13 years ago Liv Thwaites was working as a Horticulturist in uncomfortable workwear that didn’t fit and made her unsafe in the workplace. This prompted Liv to explore other women’s experiences with their workwear and the research showed that women were grossly under-represented with the clothing provided to them at their workplace. The sleeves were too long and the risk of catching in machinery was real, the waist on the pants were way too big because a man’s waist & crotch area is different and the garments did up the wrong way. The list goes on. A woman’s body shape is different to a man’s body and it was evident to Liv that women needed workwear that was designed specifically for them so their mind could be 100% on the job.
Green Hip provides women with work clothing that expresses their sense of worth and enhances their sense of identity. Through clever design and fabric development Green Hip allows women to work in comfort and style, in a tailor made fit for all women in the workforce.
Prior to launching Green Hip, Liv worked closely with women working in the field. Every single woman who participated was feeling under-represented and angry at times that they were overlooked on a basic need for safety clothing. Through the close collaboration with these women, the designs for Green Hip were created and a safer alternative was born.
‘It was essential the trial women all had varying body types because naturally women come in all shapes and sizes. The fit had to be functional but comfortable for all women and the designs custom made for real women working in male dominated industries. This in turn created designs that complied with safety regulations within the workwear industry’ Says Liv Thwaites. ‘For a long time, it was just accepted by men and women, that women had to wear clothing that didn’t fit them and they were at a high risk of injury. Women had to alter the way they worked and be aware of the risks more so than men.’
Through this essential trial period, it was quickly established the workwear needed to be made from a durable cotton stretch fabric. Majority cotton for breathability but stretch was essential. The stretch component of the fabric allowed a tailor made fit so women could feel stylish but still work in comfort. Durability and longevity of the clothing was a key factor of the design process and still is to this day.
‘Cotton Stretch fabric was not utilised in the workwear industry back in 2010 and to launch workwear using this fabric was going against the grain. It was not the norm.’ Says Liv Thwaites.
Over the years Green Hip has expanded the colour range and styles to facilitate a wide range of occupations and uniform requirements so that all women in the workforce have a better option to work in. With more styles to be launched this year for maternity wear and Hi-Vis, Liv is determined to provide all women with the workwear they require on the job.
‘As a woman who has worked in the industry and had to wear mens clothing, I know first hand how demoralising it is to be required to wear men’s clothing day in day out. It has been my belief since the launch of my business that women deserve equality in the workplace and this means wearing appropriate clothing designed especially for us.’ Says Liv
This year Green Hip has been celebrating it’s 10th birthday of providing safe and comfortable workwear to women. It is a celebration for women who require the job of Personal Protective Equipment.
‘I have been wearing Green Hip since 2017 and it was such a relief to find a brand that understood the safety requirements needed for women. I believe that Green Hip is changing women’s lives one pair of pants at a time’ Says Laura Hose from Little Creatures Brewery.
Liv is passionate about women’s rights and a leader in the field of OH&S in the workplace. Her persistence and desire to grow her business in a competitive market has meant that women can feel professional and encouraged as a women in her chosen industry. It’s a wonderful time to be a woman in the workforce.