GURUGRAM- On December 12, 2023, Tata Group-owned Air India (AI) revealed its highly anticipated, fresh lineup of uniforms designed for cabin and cockpit crews. This unveiling marks the dawn of a new era in inflight fashion.
Crafted by the renowned Indian fashion designer Manish Malhotra at his Mumbai studio, the new uniforms showcase a diverse palette of colors and timeless designs. The collection represents a unique and seamless fusion of India’s rich cultural heritage and aesthetics with the contemporary style, grace, and comfort of the 21st century.
Air India Unveils New Uniform
The introduction of these new uniforms will take place gradually in the coming months, commencing with the entry into service of Air India’s inaugural Airbus A350.
Campbell Wilson, CEO & Managing Director of Air India, expressed his views and said, “The uniforms worn by Air India’s crew hold a significant place in aviation history worldwide. We are confident that Manish Malhotra’s innovative designs will craft an exciting new chapter in Air India’s future narrative. These uniforms aptly capture the essence of our new identity, service principles, and our commitment to establishing new standards in global aviation.”
Malhotra’s interpretation of modern Indian style aligns seamlessly with Air India’s recently unveiled global brand identity, portraying the airline as a symbol of a more self-assured, progressive, and resurgent new India.
The attire for the female cabin crew includes a ready-to-wear ombré saree adorned with intricate patterns reminiscent of Indian heritage architecture (jharokha) and the Vista (new Air India logo icon).
This is paired with a comfortable blouse and blazer. The ready-to-wear sarees can also be optionally paired with comfortable pants, allowing greater flexibility for the female cabin crew to choose a style that resonates with them and creates a distinctive East-meets-West look.
For senior female cabin crew, the ombré sarees will feature shades from aubergine to burgundy, complemented by aubergine blazers, projecting a balance of authority and sophistication.
On the other hand, the junior female cabin crew will don vibrant red-to-purple ombré sarees paired with red blazers, embodying a spirit of youthfulness and energy.
Campbell Wilson said, “Air India has been in the global spotlight for a considerable time. We are confident that our new crew uniforms will exceed heightened expectations, making a distinctive statement that epitomizes the finest aspects of Indian heritage and hospitality. Travelers across continents will readily identify these uniforms as the new face of Air India.”
Manish Malhotra expressed his views on this remarkable achievement, “I am privileged to have been entrusted with the task of designing the uniforms for Air India. Contributing to the national flag carrier and showcasing the grace and allure of Indian fashion is an honor. My goal was to craft uniforms that capture the essence of India’s diverse culture and traditions while embodying a modern and sophisticated aesthetic. By incorporating quintessential hues symbolic of India, I aspire for these uniforms to instill pride in the crew and create a lasting impression on guests, reflecting the warmth and hospitality for which India is renowned.”
The distinctive ombré technique, a hallmark of Malhotra, is a reflection of his profound appreciation for traditional attire and gradient aesthetics.
The color palette of the new uniforms includes deep red, burgundy, aubergine, and touches of gold, paying homage to India’s rich cultural heritage.
Designed to be practical and conducive to in-flight duties, the well-fitted male and female cabin crew uniforms were developed in collaboration with Air India’s cabin crew representatives and the airline’s In-flight Services team. An extensive testing exercise was conducted to ensure the functionality of the new designs.
For the cockpit crew, the uniform features a classic black double-breasted suit with a print inspired by the Vista, symbolizing professionalism, timelessness, and the gravity of the flying profession.
Malhotra has also curated footwear that seamlessly combines style and comfort. The female cabin crew will don dual-tone (black and burgundy) block heels, while the male cabin crew will sport comfortable black Brogues. Completing the ensemble, the uniforms include pearl earrings and sling bags for the female cabin crew.
Other Uniform Unveiling Sooner
Malhotra has meticulously designed uniforms not only for Air India’s cabin crew and pilots but also for ground staff, engineers, and security personnel, with details to be unveiled in the near future.
The design and production process of these new uniforms prioritizes sustainability and quality. All fabrics and garments are proudly sourced and tailored in India.
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