The Promotional Apparel Industry Needs More Denim
It’s time to take denim seriously. Gone are the days when the durable, blue fabric was only for truckers, rockers and Canadians. Now, major brands are beginning to launch entire fashion lines around the versatility and universality of denim. Now, this doesn’t mean that people will start dressing like Justin Timberlake and Britney Spears circa 2001 (or so we hope), but it does present an opportunity for fashion forward promotional apparel distributors looking to stay on top of trends.
With their new collection, “Denim for All”, H&M is betting big on denim, as well as diversity. The collection, due in stores and online later this month, features garments such as pants, jackets and dresses for a range of prices from $24.92 to $78.40. The “Denim for All” collection also features a variety of styles and detailing, including colored denim, stressing, fading, rips, patchwork and embroidery in order to promote and encourage individuality. H&M understandably views style as a signature form of self-expression, and by matching that philosophy with the ever-popular denim, the affordable fashion giant is hoping to score big.
Pernilla Wohlfahrt, head of design at H&M, commented on the brand’s thinking behind the collection, and how it saw denim as an opportunity to appeal to all sorts of end-users. “At H&M, we believe denim is for everybody,” she explained. “This spring is all about wearing denim your own way, with fresh cuts and colors for all. And we’re in love with double denim.”
— H&M (@hm) February 1, 2018
While this is of course a retail collection, it points to a possible opportunity for the promotional apparel industry. In creating branded apparel, companies are looking to design clothing that will look good so that end-users will wear it and give the represented brand the visibility it needs to inspire loyalty and, hopefully, generate new business. It’s no secret that end-users are more likely to represent a brand that they feel passionate about, but it’s also crucial that the apparel follows popular style trends as well.
It seems that everyone these days owns a denim jacket, and many of these end-users like to personalize their apparel with patches, embroidery or buttons. This could work in favor of brands that have well-designed or recognizable logos or insignia, as these could add flair to a denim jacket or shirt. Denim is also a great fabric for hats, especially ball caps.
Because denim is durable, it is also a first-rate material for workwear, and it’s not unusual to see construction or factory workers wearing denim apparel as part of their everyday uniforms. This is also an opportunity for the promotional products industry, and it shows most clearly that denim really is for everyone, from style enthusiasts to blue-collar folks.
H&M’s new collection is similar to one released by Target last month. Universal Thread, which was announced as part of Target’s recent private-label apparel push, is a women’s lifestyle and denim brand designed with affordability and inclusivity in mind. If successful, these collections could mark a big year for denim in the retail apparel industry, and we could start seeing more denim styles in promotional apparel as well. Whatever the outcome, two things are clear: Denim is for everyone, and it’s here to stay.