Tag Archives: aprons

Catering Staff Uniform

Catering and hospitality is a very diverse industry, it can cover a wide range of business types, from fine dining in an exclusive restaurant, right through to a street food from a van, catering uniforms includes front of house staff to chefs jackets to pot washers.  This makes catering staff uniform incredibly varied and wide ranging.

The industries and people who need uniform

Hospitality and catering covers a vast range of businesses, some examples of these are listed below.

  • Restaurants
  • Hotels
  • School canteens
  • Cafes
  • Diners
  • Coffee shops
  • Staff restaurants
  • Outside caterers
  • B & B’s
  • Pubs
  • Bars
  • Theatres
  • Casinos
  • Cruise ships

Within the businesses above, there will be a range of staff who may need some kind of uniform, even if that’s just a dress code. Waiters, waitresses, concierge, sommeliers, cleaning staff, bar staff, reception, hosts, chef’s, cooks, chauffeurs, baristas, manager and housekeepers are just a few of the roles you might have. Some of these uniforms may be purely practical and protective for behind the scenes and some will be customer facing, so need to be much more style/ image led.

History of catering staff uniform

A hundred years ago catering was something experienced exclusively by the rich, having staff in your home to make and serve all your meals or going out for afternoon tea or for a meal was a real luxury and as such was treated with a high level of formality.  Catering staff uniform at that time would be a suit, waistcoat, shirt, tie or bow tie an apron and hat, chef whites and chefs hat.  

Staff Catering Uniform
Formal uniform for hospitality

Hospitality today

In current times going out for food has become part of many people’s weekly routine. The cost of eating out has reduced along with the increase of many people’s disposable income. As a result of this, formality has significantly reduced as a result, which means uniform is much more relaxed.  If you go for tea at the Ritz you may still experience the old fashioned formality and style, but for most catered offerings the feeling much more relaxed. Jeans, polo shirt, t shirt maybe an apron, may be not even a uniform!

Working in the uniform industry, we notice that catering staff uniform has become much less about formality but there is a real step up in branding and style.  Uniforms and catering has become very fashion led and hospitality designers create immersive experiences for the diners which is about much more than just the food.  Increased enquires into Pantone matched uniform and highly bespoke aprons. Some of our recent customers have ordered striped long sleeve t shirts with denim aprons, utility style jackets.  We have also supplied a hotel with braces to wear over shirts.

There is so much competition within hospitality, that restaurants and hotels are constantly trying to find new and exciting concepts to entice customers in.

Lady wearing jeans, striped top and full length apron
Catering uniform

The practicalities of uniform

Style and look of a catering clothes is important but when it comes to catering staff uniform, durability and practicality is a huge factor.  Spills and splashes of food are a daily hazard especially for those who prepare the food.  Long hot shifts mean that clothing should be comfortable and regulate heat.  Clothing is going to be washed and worn repeatedly and often on high temperatures with stain removers, so they need to be tough to stay looking good and last.

Putting your look together

If you are looking for catering staff uniform, please come and talk to us at Impact Trading. We have a huge range of stock uniform which we can guide you through. We can also manufacture bespoke garments to match your style and brand colours, such as aprons, polos, t shirts, hoodies and sweatshirts. Our team have vast experience of the options available to achieve your individual style and practical requirements. We can also help you with print and embroidery to brand garments with your logo. We can give you information on where logos can be positioned, maybe go for somthing new? Match embroidery thread or print colours to your brand Pantone colours.

The Changes in Company Uniform

There has been a drastic change in company uniform over the last 10 years, this change sped up in 2020 when Covid struck.  Office staff in particular noticed a significant change, as many of them spent some, or all of their time working from home.  There was no need to dress smart for the office and as long as your top half was acceptable for meetings, you could get away with joggers or even pyjamas on your bottom half.   

As we know, many people continued to work full or part time from home after the lock down lifted, and so this became the new normal. 

Going Into Work

Woman with long hair wearing a polo shirt in navy as company uniform
Casual Company Uniform

For those who continued to go into work, company uniform has also become more casual.   This is due to trends in fashion, comfort for workers and the cost of supplying uniform, especially as there is a much higher turnover in staff in many businesses in recent years.

Over the last few years, we have seen a change from dress shirts to polo shirts. Blazers to soft shells or hoodies. Suit trousers to chinos or jeans.  Ties and scarfs have almost disappeared, and many hospitality businesses are just supplying aprons as uniform, which is worn over the staff’s normal clothing.

