Jackets are a wardrobe staple in every household which hasgrasped the interest and holds anextra-special place in the people’s heart since forever. They’re one item which is loved, adored and are sort of a must-have clothing article for people around the globe. One specific type of jacket whichhas trumped them all andreigned supreme especially in the United States is varsity jackets.They really hold a place of their own in our hearts. There is proper justification for it as well.
The mad fad and infatuation towards varsity jackets is not justin the minds ofschool goers. In the modern-day varsity jackets have become a fashion trend and are admired and worn by school and college goers, andritzy fashion-conscious men and womenof all ages and sizes. Varsity jackets are simply a fixation among us Americans, whichwe simply love to show-off and flaunt.
But the question still remains. Why are varsity jackets so important to us Americans? And how did they get so popular?
To find out the answers, we’ll have to dive into the history booksand dig up the past of varsity jackets, and this is exactly what we intend to do.
Importance of varsity jackets.
Varsity jacketsarepopular in the United States because it has its roots firmly planted in the American history and culture.
The varsity jackets are inseparable from American athletes in the high school, and have a close bond with them. A varsity jacket is a matter of pride for any American high school jocks and it’s an honor for them to wear them and represent their alma mater. Harvard Universityis the creators of varsity jackets and, gave birth to them in the mid-19thcentury.
The students at the Harvard University wanted to honor their star players during a baseball match in 1865. Those students came up with the notion of stitching the letter ‘H’on the back-side of their university jacket. The ‘H’ represented Harvard. These embroidered jackets, also known as the letterman jacketat that time, were given out toeach athlete of the team. Only the players who took part in the crucial games and performed wellthroughout the year were allowed to keep hold of theirjackets, and the ones who under-performed had to give up their jackets as only the prestigious few, only the cream of the crop were allowed to wear those.
Nearly ten years later the Harvard’s football team replicated the same concept andadded the prestigious H on the backs of their jackets. Like the baseball team only the best of the best were allowed to keep their jackets and again the under-performers had to give it up.
Thus, wearing a varsity jacket was always considered as a symbol of pride and excellence and gave the wearer all the bragging rightsin their school, college, or university.
By the year 1891, the popularity of stitching the letter onto the outerwear grew.The Harvard baseball team stitched the letter ‘H’ onto the left chest of their black sweaters and started to wear them regularly. These sweaters were later called letterman sweaters.
The style spread like wild-fire and soon other institutions started to adopt it. Soon the letterman jackets (later known as varsity jackets) and letterman sweaters became a norm.
In 1930 letterman jackets were started to be known as varsity jackets (as in the United States high schools, colleges and university teams were known as varsity teams).
The varsity jacketsmade all the jocks and athletes cool and made them popular at campus, heck the ones who had the privilege of wearing these jackets, wore them everywhere they went and just flaunted and showed it off. These jackets became a symbol of excellence and pride and gave the wearer a star status. Everyone wanted to become cool and popular and sovarsity jackets became an instant hit. Everyone wanted to get their hands on these prestigious jackets. Everyone wanted to be outfitted in them and the trend just spread like a wildfire and varsity jackets became popular (even in high-street fashion wear). In the present age and time varsity jackets haven’t lost their charm and haven’t gone out of fashion. In today’s time, the rise in popularity of athleisure clothing has enabled varsity jackets to cement their place in the wardrobes of each and every individual. The way things seem varsity jackets have been popular in the past, are popular in the present and will be popular in the future.