Modern uniforms and work wear by Melbourne based Cargo Crew, run by sisters Felicity Rodgers and Narelle Craig.  Photo - James Newman.

Modern uniforms and work wear by Melbourne based Cargo Crew.  Photos - James Newman.

Modern uniforms and work wear by Melbourne based Cargo Crew.  Photos - James Newman.

HAVE YOU NOTICED that pretty much every single cool cafe that opens up in Melbourne (and beyond!) seems to have a spunky young crew kitted out in super stylish denim aprons!? It’s quite the modern ‘hospo’ trend, and frankly, I hold local start-up Cargo Crew at least partially responsible!

Cargo Crew is a Melbourne based business specialising in modern workwear / staff uniforms, run by sisters Felicity Rodgers and Narelle Craig.  Based from a workspace and showroom in Collingwood, this entrepreneurial duo and their small team create all kinds of contemporary uniforms and corresponding accessories, with a particular emphasis on contemporary work wear for the hospitality industry – including, but not limited to, denim aprons!

Having originally studied fashion at RMIT, Felicity brings design credentials to the partnership, whilst Narelle came from a career in advertising before joining forces with her sister in 2007.  ‘After having my own fashion label and regularly being approached by businesses to design their staff uniforms, I identified a demand for more fashion forward staff uniforms’ says Felicity.  ‘We especially noticed a demand for bespoke uniforms for venues and event companies, and recognised a niche in the market to offer contemporary uniforms as a stock service offering – meaning items that are available for immediate purchase’.

In September 2012, Felicity and Narelle launched Cargo Crew as an extension of Felicity’s established business, Cargo Apparel & Merchandise, which specialises in custom branded products and clothing.  In just a year their new business has already grown an impressive client base – they have custom designed aprons for the likes of Seven Seeds Coffee Roasters, Koko Black chocolate shops, and a personal fave – the gorgeous Harvest Cafe in Newrybar near Byron Bay!  I guess Australia’s insatiable appetite for great coffee has certainly played a role in Cargo Crew’s success so far… !

The entire Cargo Crew range is designed by Narelle and Felicity and their small team here in their Collingwood studio.  Their range can be customised with specific branding or other embellishments, and the Cargo Crew team can also develop bespoke pieces for companies requiring original products, designed from scratch.  This personalised approach is a major drawcard for Cargo Crew’s client base – a point of difference which has really propelled the growth of this fledgling brand in its first year of operation.

Not content to rest on their laurels, Felicity and Narelle already have plans underway to develop a new division of their business.  ‘Cargo Crew Tailor Made’ will offer made to order garments for corporate clients, including a complete textile sourcing service, and is due to launch around Christmas time.

Cargo Crew’s full range of uniforms and accessories is available to purchase in their online shop, here.  I actually really like this smart bib apron in ‘pebble’ grey… I wonder if it’s weird to buy just one for home?!

Sisters Felicity Rodgers and Narelle Craig of Cargo Crew, in their Collingwood workspace.  Photos - James Newman.