Different Types of Bars and Their Uniforms

As experts in designing and manufacturing custom uniforms for bars and restaurants of all types, Stock knows how important the perfect uniform is. The way your bartenders and servers look reflects your establishment's personality and makes a lasting impression on your patrons. 

In this guide, we'll explore the many types of bars and share some insights on creating the perfect uniform for each one.

Types of Bars

From dimly lit dives to swanky cocktail lounges, each type of bar has its own unique atmosphere and clientele. When it comes to your bartender, the right uniform can help set the tone, make your staff feel comfortable and confident, and create a cohesive look that aligns with your brand.

Let's take a tour of the bar scene and see how you can outfit your staff to suit your style.


The classic neighborhood pub is all about comfort and approachability. Think worn wooden booths, a solid selection of draft beers, and maybe a hearty menu of burgers and fries. For a pub uniform, you want something casual and functional, but still put-together.

Consider a chambray or denim shirt with the bar's logo embroidered on the chest pocket, paired with dark jeans or chinos. A pair of sturdy shoes and a bistro apron complete the look. 

Additional uniform ideas:

  • Flannel shirt with rolled sleeves and bar logo patch
  • Corduroy pants in a warm neutral tone
  • Graphic tee with the pub name

Cocktail Bars

A craft cocktail bar is an upscale establishment where mixology takes center stage. Patrons expect impeccable service and Instagram-worthy drinks in an elegant atmosphere. Your staff's attire should reflect that elevated experience.

A crisp white dress shirt, slim black trousers, and a black bib apron or vest make for a timeless bartender ensemble. Add a pop of personality with a bow tie, pocket square, or custom pin, like the subtle unicorn pins sported by staff at The Violet Hour in Chicago

Additional uniform ideas:

Dive Bars

A simple tee shirt with a bold screen print of your bar's logo is perfect for dive bars. Choose a color that pops against your interior and don't be afraid to have some fun with the graphics. Accessorize with a hat to add some extra flair and personality. Complete the ensemble with comfortable jeans and durable sneakers and your staff will fit right into the dive bar ethos.

Additional uniform ideas:

  • Vintage band tee with ripped jeans
  • Mechanic shirt with name patch and bar logo
  • Tie-dye tee with bar name in bold lettering
  • Denim jacket


For a brewery tasting room or brewpub, the uniform should mirror the handcrafted, blue-collar spirit of beer-making. Think durable workwear fabrics like denim and canvas in muted, earthy colors.

A chambray shirt with the brewery's logo embroidered on the chest or back makes for a versatile base. Adding an apron in waxed canvas is a nice touch. You can also experiment with colorful straps or contrasting pockets. Check out the uniforms Stock created for Goose Island brewery for inspiration - the untucked chambray shirts strike just the right laid-back vibe.

Additional uniform ideas:

  • Henley shirts
  • Overalls or work jumper with the brewery logo
  • Vintage beer advertising tee
  • Beanie with brewery logo patch

Sports Bars

If you’re looking at creating a uniform for a sports bar, try a polo shirt in one of the bar's signature colors with a logo on the chest. If your bar affiliates with a local team, consider custom hats or jerseys for big game days. Choose khaki shorts or pants that will stay looking neat all shift long and slip-resistant shoes ideal for navigating a bustling bar. 

Additional uniform ideas:

  • Baseball tee with 3/4 length sleeves
  • Snapback hat with team logo

Wine Bars

Wine bars have exploded in popularity and your staff's uniforms should reflect the bar's contemporary yet refined aesthetic.

Consider a monochromatic look in all-black or charcoal grey. A tailored button-up shirt pairs nicely with sleek slacks or a pencil skirt and a long bistro apron.

Additional uniform ideas:

  • Aprons in dark rich colors
  • Banded collar Oxford shirts
  • Short sleeve Oxford shirts

Hotel Bars

Hotel bars run the gamut from cozy lounges to see-and-be-seen hotspots. No matter the atmosphere, staff uniforms should align with the hotel's aesthetic and clientele.

For an upscale property, consider a uniform that combines modern cuts with traditional fabrics. A charcoal suit with a mandarin collar shirt and narrow tie makes a contemporary statement. For something more casual, try a short-sleeve button-down with chinos, accented with a colorful bow tie or pocket square.

Stock worked with Hotel Kansas City's basement bar El Gold to capture the bar's upbeat energy while complimenting their branding. Bartenders sport custom stretch gray chambray shirts, the perfect mix of comfort and style for slinging drinks. Paired with gold cotton duck waist aprons, the look is both functional and fashionable. Finish off the look with a custom "outlaw" pin that adds a playful touch of rebellion to the ensemble.

