Eastside Clothiers

So this is what it looks like when the Eastside becomes a demographic. I first spotted this campaign in a men’s magazine and I was like “Whoa, finally representing the kind of people who actually wear Dickies!” Thanks to LA Eastside reader Perry who passed on the video link, much appreciated!
When I was a teen, I was into the hardcore punk scene and interestingly our fashion wasn’t all that much different from the vatos in the neighborhood. We’d wear Dickies, those canvas shoes you could buy at Woolworth’s or Thrifty’s (both stores now defunct) and plain black cotton jackets. The difference was, we were all a lot scruffier looking and had colored hair. I’ve shopped many a dime store aisle with a vato/vata next to me.
Nowadays, my friends will head to Cesar Chavez, North Broadway, Figueroa, Huntington Park or swapmeets for their Dickies wear. You can cut them off at the knee for the classic vato look, wear them to work a la your favorite mechanic or even pass them off as dress slacks. I remember once Dickies even had a “Working Class Hero” contest which I thought was hilarious! As for me, I’ve since moved on to girlier clothes.

15 thoughts on “Eastside Clothiers

  1. I’ve been wearing dickies for fifteen years now.

    I mostly wear dickies to work. Much rather get pump oil, and solvents on dickies than girly skirts.

  2. Dickies were all I wore from the ages of 12 – 23. And everyone always was on the lookout for the place with the CHEAPEST ones. Even a dollar mark down was enough for a longer trip just to get some. I did get colorful and have some green ones and some red ones but covered in punk band patches. It took me a while to get used to wearing jeans because all I wore were Dickies.

    Dickies also last a pretty long time.

  3. I liked my Dickies best when they were washed a hundred times and got all soft. They’re not great summer wear though, a bit hot and not very breathable.

  4. Is that the other George, owner of Dino’s at the car window holding a burger in the video?

  5. I’ve been to a few job interviews trying to pass freshly washed Dickies off as slacks. I bet it doesn’t work, but at least you don’t have to buy more clothes you’ll rarely wear.

  6. chimatli said…

    I liked my Dickies best when they were washed a hundred times and got all soft.

    The blue ones were best for that. I liked the rest creased up. didn’t the punkers taper theirs into skinny jeans? i always tripped off where the punkers got those skinny dickies. anyway chimatli mentions black cotton jackets. were derby’s a so.cal thing too or just up north? i’ve recently been searching online for an original derby. you used to be able to find them at hammer & luis and all the zuit suit shops but they’re hard to find now.

  7. Wow, this takes me back.

    20 years ago, when I was a teenaged purple-haired punk rocker in La Puente, everybody wore Dickies: punks, skins, cholos, punk/cholos, cholo/skins, mods, you name it. Tapered, over 14-eye-Docs, rolled up, cut-off with fishnets underneath, etc. But the best pair of Dickies were the ones that were already worn in– and scored at the thrift store for only $2.

    Ah good times. I’ve since moved on to girlier clothes too now.

  8. Yeah, LOL Crisis I ran with the scooter boy crowd and we used to taper them ourselves. It was like a contest to see who could get the cleanest taper… a bunch of teenage boys borrowing their moms’ sewing machine.

    Thrift store dickies were my favorite too ’cause when you’re 16 years old $35 is a lot of cash (actually I think they were closer to $20 back then). I still wear them to work as slacks pretty often not tapered but the high waistline is a little funky.

  9. I think some punks did wear Derby’s. The jackets I wore were more light weight, just one cotton layer. I think it was sorta skater fashion? I would find them at the thrift store mostly.

    As for the skinny jeans trend, that totally started with punks, specifically crusty/anarcho punks. They were wearing their jeans like that in the late 90s (well, some of them never stopped from the 80s). I went to an anarcho-punk/squatter conference in Northern Spain (calimochos!) in 2001 and all the dudes had the tightest ass pants on, totally tapered. Then I saw crusties here wearing them like that and then you know, trends spread. Anyways, that’s my theory and I’m sticking with it.

  10. I remember when all my punk friends started to cut their dickies and turn them into what we now call “skinny jeans.” This was when pretty much everyone was wearing jeans at least 10inches oversized so people would call us all sorts of homophobic/heterosexist crap (now those same people are probably wearing skinny jeans!) Of course they were held together by patches of every f*ckin’ crust/thrash band to come out of Sweden/Japan.

    I remember we would compare our stitching techniques. Some would opt for the barely noticeable stitch, while others used colors to offset the pant color and used a THICK stitch.

    Check out these Mexican punx here: http://www.flickr.com/photos/mizantropunk/2927295117/in/set-72157607891653196/ TIGHT PANTS!

  11. Dickies?? C’mon let’s take it back to the classic era, 60’s and 70’s when we were wearing the khakis from JC Penny’s, the original “Towncraft” Brand of T shirts, or shopping at Al’s Army & Navy. How about some fine dress clothes from “Kurley’s For Men” on Whittier Blvd.
    I don’t remember seeing any homie in the 60’s or 70’s ever wearing “Dickies”. Let’s not forget what we really wore before all this punk stuff.

  12. Ya the derby jackets were big on the West Coast, they had the classic Gold lining, knit collar, sleeves, a good chrome zipper, with a made in usa flag..and the washing instructions on the inside lapel of the jacket

    I myself wore derbys for years, but they stopped making them like 25 years ago, but now on Facebook, apparently a new derby will be coming out soon

    go to face book type derby of san francisco

    these jackets of course will sell like hotcakes up and down the west coast, for sure…


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