Photos, video: Qantas reveals new uniform

By David Flynn, April 16 2013

Qantas has revealed the new uniform to be worn by its crew and ground staff from next year.

Here are some first photos from the launch – we'll have more details on the new uniform later today.

For now, know that designer Martin Grant has predictably ditched the Aboriginal prints of the current uniform in favour of a stylish, contemporary wardrobe of some 35 garments based on a dusky French navy incorporating elements of 'Qantas red' with the odd playful fuchsia pink highlight.

35 individual pieces make up the new Qantas look. Georges Antony
35 individual pieces make up the new Qantas look
Georges Antony

A standout element is the trilby-style cap and trenchcoat intended for off-the-plane wear, which will serve to promote Qantas brand in and around airports – even to travellers who aren't flying with the Red Roo.

The hat and trenchcoat are certain to divide public opinion!. Georges Antony
The hat and trenchcoat are certain to divide public opinion!
Georges Antony

The uniform was unveilled at a packed event in Sydney, with Qantas crew proudly modelling their new kit on a different kind of runway to the one they're used to!

Qantas crew hit the runway to model their new uniform. Mark Sherborne, Qantas
Qantas crew hit the runway to model their new uniform
Mark Sherborne, Qantas

The trenchcoats sport a fold-down lapel which reveals a flash of red and a small version of the iconic Qantas kangaroo, neatly mirroring the 'red triangle' brandmark and the tail of a Qantas jet.

No, this isn't the athletes' parade at the Olympic Games opening ceremony.... Mark Sherborne, Qantas
No, this isn't the athletes' parade at the Olympic Games opening ceremony...
Mark Sherborne, Qantas

Real-world guidance on Grant's design came through the Qantas Uniform Panel, a group of 12 representatives from each of Qantas' customer-facing uniformed departments including cabin crew and ground employees who provided feedback on functionality and wearability of the uniform throughout the design process.

Ruby red and fuchsia pink offer eye-catching highlights against the French navy base. Mark Sherborne/Qantas
Ruby red and fuchsia pink offer eye-catching highlights against the French navy base
Mark Sherborne/Qantas

Underneath the trenchcoat, the blokes of Qantas wear a single-breasted, single-buttoned structured jacket and a V-neck knit vest.

... but no pink for the boys, who stay in the red & navy comfort zone. Mark Sherborne/Qantas
... but no pink for the boys, who stay in the red & navy comfort zone
Mark Sherborne/Qantas

Supermodel Miranda Kerr sporting one of the cabin uniforms...

Miranda Kerr rocks the Red Roo's new look. Mark Sherborne/Qantas
Miranda Kerr rocks the Red Roo's new look
Mark Sherborne/Qantas

... alongside designer Martin Grant.

Miranda Kerr shows how great a uniform can look. Mark Sherborne, Qantas
Miranda Kerr shows how great a uniform can look
Mark Sherborne, Qantas

This video shot by Qantas captures this morning's 'fashion show' launch.

 

PREVIOUS | Qantas will this reveal the new uniform to be worn by flight attendants and ground crew at a Milan-style fashion event in Sydney this morning.

Created by Melbourne-born but Paris-based designer Martin Grant, and over one year in the making, the garb will begin to appear on Qantas’ 12,600 uniformed staff from early next year.

Qantas has given no clues as to the new look, apart from Qantas CEO Alan Joyce’s take that they’ll be a “fresh and contemporary style” bearing a “distinctly Australian look”.

Martin Grant, flanked by Qantas cabin crew wearing uniforms spanning the decades
Martin Grant, flanked by Qantas cabin crew wearing uniforms spanning the decades

However, Grant has ruled out using Aboriginal motifs as seen in the current uniform, designed by Peter Morrissey and introduced in 2003.

“I didn't try and push it to a specifically Australian aesthetic” Grant told The Australian earlier this month.

“I thought we already have Qantas being Australian – that is almost enough.”

Watch for the Roo?

Almost? Some pundits tip a stylised treatment of Qantas’ iconic ‘flying kangaroo’ logo will close the gap.

