Flight Attendant Uniforms: The Best in ‘High’ Fashion

Flight Attendant Uniforms: The Best in ‘High’ Fashion

Air Canada recently previewed its new flight attendant uniforms for its soon to launch low-cost spinoff, Rouge, to mixed reaction. The uniforms, which were a design collaboration with famous Canadian shoe designer John Fluevog, have evoked a sort of “Glee Club meets Justin Timberlake” aesthetic among consumers and media outlets alike. Love it or hate it, one thing’s for sure: this attempt to capitalize on current trends will render the uniforms painfully out of date in just a few years.

My suggestion: lose the fedora. You want to see your flight’s cabin crew as professionals – authority figures capable of handling anything that may occur at 15,000 feet – not someone resembling a Bruno Mars concertgoer. Not to mention what would happen when a fedora clad flight attendant opens the cabin doors on a windy day.

Rouge has hit on a major trend though in in-flight fashion; collaboration with high end designers has basically become the industry pre-requisite. Although, most airlines opt for classic, timeless, and functional attire.  Here’s a look at some of the most successful flight attendant uniforms.


Porter Airlines

Flight Attendant Uniforms

A shout out to another Canadian airline, Porter’s flight attendant uniforms are a charming throwback to the good old days of air travel, when it was truly a luxurious experience. Designed by Kimberley Newport – Mimran, the fashion powerhouse behind Pink Tartan, the flight attendant’s attire evokes the clean lines and feminine appeal that the brand is known for. As if we needed another reason to fly Porter.


Air France

Flight attendant uniforms with coat

Leave it to the French and their effortless sense of fashion to dress their flight attendants better than most passengers could ever pull off. The airline partnered with French design legend Christian Lacroix in 2005 to give the uniforms a facelift.  The dress option available to female crew members is so classic, clean and minimalist with just a bit of je ne sais quoi. I’d wager that I’m not the first to ask – where can I get my own?


Singapore Airlines

SAuniform

This look is my absolute favourite in the sky. The outfits are classic, elegant and have proven truly timeless – little has changed from Pierre Balmain’s original 1970’s designs. A take on the traditional Sarong Kebaya, evokes the signature styles of Balmain with its intricately patterned aesthetic. And the service is unreal.


Cathay Pacific

20110622_02

The Hong Kong based airline brought on local designer Eddie Lau to update the look of their crew’s uniforms not once but three times. In this bright yet minimalist line, Lau has managed to mix the traditional with the modern. Although the more I look at it, the more Star Trek-y it becomes…


Qantas

The Australian carrier enlisted Martin Grant to do a revamp on its personnel uniforms.  The result: a mix of fresh and modern pieces expertly contrasted with pink and red. Not at all kitschy, these new uniforms put the airline on par (fashion speaking) with its major Asian and European counterparts. And they had Aussie model Miranda Kerr model the uniform at its debut – not sure if that’s cheating…


So while there’s so many to choose from, this is a roundup of my favourite flight attendant uniforms. But what about you? Are there any airline uniforms that you feel should be highlighted?

Photos courtesy of: The New Paper; LuisJouJR (Flickr); Cathay Pacific;

Lauren Barth
Born and raised in Toronto, Lauren is most at home in big cities yet has a knack for seeking out rural, off the beaten path, locales. Living and working abroad while completing her MBA, Lauren travelled extensively throughout Europe, and has also spent time exploring North and South America. Likes: history (sucker for medieval cities), espresso, flying, exploring new places, and all things food. Dislikes: sunburns, the middle seat on a plane, and judgmental travelers.

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