The Harriton Task men’s (M745) and women’s (M745W) performance fleece jackets from alphabroder (asi/34063; circle 78 on Free Info Card) offer durability, warmth and comfort at work.
When you think of occupational apparel, the idea of button-down shirts for an executive office or high visibility T-shirts for road workers comes to mind. However, you can sell fleece as workwear or part of a uniform program.
“Fleece is a fabrication that is gaining a lot of momentum, especially in the outerwear/occupational category,” says Catherine Tremblay, merchandiser at alphabroder (asi/34063). “A few years ago, fleece pullovers or full-zips were thought of strictly as mid-layer items. While still great for mid-layers, people are also opting for a fleece jacket in many more situations than they used to. Part of this trend is stemming from apparel, in general, being influenced by the active industry, but some of it is due to the fabric itself and its benefits.”
Versatility and comfort are just a couple of those beneficial features. Like any work environment – indoors or out – there is a need for layers. For example, the office air conditioning might be a tad chilly or flux between extremes. Tremblay explains that the customer may be in the market for a super soft polyester fleece, like the Harriton 8-oz. full-zip fleece (M990/M990W/M990Y). “With a mid-weight 100% spun polyester and anti-pill finish, it’s a great item to layer on for a bit of added warmth, and keeps in-line with a professional business identity,” she explains.
“Fleece is a fabrication that is gaining a lot of momentum, especially in the outerwear/occupational category.”
Catherine Tremblay, alphabroder (asi/34063)
On the other hand, a brushed-back option (created by raising the surface fibers of the fabric through the use of wires or brushes), has a more technical feel, which may be more suitable for someone in a more active environment, like a tradesman or craftsman. She cites the Harriton Task performance fleece full-zip (M745/M745W) and half-zip jackets (M730) as perfect examples. “They both have lighter weight, 100% polyester brushed-back fleece, moisture-wicking performance, as well as a smooth outside finish (perfect for decoration purposes) and comfortable brushed-back on the inside.”
When it comes to uniforms of all types, the fabric used must be easy-care and suitable for frequent industrial laundry. Fleece may be the right pick. “Fleece is very easy to care for, making it a durable and economical choice,” says Tremblay. “This, combined with added performance features (moisture-wicking, anti-pill, etc.) that are quickly becoming the norm, makes fleece a great option for employers and employees alike.”
Show Your Clients
The recently released 2015 Occupational Apparel Guide from alphabroder (asi/34063; circle 78 on Free Info Card) focuses on the unique needs of the working world, including the use of fleece items like the Harriton 8-oz. full-zip fleece (M990). To make finding product easy, the guide displays apparel best suited for eight focused industry categories:
- Food & Beverage
- Hospitality & Resort
- Sales & Service
- Business Identity
- Manufacturing & Warehouse
- Tradesmen & Craftsmen
- Outdoor & Performance Specialty Occupations