Multiple factors will contribute to sustained growth in Workwear

Sales of workwear and PPE, which saw a remarkable surge during the pandemic, have continued to stabilise. In 2023, the sector achieved consistent growth, and this upward trend is expected to extend into 2024. Multiple factors will contribute to this sustained growth, including the government’s projection of constructing over 33,000 houses in 2024 and the positive influence of the vacant property grant on construction activity.

The persistent skills shortage in the construction sector remains a significant challenge, acting as a substantial barrier to growth. With more women entering the construction workforce than ever before, workwear companies are adjusting and expanding their product lines to prioritise the comfort and safety of female construction workers.

While inflation is still high the pace of growth has slowed down. There has been a growing emphasis on sustainability and environmentally friendly practices in the construction industry and construction retail in 2023. Sustainability in workwear continues as a pivotal trend as companies rapidly develop product ranges to meet the growing demand from environmentally conscious consumers.

The most notable shift in the sector is the rising demand for premium, stylish workwear products. Tradespeople are seeking comfortable, sports-inspired attire that they can proudly wear both during and after work, while ensuring their safety on the job and comfort all around.

In the Agricultural sector, weather has the most impact with very strong sales reported in September due to a drop in temperature and heavy rainfall recovering the sales lost from a milder first half of the year.

All these factors contribute to an increasingly intricate consumer demand landscape. For retailers and manufacturers alike, it continues to be a period of growth and transition. Despite strong demand, there’s a potential impact as consumers face reduced disposable income due to the cost-of-living crisis. Brands just take care to diligently manage their inventory, respond to the evolving needs of the customer, and set themselves apart through exceptional service and robust branding strategies.

Information kindly supplied by Rachel Davoren, MD Portwest Ireland and images supplied by Portwest.

WX2™ Range WX2™ by Portwest is an eco-conscious collection using GRS certified recycled fabrics and trims. The collection is manufactured with minimal impact on the environment and all products are constructed using a streamlined design to minimise waste during production which has the added benefit of delivering exceptional value. WX2™ has been developed to meet the specific needs of craftsmen and other industrial workers. Distinctive multi-functional pockets and chunky and robust zips, complement a slim and low-profile design.

Introducing Agrishield: a revolutionary rainwear brand, engineered for Irish weather, inspired by Irish farmers

Portwest are delighted to announce the launch of Agrishield, a premium Rain & Dairywear brand specifically crafted to meet the needs of Irish farmers. With a deep understanding of the unique challenges faced by the agricultural industry, Agrishield aims to provide durable, comfortable, reliable Rain & Dairywear to ensure optimal protection in the harshest weather & working conditions.

Agrishield is proud to be an Irish-owned brand, with a strong commitment to supporting local farmers and sustaining the agricultural heritage of Ireland. Agrishield is deeply rooted in the core values of hard work, resilience, and innovation which are found within the farming community.

Research by Agrishield showed the importance of staying dry and comfortable throughout long hours in the field & the Parlor, while breathability in the product was ranked as a must have by farmers. Agrishield Rain & Dairywear is tailored to withstand the unpredictability of Irish weather. Products are designed by integrating cutting-edge waterproof technology and breathable fabrics, so farmers can focus on their work without compromising on protection or comfort. With 78% of farmers surveyed saying they would prefer an item that could be repaired, the fabrics repairable nature is advantageous for farmers who rely heavily on rainwear for their protection. This aspect of the design is cost effective and reduces waste which makes it a more sustainable choice.

The Agrishield range is currently being made available in leading agricultural stores and hardware shops nationwide, ensuring easy accessibility for farmers across Ireland. The range includes Overcoats & Trousers, Smocks, Sleeves and more! This strategic distribution network has been established to ensure that Irish farmers can easily acquire the quality rainwear they need, hassle free.

Agrishield is an Irish-owned and operated rainwear brand developed by Portwest specifically for the needs of Irish farmers. With over one hundred years of experience, Portwest is committed to supplying innovative, high-quality products that protect workers and enhance their performance in diverse industries.

