Armed Work Wear was founded in 2007 by Josh Banks, a painter from Salt Lake City, Utah. Right out of the gate, this made Armed painter’s pants unique because they were thought out and designed by someone with years of experience in our field. Pants that are sold by larger companies are often conceptualized and marketed by folks who have never worn work pants every day. Armed Work Wear is a different kind of apparel company.
I happen to fall into the category of painters who have never been particularly comfortable wearing traditional white painter’s pants. Honestly, prior to discovering Armed painter’s pants, I had spent at least a couple of decades working in Carhartt’s – which are designed more for carpenters than for painters.
You know the feeling – you stick your putty knife in the back pocket and it ends up sideways and bent. Slide your 5-1 in the hip pocket, hop in your truck and get a hole in either the pants or the truck seat. Slip a nail set into any pocket and who knows where it may end up. Paint a bunch of baseboard and a few decks in traditional work pants and the knees quickly begin to wear away. And oops, you’re 20+ feet up on an extension ladder and your dust brush falls out of your pocket.
Armed Work Wear obviously considers their pants to be more tool than soft good. While these pants are as stylish as work pants can be, it is their function that is most impressive. The pants have nine built in pockets that are perfectly sized to house all of the small tools and accessories that painters need to carry:
- dust brush
- nail sets
- putty knives
- flat blades
- screw driver
- cell phone
- small notepad
And the hammer loop makes an ideal rag loop. It is like having the storage capacity of a tool belt – without the bulk. The pocket orientation is such that you can kneel down, go up and down ladders, and work on roofs/floors without sitting on the tools in your pockets or worrying about them falling out.
Most importantly, the pants have pocket inserts for knee pads. For those of us who work in real job site environments, this is huge. We no longer need to fear kneeling on sub-floors, slate, tile or concrete floors, exterior patios, decks, shingle roofs or rough exterior landscaping.
We all know the pain of kneeling on the random pebble or sheetrock screw – right on the knee cap. And we all know the pain in the butt of wearing traditional strap on knee pads. I have never in my life found a pair that I liked. They are bulky, bad for circulation and make you sweat in strange ways.
What a simple and practical idea to create pockets at the knees with low profile pad inserts that slide in and out with ease. These pants have a way of making the most miserable prep and finishing tasks more bearable. We initially reviewed these pants for APC magazine in 2010, and have been hooked on them ever since.
For more information, visit www.armedworkwear.com.