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Uniforms...........l ove `em or hate `em?!

(77 Posts)
Panache Mon 09-Apr-18 09:36:57

Uniforms,do you like them or perhaps even hate them?
I am not thinking of the three services by the way, but those garments many of us will have stuck with religiously during our work periods.But then on returning home on evenings and weekends the huge sigh of relief when discarding the usual “clobber” and donning whatever makes us the most comfortable.

What does the term “work uniform” mean to you?

For me as a Nurse a uniform was strict and in my time I have to say it looked the part,attractive,authoritative and highly professional.
It started as a grey pinstripe dress with starched collar,cuffs,apron and frilly cap together with black nylons and shoes.Hair had to be short or kept up away from the face,no jewellery or make up allowed.Later on I wore a denim blue dress with the rest remaining much the same.
A far cry from the somewhat sloppy but more comfy theatre “scrubs” most Nurses wear today, whilst anything goes regarding footwear and even make up and minimum jewellery seems allowed.Certainly the trousers now part of the nurses “uniform” not only saves on those darned nylons, but are a far more practical garment for the work they are required to do.
Whilst back in my day the uniform was worn only on the wards or place of work, and never whilst visiting the Supermarket or hopping on and off a `bus!

Probably one of the main causes in the rise of these bugs.

Quite frankly I loved my uniform and felt very much the part whilst fully dressed ready to meet another challenging day................but still so great to change into one`s own clothes to thoroughly relax in at home.
Can`t beat those "onesies!!".............or similar.I think perhaps leggings and tunics allow for great relaxation.

Teetime Mon 09-Apr-18 10:31:48

I loved my nurses uniform and the patients seemed to like it to. It helped them identify who was who and who was likely to give them the help they needed. DH had a penchant for it too. grin.

hildajenniJ Mon 09-Apr-18 10:45:40

I also loved my nurses uniform. Being in the mental health sector we didn't wear aprons and caps, but we had pinstripe blue dresses with belts which denoted our rank, black tights and black shoes. We wore the plastic aprons when serving meals, or doing messy jobs. They were colour coded, white, blue, and red. The trousers and tunics I wore in the private sector were more practical, but not as smart.
At the hospital, I had a navy blue cape, lovely and warm, to go between buildings in the winter. I had to give it back when I left to have children. I really wanted to keep it.

Panache Mon 09-Apr-18 10:56:00

A warm hello to my fellow Nurses.

Oh! yes those capes,they really were the business,so warm and cosy.Today of course, very much back in fashion to some degree.
They bring back memories of those pre Christmas events where upon we would go around the wards and departments with lanterns, whilst warmly wrapped up in our capes over our uniform,singing Christmas carols.
Our faces glowing in the dark!!
Then other times parading around the Cenataphs on Remembrance Sundays,a solemn event and we felt so part of it all.
This time it was usually bitterly cold, but we felt little of the chill when wearing those capes.
Mine was navy with a red lining.

tanith Mon 09-Apr-18 11:16:25

I loved my uniform it was so easy knowing what I’d be wearing to work every day, over the 20 yrs it changed from being quite formal with with a cap to a much easier and relaxed form by the time I retired.

ninathenana Mon 09-Apr-18 11:22:02

I now have images of Call The Midwife smile
I was a veterinary assistant and wore a light blue NHS style dress but without the belt, only the qualified nurses wore a belt. I loathed the plastic aprons in the summer as we couldn't open windows for fear of escapees ! So got hot and sticky.

eazybee Mon 09-Apr-18 12:14:12

I never had to wear a uniform after I left school, for which I am grateful, but I appreciate the need for medical staff to wear one; I just wish they didn't look so scruffy.
A smart appearance promotes confidence: "this person knows what she has to do, and will do it well".
I always admire air hostesses, immaculately presented even when the flights are hot, sticky and turbulent.

Jalima1108 Mon 09-Apr-18 12:50:52

They bring back memories of those pre Christmas events where upon we would go around the wards and departments with lanterns, whilst warmly wrapped up in our capes over our uniform,singing Christmas carols.
I remember that from when I was in hospital after having DD - the nurses walking through the corridors with lanterns, in their uniforms plus capes, singing Christmas carols.

Panache Mon 09-Apr-18 13:39:27

Delighted to have evoked some happy memories for you Jalima1108.

This was not meant to be totally about the Nursing profession you know, so what about those of you perhaps in other positions of authority whom wore the same old throughout their working it a dark suit,shirt and heels for instance?
Were you equally pleased to reach home of an evening, kicking off those heels and slipping out of your smart suits, donning something loose and comfortable?
There are many kinds of "uniforms" I am sure.

gummybears Mon 09-Apr-18 14:08:42

When I was still practising law I owned many, many grey grey suits and black dresses.

But only ever flat shoes. Cross examining in high heels is a nightmare.

BBbevan Mon 09-Apr-18 14:14:27

Never had a job which required a uniform. Loved my school uniform though. Panama hat and all

Agus Mon 09-Apr-18 14:30:40

My uniform was exactly as you describe Panache and also how we had to be presented on the ward. Hair in a bun under my cap, no nail polish, make up or jewellery and no first name familiarity. I was Nurse (my surname) and my collegues and I addressed each other so on duty.