“I started thinking more about Australia and its fauna and all different things associated with Australia and I kept coming back to Qantas and the Qantas logo and the image that we all have of Qantas, which is the red triangle, the tail of the aircraft with the flying kangaroo” Grant explains.

“For me, if not the best airline logo, it is one of the strongest international logos. When you see it in the international ports it has a very strong impact.”

“I think for a lot of people, there is a huge amount of pride attached to it; it hits a chord. It made international sense to concentrate on the corporate logo of Qantas.”

Grant offers few hints beyond that, apart from the predictable promise that it “It's chic, it's fresh, it's clean, it's modern and it is bold.”

No matter how it looks, the Red Roo’s new kit is certain to be almost as controversial and much-discussed as Australia’s Olympic uniforms, such is the Aussie feeling of ‘ownership’ for the national brand.

Australian Business Traveller will be at tomorrow’s unveiling of the new Qantas uniform – you can follow us on @AusBT for tweets and deets along with first photos as the models take to the catwalk from 10.30am.

Qantas will also offer a live streaming video broadcast of the event at www.qantasnewsroom.com.au.

Until then, why not  take a stroll down memory lane with this gallery of Qantas uniforms from years past?

The current Qantas uniforms (above and below) were introduced in 2003 and created by Australian fashion designer Peter Morrissey, and underwent a refresh in 2008.

Those are a long way from this groovy look of the mid-70s through to the mid-80s:

After all, nothing says 'premium airline' like an orange jacket with a mustard-yellow shirt and stripey brown tie!

Today's frequent flyers may be more likely to recall trips with Qantas staff decked out in these blue (and rather British-looking) uniforms of 1985-1993...

... and will certainly be familiar with the duskier navy tones through to 2003.

Here's what hosties were wearing in the early '70s – back in those days when we could call them hosties.

All those uniforms plus a red mini from the late 60s come together in this shot of Qantas uniforms from past to present.

Click here for a slideshow of Qantas uniforms from 1948 to today – and if you're really into the in-flight fashion, visit the very detailed if oddly unsettling (and thus, perhaps appropriately-named) UniformFreak site featuring "1,142 different stewardess uniforms from 433 airlines."

 
David

David Flynn is the Editor-in-Chief of Executive Traveller and a bit of a travel tragic with a weakness for good coffee, shopping and lychee martinis.

22 May 2011

Total posts 52

perhaps it will be a new look white and red theme, with the introduction of a head piece and the burj al arab featuring in the design - in line with the Emiratesation of QF that seems to be taking place ;)

British Airways - Executive Club

15 Apr 2013

Total posts 8

How about making things simple:

https://www.emirates.com/english/about/news/news_detail.aspx?article=344580

Air New Zealand - Airpoints

04 Sep 2012

Total posts 136

I really like the Air New Zealand crew uniforms, they are bright in a world of black/navy. I suppose the Virgin uniforms are quite good as well.

Virgin Australia - Velocity Rewards

24 Aug 2011

Total posts 736

The painted uniforms were even better. 

Qantas - Qantas Frequent Flyer

03 Apr 2013

Total posts 47

I wonder if the will look like some of the American carriers (like delta frontier ect)

or if they'll go for something like virgin

26 May 2011

Total posts 58

Pungpui, you sum up all that is revolting about Australia and its racism with comments like that. 

22 May 2011

Total posts 52

Hi Daniell - perhaps you mistook what I meant - I was merely poking a bit of fun at how Qantas is rather rapidly becoming Emiratiesised - I'm sorry if you feel this was racist.  Perhaps you should review some of the news articles on public transport if you want a dose of racism.  Chillaaaaaxxxx ;)

26 May 2011

Total posts 58

It's actually called a business partnership, one that makes commercial sense. One that isn't as involved as the Etihad-Virgin tie up either.

Virgin Australia - Velocity Rewards

10 Jan 2012

Total posts 253

I think it's safe to say that not many people predicted QF would go with the uniform they have! I love the womens trench & at look. Not sure about the clashing hot pink/red though. The men look fantastic, a really classy look for them.

