We all know the famous Red Tab from Levi’s Jeans. The first red tab appeared on the right pocket in the year 1936 and the word LEVI’S (also known as Big E) is stitched in white in all capital letters on one side only. The red tab was created to differentiate Levi’s jeans from competitors. Levi’s produced the Big E tab till 1971. After 1971 Levi’s changed the tab letters in small ones, Levi’s instead of LEVI’S. For the real denim collectors it’s a true treasure when you find an original Levi’s Big E item.

In the Big E area there were some more different tab colors on the back pocket besides the famous red one; orange, white and black. Orange Tab was for fashion jeans, White Tab was generally for Levi’s For Gals (except it was also for corduroy). The Black Tab with gold lettering meant the pants had undergone the STA-PREST process (non iron).

The Red ‘Big E’ Tab

The Orange ‘Big E’ Tab

The White ‘Big E’ Tab

The Black ‘Big E’ Tab


Written by Wouter Munnichs
I'm the founder of Long John. Next to running this daily magazine, I'm working as a freelance denim specialist for the industry. Titled as 'Denim Influencer 2020' by Rivet 50. Celebrated my 10th anniversary with Long John in 2021.