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Designing a uniform – the Clubclass guide to creating the perfect workwear

By 17th October 2019Awards, Clubclass

From the memorable orange used throughout outfits worn by easy jet staff to the beautiful tailored jackets with the iconic white glove worn by the Ritz Concierge. The brand appearance worn by employees plays a huge role in our subconscious relationship with brands and business.

The uniform should never be considered an afterthought by businesses. It is a crucial task that should be given time and consideration, which is why we got in touch with Debbie Johnson. Debbie is an Established designer specialising in high profile design projects and brand development. Designing internationally for over 20 years to deliver some of the most successful and memorable uniforms in the Corporatewear Industry from Virgin Atlantic to the New uniform for London Northwestern Railway and West Midlands Railway. Debbie recently won the ‘Best Design of the Year’ at the 2019 Professional Clothing Awards.

Why is understanding how your uniform fits in the workplace & brand so important?

A uniform should always reflect the character of the brand it’s representing and should go far beyond logos and brand pantone colours. The designs should capture the vision and the essence of the brand; so, whether that’s bold and sassy, or quietly understated, the uniform should communicate the ethos and values of the company.

What makes a memorable award-winning uniform?

A good uniform should be identifiable through a clear sense of style and not by using gimmicks, or fashion statements, especially for the core uniform items. I’m a strong believer that less is often more! Instead, gaining differentiation through the cut and the quality of a uniform speaks volumes. However, it is important to reflect current trends, because employees want to feel contemporary and professional. Whether the garments are casual or formal, my aim is always to combine style with functionality and a good fitting uniform that has the correct details for the job is vital. This will enable staff to feel comfortable, confident and valued. Also, great detailing is key to delivering the brand personality. Whatever the garment – attention to detail will always create a range that is ‘a cut above the rest’.

Why is finding the right supplier key?

The right supplier is crucial, because good design goes way beyond attractive sketches on a design board. A good supplier will work with the designer to ensure that the design concepts translate into wearable garments for ‘real people in the real world’. This means that the resulting garments should not only look good, but should be well fitting, durable and easy to care for. In my opinion the inside of the garment and the way it is manufactured is just as important as the outside, because it ensures that the uniform will retain its smart appearance for longer, providing great value for money.

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