What was the initial inspiration behind launching Kitx, and did you always intend on creating fashion with sustainability in mind?
I launched KITX with the intention of creating consciously-sourced fashion to minimise the impact on the planet’s precious resources without compromising the desirability and sensuality of the fashion and brand.
Kindness - Integrity - Transparency - X – for future and female chromosome
I always feel like brands that have a philanthropic mission were probably developed from a personal place? Tell us why Kitx is so personal to you?
I started a fashion label when I was 23 called WILLOW, it was my first baby, addressing sustainability through recycled packaging and often natural fibres but no awareness of the over-arching impact materials have on the planet’s resources. This label was taken over by a large conglomerate who I was in shareholding with, and overnight, WILLOW was taken from my hands. I thought if I’m going to start another fashion brand, everyone has to win, the farmers, the soil, the water, the markers, the staff, the customers, and in turn, the planet, the people, then the profit. KITX was born.
Do you feel this pandemic has changed the way people look at fashion? Why/how?
Yes, people, I feel people are more casual, more focused on investing in high-frequency wear, rather than wear once fashion, and I hope more focussed on conscious purchasing.
What do you draw from for inspiration when you’re designing? Do you feel your love for the earth inspires what you create, or is that entirely separate from the creative process?
The love for the beauty of nature has always inspired me; I really start with the materials, their story and touch, handle, feel, and the design starts to flow. Often working directly on the stand to create the garment and imagine the woman wearing and her feeling when experiencing this creation.
Why do you feel it's so important to champion sustainable fashion in the luxury space? Do you find that people often mistake sustainable apparel for disposable apparel, and how are you combatting this?
I feel the greatest luxury is actually to tread lightly on the earth, wearing fashion that has integrity, long-lasting quality, timeless design, and can share a beautiful story about. To me, that is luxury. It's not just price. It could be your grandmother’s jacket or your favorite dress sourced from a vintage shop, worn and loved rather than worn and discarded.
What do you make of sustainability becoming trendy, and how can brands like yours continue to push the envelope to find even better ways to produce?
I think that it is better millions of people try to be sustainable than 2 or 3 doing it perfectly; the greenwashing about sustainability is infiltrating the masses, and I think it actually is more beneficial than harmful; it's just up to storytellers to raise awareness and empower customers to make their judgement call.
Who is your style icon, and why?
My grandmother, because even at 100 years old she was totally chic wearing clothes from 60 years ago.
What does the future for Kitx look like right now?
The future is about striving to regenerate rather than just sustain, working with old discarded denim turning it into new fashion, working with materials that come from marine litter, and working with farmers who use regenerative farming practices to create natural, non-toxic fibres.
Love Kit x x x
Interviewed by Nikki Reed