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5 Most Inventive Workwear Products

Chris Doolan - Wednesday, February 03, 2010

Work wear has come a long way in the past decade. We've moved from bulky, sometimes painful leather belts to new elastic alternatives; the older style tool belts with fixed attachment points have been replaced with more ergonomic alternatives like tool vests; three quarter work pants are now available where the alternatives used to be short-shorts or long pants ... and that was all! Today we are looking at how new developments in the workwear arena are ultimately adding to quality of life for tradespeople - allowing you to get your work done faster and more safely, and come home feeling healthier and more energetic.

Inventive product: Tool Vest

Distributing the weight of tools over your shoulders rather than your hips makes good physical sense - but new generation tool vests go beyond the simple idea of moving tool garments upwards. In new generation tool vests, you'll find features like:

  • Sturdy mesh sections for ventilation and durability
  • Pockets for phones, pens, notepads etc as well as tools
  • Double Velcro attachments for tool pouches and holster pockets
  • Expander sections to make wearing over winter clothes possible

Back treatment costs can run into the thousands, with continual back treatment also costing thousands, let alone sick leave and low morale for the employee effected and his co-workers seeing the potential results of their efforts. The small investment of a tool vest compared to the costs of not having the right equipment is money very well spent.

Inventive Product: Kneepad work pants

The annoyance of putting kneepads on under ordinary work pants used to mean that most tradespeople simply didn’t bother - and lived with the consequences to their knees over time. New generation work pants have kneepad pockets built in, and work kneepads that are specially designed to fit in them. The cost of necessary corrective surgery on knees can run into thousands of dollars to the employer, and if continual treatment is needed around which could cost thousands more, let alone the cost of sick leave and low morale for the worker and probably his co-workers, could add upto thousands more per year . Choosing not invest in work kneepads and an easy system for using them could end up being quite risky.

Inventive product: Led light hat

Remember the old-style miner's hat with enormous spotlights attached to the front? They are a relic nowadays - there are slick baseball style caps available that incorporate LED lights into the brim of the cap that are barely noticeable in normal use.

Inventive Product: Elastic belt

Materials technology has evolved in leaps and bounds from the time when your socks used to start falling down after three washes! Elastic belts must be tried to be understood - the improved comfort comes without any sacrifice in durability.

Inventive Product: Ergo belt

Once upon a time you might have hung tool pouches from an ordinary leather belt. Nowadays tool bets are made of strong yet light and breathable materials like Cordura, with padding and multiple attachment points to help distribute weight in the most comfortable possible way. If you want to come home feeling almost the same as when you left, advancements like the Ergo Belt are a must.

Inventive Product: Tool belts with shoulder straps

If you prefer the accessibility and ease of use that tool belts provide, shoulder straps are a new invention in the work gear arena to help make them more ergonomically sound.

Inventive Product: Holster Pocket Pants with kneepad pockets and Velcro tool holders

Work pants have moved light years ahead in recent times, with advancements like:

  • Super lightweight fabric (as low as 5.6oz) that maintains durability and rip resistance
  • Holster pockets with separate compartments
  • Work kneepad pockets in the front
  • Velcro attachments for tool pouches and hammer holders

Inventive Product: ¾ pants with kneepad pockets and Velcro tool holders

Almost the same level of sun protection, but greatly improved breathability - workwear manufacturers 10 years ago didn’t even consider ¾ pants for men. Now the stereotypes have been broken down to allow hugely improved comfort.

Inventive Product: Work shorts with Holster Pockets and Velcro tool holders

Work shorts aren’t just a way to cover your neon-globe legs any more - now they can work as hard as you do, utilizing inbuilt holster pockets and Velcro attachments for tool pouches, hammer holders, etc.