Universal Textiles Buying Guides

Helping our customers make informed decisions

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May, 2014

Our Top Picks For Summer Shorts

Shorts are easily one of our favourite summer staples, and during the hot weather they’re also one of the most necessary too. Whether you’re into cargo shorts, three-quarter lengths, hot pants or chinos, there’s a style for everyone here at Universal Textiles. Took a look at our top picks below!

Easily one of the most popular styles for men, cargo shorts are great for the beach and other informal summer occasions, with their medium length and crumpled effect fabric making them the perfect choice for casual wear. These 55 Soul Men’s Cargo Shorts are no exception, with their 100% cotton build and a total of six pockets making them a practical and comfortable choice. For those wanting to be a little more adventurous with their colour pallet, these Brave Soul Classic Cargo Shorts come in a choice of orange and blue hues, as well as the standard, sandy beige.

Chino shorts are another style that’s found a firm following amongst male consumers. Cut slightly shorter than their cargo counterparts, their neat design also sheds the crumpled effect for a more presentable look, making them a great choice for more formal summer occasions. These Men’s Pinstripe Lined Chino Shorts are a great example, with their detailed inner lining and turn-up hems providing a sleek, smart finish.

Chino shorts are also a fantastic choice for women, with these Brave Soul Skinny Shorts boasting a similar turn-up hem and a choice of pink, teal and navy designs. Their medium length means that you’ll feel the sun on your skin and avoid overheating, and their cotton rich build ensures a comfortable fit for the hot summer months.

Hot pants are another great option for women looking to work on their tan and beat the heat. These Hot Pants” href=”http://www.universal-textiles.com/UK-UT/utshorts163.php”>Denim Stars And Stripes USA Hot Pants are a fashion-forward choice with an eye-catching design that’ll ensure you stand out from the crowd.

Check out our full range of men’s and women’s shorts at Universal-Textiles.com!

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Our Top Footwear Picks For Summer

One of the best things about the onset of warmer weather is finally being able to swap our bulky winter wear for clothes that are lighter, brighter and ready for the beach, and footwear is certainly no exception. So if you’re all set to stow away your boots and wellies till later in the year, now is the perfect time to invest in some shoes that’ll let the sun find your feet. Check out our top summer-friendly footwear choices below!

Throughout summer, slip-on shoes are a must. A popular, sun-friendly style for men in recent years has been the espadrille, and these Mens B&C Vibrant Slip-Ons are a prime example. Lightweight, stylish and made from 100% cotton, they’re ideal for warmer weather. For women, these Riva Catch Leather Moccasins are equally easy to put on and kick off at your leisure, and in a choice of three colours, you can mix and match to make the perfect summer outfit.

Sandals are one of the easiest go-to options for all ages through the warmer months. With two adjustable Velcro straps and a specially-sculpted footbed, these Hi-Tec Owaka Mens Sandals offer a comfortable, supportive fit, and the sturdy rubber outsole ensures stability and grip whether you’re out and about or relaxing at home. The Hi-Tec Ladies Indra Sandal offers similar benefits, and these Skechers Boys And KangaRoos Girls designs are great for letting smaller feet breathe.

If you’re looking for summer footwear with the ultimate in on-off accessibility, flip-flops are easily the way forward. With a lightweight build and a thick wedge outsole, these Syros Womens Flip-Flops are the perfect choice for relaxing on the beach or pool-side, and with a stylish pattern of pewter and silver studs, flip-flops have never been so fashionable. For men, these Floso Camouflage Wave Print Flip-Flops are ideal for slipping on whether you’re heading to the coast or out into the back garden, and are designed to dry quickly in the summer sunshine.glagla2

Whilst they’re great for casual wear, flip-flops and sandals aren’t the ideal choice for hitting the gym. Those who wish to keep their feet cool whilst also keeping active through the warmer weather need look no further than the Glagla footwear range. With a patented ventilation system that keeps feet an average of 6 degrees cooler than a standard shoe and discharges twice as much moisture in the process, the Glagla Classic Trainer (available for both men and is a great choice for working out through summer without excess sweat.

Click here to check out our full range of footwear for further inspiration!

