10 Best American Clothing Brands

A list of the ten best American clothing brands reflect America's tastes throughout the years. Several brands currently for sale in the U.S. have a rich history of providing quality clothing for decades while others are relative newcomers to the clothing scene. 

  1. Levi Strauss. This American clothing brand is the great grandaddy of the blue denim jeans. Although some of the items are now made in foreign countries and the company no longer operates a plant in its hometown of San Francisco, many of the clothing is still sewn in the American Southwest. Levi is known throughout the world and the popularity of vintage jeans illustrate just how high on the list of the ten best American clothing brands this firm ranks.
  2. L.L. Bean. Another American classic from the turn of the century in America's industrial period. Think barn coats and boating shirts and you've got the foundation of the L.L. Bean firm. 
  3. Brooks Brothers. The Brooks men started out in 1818 with a unique item for America's dress for success crowd, the off-the-rack quality suit. No need to go through the big measuring deal and wait for the suit, the company offered a place for men to simply drop by, try on a suit and pay for it. A few adjustments might be necessary, but for the most part, it was off the rack. 
  4. J. Crew.  America's First Lady wears J. Crew fashion on official state visits and functions and because of this, the company must make the ten best American clothing brands list. Most items are imported, but the brand styling is still there for classic, traditional wear, but with a dash of flash thrown in on the side. An upscale dress-for-success line of work clothing was introduced by Crew in the late 1980's. 
  5. Abercrombie & Fitch. This company opened in the U.S. in 1892 offering traditional and casual wear. The company moved to more trendy, popular offerings including jeans, sweaters and polos and took on advertising with near-nude men and the company went global. 
  6. DKNY aka Donna Karan New York. Donna is an American designer with a line of clothing sold at stores throughout the world. Founded in 1984 as an affordable designer line of both casual and formal wear, the company continues morph with the clothing trends. DKNY offers jeans, accessories and high-end runway designs. 
  7. Wrangler or Lee. These folks are the Western branch of the denim wear. While Levi & Co. made sturdy worker clothes, Wrangler and Lee made an American name in the western wear industry. We're talking top-stitched, snap-front shirts with the pearl inserts. Hang on to your hats for the boot-cut jeans and the cowgirl gear that offered the western shirts with a little flirty action. Both companies still offer western wear, but the lines have expanded to include less western-type clothing. 
  8. Hollister. A more modern entry to the ten best American clothing brand list, Hollister is named for a city in California. If you've ever been to Hollister you might wonder why the name, but the clothing line is hip and ultra casual. The sales figures rack up a yearly total to take on the big boys on this list with a few decades of experience and products. 
  9. Dickies. Folks who enjoy street wear couldn't do without a pair of Dickies brand chinos. Dickies opened their doors in 1922 with a catalog that featured sturdy work wear. While many workers wear the brand today for the sheer tough-guy quality, the quality is the same for folks who want sturdy wear or simply are making a fashion statement. In addition to the quality, prices for Dickies are reasonable. 
  10. Pendleton or Woolrich. These two firms tie in the American wool clothing brand category. Pendleton is famous for the trade blankets and morphed into a clothing company known since the 1930's for the trendy, cottage wool shirts and jackets. Both companies today offer full lines of casual clothing and Pendleton caters to traditional business wear, as well. 

References: 

Gorman, Leon. "L.L. Bean: The Making of an American Icon." Harvard Business Press, 2006.

Bolton, Ross. "Abercrombie & Fitch: 1903 Catalog Reprint." CreateSpace, 2008.

McPherson, Stephanie Sammartino. "Levi Strauss." Lerner Classroom, 2007

 

 

 

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