A Finnish brand is turning McDonald’s uniforms into high fashion

A Finnish brand is turning McDonald’s uniforms into high fashion

Written by the author Zoe Sottile, CNN

A Finnish brand is bringing high fashion to an unexpected place: McDonald’s.

Helsinki fashion brand VAIN has just released a unique collaboration with the fast food giant. The brand used McDonald’s employee uniforms as the core component for the recycled clothing collection.

The uniform’s standard shirt and pants evolved into flared dresses, hooded sweatshirts, and tiny little skirts, among other things.

The 27 items in the collection will be raffled among McDonald’s employees in Finland. Credit: Sofia Okkonen

“The clothing was designed looking for new ways to use worn-out workwear and create new designs using existing materials,” said VAIN. in a news release.

For the brand’s designer, the collaboration was an opportunity to connect with beloved images from his youth.

“When I was presented with the idea of ​​a McDonald’s workwear fashion project I was immediately blown away,” said Jimi Vain, creative director and designer at VAIN, in the release. “When I grew up in a very rural area in Finland, there was no special space to walk around when I was young. The local McDonald’s played that role for us.”

“It was also the closest we’ve ever been to global pop culture in the north,” Vain’s statement continued. “We spent many evenings, and made many memories, hanging around the local McDonald’s.”

The collection mixes up those familiar motifs, experimenting with McDonald’s iconic golden arch logo as a belt buckle, and mixing the brand’s red and yellow color palette with grays and blacks.

The collection used a combination of McDonald's uniforms and other fabrics to create unique garments.

The collection used a combination of McDonald’s uniforms and other fabrics to create unique garments. Credit: Vain Fashion Group

McDonald’s Finnish employees will be able to have special outfits, the brand said. The 27 pieces from the VAIN collection will be available to McDonald’s employees in the country through an internal raffle, a brand representative said.

But the costumes are “just for fun,” a VAIN representative told CNN via email, so employees won’t be allowed to wear mixed uniforms to work.

The VAIN collaboration is not McDonald’s first foray into the world of fashion. Earlier this year, the brand released the precious, limited edition collaboration with streetwear brand Cactus Plant Flea Market.

In 2014, fashion designer Jeremy Scott drew inspiration from the restaurant chain for the debut collection of Italian luxury brand Moschino. The label’s Fall/Winter 2014 show featured uniform-inspired silhouettes and a Happy Meal bag.

While cult favorite Vetements He hosted his spring-summer 2020 menswear show at a McDonald’s in Paris — and sent the models down the runway eating French fries.
Other brands have also experimented with fast-food-fashion crossovers. KFC, for example, released two limited edition “chicken bags” In 2020 in collaboration with the legendary designer Karl Lagerfeld, for his 80th birthday.

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