HR Strange But True!
January 20, 2010

They are so trendy that everyone will want to wear them, and sooo practical in this poor economy. And they are even considered “green.” Yes, they have it all for this new decade. They're basic, everyday work clothes, and they even have a new name--“heritage workwear”!

According to writer Beth Hughes in a special to the San Francisco Chronicle, work clothes are generating major buzz in the menswear world as fashion collides with the economic downturn.

The antithesis of the “in your face”-style” pink ties and black silk T-shirts recently in vogue (see SBT-- Is ‘In Your Face' over the Top?), old stand-by American clothing brands such as Levi, Filson, Carhartt, Dickies, and Woolrich, favored by farmers, fisherman, and construction workers are coming back because “there is work to be done,” says Hughes.

She quotes Mark-Evan Blackman, chairman of the menswear design department at the prestigious Fashion Institute of Technology in New York City , who explains the phenomenon. “When the economy is bad, you want a look that's associated with employment, no matter what the employment is,” he states. “Workwear is coming at a time when the country is saying, ‘Let's get back to work' at a very primal level.”

For the unemployed and even newly thrifty cubicle dwellers, work clothes are attractive because they are long-lasting, easy to care for, and reasonably priced. They are also perceived as “green” and “sustainable” because they are usually made of cotton or wool, according to the article. And the most prized workwear is what is passed down from a relative who wore it for years or some treasures from bygone decades purchased at resale shops.

The “heritage” brands are also honored for their value--and the fact that they are made by American workers. Ironically, the workwear trend is especially popular in Japan , where denim is hugely popular.

So keep a lookout on Bravo and TLC--Zoe, Tyra, Clinton, and Stacy may soon be critiquing bib overalls and Mackinaws on the runway--but never on the red carpet!

Source: San Francisco Chronicle

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