last thursday, the fash pack attended an event where we didn't know anyone. NOT A SINGLE SOUL. it was the 60th anniversary gala of cathay pacific, and attire required was formal, as in, business suit/barong tagalog for the men and long gown for the women. long gown! we thought, nah... nobody follows those attire requests on invitations. they'll probably be in jeans and polo shirts. well, when we got to the philippine plaza and walked into the ballroom, boy, did we have egg on our face! every single man was either in a suit or a barong, and all, as in ALL the women were in long gowns. well, at least we wore something comfortably in between that we didn't feel or look underdressed: a cocktail dress. nothing we would ever wear to the mall or to the office, so we were still appropriately dressed. we must say, there's something about going to an event where you don't know anyone. you don't have to schmooze and make boring small talk with anyone. no networking and shameless self-promotion required. no need to meet the bigwigs (because you don't know who they are) and try to impress them. the only thing to do is hang around the buffet table and eat. thank god they didn't run out of sushi. and thank god the waitresses wouldn't stop walking around with trays of red and white wine. we even got to sit on the front row by the stage to watch the fashion show. the clothes? the uniforms of the stewardesses (that quaint term of cabin crew before they were called FAs), from the 1940s to the present. the designs echoed the fashion of the times, as well as who the hot designers were. the models? the stewardesses themselves. well, they looked pretty comfortable walking the length of the runway; it was just like walking up and down the aisle on the plane, haha! before that, there was a whole spiel and video about how cathay pacific came to be. did you know the idea for this airline was hatched by a couple of air force guys (an american and an australian) while having a drink at the manila hotel? a lot of things can happen talaga when you're drunk. and did you know that some of the uniforms were designed by the likes of hermès, pierra balmain and nina ricci? although we don't know now which ones they designed. (UPDATE: now we do. see below.) how long have you been flying the friendly skies that you remember these uniforms?
1969, designed by rudella shull watterman (how could they squat and bend over while serving without giving passengers an eyeful??)
1970s, designed by pierre balmain (now we know where nicolas ghesquière got the idea for those tall hats for balenciaga's f/w 06 collection!)
1983, designed by hermès
1990s, designed by nina ricci
notice how as the decades go by, the more boring the design of the uniforms becomes?