Tuesday, 7 May 2013

Designer Uniforms

Vivienne Westwood for Virgin Atlantic
Italian Carabineri uniforms by Valentino

Italian Carabineri uniforms by Valentino
Nazi uniforms produced by Hugo Boss

Olympic uniforms for Great Britain by Stella McCartney

Giorgio Armani Team Uniforms for Italian Olympic Team

Prada look for Italian Olympic Sailing team

Ralph Lauren for American Olympic Team

Korean Air uniform by Gianfranco Ferre

Sephora beauty assistants in uniforms by Prabal Gurung

At times I wonder to myself, whether our childhoods, have had anything to do with our fashion choices today? I am not speaking about a traumatic experience or psychological influence, where those from ''broken homes'' are more likely to prefer stripes to those from a more ''secure'' family environment opting for floral prints!
Apart from the obvious influences, of fashion trends of the decade (hello 90s fluro shell suits) and country specific necessities (in my case the rain coat in Ireland), what other possible outside factors could be in play?

I have always maintained, that being one of three sisters, had a huge impact on my interest in fashion. With three years between each of us, my mother decided to dress us all the same....all the time. If there wasn't three of it, we didn't have it. I guess I feel worse for my youngest sister, who got handed down our versions seeing it through from new to vintage. Our similar haircuts didn't help. Luckily the suffragettes of the nineties (see Spice up your life) allowed my 10 year old self, to put my foot down and say no to conformism and yes to individuality !
However apart from this '' life shaping'' moment of my young life, I consider that one of the reasons that both I and my sisters are so interested in fashion and have such diverse styles, is also down to the 12 years of school uniform wearing days. On a scale of bad to good, I would put ours at around 6. It wasn't so much the itchy wool navy jumper, light blue and check shirt or the stiff pleated navy skirt that bothered me. Thinking back it was great not having to pick out what to wear every morning and considering it was an all girls school there was no pimpled faced heartthrob to impress. The frustration came with the lack of individuality one was afforded in it. Oh yes we tried, with multi-coloured hair clips, matching our thickly painted on eyeshadow. But even with our shoes having to be black and our jacket having to be navy, there wasn't much room for improvement.

In the adult world, some professions require uniforms. They are professions which I have steered clear from, possibly because of the uniform aspect, considering I hate the colours navy and light blue now and forever! However saying that fashion is the antithesis to the uniform would be wrong, as the world of uniforms have their own unique ties to the fashion world.

Vivienne Westwood has recently signed on to design the new Virgin Atlantic uniforms, using Eco-friendly, recycled and recyclable fabric.The signature red uniforms will have "a futuristic look, which references her enduring interest in 1940s French couture cutting techniques as well as the Savile Row tailoring heritage."
However Westwood isn't the first to designer to intervene and try and revive the uniform's boring reputation.
Italian Carabineri (one of the many types of police in Italy) have uniforms designed by Valentino.
Hugo Boss was the supplier of uniforms to the Nazi's during the Second World War and is responsible for that ''Brown'' shirt!
The Olympics last summer saw Stella McCartney design the uniforms for the Great Britain, Giorgio Armani designed the Italian team's uniform, with Prada looking after the sailing team. While Ralph Lauren designed the look for the American tteam.
The Korean Air uniforms are designed by Gianfranco Ferre and Sephora's beauty advisers are decked out in Prabal Gurung.

Considering this I wouldn't mind signing up for a 'uniform' job, especially one designed by Westwood or McCartney ! As long as it's not NAVY or LIGHT BLUE !

What are your thoughts on the uniform ?

That's all for now !
Love Dani xx


  1. It's such an interesting topic: designers outside the runway and into the streets! Great post!



  2. This is SO SO interesting!
    I live in Italy and never had a clue that the carabinieri uniforms are designed by Valentino!
    I guess it does explain why they're so glamorous!


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