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Virgin Atlantic Uniforms Go Haute Couture

Sarah Rappaport, News Assistant
Thursday, 2 May 2013 | 7:05 AM ET
Soo Hyun Hong | Virgin Atlantic

Air travel is about to get more glamorous. Virgin Atlantic has partnered with famed British designer Dame Vivienne Westwood for a redesign of Virgin's iconic red uniforms.

The uniforms will fly down the runways from 2014, though Virgin will preview them starting from June of this year.

They will become the official uniform for the more than 7,500 members of Virgin Atlantic staff—not only cabin crew and pilots, but ground staff as well.

Virgin Atlantic President Richard Branson explained the reason for the collaboration, saying "our current uniform is 13 years old and over the last 13 years, it's been copied by quite a lot of people. And we just felt it was time for change and we were extremely lucky that Vivienne Westwood agreed to work with us on it."

Westwood calls the uniforms a very traditional British look given a contemporary feel and cites '40s French couture and Savile Row tailoring as her influences.

The British designer is a noted environmentalist, and that's reflected in the design with Virgin as well.

"I am always trying to find fabrics that are more friendly to the environment -Virgin Atlantic managed to research into this and find more eco fabrics," said Westwood.

Recycled materials were used in the design- including polyester yarn made from used plastic bottles.

These will be the fourth uniform used by Virgin Atlantic staff since the airline's inception in 1984.


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