somebody wearing blue jeans. More likely, you’ll be surrounded by lots of people wearing jeans. Why? Let’s contextualize a little bit.

EARLY ORIGINS

In the late 17th century, weavers in Nimes, France, accidentally made the first modern denim, a course, sturdy, cotton fabric, while trying to replicate the process of producing another popular heavy duty fabric called serge…. Continue Reading (5 minute read)

11 thoughts on “In the 17th century, weavers in Nimes, France, accidentally made denim while trying to replicate the process of producing another popular fabric called serge. They called the new material “serge de Nimes” meaning literally “serge from Nimes.” Over time, merchants shortened the name to “denim”.”

  1. riskeverything

    If you ever find yourself in the Cevennes in france, visit the Tuffery jeans makers in Florac. They are the inventors of french denim jeans and have had continuous family ownership of their business. It’s a great place and they totally love their profession.

  2. donaldtrumptwat

    …. so literally ….. of Nimes ?

  3. jingalingjingalang

    StoP calling it DeNIm.
    It’s not deNiM unless it’s from the nimes region in France.
    It’s just sparkling pants.

  4. RDeb062

    It was an interesting read. Thanks for sharing.

  5. horsey_cabbage

    Was it always blue?

  6. Enraged-Elephant

    And Jeans come from Gênes, which is the French pronunciation of Genoa.

  7. Kangar

    “Ah, those trousers are dashing.

    Are they from Nimes?”

  8. No-Ring-3691

    So what does serge look like ? If denim was birth from a replication, then why isn’t serge popular?

  9. pboy2000

    How long after did it take after the invention of denim before people figured out that you have to boil it?

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