Christopher Raeburn designs V&A staff uniform

MIX AND MATCH: London’s Victoria and Albert museum has been in the process of refreshing its image and has tapped the British designer Christopher Raeburn, known for using upcycled and recycled materials, to design its new staff uniforms.

Raeburn, who first worked with the museum in 2016 as a participant in its “Fashion in Motion” series of fashion shows, designed a set of printed garments and accessories that can be mixed and matched.

Rainproof parkas and T-shirts feature the designer’s signature parachute details and his love of layering, and each item can be matched with staff members’ own trousers or skirts.

The print on the T-shirts, parkas and matching tote bags was inspired by famous objects from the V&A’s collection, including a space hopper from Seventies Britain and Gian Lorenzo Bernini’s sculpture titled “Neptune and Triton.”

The bright blue and orange color palette of the uniforms references Raphael’s “The Miraculous Draught of Fishes” painting, also on display at the museum.

“Exploring the Victoria and Albert Museum was one of my earliest childhood memories, I went on to study fashion design a stone’s throw away at the Royal College of Art and would spend hours delving into the archive at the V&A, so having this opportunity to develop responsibly designed uniforms for an institution so close to my heart has been an incredible honor,” said the designer.

Tristram Hunt, the museum’s director, added that the new adaptive uniforms are a reflection of the museum’s new, contemporary attitude and embrace of popular culture.

Over the past year, the V&A has staged blockbuster exhibitions ranging from Pink Floyd to Balenciaga and has also opened its first international gallery in Shenzen, China as part of the Design Society.

Last June, the museum also unveiled a new entrance and courtyard on Exhibition Road, as well as a new purpose-built gallery for temporary exhibitions which aims to highlight contemporary design.

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