JBH
JBH

Qantas - Qantas Frequent Flyer

01 May 2012

Total posts 118

I would agree, the men look good (but it would hard to get that wrong) - but the fushia pink? it just doesn't match with QF brand IMHO.

KG
KG

Qantas - Qantas Frequent Flyer

10 May 2011

Total posts 736

Agreed, the Fuchsia ruins it for me, otherwise very stylish!

22 May 2011

Total posts 52

check out the detailing - even the underneath of the shoes are red for both men and women!  

undertheradar Banned
undertheradar Banned

28 Oct 2011

Total posts 662

i love the new  QF uniform..just gotta keep in mind it has to try and accommodate/satisfy thousands of ground/air crew WORLDWIDE ..  i love the mix of fuchsia/reds/navy... just the right amount of colour to stand out..but not overbearing...YES those colours DO work well together.

Qantas - Qantas Frequent Flyer

20 Aug 2012

Total posts 126

The uniforms looks like a case of Virgin Australia meets British Airways!

I do think the unforms overall look sophisticated and stylish. I particularly like the re-introduction of a hat option for the women...

I'm just going to say it...Doesn't it look a tad common?

Everything with the exception of the trenchcoat and hat looks a bit blah.

Beautiful colours but it's missing something.....

24 Oct 2010

Total posts 2341

TRB, I think I know where you're coming from – it does strike me as somehow 'under-stated', although the colours and the way they're cut into the design break it up. But the ensemble doesn't have that same punch of some other airlines, it's a bit more restrained.

Indeed.

I think it needs a cardigan for the ladies and a waistcoat for the gentlemen to wear during service.

Do the boys have a hat too?

24 Oct 2010

Total posts 2341

TRB: you may have missed your true calling as a fashion consultant, because the ladies do get a cardie ("a long sleeve, three button delicate cardigan") and while the men don't get a waistcoat (which I think could look great, very Downton Abbey!) they do get a V-neck knit vest.

Air New Zealand - Airpoints

16 Aug 2011

Total posts 10

The men will have a waistcoat as an option. It was also shown on the video at 0.29 :-)

Etihad

23 Jan 2013

Total posts 175

Smart uniform. However, until Qantas ends the antiquated 2-2-2 business set-up I will be sticking with Etihad. 

Ultimately a nice uniform is always, well, nice. However, what really counts is service, the seat and price. 

AV
AV

Virgin Australia - Velocity Rewards

16 Apr 2013

Total posts 40

Awful!  I am somewhat disappointed with the new look.  The fluoro pink has absolutely no connection to Qantas at all.  Maybe this is a prelude to all the Qantas plane tails being painted pink?  The new colour scheme certainly does not tie in with the corporate look of Qantas.  Imagine the Emirates staff came out with bright pink shoes...it wouldn't really cut the mustard would it?!

Qantas - Qantas Frequent Flyer

01 Jan 2013

Total posts 12

I am loyal as a dog to Qantas, but cannot help but say the female's uniform is uncaningly familiar *cough* Virgin Australia *cough*

Qantas - Qantas Frequent Flyer

08 Sep 2012

Total posts 244

Personally I liked the existing uniform, especially the one piece dress some of the female FAs wore with the aboriginal print. Didn't think it it was outdated at all and captured the Australian part of the Qantas brand stylishly.

I like this new look but I can't help thinking of Jetstar. As David said, it's understated and restrained but perhaps bordering on plain. The red soled shoes are great though.

The ultimate test is how it will look in the flesh. Can't wait to see it!

Qantas - Qantas Frequent Flyer

20 Aug 2012

Total posts 126

Hi Alex. Sorry to say but from what I have read today, the red soled shoes are not part of the official uniform, they were just for today's show only.

24 Oct 2010

Total posts 2341

Yes, that was one of the first questions I asked Qantas - those specific shoes on the runway were highly-regarded Louboutins, and they were just for the show, they're not part of the standard uniform.

