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Press releases


7th Oct 2009

The 2009 Travelodge discarded clothing catalogue released today, has revealed that British workers are taking their fashion advice from Quentin Tarantino and are power-dressing in black and white like the sharp suited stars from 'Reservoir Dogs' - in order to be seen as leaders in the workplace.

The hotel chain's annual clothing inventory report has revealed that 60% of the 14,786 shirts left behind at Travelodge hotels were white. Whilst 80% of the 1005 discarded business suits and 40% of the 3,105 forgotten ties were black. In addition 50% of the 69,986 socks left behind by customers were also black.

To further investigate into the trend of monochrome (black and white) business attire being left behind at its hotels - Travelodge surveyed 5,000 British workers to obtain their views on business wear.

Key findings revealed seven out of ten British workers turn to a smart black suit and a crisp white shirt when they need to 'dress to impress' within the work and business environment.

Leading UK psychologist, Corrine Sweet, commented on the findings and said: "Due to the economic climate, 2009 has been one of the toughest years in decades within the work and business environment. Rivalry amongst workers has never been so fierce, therefore in a bid to stand out amongst co-workers, British workers have opted for 'power dressing' by wearing black and white.

"Monochrome colours are solid powerful colours. By dressing in black and white an individual can visually display their authority, seriousness of purpose, professionalism and allow their personality to shine through."

It's not just the average British worker who had adopted this current fashion style as top politicians and famous businesspeople have also followed suit. For example at the recent 'G20 Summit' In Pittsburgh, Gordon Brown and President Barack Obama both wore a black suit and white shirt. It was also reported by 'Fashionistas' around the globe President Obama primarily dressed in monochrome colours throughout his presidential campaign.

Another example is fashion veteran Angela Ahrendts, Burberry CEO, wore a chic black trouser suit and white shirt to attend Burberry's star studded catwalk show - which also celebrated the company's return to 'London Fashion Week'. Also new fashion icon Michelle Obama demonstrated the power of dressing in monochrome colours by wearing a smart black trouser suit and white top when she met Frances fashion queen and fellow Presidential wife Carla Bruni in Strasbourg earlier this year.

Travelodge hotels in Birmingham, London, Manchester and Edinburgh had the most items of monochrome business attire left behind within the last 12 months.

Adnan Ahmad, Travelodge Hotel Manager at Birmingham Central Broadway Plaza said: "During the week, our 13 Birmingham hotels are generally full of business customers. Some mornings my Bar Cafe will look like a scene from 'Reservoir Dogs' due to most of the customers being dressed in black and white clothing. We do have a vast range of black and white business attire left behind by forgettable customers. Items range from top end designers such as Armani, Hugo Boss to high street stores such as M&S and Burtons."

Further findings from the study revealed six out of ten of women will opt to wear a trouser suit rather than a skirt / dress when they need to dress to impress at work. Only 21% of female respondents claimed to wear skirt suit and 18% of women selected to wear a dress for an important business meeting. The report also revealed 45% of women in comparison to just 29% of men will dress smartly in order to feel more confident in the work place.

Corrine Sweet, further commented on the findings by saying: "Women today like to be taken seriously and the fact that 61% of women like to wear trousers is interesting as it signifies that women want to be seen to be wearing the trousers and not objectified sexually because of showing their legs. In addition women boost their confidence 45% more than men 29% in the workplace, as they know appearance counts for a lot."

Other key findings revealed:

Forty one per cent of British workers dress smartly in order to look important and to be taken more seriously at work

Average annual spend on a work wardrobe is 417.47 for men and for women its 343.68

Fifty two per cent of British workers will wear their favourite colour shirt or blouse to work, if they are feeling a little down in the dumps -so that they feel happier and more motivated in order to face the working day.

Corrine Sweet commented on the findings: "Colour can certainly shift a mood set and help increase motivation levels. It also aids to communicate an individuals personality. Its interesting that pink is a popular shirt colour, even among bankers, construction workers and electricians. This shows they are in touch, somewhere, with a more feminine side. Meanwhile, IT workers and sales people are keen to be seen as 'cool people'. Choosing to wear blue to work portrays a serene, confident presence. However, doctors choosing purple is fascinating, as purple is a regal and healing colour."


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