Homestead Clothes: 10 Essentials to Wear

We’ve all heard about dressing to impress and having the right tool for a particular job. When it comes to homesteading, your clothes are as much a tool as your tools are.

jacket work gloves thick socks and baseball cap
jacket, work gloves, thick, socks, and baseball cap

Being dressed appropriately allows you to work quickly, efficiently, and comfortably. It also provides a level of safety from certain possible dangers – this is particularly true on a homestead.

With all that in mind, what are some essential items of clothing that one should have and/or wear? Here are the main ones we’re going to cover today:

  • Gloves to protect your hands.
  • Jeans/long pants to shield your legs from the sun.
  • Thermals to keep yourself warm in the winter.
  • Hats to keep your face and eyes out of the sun.
  • Boots/closed shoes to protect your feet.
  • Jackets to keep the cold and wind off you.
  • Shirts to keep your skin shielded from the sun.
  • Socks to keep your feet warm.
  • Glasses to keep your eyes safe.
  • Overalls to protect your clothes if you’d prefer not to ruin certain items of clothing.
3 Must-Have Homestead CLOTHING ESSENTIALS!

1) Work Gloves

Gloves, not really something you’d think of when thinking of ‘essential clothing’, but they can be a crucial tool for a homesteader.

You’ll probably have multiple sets of gloves lying around for everything from keeping your hands warm to gardening to working with power tools (i.e. grinders, welding machines).

The use of gardening gloves keeps your hands relatively safe from insect and spider bites. They also prevent you from touching anything poisonous.

work gloves next to garden hoe and rake
work gloves next to garden hoe and rake

Sparks given off by certain power tools can burn your skin. A pair of thicker, heavier gloves can keep your hands safe from being burned.

2) Jeans / Long Pants

Generally speaking, it’s a good idea to stick to long pants or jeans. Apart from being good for keeping your legs warm in winter, long pants/jeans place a barrier between the sun and your legs.

Prolonged exposure to the sun can put you at risk of skin cancer – which is obviously not good. Additionally, sunburn behind your knees is really uncomfortable!

Now, while I’m more of a jeans guy, you can also use a pair of leggings or cargo pants – pick your poison – if they’re comfortable and they cover your legs and keep them out of the sun you can use them.

3) Thermals

Thermal wear is usually worn under your clothes, and is meant to maintain your core temperature by trapping body heat.

If you’re working in colder weather, then wearing thermals under your usual attire will help keep you warm.

4) Hats

Hats…this one should be pretty obvious; you don’t want to get sunburn, so you use a hat to keep the sun out of your eyes and off your face. You can use either a baseball cap or a broad brimmed cowboy-style hat.

The cowboy hat would probably be the better option if you’re going to be out in the sun for long periods as it can also keep your neck relatively covered.

5) Boots / Closed Shoes

Sandals might be more comfortable to wear in the summer, but it also puts you at risk of snake and spider bites.

Snake and spider bites aside, you’ve also got thorns, and sharp rocks to worry about and when working with power tools you should have some form of protection from things that may fall on your feet.

Additionally, your cows and horses’ habit of stepping on your feet won’t be as painful.

Something to keep in mind when it comes to your shoes, is the variety of weather conditions.

Some types of boots are more waterproof than others and are great for working in wet/rainy conditions. It’s probably a good idea to keep a few pairs for rainy and snowy weather.

6) Jackets

Winters here in South Africa can see temperatures of -2 degrees Celsius – windier days are colder.

With that in mind, everyone here bundles up in the heaviest possible jackets we can find. Jackets are great for keeping the wind chill off you while you’re working outdoors in the winter.

Much like the boots and gloves, you’ll want to keep multiples around so that you have a jacket for everything. You’ll want a thick, heavy jacket for the colder months and a thinner, lighter one for the warmer, rainier months.

Affordable Clothing for the Homestead - Pantry Chat

7) Shirts, New and Old

Okay, apart from the obvious fact that you have to wear a shirt anyway; a shirt keeps the sun and wind off your skin and ideally you should have a mixture of new shirts – for family gatherings and such – and old shirts for the days of hard labor where your clothes are likely to be torn up.

8) Socks

Socks…yes, socks are essential; the primary use for them is to keep your feet warm. A second function would be to provide a certain amount of protection from blistering – I don’t think I need to tell you that blisters under your feet are very painful.

With that said, you also want socks that will stay around your calves as much as possible – if they keep slipping down your leg it’ll drive you nuts.

Unfortunately, socks get worn through pretty quickly so you’ll have to keep many, many pairs of socks in your closet/dresser.

9) Glasses

Okay, so this is more for when you’re working with power tools or when working in a manner where something may get into your eyes.

Tools like grinders, jigsaws, and, to a point, hatchets can send up dust, sparks, and woodchips which would damage your eyes if they came into contact with them.

10) Overalls

One of the most useful pieces of clothing you can have on hand is a set of overalls. The more sets you have the better because they won’t last very long when you’re busy with outdoorsy work.

They work to protect your clothes from being torn up which can save you a few cents on shirts and jeans every few months.


Well, there you have it; a list of essential clothing items for homesteaders to use. If you’re looking to get into homesteading, then I hope this article helps you know which clothes you’ll need.

I hope you enjoyed the article and found it informative. As always, thanks for reading and I’ll see you next time. Take care!

homesteading clothes pin image

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