Trick or Treat with Zana Bayne

Zana in her first Skeleton Harness

The scariest and most stylish holiday of the year is just around the corner and the Stylesight Youth Team are making costume decisions, party plans and lining our pockets with candy. We thought, who better to get us into the spirit than the queen of dark and subversive leatherwear, Zana Bayne? Her hand-crafted harnesses and accessories were spotted all over the catwalks this year and worn by the biggest names in music, including Beyonce, Madonna and Lady Gaga. During our interview with Zana, we found out that her bondage-inspired brand was actually inspired by a personal Halloween costume project years ago! Check out our not-so-spooky interview with her below.

Shannan Elinor Smith: Do you ever make pieces for your own Halloween costumes? 
Zana Bayne: Absolutely! My mom used to sew costumes for me when I was a kid and I have definitely enjoyed carrying on that tradition. My proudest Halloween moment was a few years back when I decided to dress up as a skeleton, and made the costume entirely out of leather, with straps to emulate the shape of bones. I later incorporated that piece into my collection as the infamous ‘Skeleton Harness’!

What has been your best costume, ever?
My favorite Halloween costume was the Skeleton Harness, but I went to a ‘May-o-ween’ (Halloween in May) party in San Francisco back in the day– I must have been 16 and I threw on every piece of leopard print clothing that I owned (quite a lot) and went as a ‘confused leopard’. Not the most creative, but certainly a memorable night. There’s a great photo of me in this ensemble holding a can of Sparks…

Zana in her confused leopard costume!

What are some of your all-time favorite scary movies?
I don’t like scary movies! I don’t enjoy the sensation of being scared. But my favorite Halloween movie would be The Nightmare Before Christmas – it’s a classic that only gets better with time.

If you could dress any horror film character in Zana Bayne who would you choose?
I think Elvira would be a great candidate for Zana Bayne Leather. Those curves!

Nu Mode Magazine, Skeleton Armpiece and Harness Vest

Scariest place you’ve ever been?
Pitch-black post Hurricane Sandy Manhattan last year. Since I live in Brooklyn and work in the garment district I ended up commuting by cab or carpool to my studio daily during the post-Sandy blackout. I never lost power in my apartment or studio, but the ride in between took me directly through the affected areas. There was something so spooky, dangerous, wild, and out of control about driving through a city without any light. It felt less cautious, and more ‘every man for himself’.

Horst Magazine, Pentagram Harness























If you could bring one celebrity back from the dead who would it be?
Klaus Nomi and Aaliyah– gone too soon!

Can you share your favorite Halloween memory?
Can’t say that I have a favorite Halloween memory as most end up getting a bit blurred after too many adult beverages. But I do love seasonal shopping in the Halloween section of most stores! It’s the best time of the year to buy home furnishings, in my opinion.

Galore Magazine, Harness Vest and Paddle Belt

-Shannan Elinor Smith

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