Levi's is continuing its "Buy Better Wear Longer" sustainability push with a campaign that tells the story of a pair of jeans over half a century.
The integrated push includes a cinematic hero spot, created by AKQA San Francisco and directed by Megaforce, that follows the journey of one pair of Levi's 501s from the 1960s to the present day. The jeans are worn by various owners, each of whom leave their mark on them in activities typical of the times in which they live.
The ad begins with the jeans being cut from huge swaths of denim and stitched in the factory before their first owner walks out of a shop with them in the '60s. After he wears them to a disco and on his motorbike in the '70s, they pass to a young woman in the '80s who rolls their bottoms up and wears them while roller skating. In later years, they're subjected to outdoor camping, dogs, skateboarding and cliff jumping, resulting in rips and tears that become part of the final look—faded to a completely new color and hanging on the rack of a vintage Levi's store. See more of the behind-the-scenes from the ad in the video, below.
AKQA worked with the Levi’s Innovation Lab to realistically age the 501s over the course of 50 years. The various stages were then used across the entire campaign, which also includes retail, digital, social and out-of-home executions. The film is running on social and digital platforms.
The project highlights both how hard-wearing the jeans are and how they can be adapted by the fashions of the times, all of which underline Levi's sustainability message. It's an extension of the Levi's campaign first launched in 2021, which explicitly encouraged customers to wear their Levi’s jeans for years—even decades—and buy fewer clothes altogether.
“The campaign speaks to Levi’s legacy, durability, and appeal to a broad global audience," said Levi's Global Chief Marketing Officer Karen Riley-Grant, in a statement. "A pair of Levi’s ages beautifully, engaging generation after generation, with a few tweaks and changes. Timeless and versatile, yet fashionable—no matter the decade. This message is more relevant today than ever before, when we’re all thinking about how we can contribute to a more sustainable future."
To build on its message, Levi’s will also post stories from influencers Xiye Bastida, Melati Wijsen and Emma Chamberlain, who appeared in the initial launch.