El Niño who? Despite the record heat across the globe this summer, fall and winter are sure to bring chilly days. (Not to mention overzealous air conditioning in the office.) Brandable gear for cold weather, from jackets to beanies and beyond, makes a great foundation for or addition to any corporate apparel program, and it keeps your client’s brand visible as wearers layer up.

“Overall, branded jackets and vests offer a combination of professionalism, brand visibility and functionality, and build employee satisfaction, making them popular choices for corporate apparel items,” says Mitch Silver, vice president of sales and marketing for Chicago-based distributor Printable. Silver recommends Trimark for outerwear.

“They have a fantastic selection of jackets and vests at a range of price points and also offer decoration services, which for distributors is a great one-invoice solution,” he says. “And with their Proud Path initiative, almost all product categories have a recycled material, environmental or social responsibility offering in them.”

  woman wearing tailored fleece jacket with full zip and left chest logo

Made from recycled polyester, the Trimark Asgard Eco Knit Jacket features multiple pockets and an anti-pill, textured exterior that is breathable, moisture-wicking and offers UPF 40+ sun protection. Available in men’s S-5X and women’s XS-3X, and five colors (dark charcoal shown).

PCNA | PPAI 113079, S15

Jackets are a staple of any outerwear wardrobe, but this year, the shacket rules. Judith Jones of WhoWhatWear defines the shacket as “a slightly oversize shirt-jacket hybrid” that makes “the absolute perfect layering piece through fall, winter and spring.”

Many promo suppliers offer shackets, with new designs emerging this fall. California-based supplier Fossa Apparel is introducing a reversible shacket inspired by its bestselling Adapt vest, with diamond quilting (another enduring trend) on a water-resistant exterior and soft flannel on the inside.

“This is our first take on a shirt jacket, but it’s such a hot category in retail,” says Michelle Chen, president of Fossa Apparel. “You have the versatility of enjoying both sides, and people just love the concept of reversible wear. I mean, it’s kind of getting two for the price of one.”

reversible shacket with diamond quilted exterior and plaid flannel interior

The Diverge, a new, fully reversible 2-in-1 insulated shacket, features a water-resistant, diamond-quilted nylon exterior paired with a rugged but soft plaid flannel interior. The insulation of each shacket, available in men’s and women’s styles, contains at least four recycled plastic bottles.

FOSSA Apparel | PPAI 330885, S1

Vicki Ostrom, trend analyst/futurist with PPAI 100 No. 1 supplier SanMar, thinks the trend toward longer lengths in outerwear – including SanMar’s new ladies’ shacket – stems from changing details, like larger pockets featured on the outside rather than tucked away.

woman wearing long shirt jacket with buttons and chest pockets

The new Mercer+Mettle Women’s Long Sleeve Twill Overshirt, made of a poly/rayon/spandex blend, offers stretch for comfort, as well as double chest pockets with button flaps and large lower patch pockets accommodated by the garment’s longer length. Available in women’s sizes XS-4S and black or gray (shown).

SanMar | PPAI 110788, S16

“It’s an ease-of-use concept that’s really becoming popular,” Ostrom says, “like I could carry anything I needed with me at any time. And when you have a larger pocket, you need a lot more real estate to put it on, so I think that’s part of the longer length conversation that’s going on.”

Options abound for cold-weather accessories, too, from custom scarves to brandable beanies and knit caps.

Bret Bonnet, co-founder and president of Illinois-based Quality Logo Products, the No. 30 distributor of the PPAI 100, says beanies are definitely the most popular cold weather items with his customers, followed by quarter-zip fleeces.

Price definitely plays a role with winter apparel, he adds, which can make for some tough conversations with clients who want a brand name but balk at the price tag.

“People are like, ‘Oh, I like that brand, but that’s too expensive,’” says Bonnet. “I do think a lot of companies miss the mark, though, when it comes to selecting the style or brand of apparel, because they focus too much on price. I think people are more brand-conscious when it comes to their winter gear than other categories.”

But, he says, clients seem to better understand lately that if they want their promotions to work, quality matters.

“An extremely high-quality winter apparel item can last for years and be something that your customers are actually proud of,” he says.

diamond knit beanie with leatherette logo label

A one-size branded knit cap, like this Leeman Trellis Knit Beanie, can be an easy but effective giveaway. The rayon/poly/nylon blend fiber is woven in a diamond trellis pattern for added style and texture, and the faux leather patch on the front cuff is ready for debossing. Available in three colors (oatmeal shown).

alphabroder | PPAI 156993, S16

man wearing quarter-zip fleece pullover

This soft Unisex Quarter Zip Pullover Fleece, made of a blend of combed and ring-spun cotton and polyester, features hidden side pockets and a tear-away label for added comfort. Available in four colors (athletic heather shown) and sizes XS-5X.