Fashion forward PIA to glam up air hostesses with Nomi Ansari's creations

Published: March 17, 2015


PHOTO: Models presenting designer's creations for new PIA uniform in Karachi on Monday. PHOTO: MOHAMMAD NOMAN/EXPRESS

KARACHI: The national flag carrier Pakistan International Airlines (PIA), which once had Pierre Cardin design the uniform for its cabin crew, will now sport local designer Nomi Ansari’s creations after he won a fashion face-off for the top honour.

The face-off took place in Karachi with some of the country’s top designers presenting their prospective uniforms for the flag carrier at what was dubbed the ‘Runway Collection 2015’.


Models presenting designer’s creations for new PIA uniform in Karachi on Monday. PHOTO: MOHAMMAD NOMAN/EXPRESS

Designers, who were participating pro bono, included the likes of Maheen Khan, Shamaeel Ansari, Sonya Batla, Amir Adnan, Nida Azwer, Ismail Farid, Omer Farooq, Fahad Hussayn, Maheen Karim, Misha Lakhani, Sania Maskatiya, Yasmeen Sheikh, Shamoon Sultan of Khaadi, Ali Xeeshan and Hasan Shahryar Yasin – popularly known as HSY.

The designers showcased concepts for PIA’s new cabin crew look, including air hostesses and stewards.


Models presenting designer’s creations for new PIA uniform in Karachi on Monday. PHOTO: MOHAMMAD NOMAN/EXPRESS

At the end of the day, it was a split decision. Nomi Ansari’s outfit was chosen for the air hostesses. The dress will be paired with caps and scarves from Sania Maskatiya. Their coats will be by Yasmeen Sheikh.

For the men, they will wear Omar Farooq’s creations.


According to reports, the new uniform will come off the hangers from April 18, 2015, so keep an eye out the next time you’re flying on a PIA flight.

Last week, while speaking to The Express Tribune, organiser of the event and CEO of Spectrum Group Shahnoor Ahmed said, “The key inspiration comes from Bunto Kazmi who has collected 16 designers working free of charge and in national spirit.”

Read: High-end: PIA on the cusp of fashion makeover


Models presenting designer’s creations for new PIA uniform in Karachi on Monday. PHOTO: MOHAMMAD NOMAN/EXPRESS

Kazmi was initially offered to solely design the uniforms herself, in turn she turned to 16 designers to offer inspiration, The Express Tribune learnt.

“It should be smart, convey a professional image, be functional in use and reflect Pakistan,” Ahmed said, when asked what the designers would be working towards when it came to the design of the new uniforms.


Models presenting designer’s creations for new PIA uniform in Karachi on Monday. PHOTO: MOHAMMAD NOMAN/EXPRESS

“We will have to wait and see what the vision of the designers is; however, they have been briefed to reflect our identity,” he added.


Models presenting designer’s creations for new PIA uniform in Karachi on Monday. PHOTO: MOHAMMAD NOMAN/EXPRESS

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Reader Comments (18)

  • Asad Khan
    Mar 17, 2015 - 2:44AM

    Good effort by the designers, commendable.


  • Fiz
    Mar 17, 2015 - 3:43AM

    Thank God. My eyes have gone sore looking at outdated uniforms of PIA airhostesses. The new ones look smart with a hint of vintage look. The colors are nice too. Well done Pakistani designers.The new uniforms might inspire me to try PIA’s crappy service once again.Recommend

  • Aftab
    Mar 17, 2015 - 5:17AM

    Fancy uniforms, catwalk shows, oh so lovely. How about addressing the bloated and highly inefficient workforce (776 employees per plane vs, 100-120 internationally), rampant corruption and nepotism, a dated and unreliable fleet, poor food and on-board services?

    And then there’s landing into ISB, waiting an hour for your luggage, experiencing those toilets and being harassed for money by Customs or someone else. Papering over the cracks comes to mind.Recommend

  • Khan
    Mar 17, 2015 - 7:16AM

    If only we have beautiful flight attendants like these models!!Recommend

  • Chachoo
    Mar 17, 2015 - 7:44AM

    PIA is not incurring losses due to Air hostesses. Anyway PIA administration had spent millions on this project and Political minded officers love to throw parties rather than doing any Professional workRecommend

  • Muhammad Rizwan Ali
    Mar 17, 2015 - 7:47AM

    Very impresive design by Nomi Ansari,Recommend

  • Sanaz
    Mar 17, 2015 - 8:09AM

    Too bland and why has he copied Emirates and etihad here ?Recommend

  • A Citizen
    Mar 17, 2015 - 8:35AM

    The problem with PIA is the uniform of air hostesses. The problems of PIA are elsewhere. Those need to be addressed. “Great People” that fly with this airline are not interested in looking at the dresses of the servers, but are interested in services that normal airlines provide to them, like being on-time, comfortable seats (seats on PIA planes are so hard), blankets and pillows for passengers (they don’t carry these even for international flights), clean aircraft and clean bathrooms, edible food, and competitive fares.Recommend

  • MMC
    Mar 17, 2015 - 8:38AM

    A bigger concern should be over the bodies these uniforms will drape. These sort of dresses are likely to have a slightly different entertainment value on elderly, obese stewardesses that PIA currently populates its planes with…Recommend

  • Mohammad
    Mar 17, 2015 - 9:30AM

    Lovely! Talent is shouting from these pictures and creation – we are gifted greatest talented people on the planet. Good Job designers! and thank you for working free of cost in National Spirit. Recommend

  • samir
    Mar 17, 2015 - 9:56AM

    Very nice initiative! It is one step forward but an important step. Branding and Services go hand in hand and image building is a must. Hope next step is to improve service from the start of user journey to the end. Recommend

  • KK Kool
    Mar 17, 2015 - 9:57AM

    Look at the hands of Nomi Ansari around models. I believe he treats all models as his sisters. Recommend

  • roadkashehzada
    Mar 17, 2015 - 10:26AM

    fresh air
    lets not think negative for one day todayRecommend

  • sadia
    Mar 17, 2015 - 10:38AM

    I loved khaddi’s outfit! The nomi ansari design is so lack luster!Recommend

  • Omer
    Mar 17, 2015 - 10:58AM

    Boring final selection, low on original style. Designers work felt restrained, probably too many instructions given?

    Why was Yousaf Basheer Qureshi aka YBQ not part of this design exercise?Recommend

  • Naweed Rashid
    Mar 17, 2015 - 11:05AM

    Some thing refreshing to the eyes, Good thinking by PIA Management, Very Good effort by DesignersRecommend

  • straightshooter
    Mar 17, 2015 - 4:31PM

    Last picture, the lady in the middle. Reminds of the attendants in the 60s. Just borrow the beret from the one on her left, and the picture is complete. They say that back then, PIA were indeed great people to fly with. If only we could bring back the bilkul purana wala Pakistan.Recommend

  • Ali
    Mar 18, 2015 - 6:59PM

    I liked Yasmeen Sheikh design best for PIA, they resemble current PIA uniform, are not a rude drastic change like the one chosen, they are not lacklustre but are colourful and bright looking yet simple, they kept traditional yet modernised look of shalwar kameez and not a messy fusion with hat, scarf jacket and trousers bringing in another culture as dominant, even the models look like PIA girls in them, for guys Ismail Farid was best.

    Hope the chosen designs are modified to be better, I’m already judging the judges taste, these were very important people in their feilds and yet they chose the most disappointing look, of all the variety of colours and styles presented, Misha Lakhan, Nida Azwar and Sania Maskatiya together could have made a much better womens uniform if selected as they colour palettes and some ideas were really good.Recommend

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