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Essential Things to Buy for Summer Vacations

No matter where you are headed for the summer, there are certain things that you should always keep handy to stay stylish, fashionable, and ready for any summer escapade and activity. Shop for these summer essentials only from the most trusted online retailers and you will be all set for an unforgettable summer vacation:

Summer Hathats are rarely given the attention that they deserve, but they are very practical, especially during days when the sun is high up. They can also be very fashionable additions to your summer wardrobe, especially when you find a summer hat that goes with all your summer dresses and getups. You will avoid burning your face and protect your hair from sun damage while keeping a fashionable get-up.
• Swimwear – whether you prefer a one-piece suit, a two-piece bikini, a good pair of trunks or some surf shorts, carrying around a nice pair of swimwear is essential during summer, when there are plenty of opportunities for water activities.
• White cotton/linen Shirt – White is the most neutral colour you can wear for summer. It is also designed to keep the heat away from the body. A nice and crisp cotton T-shirt or polo will not only look great, but keep you cool as well.
• Summer scarf – Scarves are probably the most versatile accessories you can own. A lightweight scarf with fun patterns in all kinds of summer colours is the best accent for your plain white shirt or any other outfit you have on. They also come in handy when you have to cover up while wearing your swimsuit.
• Waterproof bagBeach hopping is one of the most fun activities to do during hot summer spells. Having a waterproof bag where you can keep all your essential belongings while you enjoy the water keeps your gadgets, wallet, and all other personal belongings dry and safe from water damage.

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Our Top Summertime Swimwear Picks

One of the best things about the arrival of warmer weather is finally being able to shed our winter layers and hit the beach, and with a heat-wave supposedly heading our way next week, the opportunity might arrive a little sooner than you’d thought! But if your family’s swimwear selection could do with a bit of an update then take a look below at our top picks for making the most of the sunshine this season!

Whether you’re travelling to the coast for a seaside adventure or simply taking them to the local pool, kids love to take to the water at the first opportunity. With a netted interior lining and vibrant summer design, these Boys Palm Tree Swim Shorts are a stylish and practical choice for kids from the age of eight to thirteen, and these Cargo Bay Camo Print Swimming Shorts are great for younger kids also hoping to visit the beach with friends and family over the coming months.

There are plenty of options for girls too. This Fluorescent Heart Print Halterneck Swimsuit is a great choice for kids looking to stand out from the crowd, and this Patchwork Two-Piece Bikini is another colourful, beach-friendly option for the warmer months.

With their fun anchor and yacht print design, these Brave Soul Nautical Swimming Shorts are a fashionable choice for men looking to feel the sun on their skin this summer, and with an elasticated drawstring waist, a comfortable fit is guaranteed. For male shoppers seeking something a little different, these Colour Fade Swim Shorts boast a longer over-the-knee cut and come in a selection of three colours, each with a detailed Hawaiian flower pattern.

For women who take their swimwear seriously, this Aqua Sphere Womens Naiad Swimsuit is a sleek and stylish option, boasting high UV protection and quick-dry capabilities. The suit’s breathable polyamide build is constructed with elastane, ensuring a snug but comfortable fit, and built-in chlorine resistance makes it ideal for combating the cocktail of chemicals found in many swimming pools.

Accessories such as these Aqua Sphere Adults Kaiman Goggles are a great way to improve your swimming experience and investigate the world beneath the waves. The easy-adjust buckle and sturdy, elasticated straps makes the design easy to alter to your liking, and with scratch-resistant lenses that also boast 100% UVA protection, comfort and protection are both guaranteed. The Aqua Sphere Kids Moby Swim Goggles make a great leak-free companion piece, ensuring that younger eyes can also play and explore free from the effects of chlorine.

Make sure you check out our full range of swimwear at Universal-Textiles.com!

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Grab Some Great Warm Weather Bargains!

With Summer not officially kicking off until the 21st of June, there’s still a little way to go before the weather permits us to slip on our board shorts and take to the beach, but with
sunshine said to be on the horizon, it’s never too early to stock up on a few summertime essentials. Universal Textiles has everything you need to make sure that you and your loved ones take advantage of any warm weather that comes our way.

Even though we Brits are always keen to welcome the sun back after months of dull, grey winter weather, keeping cool soon becomes our immediate priority. With that in mind, designs like this Womens Diamond Pattern Summer Dress are a great way of balancing style with practicality throughout periods of hot weather. Made with 100% cotton, the dress flows freely and leaves your arms and shoulders open to the air, helping you soak up the sun without overheating in the process.

For men looking to beat the heat this year, these Brave Soul Over The Knee Cargo Shorts are perfect for getting out and about whether you’re taking to grill for an early barbecue or simply lounging in the garden. Their 100% cotton build means that you’re guaranteed comfort and softness, and with a total of five pockets, there’s plenty of room for your phone, wallet and keys. Try pairing these with this Front Row Mens Denim Shirt for the perfect sun-ready outfit.

It goes without saying that kids should always make the most of warmer weather whenever the opportunity presents itself, and in the likely event that they’ve already outgrown last years’ sun-friendly garments, these Brave Soul Denim Shorts are perfect for kids embarking on outdoor adventures. With its cute, Hawaiian flower pattern and strappy design, this Floral Pattern Dress is another great option for girly girls looking to have fun in the sun throughout the coming months.

