Fashion News

How footwear designer Kathryn Wilson gets ready for New Zealand Fashion Week

The influential designer lets us in on her New Zealand Fashion Week (NZFW) show preparation and inspirations, including her 'Kathryn Wilson airlines' dream.

By Jessica-Belle Greer
Kathryn Wilson at New Zealand Fashion Week (NZFW)

We are weeks away from NZFW. What’s it like in your workroom at the moment?

We are freshly back from Queenstown for our annual catwalk at Clicquot in the Snow and we’ve hit the ground running.

We have our sales appointments for winter 2018 starting for Auckland-based stockists, along with changing our three Auckland retail stores over from winter to summer collections and distributing our collections out to 100 stockists.

Somewhere in the mix we are doing seating plans, guest lists, and ticketing for NZFW and finalising styling details for the show with hair and make-up teams… it’s a busy time!

You have five words or less – describe the inspiration behind the collection you are showing.

Playful, happy feet in (the) sunshine.

Is there a soundtrack you are listening to, to motivate the team?

‘Run the World (Girls)’ by Beyoncé!

What can we look forward to seeing at your show this year, can you give us any hints as to what we’ll see walk down the runway?

The show is a celebration of the current summer season and also introduces a teaser to the next winter 2018 collection, which will be seen by the audience for the first time and in-store next February.

The styling is based around a ‘Kathryn Wilson’ airline, where we are heading to a warm, sunny destination… the drinks are fruity and the playlist is 80s bangers!

Other than your own brand, is there another show you are hoping to see at NZFW?

I’m a big fan of Adrian Hailwood’s shows and I’m also looking forward to the Huffer 20 year celebration, Zambesi, Wynn Hamlyn – who is right after our show – and many more. I love to support New Zealand designers.

What is your NZFW go-to outfit style for the week?

A girl-boss pant suit in a pastel colour, teamed with our new season floral trainers.

What are your beauty or wellbeing tips for surviving one of the busiest weeks in the year?

Lypospheric Vitamin C, Beauty Bestow natural supplements, lots of water and as much sleep as possible!

How big of an undertaking is a show at NZFW? How long have you been working on your showcase?

It’s a big event… there’s a lot of expectation and anticipation so we want to make sure everything has been considered. It takes months to prepare the styling, music, model castings, production elements and guest list… but it’s a lot of fun.

Do you have any pre-show rituals to get ready?

It’s a team effort… Julia Ford (Miss Wilson designer) and I are pretty calm backstage and have a super slick team – stylist Kylie Cooke, Danny Pato from D&M on hair and Kiekie from M.A.C, so we’re working with the best in the business.

How do you plan to unwind once it’s all over?

Haha... I’ll start designing summer 2018's collections, to be in-store in August. No such thing as unwinding in this industry!