Shanghai designer Taoray Wang has a signature look that is present in every show: a play on the classic 80s women’s power suit.
Wang is most well-known in the U.S. for being the favorite designer of Tiffany Trump, the 24-year-old daughter of President Donald Trump and Marla Maples. However, Wang strives to embody all women, not just those in the national spotlight. “I’m always targeting leading women, and also those who are fond of suits,” Wang said.
Wang has a varied history in the fashion industry. After graduating from East China Normal University, she trained at Mode Gaskuen in Tokyo where she won 5 international fashion awards. Wang worked for menswear line Junko Koshino in Tokyo and lived in England for a number of years. She founded her eponymous line in 2014 with financial backing from Wang Weidong, president of Ribo Fashion Groups, where Wang worked for 12 years as creative director for the brand Broadcast: Bo.
Tiffany Trump has worn Wang’s designs at presidential campaign debates, election night, and her father’s inauguration. Tiffany has been present at every Taoray Wang NYFW show, including this unveiling of the fall/winter 2018 collection, alongside her mother Maples.
The latest collection stuck to white, red, and black as a color palette, with two styles in navy and one in olive green. The first handful of looks were flared business suits with pops of reddish-orange hues along the internal flare of the pants. Wang then transitioned into a pinstripe theme, with a white-cream and fringe-adorned theme following. All except two outfits were suiting styles, either pantsuits or office-ready dresses. Each suit had a touch of sheer lace with visible skin-colored undergarments to add some femininity to the office look.
“It doesn’t just say the masculine suit, but also adds a bit of sex appeal,” Wang said.
Yet the repetition of the lace-pantsuit-pinstripe combo resulted in a tired show. Wang’s velvet plaid suit with orange trim and black lace bustier was a refreshing outfit among the conservative models.
The trend Wang predicted for fall was a woolly texture that she used on shoulder pads and pockets of oversized blazers and coats. The wool look ranged in color from a natural brown to black.
Wang has been known for her use of unexpected pleating and asymmetrical hemlines for her tailored looks. Yet this business attire collection seemed to be just reiterations of the same look that has been in shown over and over again in the fashion industry until making its way to ZARA and H&M last season.
The most memorable pieces from the show were also eerily similar to styles seen before in the fashion world: a navy shirt dress with oversized cuffs and ties that seemed to be one of Brandon Kee’s creations from the latest season of Project Runway, and a red military coat with patent leather trim that was identical to a jacket from Olivia Palermo for Banana Republic. Oddly enough, Palermo was sitting front row at the show in one of her signature oversized blazers.
The Taoray Wang fall show lacked a showstopping piece. Although the tired styles seemed already done, the tailoring and material quality set Wang’s looks apart from the others.
Wang looks to the future for both herself and other Chinese designers. She cites the current political climate as an opportunity for Asian designers to become recognized in the U.S. “I’ve been very lucky since brand China is taking off globally,” Wang said. “The stronger China gets, the more the world will pay attention to Chinese designers.”
Unfortunately, this latest show for Wang was not as surprising and innovative than past runways. No doubt, though, that Taoray Wang will no doubt continue to make conservative, classic suit wear.