May 30 2018  |  Airline & Terminal News

Delta flies new uniforms

By Rachel Debling

The lineup of new Delta uniforms that debuted May 29

On May 29, Delta's much-hyped new uniform series, a collaboration between the airline, designer Zac Posen and clothier Lands' End, took to the skies for the first time.

According to a release from the carrier, 64,000 Delta employees from Sydney to Honolulu wore the collection for the first time yesterday. The airline noted that "these designs embrace innovative fit, form and function, carrying Delta into the future in style."

The uniforms were tested over the course of three months by 1,000 Delta workers. During the design process, the Zac Posen and Lands' End teams underwent hundreds of focus groups, shadowed employees and asked for recommendations via 30,000-plus surveys, leading to more than 170 changes.

Unexpected details were added to the above-wing employee uniforms, designed by Zac Posen; for example, the collar of the women's blouse was inspired by the wings of an airplane. This series also marks the use of universally flattering Passport Plum, which is joined in the collection by four other hues: Cruising Cardinal, Groundspeed Graphite, Traveling Thistle and Skyline Slate. For over 30 years, Delta's uniforms have been standard navy and red.

The airline's last uniform update was in 2006 for above-wing employees (Delta Sky Club, ticketing and gate agents, Red Coats and flight attendants) and in 2000 for below-wing employees (aircraft maintenance professionals, ramp and cargo agents, and ground service equipment mechanics).

Ed Bastian, Delta’s Chief Executive Officer, commented: “We are happy to provide this level of quality, style and global sophistication to the professional men and women who represent Delta so well every day. The new Delta uniform collection offers unity between all work groups like never before. We are one proud Delta team and it really shows.”

“It was an honor to design for an iconic global aviation brand and I wanted to bring back glamour to the runway while introducing innovative technologies in the uniforms,” said designer Posen in the same press release. “It was integral for my research and design to be part of the Delta employees’ daily tasks through job shadowing and direct feedback from frontline people. I wanted to create uniforms with all of the best and latest fabrications, while introducing new coloring and shapes to have the Delta crew stand out while looking like one team. The final designs were created to feel empowering and elegant yet comfortable. I am so proud of what we have achieved together. These uniforms symbolize a new era for Delta on a global scale.”

Lands' End manufactured Zac Posen's designs for above-wing employees, and for below-wing employees the clothing company created and manufactured uniforms that are lightweight and breathable with added gripper technology around the waist to keep shirts tucked.

Jerome Griffith, Chief Executive Officer and President, Lands’ End, said: “These uniforms were built to keep Delta employees safe, comfortable and always ready to fly. We’re honored that Delta turned to Lands’ End for our legendary service, style and quality to outfit their employees worldwide. Our talented team drew inspiration from Posen’s designs to create cohesive styles for Delta’s below-wing employees, while producing both collections with meticulous attention to detail in high-quality, innovative fabrics and materials.”

The company reported that the collection was introduced yesterday via runway shows in Atlanta, Minneapolis and Los Angeles featuring Delta uniforms over the decades. "Customers may even be surprised by pop-up fashion shows with the designer on board at 30,000 feet," Delta also noted.

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