Custom branded apparel is an accepted part of working life. It’s common practice for businesses, small start-ups and corporate giants alike, to issue employees with clothing that’s customised to reflect the company’s identify and values. T-Shirts, polos, hoodies, sweatshirts and jackets – and plenty more besides – embellished with a logo or message.
That’s all good with us here at Fifth Column. After all, screen printing and embroidered merchandise is what we do, so we have no complaints if demand is increasing. The more widespread the better, from our perspective. But it did get us pondering the whole area of dress codes and uniformity in clothing. We think printed t-shirts are taking over. They’re the garment of choice for staff uniform in the information age.
Staff Uniform under New Management
Nowadays, the line between everyday fashion and staff uniform has blurred. If you want an example, take our friends over at Beavertown Brewery. They make great beer and also make Beavertown branded merchandise for their customers. T-shirts and hoodies, jackets and sweatshirts . The folk they employ are more than happy to wear this stuff to work.
It’s not an imposition, something which you simply have to accept in order to retain your job. They’re wearing clothes that are desirable. People buy these garments out of choice. Working for Beavertown means you have an advantage. Inside the beer tent, with all the benefits that come with being there.
Wearing a uniform for work isn’t a new thing. Having a specific outfit for your profession is as old as the trees. But times are changing. Nowadays, some of the best uniforms have merged work with downtime. They’re not really uniforms at all, just the clothing you’d choose to wear outside of work except with a stylistic twist
Forward thinking businesses have been able to manage an innovative transition when it comes to company identity. Work can be tough enough without being unhappy about how you’re dressed. Feeling good in what you’re wearing to work is possible when they’re great looking clothes. The company logo becomes part of the attraction.
T Shirts and the Tech Age
Not so long ago, a suit and tie were the accepted uniform for an office environment. That’s still the case in many of the more traditional professions, but the newer tech environments are far more imaginative about things like dress. Convention has flown out of the window. Tradition isn’t something to be dismissed out of hand, but it needs to add practical value.
These days, walk into a lot of offices and you’re greeted with a workforce in jeans (maybe shorts in the summer) and t-shirts. The information age is ushering in a new era. Society is changing and attitudes to work are changing with it. If anything, people are working harder than ever, but informality is the order of the day. One of the reasons is that it’s proving to be more productive.
If you’re starting a business or already up and running, custom printed tee shirts should definitely be on your ‘to-do’ list. They’re one of the most cost-effective advertisements you’re ever going to find and they deliver on so many different levels. Any good brand architecture will include a memorable logo and distinctive company artwork. This is marketing gold and you should be getting maximum value from it.
That means going beyond business letter heads and the new website. Get it printed on t-shirts and get them out there, spreading the word and promoting your enterprise. The best place to start is with your own employees. They’ll happily raise the company profile by wearing something that looks good and won’t be seen in virtual (or bricks and mortar) High Street stores.