Jean Guide - Buttons
There has also been a
lot of questions regarding stamping on the back of the top
As a rule, jeans with a single stamped digit (2, 5, 6, W) for example
are older than jeans with a 3 digit stamping on the top
of the button. Common 3 digit stampings are 524, 558, 555,554.
- Jeans with single digit or no digit stamping are made from mid 70's
back, and are possibly big E
- Authentic Big E non-reproduction jeans will have either no or a
single stamped digit.
- Reproductions will
normally be stamped '555'
- Newer Levis and fakes will be stamped '501'
- Japanese Made Levis will have a 'J' followed by a couple of digits
1870 ~ 1873 period.
The hand stitched
top-buttons used in the
duck cloth work overalls.
Era: 1873 ~ 1890 period.
The most basic type of metal buttons used in the Levis 125 model waist
overall in 1873.
note the recessed button center which differs from more
Era: 1902 ~ 1928 period.
This is a black donut top button used on the LEVIS 201XX Lot.
No. 2 jeans. It is considered the most basic style of top button by
Levis with " LEVI STRAUSS & CO * " stamped on it.
Only Black button to be found on levi's will be from this era.
Era: 1930 ~ 1941 period,
The donut core was filled and molded into a solid heart top button for
the 501XX series. Levis decided to include it's country of origin, and
thus, " * S . F CAL * " was inserted in together with the
other characters. This button is the father of the modern
button used currently.
Era: 1942 ~ 1944 World
War II period.
The donut styled top button (possibly used as to conserve material
during the war) of the S501XX jeans. The original " LEVI
STRAUSS & CO * " was replaced with laurel leaves
which bears a meaning of peace. Jeans with this button will
not have arcuate
stitching as it was deemed decorative and not necessary during wartime.
It was painted on by hand. A pair in mint conditon
still containing the painted stitches would be worth $1000 USD + to
collectors or on Ebay.
Era: 1987 ~ Current
There are two versions of this top button. Available in both Silver and
Copper, the " * " which was used as a spacer was replaced with " . "
instead. The silver color top button were use mainly on jeans while the
copper version appeared on 505 series of jeans and jackets.
Copper buttons never appear on 501 model jeans.