Additional uniform ideas:

  • Double-breasted vest and trousers
  • Crisp white shirt with collar bar

Karaoke Bars

Karaoke bars promise a lively atmosphere. For your staff's uniforms, embrace the playful, high-energy spirit.

Consider a color-block shirt in bright, contrasting shades with a cheeky slogan or graphic. A branded baseball cap and dark jeans keep the look relaxed but uniform. 

Additional uniform ideas:

  • Bomber jackets


A fitted black or white tee makes a solid base for nightclub uniforms. Pair it with denim jeans. Alternatively, for higher end night clubs you could opt for cocktail dresses for the female staff and Oxford shirts, ties, and black trousers for the male staff members.

Additional uniform ideas:

  • Vests can be a nice touch for higher end nightclubs
  • A white blouse with dark trousers

Tips for Choosing the Perfect Bar Uniform

Consider your clientele

Your staff uniforms should match the needs and expectations of your target audience. A blue-collar bar crowd will expect a different look than patrons at a wine bar. Then, incorporate your logo, signature colors, and overall aesthetic to create a cohesive look that captures your bar's personality.

Prioritize practicality and durability

Bartending is hard work, so it’s important to ensure their uniforms are made with durable, comfortable fabrics that will hold up to long shifts and the occasional spill. Choose cuts that allow easy movement. Before committing to a uniform, test fabrics for colorfastness, stain resistance, and durability to ensure they'll hold up to the rigors of the job.

Go custom and accessorize smartly

Stock specializes in creating one-of-a-kind uniforms perfectly tuned to your needs. With custom embroidery, patches, aprons, and more, they'll help bring your vision to life. Select accessories like aprons, hats, or ties that complement the overall look while adding flair. Ensure they're functional and match your bar's aesthetic.

Ensure proper fit, but prioritize easy care

Have uniforms tailored or provide a range of sizes to ensure each staff member has a well-fitting uniform. Ill-fitting uniforms look sloppy and can impede movement. Make sure, however, to choose fabrics that are machine washable and require minimal ironing or special care. This will make uniform maintenance more manageable for your staff.

Consider different roles and solicit staff input

Bartenders, servers, hosts, and security may require different uniforms. Ensure each role has a distinct but coordinated look that suits their duties. Ask for feedback from your staff on preferred styles, fabrics, and features. 

Think seasonally

If your bar has outdoor seating or patio space, consider lighter fabrics for summer and layers for cooler months to keep staff comfortable year-round. Breathable cotton blends are ideal for hot days while adding a cozy flannel shirt or vest can provide warmth during chilly evenings.

Have backups ready

Accidents happen, so have a few extra uniforms on hand in case of spills, rips, or other mishaps. That way staff can quickly change if needed and maintain a polished look. Keep spare shirts, aprons, and even pants in common sizes stored on-site for emergency wardrobe changes.

TL;DR: Dressing Your Bar for Success

The right uniform can be a game-changer for your bar, reflecting your unique style, elevating your staff, and enhancing the customer experience. From laid-back pubs to upscale cocktail lounges, there's a perfect uniform for every type of bar. 

  • Pub/Tavern: Casual, functional chambray or denim shirts with dark bottoms and bistro aprons
  • Cocktail Bar: Crisp dress shirts, slim trousers, and touches like bow ties or custom pins
  • Dive Bar: Bold, retro-inspired tees or tanks paired with jeans and sneakers
  • Speakeasy: Vintage-style elements like suspenders, vests, and eye-catching aprons with custom details
  • Brewery: Durable workwear fabrics like denim and canvas, with rugged aprons and sturdy boots
  • Sports Bar: Team-spirited polos, custom hats or jerseys for game days, and neat, practical bottoms
  • Wine Bar: Sophisticated monochromatic looks with tailored shirts, sleek pants or skirts, and sommelier-inspired touches
  • Hotel Bar: Polished, modern uniforms that align with the hotel's aesthetic, from sleek suits to short-sleeve button-downs
  • Karaoke Bar: Playful, high-energy looks with color block tees, branded caps, and optional sequins or light-up accessories
  • Nightclub: T-shirts and jeans for more laid back nightclubs. Cocktail dresses, Oxford shirts, ties, and shirts for more upscale establishments

From initial design to final delivery, we will work with you to create one-of-a-kind looks that reflect your brand. Get in touch with Stock today.