Upcoming special exhibition
Denim – stylish, practical, timeless
Blue fabric with a history
17 October 2020 – 4 April 2021
For many, denim is the most basic part of a wardrobe. Practically everyone’s closet has at least one piece made from this cloth. Today denim is more than just a fabric for clothing. One might think that denim and art have nothing to do with each other. Far from it: artists worldwide have discovered denim as a working material. This unique special exhibition shows the versatility and history of this popular cloth. From denim jeans, jackets, bags, shoes, furniture and everyday objects, to artwork or installations such as The Secret Garden by Ian Berry, made entirely of denim.
But what are denim jeans actually made of and where does the name come from? The specially woven and indigo-dyed cotton fabric, which still gives denim its typical look, was originally manufactured in Nîmes, France. The term denim came from the phrase Serge de Nîmes – in English, textile from Nîmes. Denim became world-famous for its use in American jeans. The name jeans came from the Italian port Genoa and the Genoese sailor pants called gênes.
Jeans were first worn in the 19th century. Jacob Davis and Levi Strauss patented the production process for rivet-reinforced jeans, which were particularly robust and could therefore be worn by workers in gold mines. The comfortable and durable indigo-colored trousers soon became popular as work trousers par excellence. Indigo was and is one of the most valuable and widely used colorants from ancient times to the present day. Before its synthetic production, it was obtained from various indigo-containing plants. Today, tens of thousands of tons of indigo are produced synthetically each year, mainly for dyeing the denim cotton used in the production of blue jeans.
For women, jeans became interesting in the 1930s, when the Lady Levi’s line became the durable trousers for riders. In everyday life, however, women wearing jeans was still frowned upon. It was not until the 1950s that women started wearing unisex denim pants because they no longer wanted to be limited to skirts and dresses. Now, the practical and sporty garment has been in the fashion world for more than 140 years. And there is no end in sight. Quite the contrary: virtually every haute couture collection contains a piece of denim.
the world of the Museum
A mecca for gift hunters and collectors
The Boutique at the Spielzeug Welten Museum Basel (Toy Worlds Museum Basle) offers everything that hearts young and old could desire. Here you will find a variety of gifts to satisfy every want, large or small. There are lucky finds for collectors and a range of unique and joy-bringing gifts.
Ristorante La Sosta
The Ristorante La Sosta in the Spielzeug Welten Museum Basel (Toy Worlds Museum Basle) is open daily to sate appetites great and small – with warm meals served all day. Seasonal and fresh menus, light snacks, fine sweets, enticing desserts, and cool drinks will transform every visit and break into an enjoyable experience. Outside or inside.