I enjoyed doing the Christmas carol patrol in full uniform and bringing some cheer to those who were stuck in hospital over the holiday period, relaxing the rules a bit if possible.

Oh how I hated the changeover, early seventies when we started wearing white dress and shoes. Throwing away perfectly good black nurses shoes and scrimping from our salary to buy white ones and the dresses were practically see through.

Alima Mon 09-Apr-18 14:45:31

Most of my adult life has revolved around uniforms. My own in the Wrens, No 1 suit, No 2 (woolly bear) suit, beetle crushers, shined so you could see your face in them. Collar detached shirts, had to starch the collars. Rain coat, great coat, summer blouses. The hat, came up a treat when cleaned with toothpaste. The list goes on. DH was in the Navy too then the MoD Police. Very handy never having to wonder what to wear to work.

Blue45Sapphire Mon 09-Apr-18 15:04:39

Having been a teacher never had to wear a uniform, but we were expected to look smart, in a dress or skirt and jumper. What a victory in the 70s though when our head allowed us to wear trousers, but only as part of a trouser suit. That didn't last long though, as we gradually left the jacket off and soon most of us enjoyed the ease and freedom of trousers in the classroom. The mind boggles at some sights the children must have seen in the era of the mini-skirt! I was a teacher in the 60s and recently found some pictures of me, my mini skirts must have left nothing to the imagination! Especially when bending over infant size desks.....

M0nica Mon 09-Apr-18 15:07:12

I never wore a formal uniform but through out my working life I always wore smart suits and more formal wear. I worked, mainly in male dominated industry sectors like engineering and was usually the only woman above clerical and secretarial level. so needed it make that clear.

I always referred to work wardrobe as my 'school uniform' and when I got home each evening, I hid my briefcase under the stairs and went straight upstairs and changed.

jura2 Mon 09-Apr-18 16:55:22

Hate them.

joannapiano Mon 09-Apr-18 19:06:20

DH was uniformed Police Officer for 30 years and at one stage was issued white nylon shirts. One busy day I put several of them in a wash not realising a red sock lurked in the machine. To my horror they all came out bright pink. I bunged them all in a bucket of bleach and they turned a sort of cream colour. He did notice, but continued to wear them.

Greyduster Mon 09-Apr-18 19:49:22

I loved my Army uniform; kept it immaculate and wore it proudly when required to, though I spent much of my working life in the Army in civilian suits, plodding away at the MOD. When I got married, I had someone else’s uniform to look after and knowing the form was very useful! In my later working life, clothing was relatively informal except for my last job when I was required to wear a suit for certain situations. I rather enjoyed it but wasn’t sorry to leave it all behind.

Jalima1108 Mon 09-Apr-18 19:52:56

Hate them.
I think that people wearing a uniform in the course of their work are instantly recognisable to the general public, so that is a positive imo.

agnurse Mon 09-Apr-18 21:37:49

As my username suggests, I too am a nurse. I teach nursing, so I don't usually wear a uniform. Our students are required to wear scrubs for labs (any type is fine), and they have to wear special green scrubs for their first two practica. They're green and have the school logo on the left breast. We assess the fit ourselves so we know they're dressed appropriately. When I teach practicum or lab I do wear scrubs. Personally, I choose to wear dresses or a top and skirt, but I wear leggings underneath instead of nylons. We do have a dress code, though - students (and instructors) must have their hair tied back, no big rings (flat wedding band is allowed), stud earrings only, necklaces only under your clothing, no fake nails or coloured nail polish, closed toe and heel shoes, no bracelets. You can wear a wrist watch but it must be removed prior to performing patient care. Most students elect to wear a lapel watch.

lemongrove Mon 09-Apr-18 21:45:51

Never had to wear any kind of uniform ( once past school age.)
Panache I think any men on the forum will enjoy reading your OP grin
My sister-in-law was a nurse, she wore a very pretty lilac dress and white starched apron.

Panache Tue 10-Apr-18 09:32:04

Lemongrove perhaps I should have added a few pictures??!!!

Again interesting reading because as the letters suggest uniforms come in all varying shapes,colours and sizes whilst in many cases they show a certain superiority which is no bad thing in the work place I suppose.
It is heaven sent to get back home though and toss that brief case,high heels,flats or whatever in the corner,and climb into one`s leisure wear........... whatever that may mean to us all.
School uniforms,yes another new subject that some one else may wish to explore?
I wore a bottle green pinafore dress,blazer and beret,together with red/gold badge plus cream square necked long sleeved shirts and green cotton gingham summer dresses.Shoes must be black and standard shape,macs bottle green only.............and the rules were extremely strict.(I paid the price for turning up in a coloured coat as I had grown out of my green one!!)

lemongrove Tue 10-Apr-18 09:34:28

That must have out you off bottle green for life Panache grin navy blue had a similar effect on me for about 30 years afterwards.

lemongrove Tue 10-Apr-18 09:34:46

Typo...put you off.

Panache Tue 10-Apr-18 09:49:18

Quite the reverse actually Lemongrove...............since that colour......bottle green...... has been well suited to my complexion and hair colour over earlier years!!
Though I quite understand your reasoning and I hope you have found a new love of Navy blue later on in life!!