SeeHerWork, a new apparel company launching in mid-September, is aiming to put female workers in clothes that both fit and perform.
According to the company, the number of women in non-traditional careers, including construction, is on the rise. However, hazards still need to be addressed. Citing a 2017 report from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, the company noted that 150 women per year lose their lives to work activities that could be prevented through properly fitted personal protective equipment (PPE) and clothing.
New Product Offerings
In response, the company’s line includes many products an industrial woman needs, with options ranging from eye protection to tool belts. Clothing options encompass basics to high visibility, with vibrant colors and reflective materials.
“We want to empower working women,” said Jane Henry, founder of SeeHerWork.
The clothes are lightweight with moisture absorption materials, allowing layering for shifting climate conditions. Meanwhile, gloves are designed to fit the female hand and close tightly around female wrists.
“We are sticking to the standard and making it highly effective from a fit and performance perspective,” Henry said. “Most of the women say that they are tired of ‘pink it and shrink it’! They want to perform.”
The company officially launches in September 2018, with pre-orders available beginning August 1, 2018.
Born from Hurricane Harvey
The seeds of the company were sown in the wake of the devastation that Hurricane Harvey brought to Henry’s native city of Houston, Texas. Like many in her community, Henry lost numerous items due to the storm’s damage to her house and cars.
In Harvey’s aftermath, she served as general contractor on her house helped by volunteers of both genders until her insurance money arrived four months later. During that time, Henry quickly noticed a huge gap — there were no well-designed, well-fitting work clothes for women.
Gloves did not fit. Work pants were made of yoga material and tore easily. Overalls, designed for men, required women to undress almost entirely when they took bathroom breaks. Researching the issue, Henry said she found that tradeswomen often came to similar conclusions. In addition, safety was a huge concern with extra material flopping around and putting women at risk of getting caught in machinery.
In response to the concerns, Henry and a student at nearby Rice University convened over 50 focus groups from market segments such as construction, emergency response, food service, and military.
“All these ladies needed basic stuff,” Henry said. “Clothing and equipment matter.” Potential items range from tops that close higher to protect against dust and debris falling into undergarments, to kit bags that would allow females to quickly change roles from field worker to office worker to mom, with a “grab and go” approach to organization.
From there, Henry hired a product designer and got to work — with fit and ability to perform as the highest priorities.
For more information, contact: SeeHerWork, (281) 623-1448, www.seeherwork.com