The Flair Up There: 20th Century Spaceman Style

Can you name a modern-day astronaut? It’s not a trick question. The Rake pilots a time machine to the mid 20th century – the glory days of space exploration – when the men with the right stuff became international celebrities and style icons.
Deke Slayton during the Appollo-Soyuz test project, 1975. Photo courtesy of Getty Images.

Buzz Aldrin may have been the second man to walk on the moon, but he was, at least,the first astronaut to walk the New York Fashion Week runway. Two years ago, the space exploration pioneerwhose personal style is of a more bohemian bent, with gangsta levels of jewellerymoved throughsEarth gravity at a steady enough pace for an 87-year-old dressed in(what else)a metallic silver jacket from designer Nick Grahams Life on Mars collection. And, yes,Aldrinstill looked like a bit of a dude.

Even if we barely know the names of spacemen and women today,we know thatNASAs Mercury, Gemini and Apollo space programmes set a high bar for style, not least becausetheymade national celebrities of the individuals chosen to fly literally out of this worldand of their families.The New York Timesnoted how the astronautsquicklycame to embody greatUS of Avalues,the likes of duty, faith and country:Nobody went away from these young men scoffing at their courage and idealism,it noted.And such was the hype that even their children became famous.Teenmagazine ran an exclusive onCarolyn Glenn: Astronaut John Glenns Daughter Reveals Why Shes Way Out in Orbit!


September 2019


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