I know I don’t normally run fashion news, but I’m interested in how Vivienne Westwood has redesigned Virgin Atlantic’s iconic cabin crew uniforms for their 30th anniversary uniform rebrand. I also properly love that for once they have a female pilot as a plank of the visual campaign AND she’s in trousers. Nice one, Virgin Atlantic. Bravo!
It’s no sinecure redesigning a uniform on this scale: Over 7,500 staff including cabin crew, pilots, Clubhouse Spa staff and Virgin Holidays employees will receive the new uniform consisting of 22 pieces in total, which has been trialled across airports and on board over the past year.
The core design is a red jacket inspired by the “Bettina” jacket designed in the early 90’s with a matching red pencil skirt with a dart to the rear. The hand drawn wing designs are a recurring theme across all the team uniforms, whilst a new addition of bags for the ground staff has been produced by the Ethical Fashion Initiative in Nairobi in collaboration with the International Trade Centre, United Nations. The red leather bag for cabin crew features classic Vivienne Westwood diamond shape handles.
The design references Westwood’s forensic interest in 1940s French couture cutting, with a double breasted ‘drape coat’ for women.
The classic red Virgin Atlantic shoe has been updated with Westwood’s iconic hourglass heel, with three heel heights depending on the wearer’s role or service phase.
Male crew will be wearing a Saville Row-inspired three-piece suit in a deep burgundy Oxford weave wool.
The polyester yarn has been made from recycled plastic bottles and a nano finish has been applied to the fabrics to extend the garments’ life and retain colour, which in turn reduces turnover and wastage of uniform.