Meat Studio redesigns the Iconic Dickies® Original 874 Workwear Pant as a Graphic Art Piece

By Ronald Tau RGD, Principal & Creative Director at Meat Studio

The Dickies® Original 874® Work Pant is the world’s best-selling work pant. Over decades, it has crossed from workwear to streetwear, but the design remains unchanged and authentic.
The goal of the project was to create a graphic art piece to be applied to the signature garment piece. The graphic needed to be as raw and unrefined as possible, speaking to the characteristics of the pant itself.
Building on this story of resilience and evolution, we deconstructed and exposed the textures of the numerals “874”, creating forms of mutation and metamorphosis. 
Inspired by the notion of "illegible" and "emotional" typography, the Chinese characters of 8, 7 and 4 erode through a filter while maintaining their skeletal form. A metaphor for the resilience of the pant that lives through decades.
We gathered lots of textures commonly found in urban contexts and cities, concrete on roads, cracked walls, aged paint, etc. — these natural textures "created" by time and "wear". We explored different techniques for creating processes that treated the textures of the characters.
We believe authenticity comes through genuine processes of unpredicted growth, not pre-meditated design. We wanted our concept to emphasize the process rather than the outcome, much like how cultural phenomena and movements come to b; they are rarely carefully plotted.
Classic designs like the 874 and "authentic", long-lasting brands like Dickies, are often beyond one or two clear-cut ideas that make them "tick". Rather, they are an amalgam of stories. 
The design reflects this as the final forms do not have clear identifiable or readable forms as typography. They are not information to be understood, but voices to be heard and feelings to be felt.
Ronald (@rontau) is a Chinese Canadian art director and graphic designer specializing in creating visual identities. Born in Hong Kong, raised in Toronto, relocated to Beijing, Ronald creates in multicultural creative contexts, crossing cultural borders through creativity and design. Ronald’s work has been covered and/or awarded in a variety of awards and media, ranging from the Tokyo Type Directors Club (Japan), It’s Nice That (U.K.), the Museum of New York (US), Asia-Pacific Design (China), Typojanchi (Korea). Ronald founded and operates Meat Studio ( between Beijing and Toronto.





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