This is why Daylight Savings Time needs to be abolished– I think we all turned the clocks back a little too far. Someone is trying to cash in on nostalgia– you know, what is old is new again. Of course people who used to wear wide-leg jeans should now rejoice. According to Christie Creighton Wallace’s Facebook page the jeans that outfitted a generation are coming back to cover America’s legs in oversized, elaborately decorated denim. JNCO short for “jean company,” is a Los Angeles based clothing company who specialized in wide-legged jean styles for men and women that gained popularity in the ’90s . Yeah, let’s bring these back, along with random escalator fatalities, or something like that.
I’m not sure the teenagers will give up their skinny style just yet. However, if you been to anime cons or comic cons, or heard of Kandi Kids, I am pretty sure that group has already given their up skinny jeans. Of course don’t get me started on leggings. (of which I still retain one pair in my drawer) The real satire of stretch pants is that they were probably endorsed by the new world order as a way to reduce human propagation.
But, I fondly remember the Howick Star Jeans that I sold hundreds of once upon a time in the 70s. The best memory is of a wasp that once flew up my wide leg and got caught in my Ballroom jeans and attacked me. How about the memories of wearing those wide-legged frayed hemmed wonders while walking on a rain soaked sidewalk or in deep Canadian snow? Did that equal a miserable disaster for anyone? What was the word most associated with people who wore these pants? ‘Poser’– remember that one?
For anyone that did not know the Howick legend- it had an Ottawa connection. Ray, who used to own the Black Cat Bistro in the 70s at Hawthorne and Colonel By just off the Pretoria Bridge in Ottawa was the man behind the trend. Ray not only had a bistro, he also had a very cool fashion store on Bank Street. It’s never about being best in life, it is being better than you were yesterday- and that is what Ray was all about. During many frequent visits to my store, Flash Cadilac, the man who wore an eye patch told me many stories about the concept of the Howick Star Jean, or what we called Howick Ballroom Jeans.
The trend lasted barely a couple of years but it went from one big star to 4 stars and eventually died out. Yes, it found its way to that great Museum of Cool in the sky along with the Members Only jackets. Happiness is fitting into an old pair of jeans– but in doing research for this blog I could not find nary a mention of the Howick Ballroom Jeans in the fashion archives. Did the style become like disco, and were they suddenly related to being uncool, never to be mentioned again? Fashion always seems to be a repetition of what is cool- and if JNCO is back, let’s bring the Howick Ballroom Jeans back.
Montreal 1975— watch for the Howick Jeans store