Branded apparel is a tried, tested, and trusted part of the marketing world. When it comes to branded products, apparel checks off all the right boxes. Recipients will love it for being practical, useful, and aesthetically pleasing; brands will love that apparel exposes more people to their branding, since anyone who encounters someone wearing branded apparel will spot the company’s logo. Whether it’s part of your online store, part of a corporate gifting campaign, or something else entirely, it’s definitely one marketing tool you should be familiar with!
Because fashion changes so rapidly, it’s important to stay up to date with what’s stylish to make sure that your branded apparel is not just on top of marketing trends, but fashion ones too! Here are four trends you should know for this year and beyond.
More and more people are paying attention to the environmental footprint of all their choices, and fashion is at the top of the list. Instead of fast fashion, made from cheap materials that don’t last and increase waste, consumers are looking for apparel with a “green” twist. This can mean environmentally friendly production practices, fabrics made from recycled or sustainable materials, pieces that will last a long time instead of ending up in landfills quickly, brands that donate proceeds to environmental and sustainability causes, and other factors.
Branded apparel can be part of this trend in quite a few ways. Consider partnering with a company that uses sustainable materials and/or production processes. Alternately, brands might consider working with an apparel company that has some sort of green pledge in place to donate proceeds, work towards carbon neutrality, or something along those lines. Most importantly, however, is to find an apparel partner that produces high-quality, durable products – avoiding waste is one of the biggest and easiest ways to join the eco-friendly trend.
We’ve seen athleisure wear become even more popular over the last year or two, and the boom can really be traced to a couple of things: work from home, and a resurgence of interest in healthy living.
With the increase in work from home or hybrid setups, more people are expanding their wardrobe of comfortable clothes that can take them from their home office to their errands or on a walk outside. There’s also the simple fact that more people are interested in ways to live a healthier lifestyle, especially with the past couple of years of major health concerns. Athleisure wear is the answer for all of this: comfortable apparel that’s more stylish than a basic sweats-and-T-shirt combo and often is made from material with “upgrades” like UV protection or moisture-wicking properties.
Consider items like branded jackets, which are both comfortable and practical for most people. Since this trend overlaps with the trend towards more outdoor wear, it’s a smart idea to have options targeted at what people are most likely to wear on walks, hikes, runs, and other casual, active outdoor activities.
While basic branded items are still popular, more and more consumers are looking for personalization to take things to the next level. For branded apparel, that can be something as simple as offering custom options like monograms, color options, and other basic ways for recipients to make a few choices.
Brands that really want to stand out, however, might want to look at partnering with apparel companies that take a more creative approach. Being able to customize fit, for instance, is a huge plus, since the tailoring of apparel is one thing that sets higher-quality pieces apart. People like to feel like brands care about them as an individual, so offering them ways to individualize branded apparel can really make a big impact. After all, marketing is about finding ways to build personal connections between brands and individuals, and what says that more than a personalized product?
Perhaps unsurprisingly, given the immense stress of the last couple of years, people are turning in droves to clothing that’s bold, bright, optimistic, and statement-making. Bright colors are staging a comeback, in sharp contrast to the carefully-curated neutrals of years past, and that trend is extending into branded apparel. One of Pantone’s 2021 colors of the year is a bright, rich, golden yellow, if you needed more proof of the primacy of primary and bright colors!
In branded apparel, bright and bold colors have another advantage. They stand out more and are much easier to notice – which in turn means that the branding will be noticed more. The same goes for bold patterns, which are also increasingly popular at the moment. This trend overlaps to some degree with another trend, which is a rise in ‘90s nostalgia – and in fashion and accessories, that means brighter colors and patterns.
Look for apparel that uses vivid colors and interesting, eye-catching color combinations for branded apparel that’s totally on-trend. Plus, it’s just fun to wear.
Tone on Tone Logos
At first, the idea of a subtler, tone on tone logo might seem counterintuitive. After all, you want your branding to be easier to see, not harder, right? In reality, a subtler style of branding can actually work in your favor! How does that work? It actually makes a lot of sense once you think about it.
Tone on tone logos depict the design in a color similar to the background color, creating a more subtle effect. As a result, branded apparel that uses a tone on tone approach feels less like a walking brand advertisement and more like “regular” apparel. In turn, this makes people more likely to wear this apparel out and about in non-work contexts – meaning your brand gets even more exposure.
No matter who your target audience is, branded apparel that picks up on the latest fashion trends will always be a big hit!