By now we’re sure you’re more than ready to stow away your winter wellies and trade them in for something lighter and brighter. These Mirak Mens Yachtmaster Slip-On Shoes are a great casual and colourful choice, perfect for pairing with cargo or board shorts, and these comfortable Cotswold Summer Sandals are perfect for ladies looking to relax with friends at informal warm weather get-togethers.

Be sure to check out our full range of shirts, shorts and dresses at Universal-Textiles.com!

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How To Update Your Office Wardrobe

shoesFor some, the importance of dressing for the workplace can get lost during the hustle and bustle of the early morning rush, but in order to perform to the best of your ability you need to be comfortable both mentally and physically in the clothing you select. If you or your loved ones’ workwear wardrobe could do with a little updating, check out our selection of great quality shirts, ties, shoes and accessories below, perfect for any worker looking to be the envy of the office.

A crisp, clean Oxford shirt is a sure-fire way to make a good impression on your colleagues and superiors. This B&C Mens Long Sleeve Shirt is made from genuine Oxford fabric, and has a built-in Easycare finish to ensure that the product is protected against shrinking and creasing during washing and ironing. The female design makes use of the same technology, with both the collar and body also being tailored to be comfortable and flattering for women in the workplace.

Whether you prefer patterns or colours, skinny or standard or knotted or clip-on, a necktie can be a great way for men to inject a little of their own personality into an otherwise drab office uniform. This Premier Mens Coloured Business Tie is available in a choice of over twenty different block colours, with a shade to suit even the most discerning of workers, and it’s a steal with 25% currently slashed from the original retail price.

Perhaps one of the most vital aspects of a successful office wardrobe is your choice of footwear. Whether you’re attending meetings, delivering presentations or sprinting to catch the last train, sturdy and supportive shoes are essential. Crafted from real leather and incorporating soft internal padding, these Cotswold Mens Lace-Up Oxford Shoes are a great choice for the male worker looking to balance practicality with style.  Similarly, these Amblers Ladies Court Shoes boast a genuine leather build and a 1 ¼ inch heel, perfect for a busy day in the office.

Whether you’re looking after confidential papers or simply wanting to protect your shoesvaluables (not to mention your lunch) during the daily commute, a practical and smart-looking work bag can be invaluable. This Shugon Briefcase Bag boasts 11 litres of storage space, with its spacious inner compartment protected by both a zip fastener and a front-folding flap which can be clipped at the bottom for extra security. For those who need a little extra room, this Bagbase Portfolio Briefcase Bag has an extra 4 litres of storage, and comes in shades of blue, black and grey.

Be sure to check out our full range of workwear at Universal-Textiles.com!

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Why Supportive Shoes Are Key To The Future Of Your Feet

massivefuckingfootIt’s an unfortunate reality that people often underestimate the dramatic effects that their choice of footwear can have not only their feet, but also on their balance and posture throughout the wider body. With younger consumers in particular being tempted by the cheaper designs offered by some of today’s high street retailers, arch support is rarely high on the average shopper’s list of priorities, with many placing style firmly over substance. But as the old adage goes, you only get what you pay for, and with cheap but poorly designed shoes having the potential to lead to back pain and skeletal misalignment, supportive footwear is something that you can’t afford to scrimp on.

Though you may not know it, there are 26 bones in each of your feet, all of them working together to provide your body with the support it needs to bear the brunt force of walking and sprinting across a variety of different terrains both natural and man-made. With each step you take, your feet are working as your own personal shock absorbers, supporting the weight of the rest of your body as you go about your day.

According to the New York Times, modern people spend roughly four hours a day on their feet, with the average pair supporting a force equivalent to several hundred tons each day. When footwear is carefully designed to support the natural shape of your feet, your bones are kept in their proper alignment, allowing them to effectively absorb the pounding that flat, inflexible surfaces such as concrete and wood throw at them.PRINT

But with some of today’s all-too-affordable footwear, corners have often been cut, with thin and unsuitable materials being used in the manufacturing process. As a result, feet fail to receive the support that they need, which can cause the entire skeletal structure to become misaligned as other areas of the body (such as your back, hips or knees) are forced into helping absorb the impact. The end result can be persistent pain in not only your feet, but also in the spine, lower back and beyond, as well as a negative knock-on effect on your posture and balance.

So what can be done? Placing greater importance on the build of your shoes is certainly the best place to start, with the thickness of the sole and shock absorption performance being two key criteria. Skechers and Birkenstock are two of many companies that specialise in supportive footwear, with their specially designed footbeds offering comfort and support without compromising on style. For those who want as much support as possible, arch supports are another product worth investing in. These springy insoles are crafted to slip into your shoes and support the natural arch of your feet by filling the unsupported area with a comfortable bubble, usually filled with a soft, thick gel.

Click here to check out the Skechers and Birkenstock footwear that we currently have on offer!

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