Great fences around the world might serve the same purpose but can look a little different. Spotting the difference might require a good keen eye – or be as plain as day.
This year, at the Fall Fence Forum, a few people may have spotted something a little different. Stockade took the opportunity to share an enduring rural tradition from New Zealand with scores of professional fencers from the US. That tradition is ‘shorts’. Thanks to another Kiwi tradition – the great ‘OE’ (overseas experience) 80 pairs of Stoney Creek shorts overcame international border closures to arrive just in time for the annual Fall Fence Forum.
Erik Elliott from Stockade Territory Manager Northeast explained the shorts as “a little taste of NZ in Indiana”. “We wanted to bring some flavour over from downunder.”
Shorts are not common workwear in the US and Erik says most of the professional fence contractors greeted them with a great sense of humor.
“The bare legs attracted others to the Stockade tent to ask for a pair and I heard one of the guys saying if he wore these to an install, he might get arrested!”
Back in New Zealand, shorts are an essential piece of kit. They need to be comfortable and rugged and the ensuing tan line between boots and shorts is the stuff of legend.
Nigel Wilson, Stoney Creek Corporate Clothing and Workwear Manager from New Zealand says when they heard that shorts weren’t common across the fencing community in the US, they were keen to help out.
“We were stoked to partner with Stockade and connect with fencing professionals in the US. Shorts are an enduring staple of New Zealand fashion, whatever the weather! Our Classic Rapid Dry Shorts have been tried and tested in the beautiful and extreme environments of New Zealand. We put our gear through its paces here, and we back our products to perform, globally.
Justin Nary from Taylor Fencing, LLC in Iowa was one of the lucky recipients of the Stoney Creek shorts.
“It was an awesome idea to bring a little bit of New Zealand to the forum. The shorts were a pretty good ice-breaker. The shorts definitely made things a little more interesting. They feel like high-quality, durable shorts. It was a learning curve wearing them on the fence line. I’m so used to having my pants with multiple pockets. I’m guessing you become more aware of what you’re doing on the fence line when wearing shorts…”
“I can’t wait for the borders to open up. There will be plans to head out there to New Zealand and meet up with some contractors” No doubt Justin will pack his shorts!
Brian West, Stockade Territory Manager Southeast happily donned his pair and says he expects to see several pairs still being worn there next year.
Stockade ambassador, Ryan Sloop from Sloop Fence in North Carolina concedes that shorts are “not really normal attire here – but everybody had a good time and a good chuckle and jumped right in”.
“On the first day everyone was wearing them, but on the second day, it was a bit too chilly. I think a lot of people are going to take them home and wear them. At the end of the day, these are really comfortable. Stockade, you might have started something…”