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Patagonia Changes Corporate Sales Policy, Endangers ‘Midtown Uniform'

The infamous getup includes a Patagonia vest, a button-down shirt and either jeans or slacks

What to Know

  • It might be time to say farewell to the infamous Midtown Uniform
  • The uniform relies on the Patagonia vest and includes slacks or jeans and a button-down shirt
  • Patagonia changed their corporate sales policy to increase Certified B Corporations, which support social and environmental causes

It might be time to say farewell to the infamous Midtown Uniform.

That's because Patagonia, the apparel maker whose vests are central to the look -- which also includes slacks or jeans and a button-down shirt -- is apparently shifting corporate sales from tech and finance firms to companies that focus on green and social initiatives. 

Buzzfeed first reported the policy change after the president of Vested, an integrated communications agency, tweeted an email from a reseller after a  client's order was rejected.

Patagonia said that the shift won't affect current customers, but that its "corporate sales program manages Patagonia’s sales to other companies, non-profits and other organizations."

"We recently shifted the focus of this program to increase the number of Certified B Corporations, 1% For The Planet members and other mission-driven companies that prioritize the planet," the company said in a statement. 

According to its website, Certified B Corporations "meet the highest standards of verified social and environmental performance, transparency, and accountability." Patagonia is itself a Certified B Corporation.

The people behind the Midtown Uniform Instagram account, which highlights and often maligns pictures of people wearing the getup across the county, said in a statement they weren't surprised by Patagonia's shift in policy.

"It was only a matter of time before Patagonia laid the hammer down on working with financial firms," said the person who runs the account. "They don't want to be associated with firms that aren't aligned with their mission. I get it. I honestly don't think this is gonna have much effect on what finance dudes wear."

The creator of the Instagram account said that they don't think that the change will affect the prevalence of the so-called midtown uniform since many of the submissions to the page include vests that don't have corporate embroidery.

"In fact, I think it'll have the reverse effect as the brand will seem more unattainable and thus more desirable," the account-runner said.
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