The Wrangler Jeans Story
Wrangler Jeans are manufactured by a company that is more than 100 years old. Wrangler Jean Co. is owned by the VF Corporation, who also owns dozens of other brands, such as Lee, The North Face, and JanSport. The companys headquarters are located in Greensboro, North Carolina, with many production plants all over the world.
People have often wondered how Wrangler Jeans got its claim to fame with the rodeo. Wrangler Jeans were first made by Blue Bell, who acquired the brand when it took over Casey Jones in the mid 1940s. Blue Bell hired a man by the name of Bernard Lichtenstein, who was a Polish tailor to help design jeans that would be good for using during rodeos. Lichtenstein worked closely with cowboys often, and was considered the clothing expert.
From Lichtenstein and his knowledge of the rodeo and the design of jeans that were needed came the birth of Wrangler Jeans. The first style, the 13MWZ style is still available worldwide, and was first introduced in 1947. Wrangler Jeans since has expanded to produce several other lines that cater to specific demographic groups. These lines include Riggs, Aura for women, and 20X. In addition, Wrangler Jeans also has a complete line of accessories for music that is geared towards country music fans.
The parent company of Wrangler Jeans, the VF Corporation, is structured by coalitions, like the Imagewear Coalition, the Sportswear Coalition, and the Jeanswear Coalition. The Jeanswear coalition consists of Wrangler Jeans, 20X, RIGGS Workwear, Lee, Riders, Brittania, and Rustler. Although the parent company of Wrangler Jeans is best known for its jeans and has expanded to make everything from shoes to coats, the company started out as a glove and mitten manufacturer.
A man named John Barbey opened a factory in 1899 in Reading, PA. The company added undergarments to its list of items in 1919 and was listed on the New York Stock Exchange in 1966. The company didnt get into the denim business until 1969 when it bought H.D. Lee Jeans. That same year, the company changed its name from Vanity Fair Mills to the VF Corporation to lessen the emphasization of the underwear line.
In 1986, the parent of Wrangler Jeans made a giant move when it bought Blue Bell. By doing this, the company doubled its size and added Rustler Jeans, Wrangler Jeans, JanSport backpacks, and Jantzen swimwear to what was by then an incredibly diverse line of products and goods.