The Financial Times


The race for space is rocketing to dizzying new heights, but fashion designers have long been on board with all things otherworldly


Mark C O’Flaherty August 26 2021


Theatrics aside, space fashion continues to tap into a utilitarian, sometimes genderless theme that many see as synonymous with the future. Boarding a commercial space flight in Barbarella-style sexy space-wear seems unlikely to happen.

“Historically we have viewed the future through a utopian lens, imagining ourselves as finally conforming to a democratic system of dress,” says Professor Andrew Groves, director of the menswear archive at the University of Westminster. “It stems back to 1919 when Italian futurist Thayaht designed the TuTa, now known as the boiler suit. It was a utopian garment that served as the prototype for practically every subsequent iteration of space clothing.” Fast forward a century and a designer such as Craig Green creates clothes that offer tactile sensuality to the wearer, yet outwardly project the codified meanings inherent within generic uniforms. “His clothing is modern and timeless,” says Groves.

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