British Airways has long used the talent of British designers to create their uniforms with the likes of Paul Costelloe and their current designer Julien MacDonald, loved by Kylie Minogue and Millie Mackintosh, lending their expertise. And the latest designer to join the line-up? Savile Row tailoring expert Ozwald Boeteng OBE. Known for bringing a contemporary twist to classic tailoring, Ozwald will design a collection for the airline's 32,000 employees, from flight crew to engineers.
Ozwald Boateng OBE said: "I am really excited about creating this new uniform for British Airways. It is important for me to create something that makes all of British Airways' 32,000 uniform-wearing employees across the world excited, at the same time as enabling me to really demonstrate my skills as a designer. British Airways is investing £4.5 billion over the next five years and the uniform I design will form part of that, so I'm looking forward to taking a uniform and refining it into a collection." The tailor will work closely with the airline's staff throughout the development process, from shadowing them to understand their roles and how the uniforms need to perform, to design, testing and final delivery.
Ozwald started his career in fashion in 1986 and became the first tailor to host a catwalk show at Paris Fashion Week. As well as being the youngest tailor to open a store in Savile Row, Ozwald was the Creative Director at Givenchy Homme from 2002 to 2006 and launched his first womenswear collection last year.
Next year marks the Centenary of British Airways, with the uniforms playing part of the airline's 100-year celebrations. The airline released pictures of how British Airways cabin crew uniforms have changed over the years, from the striped Roland Klein outfits in 1985 to the paper dress of 1967 worn by cabin crew flying from New York to the Caribbean.