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Zandile Blay
Zandile Blay is a Style & Culture columnist. She is currently Fashion & Beauty Journalism Lecturer at Syracuse University and Managing Partner at BDM. Blay was formerly Digital Fashion Editor for ESSENCE Magazine, Women’s Fashion Editor for Paper Magazine and Readers Editor at SEVENTEEN Magazine. Her work has appeared in New York Magazine online, InStyle, Teen People, The New York Sun, The Daily News and America Online, amongst others. As a leading fashion blogger, she founded the British Vogue recognized fashion news blog, The Blay Report, and the newly created Africa Style Daily. Blay holds an undergraduate degree in Broadcast Journalism from the Newhouse School at Syracuse University and a Masters in Fashion from Central Saint Martins College of Art and Design in London. She is a 2012-2013 Semi-Finalist for the Nieman Journalism Fellowship at Harvard University.

Entries by Zandile Blay

Girl Boss: How One Young CEO Builds Her Family Business & Her Pop Career

(0) Comments | Posted September 8, 2014 | 5:51 PM

Vladivostok, Russia: May 2013
After ten straight hours of working, Dan Tannenbaum needed to take a break. For the noted producer, the mastermind behind tracks for artists like Dr. Dre and Emeli Sande, this usually means stepping out of an L.A studio or Time Square office. But this time...

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Bally Was Here: The Luxury Brands' Presence At The First Everest Climb

(0) Comments | Posted May 29, 2013 | 1:47 PM

Courtesy of Bally

Of all the things mountaineer Tenzing Norgay (above right) must have been grateful for as he topped Mount Everest, it may very well have been luxury shoes. After all that fateful day on Friday, May 29th, 1953 when the...

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When Shredded Vuitton Bags Became Art: Jordan Doner's 'Luxury Explosions' Exhibit

(0) Comments | Posted May 13, 2013 | 5:48 PM


From South Africa's Soweto poorest kids, to Los Angeles wealthiest ones, destroying luxury goods has evolved into a new form of expression. According to the "izikhotane," the young South African teens who burn money and high-end accessories the ritual means showing off...

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Luck Be A Hotel: Borgata Hotel Casino and Spa's 10-Year Streak

(1) Comments | Posted April 17, 2013 | 10:19 AM

The Golden Child

11:45 pm, Wednesday, July 3, 2003.

It was an inconspicuous day to launch a conspicuous project: a gleaming, golden, sleek structure christened the Borgata Hotel Casino & Spa. No press mention of the opening elaborated on the time and perhaps there was...

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Africa Style Profiles: Omoyemi Akerele, Founder, MTN Lagos Fashion and Design Week

(0) Comments | Posted January 9, 2013 | 2:11 PM

I'd never met her in person, though I'd written about her several times. The one photo I'd seen was little help -- after all, women could be mercurial groomers. Hair, make-up and even style of wardrobe could drastically change in the span of a week. The only option was to...

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Africa Style Profiles: Roberta Annan, Africa Co-Chair, World Fashion Development Program

(0) Comments | Posted January 2, 2013 | 2:23 PM

Her skin is glowing, eyes shining, face smiling. There should be nothing remarkable about this sunny disposition, except Roberta Annan (below) is on her third business trip, in the third country in just as many weeks. Yet as she looks up from the menu at the Golden Tulip Hotel in...

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A Determined Chairman, An Honest VP And A Game-Changing Airline: A Love Story

(2) Comments | Posted July 27, 2012 | 7:00 AM

Perhaps, love's got nothing to do with it.

After all, with sky-high fuel costs, plummeting budgets and increasing bankruptcies, the global aviation industry is driven more by the bottom line and less by emotion. Yet when it comes to Nigeria, the bottom line seems bleaker still. From 2002 to 2006,...

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Ferragamo's U.S. President Dishes on Their Haute New Site

(0) Comments | Posted March 28, 2012 | 5:32 PM

A press release and a party: that's all Salvatore Ferragamo needed to successfully launch their lush new women's scent, Signorina. But digital times call for more inspired strategy and so Ferragamo added another dimension: a brand new website.

The site, which officially launched on Monday, is dubbed "The...

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Dispatch From Africa: Day 4 at ARISE Magazine Fashion Week

(1) Comments | Posted March 19, 2012 | 11:31 AM

It took almost a week, but the kinks had finally been ironed out. By day four of ARISE Magazine Fashion Week (AMFW) in Lagos, Nigeria, shows started relatively on time, seats filled up rapidly, and there was fierce competition between socialites and press for the front row. Audiences could now...

