A Look At The Most Classic Uniforms

27 February 2015 | 0 Comments | Inspiration, Uniform Design, Uniform History

Uniform is often something that’s taken for granted. We are surrounded by it in our day to day lives but how often do we actually think about what it means? When we put on a uniform, we become a part of the team it stands for. We make our self-recognisable to the world as a member of that unit, and stand alongside our colleagues as an integral part of the company itself.

Whether they’re identifying a profession or showcasing a brand, uniforms certainly have a lot to say for themselves! You probably remember your very first uniform very clearly – something like the ones below, perhaps?

School Uniforms

Jermyn-Street-design-JSD-School uniforms

Photo credit: theirhistory via Flickr

From blazers and caps to the elite’s tailcoats and top hats, secondary school is often the first time people find uniform rules strictly imposed upon them – often leading to rebellion from the pupils in the form of altered ties, make up and shortened skirts!


Club Uniforms


Photo Credit: Beaton Institute, via Flickr

Another uniform you may have come across in your youth is that of the Scouts, Cubs, Brownies or Guides. Youth organisations have been popular for over a century and are still attended by children today. These Brownie Guides and their leader are wearing the Brownie uniform of the 1970s. Today’s uniform is still very similar, although the head scarves are no longer required and the children can choose between skirts, shorts and trousers. Uniforms today are can be customised to suit the wearer’s style, needs and functions. Not only does your work uniform highlight the brand you work for, but it will also have been designed with safety in mind.

Football Uniforms


Photo credit: Tim Snell, via Flickr

Were you also part of a sports team when you were younger?
Do you follow a football club today? Uniform is hugely important to football culture: your team’s shirt is a flag that you fly to show your support for the club. So whether you’re a player or a spectator, wearing your football kit with pride makes sense both on and off the field.

From the bright colours to the team badges, fashion in football is hugely important. You’ll spot the corporate logo on the player’s shirts above. Football is such a big industry that sponsorship deals are huge. After all, millions of people across the world watch the top flight matches. By getting your name onto a football uniform, you can be sure that your brand will get noticed.


Nurse Uniforms


Lower Columbia College, via Flickr


Lower Columbia College, via Flickr

Take a look at these nurses. Uniforms for nurses used to be very prim and proper, with high starched collars and long skirts which can’t have been very practical. The nursing industry has also widened up to both genders over recent decades, and is no longer seen as just a woman’s job. The clothing worn by healthcare professionals is now designed to be safe and easy to work in – after all, when you’re saving lives, you don’t want to be worried about your outfit!


Police Uniform

The clothing of the UK police force is another iconic uniform that you’ll recognise instantly. Yet how often do you actually see the typical ‘British bobby’? When looking at the wider picture, you find less police wear the stereotypical uniform than we think do! Undercover officers, unmarked police, PCSOs and riot squads all have alternate safety items available best suited to their specific needs. The police work in all styles of dress and adapt their clothing to suit the role they do, but you’ll still probably imagine them like this:


Image Credit: Norman Fowler, via Flickr

The iconic wool tunics and the bell hats are a thing of the past, but the image of the UK copper lives on. In fact, you’re far more likely to encounter officers wearing high-visibility coats are designed to make them easy to spot, putting off criminals and reassuring residents.


Photo credit: Leonard Bentley, via Flickr

Note that the women wear practically the same clothing as their male colleagues (only the hat differs). This is actually a very recent development: women officers were still policing in skirts until the late 1980s, despite this not being the most practical item of clothing.


Airline Uniforms


Photo credit: Italy Airlines, Flickr

Uniforms have played a big part of the service industry for many years and are a great way to identify a brand. No doubt you’ll have worn a few in your time – we all have! From catering and hospitality to retail and banking, uniforms are used by businesses across the work to unify their employees and to promote a strong corporate image.

The image of the air steward is another iconic one. These uniforms, often designed by leading fashion designers, are made to be pristine, and the wearers are expected to uphold very high standards of appearance to match their dress. From approved hairstyles to flawless make-up, the uniform extends to far more than just clothing. As with many modern uniforms, the additional touches are important: a professional business image is great for bringing in the customers!


Beauty Therapist Uniform

Jermyn-Street-Design-JSD-Beauty-Therapist-UniformAs with the air hostesses, beauty therapy is another industry where looks really matter. With crisp, clean tunics and immaculate hair and make-up, these stylists give you confidence in their work. If they look great and present a fantastic image, you can be sure that they’ll have you looking a million dollars, too! From your local salon to beauty counters like Gucci and L’Oreal, you can be sure that your beauty consultant will wear their uniform with pride, and that they’ll always look amazing.



Whether you wear a uniform for work, or if you’re a member of a club or sport, remember that uniform has come a long way in history. We are always striving to look and feel our best so be proud to wear your uniform and show that you matter!

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