Style in the Sky: British Airways Fashions Through the Ages

I can’t help but love aviation fashion.  I was a complete sucker for “Pan Am
,” and before that, “View from the Top
,” and just about any photograph of a sharply dressed stewardess gets me all tingly in the costuming department. How about you?

I just learned about a charity fashion show put on by British Airways Heritage – I wish I could have gone!  Though less flamboyant than some of the mid-century American uniforms, there is such a chicness to BA’s uniforms through the decades.  Get a load of these beauties…

BOAC stewardess uniform 1946-early 1950s (Via)
BOAC stewardess early 1950s
BOAC stewardess early 1950s
BEA stewardess 1960 -1967 (Uniform designer: John Cavanagh)
BEA female uniforms, 1972-1974 (Designer: Hardie Amies)
British Airways female uniform 1977-1985 (Designer: Baccarat Wetherall)

The “Fashion Through the Age of Aviation” event showcased historic uniforms and also raised money for BA’s program “Flying Start,” in support of Comic Relief.  Historic Fashion AND a good cause? Yes please!

If you’re interested in learning more about it (and maybe be inspired to throw a similar event), check out the BA historic uniform gallery, read about Flying Start, and see some photos from the fashion show itself.


  • Sassy Countess

    March 19, 2013 at 6:01 AM

    I was the managing recruiter for the flight attendants of United Airlines for three years (through a second party recruitment company – Spherion Staffing)in Chicago. At World Headquarters there are some of the early uniforms. Also, because I was in this industry for some time, I learned quite a bit. In the late sixties, one airline (I think that it was Pan Am, but can't be positive)had PAPER uniforms. They were selling sex appeal, and it worked! Sales went up, but FA's quit at an astronomical rate. So, they dropped them after a year or so. Interesting fact!

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