Iberia just released its latest uniform in front of a fashion-focussed audience of hundreds at the 71st annual edition of Madrid FashionWeek. Designed by Teresa Helbig, this is the latest designer to grace Iberia’s crews following fashion greats including Manuel Pertegaz, Elio Berhanyer and Adolfo Domínguez.
The expansive line of clothing and accessories will adorn the carrier’s 6,500 uniformed cockpit, cabin and airport crews as of 1st May 2020. The range is more of a capsule collection including dresses, suits, skirts, trousers, shirts, blouses, overcoats, handbags, cardigans, blazers, waistcoats, scarves, knitted jumpers, polo shirts and neckties. It doesn’t stop there, as there is even special uniforms for pregnant employees.
The look is intrinsically ‘contemporary Spanish’, with a hint of retro nostalgia mixed with what looks like a seasonal collection from the likes of Zara or Mango. Helbig explains that the uniforms embody ‘edginess, proximity, vitality, excellence, and helpfulness’, all Iberia values that are shared by Helbig. The clothing is not only comfortable and utilitarian, but made in an enduringly elegant style.
Being somewhat on trend, and less timeless than many other airlines opt for, there is the risk that these threads could date faster, but simple additions or deductions from the capsule collection is a clever way of keeping the line fresh without having to completely redesign the uniform.
“The jackets are a touch retro, while there’s an attractive unisex flair to the coats, and the women’s trousers are anything but rigid –they facilitate women’s movements. All are garments that we would be happy to wear for everyday.
There’s a reinterpretation of the iconic straight skirt, and we have given special importance to the accessories,” says Helbig, one of Spain’s top contemporary fashion designers. That includes Iberia’s new red gloves – a great ‘retro’ addition, which could become iconic, now that Air Berlin no longer flies the skies.
As well as red, predominant colours in the collection also include blue and yellow all grounded by beige hues. Navy blue symbolises balance, while red and yellow are Iberia’s corporate colours: “Red embodies passion, drive, and vitality, and yellow is stimulating, youthful, and energetic”, says Helbig, while beige is “genuine. natural, calm, and very elegant.” The mosaic of colours is complemented by details which appear and disappear with the movement of neck, cuffs, and back.
What we do love is the fact the commissioning of the uniform project to a Spanish designer is in keeping with Iberia’s #Talentoabordo project. A scheme which promotes established and emerging Spanish creative artists in all the countries served by the airline.
Supporting the new uniform, El Corte Inglés retail chain is making the new threads, which will be delivered individually to each employee’s home with alterations made at El Corte Inglés outlets near the Madrid and Barcelona airports.
It’s a cohesive collection, which will work well within Iberia’s branded universe and is very representative of the carrier’s Spanish roots, but hopefully the look, which is very en Vogue in today’s world, doesn’t age too quickly. We also wish there was perhaps one key outfit that became a signature look for the carrier in a reverse colour block, such as Kempinski’s red dress or Avianca’s iconic red cape.
The Big Spanish Picture