History of the Trend: Ripped Jeans

Let's take a sort break from subcultures and focus on a single article of clothing that has a trend which comes in and out of fashion every few years. That being ripped jeans.

History of Ripped Jeans

This first came into style during the hard rock/heavy metal era of the late 1980s and into the 1990s/2000s during the grunge era. They were also popular amongst the punk crowd. Before these time periods, ripped jeans were not a fashion statement but rather a sign of the lower working class that could not afford to part with their denim or to buy new pairs of pants.

Ways Ripped Jeans are made

There are three different types of ripped jeans today:

  1. Jeans ripped naturally from frequent use or age of the denim.
  2. Jeans ripped on purpose by the owner of the clothing garment.
  3. Jeans ripped during the manufacturing process on purpose.

Types of Rips

There are three different types of blemishes in ripped jeans.

  1. Holes. Places in the pants where there is actually a visible window through the fabric and your legs. Some brief rules that come with holes if you are making them yourself:
    1. Holes should never be wider than the seams on each side of the jean. And look the best horizontally.
    2. Holes should never be more than an inch high when you're standing up. When you sit down more of your knee or leg will be exposed. Also anything bigger makes it so much easier to rip when you're putting on the jeans.
  2. Shreds. Places in the fabric that has been torn, but threads remain, covering up the hole.
  3. Scrapes. Small abrasions or scratches on the surface of the fabric. Typically between a dime to quarter in size.

My Favorite Ways to Wear Ripped Jeans

Most ripped jeans from the rips across the knees. I personally love when my jeans rip naturally but if I want that over the top ripped jean I will distress them myself so I can put the rips exactly where I want them to be. Another thing I love to do with ripped jeans is where fish nets underneath.

If I'm in the mood for wedges then I'll roll up the bottom of the jeans. Otherwise, there's no rolling up the jeans at all as I typically reach for a pair of boots or my black high top Converse. Though I should really get a new pair at this point since mine have seen better days and have a hole in the side where the fabric meets the sole.

As for the top I normally wear in addition to the ripped jeans is a nice chunky sweater or long shirt. And I'm good to go for the rest of the day.

Are you a lover or hater of ripped jeans? If a lover, how do you love to wear them?