Making Your Clothing Look Like Company Uniform

Because uniform has become so much more casual, businesses often choose to have it branded so it can be distinguished from non-work clothing.  This is a simple and cost effective way to provide a company uniform.

Company Uniform of the Future

As time moves forward we predict that uniform will continue to move towards a more casual look and practicality and comfort will be key. It may become more like merchandise and be used as a form of marketing through fashion trends.

If you would like to discuss your uniform requirements with us please call on 01908 290482 or email [email protected]

Aprons as Uniform

We have noticed that aprons have become uniform for so much more than just hospitality businesses.

Lots of customers who order aprons from us are from other industries such as homeware shops, flour mills, museums, nurseries, and potters.

Aprons have become an easy way to give staff a uniform and brand identity because it’s one item of clothing and one size fits all.  An apron can be made completely bespoke to match a Pantone colour as well as to fit a brand design. 

Examples of customers

Homesense are a well known high street chain, part of the TK Maxx brand. We have supplied them with bespoke aprons for their staff for many years HOMESENSE

Shipton Mill supplies flour and so much more, anything you need to baking including aprons and couche cloths supplied by us  SHIPTON MILL

Organic cotton apron with Shipton Mill embroidered on the front
Organic cotton apron

The Waterside Inn is a 3 star Michelin Restaurant opened by Michele Roux.  It gained it first star in 1974 and is the only restaurant in the work outside France to have retained 3 stars since 1985.  Michel’s son Alain has been running the restaurant since 2002, we have been supplying their bespoke aprons and cookery school bags for many years  WATERSIDE INN

The Voung V&A came to us after seeing some aprons we had made for Pasta Evangelists for their restaurant in Harrods, they loved what they saw and wanted the same. YOUNG V&A

Valvona and Crolla are an incredible delicatessen, restaurant, bar, wine merchant and outside caterers in Edinburgh established in 1934.  We supply them with bespoke aprons made here in the UK  VALVONA AND CROLLA

A few years ago we worked with the fabulous coffee bean shop to develop and make aprons, tote bags and Christmas stockings.  You can see them and even buy them here. COFFEE BEAN SHOP

The Benefits of a Customised Apron

A customised apron serves as a distinctive and practical choice for your business, highlighting your brand and your team while providing comfort and functionality. At Impact Trading, we offer an extensive range of styles and fabrics to cater to the unique needs of hospitality and various other industries.

The Advantages of a Customised Apron

The key advantage of using a customised apron for your business is branding and professionalism. Customised aprons serve as a walking advertisement for your brand, as they can feature your company logo, colours or specific designs. They can also create a professional and cohesive image for your company as they promote a polished and professional image and standardise the appearance of your staff.

Employee Morale and Identity

Providing customised aprons for your team fosters a sense of belonging and unity among employees, and it can also instil a shared identity and pride in representing the company. In terms of employee morale, wearing a customised apron can make employees feel valued and appreciated, and it adds a personal touch to the workwear, contributing to overall job satisfaction.

Promotional Opportunities

Customised aprons can be used as promotional items during special events or trade shows. This can attract attention, engage potential customers and create a positive association with your brand. You could also use a customised apron for special occasions or seasonal events.

Functional Design and Comfort

Customisation allows you to design aprons that cater to specific job requirements. Whether it’s extra pockets for tools or adjustable straps for comfort, tailored designs enhance functionality. This also benefits your employees as aprons made from comfortable and breathable materials ensure that your employees can work with ease, contributing to overall job satisfaction and productivity.

Customised Aprons at Impact Trading

At Impact Trading, we understand that one size does not fit all. Choose from our selection of beautifully crafted apron styles tailored to meet the specific demands of your profession. Whether it’s the classic bib apron, the functional half apron or the sophisticated bistro apron, each style is designed to offer both aesthetic appeal and practicality. Selecting the right fabric is crucial for comfort and durability, so you can opt for 60-degree wash fabric, polyester/cotton blends, 100% cotton for a soft touch or denim for a rugged, authentic look. For those with a commitment to sustainability, there is also an option for organic and Fairtrade-certified aprons, showcasing our dedication to ethical manufacturing.

