Work uniforms aren’t just clothes you wear to work every day. They’re a sign of unity and equality in the team. But most importantly, they play a role in brand recognition. Think of every time you go to a store and need some help. You’re immediately looking for a recognisable piece of clothing to separate employees from the crowd. Aside from being a tell-tale sign customers use to identify team-members, uniforms serve as a great way to save employees’ time and money on work clothes and also keep them protected during work hours.
Even though the concept and purpose of work uniforms haven’t changed much through the years, it’s been a long time that uniforms have been, well, uniform. Options to diversify work clothing are now faster than ever. We’re long past the days of just a shirt or an apron or a jacket. Because of the need to stand out among an oversaturated market, modern business owners look for ways to separate themselves from the crowd and display their brand’s originality and philosophy in inventive ways. One of the ways to do this is by accessorising the work uniform.
How Do You Accessorise a Work Uniform?
Stepping out of the box and seeing the uniform as not just a piece of work clothing, but a stylish outfit is the first step. People strive to be able to stand out while still fitting in. Recognising the potential of this and expanding the items that your uniforms consist of is a great way to start building a uniform that’s both traditional and up-to-date at the same time.
So, how do you actually go about it? To help with that, we’ve compiled a list of items you can choose from.
Pins & Patches
If you want to go small and clean with your uniform accessories, but still make a statement, ordering pins and embroidered patches is a great place to start. Cousins of badges, which in times when clothes were too expensive to make served as a sort of uniform themselves, pins and patches have a long, strong relationship with work attire.
Durable, diverse, and with just the right amount of pop, these little work accessories can fit smoothly in all kinds of work environments. From corporate offices to coffee shops and restaurants, pins and patches can be just the right mix of professional and stylish. These accessories can also be used on every type of uniform piece. They can be pinned on the collar of a formal shirt or a blazer or sewn onto a breast pocket, a cap, a tote bag, t-shirt, and so much more. Their touch of colour instantly enlivens the uniform and makes it stand out.
Available in different shapes, colours and patterns, pins and patches can be modelled into anything you want. Often used to show support to important community causes or to celebrate holidays, they can also be used as a seasonal accessory. Another fun and effective way to accessorise with them is by having them made in the shape of a product you’re promoting, or displaying your company motto, a message to your customers, or your latest marketing campaign punchline.
The great thing about pins and embroidered patches is that they don’t have to be worn in the workplace only. Imagine a patch sewn onto a branded tote bag. Totes are very fashionable nowadays as they’re both practical and stylish, and both men and women love to wear them. The tote itself will serve as its very own kind of advertisement for your brand, displaying your message wherever it goes, but a nice little patch sewn on there will definitely draw the eye. Remember, people like brands that are fun and creative.
Ties & Scarves
Ties and scarves are often already a part of many uniforms. Used mostly in corporate settings, but no strangers to catering businesses and other companies in the hospitality branch either. They provide that classic, clean, timeless element of a well-put-together outfit. This is what accessorising is all about.
However, most often we see ties and scarves in plain colours, paired with solid-coloured shirts. But if your company dress code allows it, feel free to shake things up! Patterned ties and designed scarves will bring a creative touch to your uniforms while still preserving the smart, business look you’re going for.
When it comes to ties, there’s room to play. Regular and bow tie are the usual models, but you can look around for contemporary twists on these classics and end up with an interesting ensemble that will definitely refresh the look of your uniforms. Both the classics and their modern counterparts are usually available in various materials and colours, and provide numerous ways to be paired and worn. By having them customised with your logo, or adding a sewn-on patch or pin to them, you can round up the look easily.
Scarves are accessories that have always represented style and elegance. By incorporating them into your work uniforms, you can only strengthen that poised, refined look. Scarves are equally as diverse as ties, if not more. They also come in classic styles like silk head or neck scarves, but you can find a modern twist in bandanas. Depending on your industry branch, you can choose between the models, patterns, and styles and decide which ones work best.
As we mentioned before, the secret is in the details. No matter how well-planned out your uniform is, if one detail is looked over, it can all come crashing down.
Belts are one such detail. Having your team wear matching belts will tie everything together, putting the finishing touches to your uniforms. Often available in different sizes, lengths, materials, and styles, belts can be matched with the rest of the outfit to serve as an excellent accent. Needed in basically every industry, a polished, good-looking belt will never go out of style.
Totes & Caps
Totes and caps have an interesting duality to them. Although they’re not always an essential part of the uniform, they possess the most promotional potential out of all other work accessories.
A branded tote that matches the tone of your uniform is an excellent add-on to wear to and from work. It’s convenient, practical, and will increase the visibility of your brand. The same goes for caps. Often used by businesses that operate outdoors, and always needed as an essential protection against the hot Australian sun, branded caps will flash your business’ name and message around, wherever they people wearing them are.
Even if they are not required as part of the uniform, providing these accessories to your employees is a great marketing move that is bound to pay off. They’ll also definitely come in handy to your team!
There’s one more thing that’s really important to mention. If the uniforms you’re using are not well-designed, comfortable, and pleasant to wear, no amount of accessories will help. Having a uniform made out of durable, quality materials is the only uniform worth accessorising. Remember, employees that are comfortable and happy in their work attire are the single best accessory your business can have.