What is it?
Launched in 1889 by one Henry David Lee in Salina, Kansas, as a workwear company, Lee is responsible for some of the most well-known denim tropes of today. After making the first overalls in 1920, the inventors put their heads together again and launched the now-ubiquitous zip fly. So you can thank Lee for the fact that you can now do your flies up with one hand, while drunk.
Why should I care?
If you favour premium cuts and finishes without a ridiculous price tag, Lee jeans are for you. They'll last you a serious amount of time, too, thanks to their quality and their range of stylish but not faddy finishes. Check out their slim-fit jeans and chinos, and build up your wardrobe with smart denim and cotton button-downs.
Who wears it?
The original rebel without a cause, James Dean, modelled for the brand in their 50s ads, launching them into fashion superstardom. If you want to riff on his enduring cool, you could do worse than investing in a pair of classic Lee numbers. Today, you'll see them repped by the kind of quietly stylish, no-frills guys who also know how to rock a rough-tough work boot – think the Beckhams of this world.
Wear it with…
Pretty much anything, but the aforementioned boots and jumpers are a good start for autumn. A grey marl tee and some subtle trainers – Converse, for example – are a good match for its casual, weekend vibe, as is a checked lumberjack shirt worn open over a white tee.
If it were a meal, what would it be?
Something classic and comforting from the good ol' US of A, like a decent burger – one of those gourmet ones, mind, with mountains of cheese, bacon and gherkins. Followed by a big slice of American apple pie.