Bespoke Aprons

At Impact Trading, we go above and beyond by offering made-to-order aprons, ensuring that each piece meets the unique requirements of your business. The diverse range of fabrics includes half Panama, bull denim, denim, organic denim, recycled coffee sacks, coated cotton and Pantone-dyed half Panama aprons. We can also dye all our aprons in the UK to your specific Pantone colour, and each apron, regardless of the chosen fabric or style, is superbly stitched and finished at our UK factory.

We feel that the benefits of customised aprons extend beyond design and aesthetics. They can also play a pivotal role in shaping your business’s brand identity, enhancing employee morale and creating a positive impression on customers. Our commitment to excellence, ethical practices and unmatched customisation options makes our aprons an indispensable choice for businesses looking to elevate their professional image.

Customised Printed Apron.

An excellent way for you to stand out from the crowd and promote your brand is with our customised printed apron. You can create a strong, unique and vibrant look with an all-over print. Our team can help you to produce the perfect apron that will develop a sense of unity amongst your employees.

Stunning vibrancy of print.

A customised printed apron is the perfect solution for creating an apron with a large, detailed image. Your apron literally becomes a customised piece of artwork. There is no limit to the size or the number of colours in your logo or image. The results are stunning and far beyond anything that we can achieve with a traditional screen print.

Embed your logo as part of the image.

The beauty of this process is the flexibility to add your logo into the image, rather than having to add it afterwards at an extra cost.

It all starts with a high-resolution image.

Your artwork is reproduced using a library of hundreds of colours into a high-quality photographic image with excellent colour consistency. We achieve this by using reactive inks that have an excellent wash and rub fastness for durability.


We carefully source all our fabric and use high-quality durable 300 gsm half Panama cotton. Ideal for aprons, this fabric quality comes in both regular and 100% organic cotton, for a more sustainable product.

Fast turnaround

Once the artwork has been agreed and you are happy with the print proof, the printing process is fast and very efficient. A pre-production sample is produced for you to review the completed design.

Low minimums.

The minimum for a customised printed apron is 32. The technology allows us to produce short print runs. We print out each apron as an entire pattern piece and cut it out by hand.


Adjustments are easy. We review the all aspects of the design, adjust them accordingly and re-print the apron.

Carry the design through to other customised products.

Once you are happy with your customised printed apron, we are able to reproduce the same design on to tea towels, oven gloves, tote bags, cushions and even washbags. All these products will make perfect customised gifts.

If you would like to discuss a future order with one of our team please click the link.

Premier Aprons

Premier workwear is an established company who have been supplying to trade suppliers for many years.  One of their key products is aprons, they have a huge range of styles, colours, and ethical certifications. 

Our customers

Although we manufacturer and supply bespoke made to order aprons, some of our customers choose stock options because it fits in with their deadline, budget or requirements.  These are quite often premier aprons as they have a range that caters for many requirements.


Premier aprons have several styles which have ethical credentials such as Fairtrade, organic or recycled. This is an area that we specialise in, particularly on our other site Cotton Roots.


If you are looking for something that is more of a premium look, premier aprons have a selection that may suit the style you need such as an artisan, industrial or bistro.


One of the big advantages of premier aprons is their huge colour range. They have over 60 colours accross all their styles which makes it perfect for someone who needs a small quantity or has a short lead time but needs a Pantone matched colour. 

Apron specialists

If you need to source aprons for your business, we can help you with stock and bespoke options. We supply restaurants, outside caterers, street food chains, hotels, food brands, nurseries and many other business’s . We can help you find the best style and colour for your branding. Contact the design team today on 01908 290482

We supply Aprons in Bulk

Where is started

Traditionally aprons are a piece of clothing that covers the front half of the body to protect the clothing underneath. The word originates from the French word napron, which was a small tablecloth that covered the main table cloth to protect it from food spills.

Aprons today

Today aprons have become about much more than just the protection of clothing, they have become a huge part of the brand identity for businesses, especially in the hospitality and catering sector. Companies order aprons in bulk and then brand them with their logos, they make up part or all of their staff’s uniform.

Bespoke Aprons

At Impact Trading we supply aprons in bulk, these can either be made to order such as Pantone dyed, bespoke style or with specific pockets. By making bespoke you can have branding which is not possible on stock aprons, such as an all over print or an embroidery on a small pocket. Our design team sample the apron before the order goes ahead so we can make sure it is exactly what the customer wants.

