Ever wondered what those tiny buttons, known as rivets, on your jeans are for?

It turns out they're not just there for decoration. Found on most jeans at the top corners of the pockets, they play an important part in keeping the denim together.

First patented in 1873, the history of how rivets came to be is almost as old as jeans themselves.

The father of jeans, Levi Strauss, was approached by a tailor looking for investment in a new concept for strengthening trousers, according to levistrauss.com.

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The tailor, Jacob Davis, had discovered that rivets placed at points of strain on trousers would make them more durable.

With financial backing from Strauss, the pair patented the design and advertised the riveted pants as trousers that "can't be ripped".

While it wasn't until the 1960s that "waist overalls" became known as jeans, the rivets along with other features developed by Strauss can still be found on denim today.

- nzherald.co.nz