Trends - All Wrapped Up

Bandanas Have High-Fashion Staying Power

BandanaBandannas provide a flexible option for clients looking to reach multiple audiences.

The bandanna conjures up images of cowboys and pirates (not to mention ‘80s hair bands), but they also have high-fashion staying power. In their fall collections, designers like Wes Gordon, Coach and Cynthia Rowley all topped off looks with the colorful cloth squares. Deceptively simple, the bandanna is actually a versatile accessory.

You can fold it into a triangle and tie it around your head to keep your hair out of your eyes, or around your neck and wear it instead of a necklace or fashion scarf. Roll it up and turn it into a faux headband, or wrap it around your wrist like a bracelet. In the promotional sphere, a bandanna is a great way to display a company’s logo. After all, says Pam Scott, national sales director of Caro-Line/Bandanna Promotions (asi/44020), “Who doesn’t want to be a rock star or let their customers feel like rock stars?” She points to rocker Bret Michaels’ ever-present bandanna as evidence of the item’s iconic appeal.

When it comes to designs, classic paisley reigns supreme and is easily modified to incorporate a customer’s logo, Scott says. With Bandanna Promotions’ custom paisley decoration, she adds, “Your logo becomes part of the pattern, making it your customer’s own custom paisley bandanna.”

But a bandanna is also a perfect canvas for detailed images, like a campus map Bandanna Promotions’ printed onto a purple kerchief for Northwestern University.

Pop! Promos (asi/45657) offers its own version of the bandanna, dubbed the “Brandana,” which the supplier imprints with sublimation. “This process allows us to do everything from a one-color Pantone-matched imprint to a full-color, full-bleed detailed printing,” says Julie Touchstone, marketing director at Pop! Promos.

Bandannas are versatile enough to be ideal promotional items for colleges, sports, rodeos, marathons, bike races and other outdoor events.

Don’t forget the animals: A jauntily knotted bandanna is a great look for just about any canine companion.

Touchstone suggests adding value to a promotion by including an insert card with instructions on how to wear the Brandana. Pop! Promos has come up with more than 11 ways for end-users to employ its “multifunctional rally wear,” including as a rally towel, wristband, headband and neck scarf.

With its many uses and enduring popularity, it’s clear the bandanna presents multiple sales opportunities – and markets to target – for ad specialty distributors.