For more information or any further quotes, please contact

TIMCO launches extensive workwear range

TIMCO, a leading supplier of essential construction products, extends its promise to provide the essential products that trade professionals rely on every day, by including the clothes they wear too, following the recent launch of its first workwear range. The comprehensively branded TIMCO range includes workwear
for every role and task, and includes trousers, shorts, overalls, fleeces, rain jackets, waterproof trousers, soft shell jackets, and padded bodywarmers.

In time for Autumn, it also includes accessories such as beanie hats and adds to the range of Hi-Vis Clothing launched last year. The clothing has been specifically designed by TIMCO to suit a variety of jobs, so for example there are Craftsman Trousers made from heavy duty breathable, 4-way stretch fabric, with nine different pockets to store tools, tape measures etc, plus an adjustable hammer strap. In contrast, the Yardsman Trousers are made from lightweight, sturdy fabric and provide all-day comfort.

The premium rain jackets and trousers are made from heavy duty, high stretch nylon fabric, for
enhanced movement and comfort, which are 100% waterproof yet breathable, easy to clean and stain

All photography that features in the TIMCO brochures, merchandising solutions, and on the TIMCO website, has been taken in-house and features TIMCO colleagues modelling the clothing.

John Mackin, General Manager for TIMCO Ireland comments: “We’ve always pledged to provide every type of tool, building supply and equipment that construction and industrial workers might need throughout their working lives, and to guarantee outstanding quality, and now we’re delighted to be extending this to the clothes they wear too. We’ve spent 36 months in R&D to ensure a robust and comprehensive product range at value for money prices, which we are confident will be a big hit
with our customers.”

Whatever the job needs, trust, IRE: 047 63538 NI: 048 90992305

LMA reinforce their workwear message

Workwear means many different things to many different people. The workwear associated with firefighters is very different to that used by medics and doctors.

Company uniforms need to double as workwear according to their industry, some will be flexible, needing stretch elements, allowing movement while other might prioritise flame resistance. With so many options, how does a builders merchant know what to stock for their individual customer base? Knowing your customer base is the first and most obvious starting point. You don’t necessarily stock painters’ clothes if you don’t sell paint!

But with so many different customers with such different requirements how can you cover as many bases as possible?

Here are some handy hints from LMA:

Don’t necessarily just buy what you would wear: What type of work are my customers doing? Do they need to do tough physical work? Do they need to carry a block or length of pipe? There may be an option for you to stock different types of products, to suit your own specific customer demographic.

Consider it from your customer’s viewpoint: Your customer will have different considerations that they are looking for in features and benefits. Is it warm, dry, hard wearing, high viz elements etc? All these things will be of interest to your customer as well as those who like the look of the product. If you don’t have a choice on the shelf, they can’t make that decision.

Think like your customer: When in your workwear section approach it as different tradespeople, ask your staff to do the same. What does a plumber want? Is it the same as a brick layer? Do they work inside or outside? Are they carrying and lifting? Do they need external pockets is that a hazard? Do they kneel, crawl, and or climb? Do they work near sparks/grinders etc?

To help cover as many trades as possible, LMA have reviewed their range for winter 23/24 and added reinforced 300D Oxford to the more vulnerable areas, the areas that take the wear. They now have a range of upper garments with 300D Oxford reinforcement on the arms/cuffs, shoulders and stomach.

What is Oxford D300?

It’s a light fabric, waterproof, resistant to tearing, good softness, good pull resistance, and also has the advantages of fire resistance and abrasion resistance.


The Quebec, for instance, is the hoodie people love, the pockets at the front, the sleeves and shoulders all having this extra reinforcement. The Erable is a very warm shirt/jacket idea for the winter but has the added benefits of waterproof Oxford 300D on the shoulders and elbows.

The Mire is a high viz quarter zip hoodie with reinforced kangaroo pockets at the front.

These are just a few of the reinforced garments LMA has to offer. They have an extensive range of workwear to offer that will match most of your customers’ requirements.
Contact the LMA Country Manager Peter Dunican on 087 9660561 or for more information.