36. Wrangler Jeans: Mamas, Don’t Let Your Babies Grow Up to Wear Levi’s

7 May

Why do Southern people love Wrangler jeans? No, I’m asking you: why? Ok, I’ll admit to admiring the way they hug the backsides of bull riders. But, honestly, I think any jeans would do. Even Walmart brand, if there is such a thing.

Wranglers are supposed to be tough, the Clint Eastwood of jeans. So maybe folks feel more macho with that lasso-esque label on their butt. Still, this doesn’t explain why women wear them. Then again, maybe it does.

I can’t recall whether or not I’ve ever actually owned a pair of Wranglers. I’m sure my sister would remember. She has an uncanny talent for recalling anything you’d rather forget. I do distinctly remember trying on a pair once. This was at Mildred’s, a sad little clothing outpost not far from where I grew up. I can’t remember anything they sold apart from the aforementioned Wranglers. Underwear? Neckties? Ball gowns? Help me out, Richland people…

I never considered myself the Wrangler type. I mean, I’ve yet to attempt roping a steer. Heck, I haven’t even chased after a greased pig. I think you kind of have to earn Wranglers, in the manner of a Boy/Girl Scout merit badge.

When I was growing up, getting caught in Wranglers knocked you at least two rungs down the social ladder. In my mind, anyway. I didn’t even want folks knowing I occasionally wore Lee’s. (eek! now you do!)

I was all about Chic jeans (pronounced like “small yellow bird,” not “oil baron.”). And Jordache (with requisite comb in the back pocket). And my personal favorite, Gloria Vanderbilts (although my dad claimed he couldn’t afford those fancy Gloria “D.” Vanderbilts. Perhaps because he wasn’t John D. Rockefeller?)

Now that I’ve been an ex-pat Southerner all these years, I kind of think I ought to get myself a pair of Wranglers. Embrace my heritage, you know? But where would I even find a pair? I’m guessing Nordstrom doesn’t carry them.

Do you wear Wranglers? What do you like about them?

10 Responses to “36. Wrangler Jeans: Mamas, Don’t Let Your Babies Grow Up to Wear Levi’s”

  1. Suwannee Refugee May 8, 2010 at 6:05 am #

    I’m not a big fan of Wranglers for the fact that I like my legs and other parts of my lower half breather while I have jeans on. I’m still have PTSD from the first time I tried a pair of these suffocating jeans.

    • girloutofdixie January 28, 2011 at 2:41 pm #

      LOL! PTSD from putting on jeans…ahh, i remember the days…

  2. Jenna June 25, 2010 at 2:40 pm #

    oh yes…we owned Wranglers…Mom went to Mildred’s to buys us some that summer that “We got too fat to fit into anything else.” Sometimes my memory is a curse upon myself…

    • girloutofdixie January 28, 2011 at 2:41 pm #

      and upon me, apparently.

  3. thenakedlistener January 26, 2011 at 12:08 pm #

    Any brand of denims will do me fine, so long as they’re hip huggers and have boot cuts.

    Why boot cut? I grew up in London but I’ve been wearing cowboy boots since I was 10 or so (that 40 years ago!). It all started when my family lived briefly in the States. My first pair actually belonged to mum and it was bright red in colour. Imagine wearing cowboy boots in the middle of London in the 1970s.

    Even today, in Hong Kong, I wear cowboy boots. In fact, I have around nine pairs right now – all genuine American-made. When it comes to cowboy boots, people say I can get mighty snooty about them. Shame that the American bootmakers are now mostly dead from old age or gone insane from the stupid outsourcing.

    Err, I don’t speak Dixie, only London English.

    P.S. Sorry, I just had to get this in.

    • girloutofdixie January 28, 2011 at 2:46 pm #

      I love that your first pair of boots were your mom’s red ones. And that you had the chutzpah to wear them in 70s London? Even better.

  4. Of Life and Laughter January 26, 2011 at 12:48 pm #

    All I know is, behinds look pretty nice in Wranglers. Also, thenakedlistener, you should look online at http://www.lucchese.com…all still handmade in Texas. Just bought myself a(nother) pair. They last forever and have a lifetime warranty.

    • girloutofdixie January 28, 2011 at 2:55 pm #

      Thanks for posting the Lucchese link!

  5. KC January 27, 2011 at 3:15 pm #

    My dad still wears Wranglers. He’s the kind of guy that finds something he likes and sticks with it. He must have 15 pairs of them with varying degrees of wear and tear (and who knows how many pairs have been worn to threads and thrown away). I just asked him, and he proudly stated that his most recent pair was purchased at Walmart for $15. What a value.

    • girloutofdixie January 28, 2011 at 2:57 pm #

      That’s great! My dad has been loyal to Cuban shirts for as long as I can remember. When they came into fashion (briefly, in Los Angeles circa 1998) they were a lot easier to find…

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