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Dispatch From Africa: Day 3 at ARISE Magazine Fashion Week

(0) Comments | Posted March 12, 2012 | 11:20 AM

The collections were interesting -- but it was the designers who intrigued me.

As each of them took a bow on the second day at ARISE Magazine Fashion Week, I noticed a theme.

From the exuberant bow by Romero Bryan of Jamaica, to the fresh-faced beauty of Lia...

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Dispatch From Africa: Day 2 At ARISE Magazine Fashion Week

(1) Comments | Posted March 9, 2012 | 4:45 PM

They key to enjoying a fashion show is not to look too closely.

Should your eyes wander to the back of house, you will witness the chaos that consumes designers and production crew seconds before the show. Should you look at the front of house you will see dozens of...

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Dispatch From Africa: Day 1 at ARISE Magazine Fashion Week

(2) Comments | Posted March 8, 2012 | 3:05 PM

This was personal.

After years of reporting on fashion shows everywhere from the Caribbean to Brazil to New York to London -- I was thrilled to finally cover a show in a location that is closest to my heart: my native Africa.

The continent, now enjoying rapid growth in...

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Fashion, Friendship and Building a Business: Talking to the Trio Behind Style Armory

(0) Comments | Posted March 2, 2012 | 2:29 PM

To the untrained eye, the three women chatting in the corner of the restaurant could have been a girl group. While their make-up was understated and their clothing sophisticated, their obvious joy and friendship simply screamed 'Girl Power.' One quick chat with them and you discovered why: these distinct personalities...

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From Carpenter to Calvin Klein Model? Matthew Terry Explains It All

(1) Comments | Posted March 1, 2012 | 10:45 AM

With just one billboard, Calvin Klein Underwear changed it all. Their 1983 Time Square ad featuring Olympic athlete Tom Hintnaus revolutionized how the male physique would be seen and celebrated in mainstream advertising. The unapologetically virile image of the bronzed pole vaulter leaning against a stark white background in snug...

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Between a Rock and a Haute Place: Reviewing a Collection You'd Love to Loathe

(0) Comments | Posted February 21, 2012 | 11:20 AM

It all comes down to one moment: when the light's dim, the models exit, and the designer takes a bow. For a journalist, this is when the real show starts. You must rapidly process what was seen then quickly craft copy that provides commentary and context. This Fashion Week ritual...

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After the Hype: The Return of Laquan Smith to NYFW

(0) Comments | Posted February 15, 2012 | 8:01 PM

It is the summer of 2009, and the relative tranquility of West Broadway is shattered by the appearance of Laquan Smith. It's not his boyish good looks or lean 6'1 frame that turns heads -- but the sight of said frame draped in gold leggings, high-heels and a bright neoprene...

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How to Make It in America: African Designers Map Out Their Own Path During NYFW

(4) Comments | Posted February 14, 2012 | 5:34 PM


Mimi Plange (above) had no choice. When it came to selecting a New York City venue to showcase her Fall 2012 Collection it had to be luxe as her clothes. As editor after editor stepped inside the sprawling space -- a...

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Jenné Lombardo Talks 2012 Class of W Hotels' 'Fashion Next' Program

(0) Comments | Posted February 13, 2012 | 11:08 AM

A common theme binds Fashion Week parties: celebrating a successful end. But the soiree held by W Hotels last week celebrated the opposite: a successful beginning. For five lucky designers, the event at Lilium at W Union Square commemorated their induction into the brand's Fashion Next Program. They include

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Tilda Swinton & Waris Ahluwalia Ask You To Come "Here"

(0) Comments | Posted February 6, 2012 | 9:18 AM

A few months ago, Tilda Swinton, Waris Ahluwalia and Paul James walked into a London restaurant. As meals among friends are wont to do, talk turned to favorites. Travel was a common denominator and the trio swapped stories of memorable hotels. With an actress, an entrepreneur and the Global Brand...

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92 Year-Old Ski-Wear Designer, Klaus Obermeyer, Answers the Proust Questionnaire

(0) Comments | Posted February 3, 2012 | 4:49 PM


The legend goes when Klaus Obermeyer immigrated to Colorado from Germany in 1947, his mother insisted he pack a comforter. In this case, Mom's advice wasn't only right, it made Obermeyer a mogul. When he began working the slopes of Aspen as a ski-instructor,...

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