Stock Aprons

Impact Trading have a large range of stock aprons in a wide range of styles and colours, there is often a style which suits our customers.  We can arrange samples to be sent out so the customer can check the size, colour and quality.  These can then have branding added such as an embroidered logo or a printed slogan.

How can we help you

If you are looking for a supplier of aprons in bulk, please get in touch with us. We can talk through your requirements and arrange samples, print proofs and embroidery samples before we go into production so you can be completely confident in the product you will be receiving. Call the team on 01908 290482 or email [email protected]

Bespoke half apron with pockets.

The classic half apron with pockets is one of our core products. It has been part of our aim to create something unique for our customers. Half aprons are an essential part of any hospitality uniform and can be both a perfect blank canvas for promoting your brand and an essential key garment for front of house catering.

We design our bespoke half apron with pockets individually to meet all our customer’s needs. Our design team carefully source and test all the materials and components.

We only work with quality fabric mills and suppliers, and take great care when choosing fabrics.

One of our tried and tested fabrics is the 100% cotton canvas half panama. The weave has a distinctive 2 weft threads to one warp, giving the fabric a unique look and adding to its durability. It really is the perfect fabric for hard wearing aprons.

We have a wide range of colours to choose from and can also Pantone dye fabric to match your company’s brand colour.

Half Apron with Pockets

The Design Process

The design process for our half aprons starts with the customer’s brief. You can choose the length and width, the size, position and number of pockets you want. You can add details such brass eyelets, studs and a variety of straps.

The ultimate detail to add quality and exclusivity to an apron is leather. This can be incorporated into the straps, which can then be removed for laundering. Brass eyelets and poppers are the perfect features for attaching the leather straps. We can reinforce the apron corners to give extra strength where the eyelets are attached.

The leather is carefully selected to look beautiful and feel soft to wear.  One of our most popular straps are a combination of leather and webbing. This way you get the beauty of leather but the practicality and ease of webbing.

On the half apron with pockets, the pockets are the key feature and are carefully considered and are determined by the wearer’s role. The pocket needs to accommodate all the items that the wearer will need to carry and have access to. The pockets need to be deep enough to safely hold items such has iPad or phones but also separated if items need to be kept in different places.

Final Details

The final stage in the design process of our half aprons is to add our customers branding. We will carefully consider how best to achieve this whilst working alongside our customers brief. This may involve a detailed embroidery, print or a bespoke woven label. All of which can either be large and very visible or subtle and understated.

All our half aprons are hand cut in our production room. The customer’s pattern and design details are carefully recorded and stored for future orders.

We will always produce an initial sample half apron for our customer to approve. This is a key stage in the design process and gives us an opportunity review and amend any details.

The sample stage is also an important point for our customer to receive and get a glimpse of their new design.

It is always great to see the finished results being worn in their new environment!

Leather Straps on Aprons


We are often asked for artisan style aprons and one feature that is always of interest is the straps. Customers who are looking for something unique and special often love leather, as it’s a great way of adding quality.

The main stumbling block with leather is it cannot easily be cleaned.  You can’t put the leather straps in a washing machine with the aprons, so we wanted to find a way for the straps to be easily removed for laundering.

The flexibility to remove the straps means that they become interchangeable.  As well as solving the laundering issue, it means that you change the look of the apron depending on which straps are attached.

The easiest way to achieve this flexibility is to attach the straps though metal eyelets, using heavy duty metal snap fasteners. At the point where the eyelets and straps are attached, an extra piece of fabric is sewn to reinforce the corner for extra strength. These can also be made into a feature with contrast stitching or fabric. The most popular choice of eyelet and popper is Antique Brass or Nickel.  Buckles can also easily be matched.

When cared for correctly, leather can last much longer than fabric and so this method means that one leather strap can be used for several aprons, therefore making it very economical.

A good intermediate design is to combine leather and webbing. The leather is used for the most visible part of the strap, that attaches to the apron. The webbing is attached to leather to make tying the straps easy and flexible, without the need for buckles. This option can also be less expensive.

Leather and Webbing Straps

We carefully source the best leather, that is both soft to wear against the skin, easy to adjust but very durable. Different colours can be sourced, we certainly don’t have to stick to the traditional browns and blacks.

Our customers love their bespoke aprons with leather straps and frequently return for repeat orders.