suzaanheyns

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Suzaan Heyns - Day 1 at SA Fashion Week Autumn/Winter 2014

This season’s collection by the incredibly talented designer was inspired by, get this, Minnie Mouse! Talk about taking the most fashion-obsessed trip to Disney Land ever!

The collection actually had an understated gothic feel to it. So basically think of an “if Micky ever dumped Minnie, this is how she’d dress and was kinda sad but still wanted to look hot” kind of collection and up that.

Exquisite drapery, totem pole appliqué, some see through cut-outs, various types of coats, uniquely placed bows (big and small), leather, bomber jacket, monochrome colour detail and colour patches.

This collection is incredible! Oh my goodness! This woman is taking the fashion world by storm! Where in your life have you seen a collection inspired by the most cutesy character possible turn out to be so edgy and dark/twisted yet feminine chic?

The creativity, the variety, the wearability (if that’s a word), the versatility, the detail, the fact that it was cohesive without being annoyingly matchy-matchy, the young fun aspect, the sophistication of both her designs themselves and how they’d look on people, the quirky details.

It was simply EVERYTHING!

safw: suzaan heyns

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(images via sdr photo)

after reading a bit about the background of johannesburg-based designer suzaan heyns’ s/s 2012 collection, which was presented at south african fashion week, i wondered that it wasn’t getting more press, particularly in european fashion circles.  and perhaps this is just another example of how african fashion really doesn’t get the love it deserves.  anyway, according to biz community, ms. heyns partnered with pretoria portland cement “illustrat(ed) the journey of cement from powder to a dream realised and has called it, ‘Reimagine Concrete’. By combining her love of art and architecture, Heyns created the collection to 'feminise’ concrete." 

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the site went on to write that "the fabrics used in the collection were dipped into a concrete mixture and moulded on a dummy. The pleats and drapes of the voile and chiffon combined with concrete creates an optical illusion - trompe l'oeil - and audiences are left perplexed by the surreal way in which concrete has been used in the same way as fabric, literally sculpted into garments,” while the blog gaschette noted that “Heyns sites scultpter Kevin Francis Grey as her main inspiration for the collection, his work typified by the juxtaposition of 'where it looks like liquid but it’s solid and it looks soft but it’s hard.’ The three forms of cement (powder, liquid, solid) as well as the change in colour in all three stages were used as the basis for the creation of the collection.”

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“Cement dipped scarves, cravats, cap sleeves and collars placed against light weight fabrics, relaxed tailoring for menswear and leather accented blazer collars,” was how haute fashion africa summed up the offerings they alternately called “Grecian” and “minimal,” although none of the sources i’ve found really made the collection’s wearability factor clear.  nevertheless, ms. heyns’ work was awesome and alluring to me not just due to the artful conception behind the range, but because on the face of it, i liked the pieces for themselves, without having known all of the spicy background.  and if i’ve long maintained that the lesser well-known fashion events deserve their share of attention, i’d also say that south african fashion week gets about the least love of any.  and shows like this one just illustrate what we’re missing when we keep our eyes perpetually trained at new york and paris, non? (see additional images at we are awesome)

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(watch the collection’s correlated short fashion film here)

updated: with new images