Thursday, July 26, 2007

I'm TOA, Fly Me

Up, up, and away,
With TOA,
The friendly, friendly waaaaaaay! *

It's an homage to air travel here today. Not boring humdrum discount air travel, but the days of highballs, smoking sections and Pucci miniskirted 'Stews'. Glamour. When people dressed up to travel, the food was real food, the flight attendants were glamazons and the young Brioni blazered exec in 12B was a likely candidate to join the Mile High Club with.

  • Braniff International were one of the first luxury airlines. Vibrant sexy uniforms by Pucci (and later, a more subdued Halston) were just one of their trademarks. Sadly the days of shag carpeted aircraft and upstairs bars on 747s are a thing of the past. Look back in awe on the Braniff International official site, and a Braniff tribute site and the Braniff pages.
  • Gail Salenius runs a customised Barbie doll site, but was a Braniff hostess back in the day and has kept all her Pucci designed uniforms.

  • Speaking of uniforms, Cliff Muskiet is a purser with Dutch airline KLM, and has a huge Stewardess Uniform Collection.
  • Look back on the glory days at The Airchive, a comprehensive museum of commercial aviation, old and new.
  • Search through and compare the plastic wrapped lunch boxes of today with the Wedgewood china Chicken Kievs with Chef Salad of the past.
  • Remember Pan Am? Here's a fab Pan Am tribute site (with a sobering list of accidents).
  • Eero Saarinen built a fabulous one or two, but check out some other beauties at Old Airline Terminals (shield your eyes, the webpage design is a little horrendo and bright.)

There are some passionate collectors of airline memorabilia out there. Both fabulous and strange:

* With apologies to the late, great Aussie airline TAA.


thombeau said...


Your on a roll today! Fabulous!

The Other Andrew said...


Mikey (TLE) said...

I ask you; is Das Internetz not the best invention for human communication ever? I think it must be.

Fabbo collection, though I thought the theme song ought to have ended "the friendly, friendly gay".

I guess the closest we come to Braniff these days is Wallpaper founder, Tyler Brulee's Swissair.

And are we taking bets on the inspired Cliff Muskiet being a homoxual?

M-H said...

I remember lots of those bags. NAC was NZ's national domestic airline, back in the day (stood for National Airways Corporation). We lived close to Wellington Airport, so I have a lot of memories of picking up various rellies and either bringing them home to ours or depositing them where they were staying. In those days the terminal was a converted hangar - it wasn't very glamorous.

Kenyo said...

Ah, the Golden Age of Flying. Great memories. Today I would rather stay out of airports and planes and take a cruise ship.

I too have a nice collection of airline coffee spoons. I treasure the ones from airlines of the past -- Braniff, PanAm, TWA, Eastern, Manx, BOAC...

A wonderful post, thank you, TOA.

Quatrefoil said...

I've done a lot of air travel, but my favourite airsickness bag was the one used on the MMA (McRobertson-Miller Airlines, but known locally as Micky Mouse Airlines)flight between Alice Springs and Tennant Creek in the 80s. It was a foil lined bag emblazoned with 'Tennant Creek Hot Chicken Shop'.

The Other Andrew said...

Hah, too funny!

Is that because you're more inclined to need the bag after eating from the chicken shop?....