The garment we know and love know as Dungarees has a long and colourful history. From being worn by hard labourers to even royalty, and worn all over the world.

Dungarees can be traced back as early as the 17th Century, to their birthplace in an Indian dockside Village named Dongri. 

Factories made a thick, coarse cotton. Cheap to manufacture. In Hindi they called it Dungri.

When it began being exported to the England it was made into robust clothes for labourers and was given an english twist to its name. Thus Dungarees was born!

To begin with the word dungaree referred to the cloth used and not we call the garment today. Back in the 17th century the cloth was used to make many different items of clothing, but mainly trousers. 

It wasn't till the 1850s overalls were made out of dungaree fabric. Adding a bib to the trousers to allow for extra pockets and loops, negating the need for a tool belt. 

This was a stroke of genius for dungarees. They boomed in popularity, making the overalls the uniform for the hard labourer and working man (and woman)

Then came the silver screen. The rise of cinema saw stars such as Judy Garland and John Wayne sport dungarees in their films. This brought the garment into the fashion world. And since then dungarees have been worn by countless actors across film and television. We all remember Tai in Clueless and Will Smith in The Fresh Prince of Bel Air.

And that brings us to today. Dungarees have become more synonymous with the garment than the cloth, being made out of a range of fabrics including twill and cord. But they still reign supreme in the fashion world, never dropping out of style.


Leave a comment