How to Identify a Secondhand Levi’s Jean

Buy secondhand Levi’s jeans can save money and reduce resource consumption when producing new garments, while providing access to expert tailoring repairs on your beloved pieces.

Before purchasing any jeans pre-1971 Big “E”, the first thing you should look out for is a capital E on the red tab indicating pre-1971 Big Es.

The red tab

The red tab on λιβαισ jeans was introduced as an authentication trademark in 1936, and stands out clearly against dark blue denim. Additionally, this tab distinguished Levi’s from competitors using arcuate stitching on their jeans – providing consumers with an easily recognizable indicator that their Levi’s are real.

Over time, the tab lettering evolved. At first, “LEVI’S” was written in white letters on red ribbon; later it became all-caps embroidery before evolving to title case Levi’s. This subtle change allowed designers to experiment with fashion denim styles like bell bottom and boot cut jeans.

Levi’s has employed various colors of back pocket tabs beyond red for their back pocket jeans and corduroy pants. Orange was typically reserved for fashion jeans while white and black tabs could also be seen on women’s jeans and khakis respectively.

The leather patch

Identifying Levi’s jeans requires checking several characteristics, with leather patch being one of the most significant. Fake vintage Levis tend to feature linen patches with batwing logos while real ones will feature leather patches either tan or black in color.

One indicator to look out for when shopping Levi’s jeans is a capital “E” on the red tab – this was used as part of their branding from 1940s until about 1970 and has since become an iconic part of their image worldwide.

If your jeans contain a lowercase ‘xx’ after their lot number (501) in the bottom left corner of The Two Horse brand patch, they were manufactured post-1986. You may also look for three-digit stamps on top buttons which correspond with numbers found inside garment care labels to determine their factory of production.

The top button

Levi’s jeans have become an icon over the course of over 150 years. First produced in America to meet workers on the western frontier’s needs, today they’re worn casually and stylishly across many areas and sizes – you’re sure to find your ideal pair among their wide variety.

Levi’s jeans feature an unmistakable top button that can help you identify genuine models. Look for an arcuate design resembling wings – this feature was first used on their 501 jeans in 1943!

Levi’s jeans can command an astronomical price tag, yet counterfeit versions may also be sold at garage sales or secondhand shops as authentic pieces. To be certain you’re getting authentic Levi’s jeans when buying second-hand or at garage sales, request the original receipt – it is your best defense against buying counterfeit versions!

The rivets

An iconic feature of vintage Levi’s jeans is their copper rivets – these small copper nails serve to hold together denim fabric. Levi Strauss himself patented these rivets back in 1873 after Jacob Davis of Reno approached him with his plan for strengthening workwear pants by including them.

Levi’s first introduced riveted jeans on the outside in 1928; however, after complaints that their rivets scratched furniture from customers in 1937 they began sewing them underneath and later switched to bar tacks due to technological advancements.

Look out for the number stamped on the top button of your jeans; if it bears a three or four digit code, that indicates genuine Levi’s jeans; otherwise it could be fakes. Additionally, double check that back pocket rivets have curved rather than straight shapes, as this indicates genuineness as well.