0806esb.jpgThe Empire State Building is going couture! Well, sort of. From a press release about the 300 newly-uniformed employees:

As part of a $500 million renovation to restore the Empire State Building’s 1930’s glory, new Art Deco-inspired uniforms are rolling out for staff this summer to kick off the season in style.

The dapper uniforms are made to measure and have unique 1930’s details that fit the period and character of the ESB, like chevrons on the sleeves, custom silk ties with mini buildings, an Art Deco-style font created for patches, and a custom dyed fabric color called ESB Burgundy.

With Art Deco details integrated into many Fall '08 runway shows, this puts the ESB right up there with Versace -- who, incidentally, also had a shade similar to the building's burgundy at his recent shows. The company who designed the latest look, I. Buss Uniform Co., also handles the Metropolitan Opera, Lincoln Center, Dakota, Waldorf-Astoria, and UN. Designers searched the company’s photo archive for inspiration, pulling Art Deco elements from real 1930s uniforms. You'll see them on observatory and security staff throughout the building.

The NY Times went inside the workroom last month, where 70-year-old Stuart Busch did all of the fittings for the ESB staff. His daughter noted, “I love that they’re doing this more formal look. They were in polo shirts. That’s not a uniform.” An ESB spokesperson told us that the last redesign was in the Fall of 2002, when staff received new polo shirts and cardigans.