Zana Bayne Makes You Forget Everything You Think You Know About Bondage Gear



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Zana Bayne, Founder & Owner, Zana Bayne
If you recall Prabal Gurung's spring '12 collection of flouncy frocks cinched with bondage-like harnesses, you may already know there were two designers sharing the runway that day: Gurung and then-newcomer Zana Bayne. What started as the New Yorker's blog, Garbage Dress, soon expanded into her own line of leather harnesses, which have changed the way we think about the evocative and suggestively fetishized accessory. Of course, it's really Bayne herself that we've really become most fascinated with.

With a style POV that's part edgy, part feminine, and completely unexpected, Bayne's wardrobe mix (or lack thereof — she wears mostly head-to-toe black) is not for the faint of heart. And with editors and celebrities fawning over her leather creations — Sally Singer and Derek Blasberg both wore pieces to the punk-themed Met Ball — it's easy to see that Bayne is a crowd favorite (and not just around R29). Ahead, the everyday-bondage-accessory creator dishes on her greatest splurges, favorite new designers, and badass (but totally appropriate) theme song.

The greatest style lesson I've ever learned: 
"When I was a little kid, I loved the color lavender...Years later, my mother confessed that as an already-pale person, it made me look ill. I’ve never attempted the color since."

My constant source of style inspiration:
"It's impossible for me to pin it down to one person! I’m constantly people-watching, gathering bits of inspiration from strangers on the subway or friends at parties."

My first major, big-ticket style purchase:
"I fell in love with the now-infamous Maison Martin Margiela long-sleeved ‘bra leotard’ from the spring '07 collection IN spring of '07 (it's now been replicated for the Margiela x H&M collaboration). It's such a nonsensical item of clothing, as it's made of heat-holding, thin polyester that shows sweat marks in about .2 seconds. Also, people stare at you like you’re really not wearing a shirt (not that the attention has ever stopped me), but I fell in love with it and finally tracked it down to Wilkes Bashford in San Francisco. I was 18 years old and really had no business paying full price for it, but I was overtaken by Margiela-mind-power. It's been a cherished, relic item in my closet ever since, even though it barely ever gets to see the light of day."

My favorite up-and-coming designers:
"I edited my list down to my favorite New York-design stars — they've all had pretty major moments, so I wouldn’t exactly classify them as up-and-coming, but, hopefully, those who are unfamiliar will find them as inspirational as I do. Clothing: Skingraft (they just opened up a New York store!), Sally LaPointe, Logan Neitzel, InAisce, Daniella Kallmeyer, Asher Levine, Obesity & Speed. Jewelry and accessories: Chris Habana, Mordekai, A-Morir."

My style theme song:
"The Cramps — 'Paint It Black' (black lace, black leather, black vinyl, all together)."

My definitive summer go-to outfit:
"I tend to dress pretty simply in the summertime — my goal being to stay as cool as possible, as I get overheated really easily. My key clothing item is fishnet stockings (preferably ripped to shreds) with a simple, drapey, black tank top for ventilation and a short, stretchy, black skirt. And, of course, a great harness. For summer looks, I highly suggest the clear PVC, because it reflects sunlight in a stunning way and can also be worn over a swimsuit in water!"

If I were 80 years old today:
"When I’m 80, I would love to have an extensive collection of dramatic hats and elaborate swing coats!"

Styled by Laura Pritchard, Hair by Bethany Brill, Makeup by Tiffany Patton

Acne black button-down shirt; Chloë Sevigny x Opening Ceremony black booties; IOSSELLIANI Agate & Stone Necklace, $256.80, available at Shopbop; Natalie Frigo Large Antler Earrings, $290, available at Natalie Frigo; PENDU x Zana Bayne Bracelet Black/White, $66.60, available at Zana Bayne; Zana Bayne black-leather harness available at Zana Bayne.

Photographed by