Blue Jeans: Articles of Interest #5

For the most part, we tend to keep our clothes relatively clean and avoid spills and rips and tears. But denim is so hard-wearing and hard-working that it just kind of amasses more and more signs of wear. So you can learn a lot from observing an old pair of blue jeans.

Articles of Interest is a show about what we wear; a six-part series within 99% Invisible, looking at clothingEpisodes will be released on Tuesdays and Fridays from September 25th through October 12th.

For Denim, Avery Trufelman spoke with her friend, artist and curator Lukaza Branfman-Verissimo; Tracey Panek, the corporate historian at Levi Strauss and Company; Lynn Downey, a biographer of Levi Strauss and the former Levis corporate historian; Ada Kong, the toxics manager at Greenpeace East Asia; Emma McClendon associate curator of costume at The Fashion Institute of Technology; Ulrich Simpson, owner of the small independent denim brand UBI-IND.


Production & Music

Articles of Interest was created by Avery Trufelman; this episode was edited by Emmett FitzGerald and Joe Rosenberg; Sasami Ashworth wrote the theme songs for the show; Rhae Royal made the rest of the music; Graham Hacia did the fact checking; Kelley Coyne did the mix; photography by Matty Lynn Barnes; Roman Mars is the executive producer.

Special thanks to Erin Newport, Brad Bunnin, Taylor Hamilton, Morgan Brown, Sally Fox and Elaine Hamblin as well as Delaney Hall, Emmett Fitzgerald, Vivian Le, Kurt Kohlstedt and the rest of the 99pi team. You can read ann masai’s full story here.

Comments (7)


  1. Arvinder

    Where can I find the audio for Sasami Ashworths outro song? The one that says “there’s a portrait painted on the things we love?” It’s so magical. I can’t find it anywhere. If I can get just an audio clip that would make my day. Thanks!!!

    1. 99pi

      There’s a link to her story down there if you want to check it out!

  2. I graduated high school in 1974. When I was a teenager, the jeans were is blue as night and a stiff as a board when they came from the store. It would take several weeks of geeky wearings, not to mention driving over them with my 1970 VW van, before they faded and became a beautiful and favored garment, the likes of which I haven’t seen since the 70s. Now I know why.

  3. Chris Selig

    I would love to be able to download or even just stream that outro song by Sasami Ashworth. At the very least I would like to share it with a friend of mine. Thanks for another awesome episode, by the way.

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