Whether you operate a white tablecloth restaurant in the middle of Manhattan or a fast casual eatery in the suburbs, uniforms are a business expense you will always have to consider.
There are a lot of details to factor in when deciding on your uniform plans. So Total Food Service sat down with Kevin Ross of S&H Uniforms to give you their professional insights for what you need to know when looking at uniform design.
What are the first things that a restaurant should be thinking about in terms of uniform design?
Create three or four different options and don’t be afraid to think outside of the box.
What is the relationship between the design and feel of a restaurant and its uniforms?
You need to determine what the uniform is based on. (Logo, Color Scheme, Theme, ect) Then you need to determine the look that you are trying to reach. Next step is to decide on the type of fabric you are going with.
For many years, restaurant and club owners subsidized uniforms. Why does that make sense again?
First of all it is time to drop the rental expense. We can show you how to buy your uniforms direct and save a ton of money. Also consider putting in your own washing facility.
Some years, we see lots of colors and some we get back to earth tones. Where are we now?
We’ve never seen more fun colors being done in so many wonderful breathable fabrics. Color is the new black and white.
Lots of changes through the years in fabrics and textiles, what’s the latest?
Micro fabrics are everywhere. They are what everybody is using now. The staff loves them because they look crisp and breath.
Kitchens can be extremely hot. Are there fabrics you would suggest for a culinary team?
Again, make sure your uniforms are comfortable and are all about breathing. These folks are all about keeping your customers happy with great food. So why not ask your chef and culinary team for their input on uniforms?
Wait staff spend lots of time on their feet. How would you approach the selection of the right footwear?
Think about yourself. We’ve all spent days in uncomfortable shoes. With all of the amazing bio-orthotics and breathable leathers, there’s no excuse for anybody on your team to not be wearing a comfortable shoe. In the market today, we have a variety of price points.
What about shoes and safety in your kitchen?
You may even find that your insurance costs may decrease if you take the time to make sure that you offer your team a slip resistant shoe.
Kevin Ross is the CEO of S&H Uniform Supply in White Plains, NY. You can send him questions at firstname.lastname@example.org, reach him via phone at 800-210-5295, or visit the S&H website.