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Luxury travel news

20 Dec 2018

BY Olivia Rook


Singapore Airlines celebrates 50 years of style

Ever wondered who masterminded the Singapore Airlines’ flight attendant uniform? It was designed by Pierre Balmain and has been in place for 50 years.



Famed the world over, the Singapore Airlines uniform was designed by Pierre Balmain more than 50 years ago

Singapore Airlines’ female flight attendant uniform has undergone few changes in the last 50 years, with the pattern, lines, hues and fabric remaining as they were in 1968.


The sarong kebaya’s batik print was chosen by Balmain to “reflect the identity and hospitality” of Singapore Airlines’ cabin crew.


Balmain insisted every sarong kebaya should be tailored to fit the wearer, which means there are no standard sizes.


The uniform’s four different colours represent the rank of the person wearing it. Purple is worn by the inflight manager, red for chief cabin crew, green for leading crew and blue for flight stewards and stewardesses.


When creating the uniform, the designer included a split in the front of the female uniform to allow cabin crew to tie the skirt for ease of movement.


Sheldon Hee, Singapore Airlines’ general manager, said: “We’re proud to say Balmain’s timeless Asian batik female and male designs have made the Singapore Airlines cabin crew one of the most instantly recognisable in aviation.”


The airline also recently celebrated the launch of the world’s longest commercial flight. Its new Airbus A350-900ULR aircraft have been flying between Singapore and New York since October.

Runway fashion

Singapore Airlines is not the only carrier to work with a fashion designer. Zac Posen, who has previously dressed Rihanna and Michelle Obama, is responsible for the Delta uniform, which was refreshed earlier this year.


The bold red Virgin Atlantic uniform is the mark of British fashion designer, Vivienne Westwood, with the narrow-cut silhouette being a classic Westwood look.


And a further development in aviation fashion came in October when it was announced Savile Row tailor Ozwald Boateng will redesign the British Airways uniform, taking on the brief from Julien MacDonald.

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