Home / History / What is the small pocket on jeans? Jean Pockets Have A Tiny Pocket Inside Them For This Historical Reason

What is the small pocket on jeans? Jean Pockets Have A Tiny Pocket Inside Them For This Historical Reason

What is the small pocket on jeans?

What is the small pocket on jeans?

There’s many mysteries out there in the world which has gone unexplained for a very long time. One of those mysteries? Figuring out what we’re supposed to do with that tiny pocket within a pocket found on our jeans. Surely you’ve noticed this anomaly. It’s just there, but nothing fits in it. Why is it there? What do we need it for? WHAT IS ITS PURPOSE?!

Maybe you’re not as consumed by the great denim debate as I am, but you’ve undoubtedly wondered about it at some point.

There it is. The tiny pocket that nobody has any use for. It’s just there, and we can’t seem to figure out why. There has to be a reason, right? RIGHT?!

What is the small pocket on jeans?

Yes, right indeed, there is an answer to the purpose of these tiny pockets, and it dates back to the time of my grandfather’s favorite film genre: the old West. Levi Strauss, the purveyor of pants, points out on its website that the tiny pocket was originally used as a convenience for cowboys and their pocket watches.

This saved them from damage from hanging around a neck or from getting sat on. Hence the name, pocket watch.

The design used to be 4 inches wide to fit watches in, but as they progressively fallen out of fashion, the pocket has gotten smaller.

Basically, the tiny pocket stays just because Levi’s hasn’t changed their design since their inaugural pair in 1873. It’s nostalgic and just part of the look and feel of jeans. They explain it’s taken on a new purpose in recent history:

“This extra pouch has served many functions, evident in its many titles: frontier pocket, condom pocket, coin pocket, match pocket and ticket pocket, to name a few. Not only is the pocket extremely useful for holding tiny trinkets.”

“It is also is loved by denimheads for the faded and worn nature it takes on over time.” However, it’s origins are in the hands of rugged cowboys checking the time to ensure their stand-off at ‘high-noon’ was on schedule.





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