Levi Strauss gets the credit for "inventing" blue jeans, but it was Jacob Davis who brought Strauss the idea to make a better pair of pants using metal rivets. The idea was sufficiently innovative to receive patent protection in 1873. A hundred years later, the western working class wear produced by Levi Strauss and Co. was everywhere. The durable blue trousers had become a symbol of the casual freedom of the post-war American lifestyle.
It was the 1950s when the popularity of blue denim really took off, spread by those American ambassadors, teenagers and movie stars. Bing Crosby wore a tuxedo made of the stuff in 1951 to show it could go anywhere.