This time around, we're doing something a little bit different and fun. My Crazy Sexy Geeks co-host Jennifer Ewing and I reunite with our friend Tim Gunn. For those of you not familiar, Tim is a fashion authority who spent years as a faculty member and chair of fashion design at Parsons The New School for Design. He has been a host and mentor to the candidates of ever since the show started and currently serves as Chief Creative Officer at Liz Claiborne, Inc. He's also got a healthy interest in science fiction and superheroes.
In the past, Tim and I have discussed various superheroes and a few super-villains. This time, we shift our lens to Star Trek: The Original Series, as well as the pilot episode "The Cage" that started it all. And while we discuss the 1960's uniforms of Starfleet, we also get into a conversation about gender power and identity in fashion.
As we can see in the pilot episode, the Starfleet uniforms seen aboard the USS Enterprise NCC-1701 (under Captain Pike at the time) were a bit drab. Designed by William Ware Theiss, It's basically just black trousers and boots with a velour shirt, the color of which indicates what division the person belongs to: gold indicates command (helm control and navigation); the pale shade of orange/tan indicates operations division (engineering, communications and security); blue indicates medical and science division.
These three major divisions were also indicated by symbols drawn inside the badge worn by each crew member of the Enterprise. Command gold uniforms had a starburst within the badge. Operations badges had Science/medical blue had a Gold bands on the ends of the sleeves indicated rank.
When the original series truly began in earnest, with Captain James T. Kirk in charge, the uniforms changed a bit. The colors were more deeply saturated. Duty uniforms for command remained gold, but the dress uniforms for command were now a shade of green. Engineering and security now wore red shirts rather than a shade that could be confused with command gold. Women crew members now had essentially a shirt that ended in a skirt and also had with a lower, sloping neckline to differentiate them from the men. The material stayed velour until the third and final season of the show, by which time it had become a problem that the uniforms would constantly shrink. For that last season, a nylon material was used.
Now let's get to the video!
Remember, this is just the first of a series of videos look at the Star Trek franchise, so be sure to check back soon as we begin delving into the Mirror Universe, Star Trek: The Next Generation, and beyond! This is Alan Kistler, Agent of S.T.Y.L.E., signing off!