How work wear communicates

Mention work wear and thoughts of overalls, protective clothing and uniforms spring to mind, but work wear can describe the type of uniform donned by many for the work-place – a chalk stripe city suit, high-heeled-shoes-and-power suit, or a boilersuit.

Work wear is a communication device, telling us many things about the wearer, his or her status and role. Judges and barristers rely on the pomp and formality of their work wear to enforce their detachment from the public in the court room, deliberately instilling a sense of inaccessibility, authority and even anxiety to unnerve and disarm whoever is unlucky enough to be facing them. In the same way, judges will often remove their wigs and dress down to put a child in court at ease. Doctors wear white coats to suggest cleanliness, control and authority.
Employers recognise the messages that uniforms can transmit; the old stereotypical and often absurd airhostess garb has gradually adapted to a more practical, easier to wear uniform. Air-hostesses today aim to project an image of calm authority; they need the passengers to trust them and feel confident that in the event of a crisis the crew will triumph and keep everyone safe. That’s not so easy if you are wearing a straw hat and jaunty neck scarf!

Ultimately, work wear identifies the type of work one does; it sets the wearer apart from the general public, telling others what he or she does and encouraging a sense of ‘Trust me – I’m a doctor/nurse/washing machine repairman…’

Comments on this article

James 16 June, 2009

Check out as it's a great site for workwear and I would definitely recommend them.

Jeff Harris 21 July, 2009

Another good site for a wide variety of workwear is

J mackey 8 August, 2009

I found a secure online site for work wear that has google checkout.

really helpful to.

Steve 9 December, 2009

Try for hi viz clothes, and general workwear and ppe.

Jenny 21 January, 2010

Thanks for the tip james on I placed an order with them and they were very helpful. Embroidery was good quality.

Martin 22 February, 2010

Check out

I placed an order with them for some polo shirts and they looked very professional. Also eXodirect offer an excellent range of hi viz workwear as well as sweatshirts. 23 September, 2010

Can I get a workwear Coat size XXL I lost the site I had used at the first instance

Mark 26 July, 2011

workwear prices all shot up at the start of the year but bought out a price buster pack which gives 3 polos 1 sweat 1 fleece and 2 pairs of trousers all for £59.95...That includes all the tops embroidered too

Jacksons Workwear Rental Ltd 27 March, 2013

Jacksons Workwear Rental Ltd for a full rental service.

Matt 18 April, 2016

Very pleased with the overall service from brix workwear. Also the quality of the trousers are great.

Add your comment

This helps to discourage spam