I would like to start off admitting that Zana Bayne is not a brand you would see the typical college student wearing around campus. Though I think these clothing lines are beautiful, intricate works of art, I would not categorize them as a prêt-à-porter line. Bayne specializes in handcrafted leathers, harness collections, to be exact. I would say her lines seem inspired by the leather bondages, dominatrix scene. So, proceed with caution when googling this brilliant designer, you may see a little more than you bargained for.
Now that I have presented the parental guidance sticker on this designer, let me continue and tell you about how unique and inspiring she is. Bayne has a BFA in Conceptual Art from the San Francisco Art Institute and now lives in New York City where she just had a show in New York Fashion Week, displaying her Fall/Winter 2014 collection. When I first set eyes on this collection I felt very conflicting emotions, but that worked together, like yin and yang. These pieces show strong leather bondages and belts that made me feel, frankly, a little threatened, but also mixed with intrigue. Bayne also combines these forceful materials with fragile ones, such as chiffon, and mesh. Making it an outfit of danger and desire all in one!
Bayne spent time living in Berlin, and this can be seen as an obvious inspiration in her designs. Berlin has a well-known… well, lets just call it a sensual scene that includes a swirl of open sexualities, fetishes, and, of course, lots of leather. There is even a Berlin Leather Week in the month of April! (That I would also suggest googling with caution.) With leather comes a badass demeanor. From Marlon Brando’s The Wild One to the recent rendition of Girl With the Dragon Tattoo, leather plays a big part in describing a character. Bayne is able to do this with her designs by pouring her self-expression into her leather designs.
As for you and I, the fashion adorers of Temple, it may be a little difficult to stunt this style on our way to an 8 a.m. literature class, but it wouldn’t hurt to try! If I were to own one of these daring designs I would not be able to resist wearing it!
Just for a quick example, to indulge myself, take this breathtaking ensemble above from Bayne’s 2014 Spring/Summer line. It would most likely get me kicked off campus quite fast. However, if I were to stunt a simple, high-waist, pencil skirt underneath the leather harness skirt and pair it with a cropped blazer or a simple cardigan I am pretty sure I would be in the clear to take my finals. In fact, I would most likely be the most fashionable person for miles, so much so that I would instantly pass all my finals because of all the confidence that is beaming off of me! (Ok, maybe that last sentence is a bit of an exaggeration, but I would definitely be the most fashionable person around for miles.)
Bayne’s designs can be found at such high-fashion ends as Comme Des Garcons and Opening Ceremony. For an entire list of where you can find Bayne’s lovely designs check out THIS list or click HERE for her online shop.