Emerging South African label Tayla Shan’s capsule collection for the African Fashion International Fast track was chosen as one of the four top collections shown in the showcase for good reason. Shan’s collection, like many of the others shown as part of the Fast Track initiative showed incredible brand awareness and an ability to either deconstruct stereotypes or build on a simple idea.
There is a flirtatiousness that pervades the collection, expressed through the label’s choice of fabric, lush jerseys and loose folds that drape on the models, sculpted into low slung capes and skorts. Even when Shan does volume tackling this season’s favourite (culottes) she tempers it with structure, slimming down the pant legs and adding a train.
What really sets Tayla Shan’s work apart though is her construction. She threads the entire collection together through a series of experiments with rope, using different techniques to create exquisite detailing on her pieces. Some of the work is subtle, lacing up the rope into the collar of a risque jumpsuit with a plunging neckline, some extensive as she creates an entire halterneck blouse by using the ropes to create a basket weave.
She even creates accessories with this, a thick corded choker knotted from the ropes, the ends left to hang into a fringe, ends tucked into the bottom hem of the gown. This artisanal approach elevates her work to genius status and excites us.
Tayla Shan’s first full collection will definitely be momentous.
Mercedes Benz Fashion Week Johannesburg
Nelson Mandela Square, Sandton, Gauteng, South Africa.