Miranda has a lot of free time now that David Jones and Victoria's Secret didn't renew her contract.

as for the uniforms, um yes its alright. but i think that hot pink color will become outdated pretyy quickly. they do look nice together though, certainly the red stripe will stand out.

but nothing will beat the virgin atlantic's crew. and that ad, still hot after 25 years.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6cM4EOeJzHA

I've got change my ticket.

Qantas - Qantas Frequent Flyer

08 Sep 2012

Total posts 244

Personally I liked the existing uniform, especially the one piece dress some of the female FAs wore with the aboriginal print. Didn't think it it was outdated at all and captured the Australian part of the Qantas brand stylishly.

I like this new look but I can't help thinking of Jetstar. As David said, it's understated and restrained but perhaps bordering on plain. The red soled shoes are great though.

The ultimate test is how it will look in the flesh. Can't wait to see it!

CL9
CL9

22 Mar 2012

Total posts 200

Ew... they have to be joking! I guess they are trying to achieve a different style, but it hasn't worked in their favour, when I first saw this all I thought was WTF is that!?

Qantas - Qantas Frequent Flyer

10 May 2012

Total posts 140

wow. A dark suit with a red tie.  This clothes designing lark must be a tough gig. I wonder hw much Mr Grant got paid for this?

Virgin Australia - Velocity Rewards

23 May 2012

Total posts 268

I must say that the new uniforms look more contemporary! They really stand out but I don't feel that they look very professional, unlike Virgin Australia. Personally I think this change could have waited a little longer, the old ones weren't outdated yet.

20 Feb 2012

Total posts 128

Qantas needs to hire a supermodel to showcase their uniform?

Other airlines like CX use their own flight attendants!

btw- is the uniform change also for pilots?

24 Oct 2010

Total posts 2341

Miranda is under contract with QF, so I'm sure they got dicount rates!

And no change to pilot's uniform.

Qantas - Qantas Frequent Flyer

08 Nov 2011

Total posts 110

@ Kash,

 

Qantas used staff from all over the company to showcase the uniform, Miranda just happened to come out first. No difference to Virgin Aus who used Elle to model the new pilot uniform.

26 May 2011

Total posts 58

Both the new QF uniform and the current VA uniform are very smart and stylish. I'm sure it's rather difficult designing something for the many body shapes and rigours of flying. Kudos to Mr Grant.

11 Jan 2012

Total posts 20

With a fair number of the Qantas crew, both male and female, being of fuller figure and more mature years, will be interesting to see how these tailored, slim-fit cuts will look on them.

02 Jul 2011

Total posts 57

Three comments.

  1. i agree that these designs look great on tall thin crew but fuller figured or older staff might struggle to pull off the look.
  2. I'm surprised no one has called out the Star Trek feel of the women's dress.
  3. Personally I love the hot pink. Daring and "out there". Just a pity the diagonal will date sooo quickly. 

24 Oct 2010

Total posts 2341

Stephen: let me admit that as the Qantas crew chosen as 'models' took to the catwalk during the launch, one of my first thoughts was Trek-like look of the women's uniforms!

17 Apr 2013

Total posts 1

Interesting dark uniforms for a very bright country....especially , the trilby-style cap and trenchcoat intended for off-the-plane wear, reminiscent of a time Germany in the 1930's ........the only thing missing is the red arm band , white dot and the funny looking cross.

Qantas - Qantas Frequent Flyer

10 Jan 2013

Total posts 715

Firstly, yes uniforms are about the last thing that determines carrier choice, but if they make the STAFF happier, can only be a plus for customer service. 

Qantas has had some odd uniforms over the years, but I do welcome back the hat and a trench coat is a nice touch for cooler climes. 

I can't say the colour scheme appeals to me, but then I don't really care. I do think a formal vest would have been a nice idea - more practical than pullover (which would be a touch too warm most of the time) and a little bit fancy, plus good for keeping ties and badges tucked safely away during service. 

27 Jul 2011

Total posts 42

Bizarre. Another step in the process of Alan Joyce destroying this national icon.


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