If I was to choose a single period of time in the history of aviation to revive, then this would be the former Olympic Airways era. Just about every girl who longs a profession up in the sky, daydreams about getting a aspect of this golden era of aviation. Back then, when renowned designers competed with every other about who would design and style the finest and most sophisticated patterns to dress the glamorous flying girls.

And even although the post-Onassis era proved to be unstable for the corporation, there is no denying of its unparalleled contribution to the Greek aviation style excellence more than the subsequent years.


The glorious era of aviation in Greece started on April the 6th of 1957, the day when Aristotle Onassis bought the corporation from the Greek state, the day when the Golden Era of Olympic Airways – his valuable “girlfriend”, as he utilized to refer to – launched. The company’s operation initially started with inbound flights and progressively grew into one particular of the biggest airline organizations connecting Greece with each continent, which includes Australia, inspiring young girls through the 60’s and 70’s to pursue a dream profession up in the air. Only a handful of of these aspiring flight attendants managed to make their way into small business – these had been the “selected” ones, the elites.


Olympic Airways was a corporation renowned for its interest to detail and the luxurious solutions it offered to its passengers when making certain that its girls would only be dressed according to the most recent and finest trends, generating a style statement that would final more than the decades to come. Everyone who had the opportunity to fly through the Golden Era of Olympic Airlines, certainly witnessed one particular of the most refined periods of aviation in Greece. Beneath the prestige and the luxurious character of the corporation lied the eagerness and endless longing of Onassis to turn its “girlfriend” into a leading-class worldwide aviation corporation, leaving its glorious mark behind. Onassis place genuine faith to its individuals and proof to that was the incomparably outstanding apperance and skilled management of its personnel, top to its massive results more than the years.

Flying at the time was far more like a lifetime practical experience,  rather than a uncomplicated suggests of transport.

The cabin service was one particular of the most luxurious and of higher high-quality provided at the time – Onassis himself ordered to use gold-plated flatware in each Small business and Economy class four in response to the secret (or not so secret) attempts of the Small business Class passengers to obtain some of the gold-plated flatware utilized for their meals. Onassis aimed for each Greek home to have a reminder of the Golden Era of Olympic Airways. Fine porcelains and crystals along with sophisticated designer uniforms combined to realize the outstanding outcome that left a permanent mark in the history of aviation.

The company’s luxurious style inspired style designers about the globe to generate exclusive uniform collections to dress the fashionable flight attendants.The styles had been either revolutionary  or clean-reduce classic ones when their accessories variety integrated rubber boots and fashionable capes that left their mark in the style history. The uniforms had been each fashionable and refined, when at the identical time functional, turning every one particular of the girls into style icons of the time.

Jean Dessès was the company’s very first uniform designer and a globe top style designer from the 1940s till the 1960s. He was born in Alexandria, Egypt and lived in Paris. He became broadly recognized as the “king of muslin”. His design and style for the Olympic Airlines uniform integrated a blue clean-reduce skirt suit fiited in the waist, worn with a crisp white shirt and necessarily, a chic hat.

Hats in aviation had been a mandatory accessory that complimented every uniform, marking the luxury and prestige in aviation. Hats are generating a comeback currently as far more and far more aviation organizations are attempting to re-establish their luxurious character.

Jean Dessès and the very first uniform of Olympic Airways (1957-1966)

Coco Chanel followed, presenting a vibrant, super chic uniform style that bared her signature jacket style and kept the hat. The jacket created by Coco Chanel was a signature button-up with a white peter pan collar and a cute bow correct under the neck.

The uniform created by Coco Chanel was in use for 3 years and became a promiment chapter of the company’s history.


Coco Chanel and the ladies wearing her fabulous uniforms (1966-1968)

Pierre Cardin followed with his perception of the ultimate uniform style inspired by the space age trend of the late 1960’s. His design and style was the most influential uniform design and style of all instances in my opinion, which includes a mini dress, a statement cape and a wonderful bonnet hat.

These 3 components promptly became the trademark of Olympic Airways. Aristotle Onassis set the requirements so higher that one particular could merely watch him and his company’s results “take off” afterwards.

Pierre Cardin and his ultimate uniform style inspired by the space age (1969-1971)

In 1972, maxi dresses are introduced for the flight attendants in Small business Class when Yannis Tseklenis was assigned to design and style the company’s brand new uniforms. The Olympic rings starred in the new uniform when a new maxi and mini version came in use, enriched with complimentory accessories like the umbrellas.

Tseklenis launched an exclusive collection which integrated all the needed accessories a flight attendant would want: umbrellas, the dress and the statement boots. These white rubber boots received a lot of constructive feedback as they introduced a new style era. Tseklenis believed very of this collection, as it was a project he loved functioning on.

γιαννης τσεκλενης, ολυμπιακη αεροποριαolympic-airways-uniforms
Yannis Tseklenis’ design and style for the small business class ladies (1972-1976)

The death of Aristotle Onassis resulted in the downturn the corporation took right after 1974 when the Greek State gained ownership of the corporation. Onassis’ adore for the corporation and his longing to see it make it to the leading, was vanished right after his death.

A contest was held involving designers by the state to decide on future designers. Roula Stathis won in 1979 with her hippie-retro design and style and Billy Bo followed in 1981, introducing burgundy hues for the Small business Class girls for the very first time ever. From 1978 to 1992, Truth Kontoyorgos and Aspasia Jerel took more than designing the company’s uniforms. Afterwards, Makis Tselios created the foulard-centered uniform from 1992 till 1999.

Sylia Krithariotis‘ design and style in 2013 was a vibrant instance of the company’s comeback. Getting aspect of the Aegean Airlines group, Olympic Airlines’ uniforms are at present created by Sophia Kokosalakis.

The hippie design and style of Roula Stathi 

Pierre Cardin

There is no doubt that right after the death of Aristotle Onassis, Olympic Airlines lost its prestige, though there had been various attempts produced to bring back some of the company’s lengthy-gone glamour. Sophisticated uniforms perform as an unmistakable sign of outstanding service and unremarkable style for every corporation.

And even although I did not have the opportunity to perform Olympic’s glamorous days, this dream will generally keep alive.

*** None of the above images is mine. All are borrowed from pinterest.


Maria Kalymnou

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