Founded in 2013 by Canadian designer Steven Tai, Steventai is a brand known for its endearing take on the awkward and quirky girl by experimenting with unconventional refreshing silhouettes. The womenswear brand encourages a relaxed tomboy look that defies mainstream trends. Steventai’s collections often reference sportswear and are loose fitted with innovative technological developments on fabrics that create a unique blend of luxury and comfort.
The Steventai AW17, entitled Sleep Now Work Later, took inspiration from 8-year-old artist Elifreda and their print of portraits of sloths in a watercolour forest. The collection takes its cues from sleep patterns and slumber, shown through collection pieces such as ‘pillow-leg’ trousers in woolly cashmere, a cocoon coat with silky edges and a detachable wrap skirt.
Ribbed fabric twists and twirls around the models represent the tossing and turning in bed as you sleep. Steventai also takes inspiration from mattress tags with comforting instructions. These items within the latest collection are pieces to count your sheep in and yawn at the responsibilities of the waking world, such as pj slip dresses, sleep masks and shades of dreamy whites.
Steven Tai’s unique blend of intellect and irony presents a refreshingly new take on the woman who stands confidently apart from the mainstream. With a BA in Fashion Design from London’s Central St Martins, Steven worked at top design houses including Viktor & Rolf and Stella McCartney before debuting his own label in 2012.
His quirky collection of innovative textiles combined with a celebration of the awkward caught the eye of Yohji Yamamoto, who awarded him the inaugural Chloe award at the 2012 Hyères Festival. With a sponsorship offer by Mercedes-Benz, he went on to present this collection at Berlin Fashion Week in July 2012 where he received international recognition for his self-confident and endearing take on the nerd.
Since then, Steven Tai has continued to amass a strong following, making his mark at New York Fashion Week in September 2013, presenting at Vogue Italia’s “Vogue Talents” exhibition in Milan, being a finalist for the prestigious ANDAM Award in 2014 and showcasing SS15 collection in Dubai as part of Vogue’s Dubai Fashion Experience.
See the rest of the collection below: