TCB: A brief history of denim in the U.S. Navy

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Hajime Inouie's denim brand, TCB, are pretty serious when it comes to denim. Based in Kojima, Okayama - an area renowned for denim production and manufacturing - they have a small workspace with a dozen skilled craftsmen individually constructing each garment. Their inspiration comes from Inoue San's vast and personal vintage archive. As well as producing a 50's & 60's jean, based on the original Levi's 501XX from the period, they also produce an exquisite U.S.N. Seaman's outfit. 

Officially the U.S. Navy introduced denim at the start of the 20th century. In 1901 the first denim jumpers and trousers were introduced, and in 1913 regulations issued the denim dungaree to officers. It wasn't until World War Two where on-board members of the Navy sported the indigo denim jacket and trousers as part of their uniform. Originally produced in 12oz denim cotton, the jacket had a couple of striking features; open top pockets sitting at the hips, a shawl collar & a cuff placket. To complete the uniform at the time it was worn with straight trousers produced out of the the same denim cotton with square pockets at the front. 

                  TCB Seaman's Jacket and Trouser - worn for a number of years with various washes in-between   

The TCB reproduction is constructed from 10oz denim, complete with one wash so there is no issue with shrinkage when it comes to washing. It is an exact reproduction with the same silhouette of an original 1940's U.S.N. Seaman's jacket; complete with the open top pockets on the hips and shawl collar. Another interesting detail with the jacket is the anchor ring buttons which are detachable and the TCB stencil on the inside of the jacket. The trousers, again, are inspired from the time with a traditional straight fit, 10oz denim fabric, button fly and TCB stencil on the back. 

To hark back to the times it is complete with a chambray shirt - much like men on deck for who it was not uncommon to take their jackets off and be sporting a chambray on deck. 

TCB Seaman's Jacket & Spellbound chambray