At Henry Corbett & Co. we are surrounded by amazing artisans, so we decided that it is only fair that we should share these amazing people with all of you. The Henry Collective is an exciting series of articles that invites you to get closer to the artists and interesting people who we have had the pleasure to meet at the Henry Corbett & Co. boutique.

Our feature this month is on fashion designer Celia Kate who has just launched the Celia Kate & Co. fashion label, whose relaxed dresses and accessories are inspired by the natural world and use beautiful linens, cottons and silks to create stunning pieces. Check out our chat with her.

What was the path that led you to be a fashion designer?

I was always very creative on a very deep level. I started off playing with color and paint, but fashion, clothing and jewellry design is where my heart was. Where I really got started was in California where I was able to select designer pieces to make clients look amazing and they would pay me a couple of hundred dollars for my time.  Also it was in spending time in Bali where it is important for me to feel and look great even on a hot humid day.

 

How would you describe your design style?

What my design style is all about is making people feel relaxed and comfortable and feel like they are being their true selves.

I only do natural raw fibers, linen, cotton and silk which once again are used for the feel good factor, I am a very tactile person.

 

What gives your inspiration?

I am inspired by feeling good. Life is too short to not feel wonderful on a daily basis.

I am inspired alot by nature and  my jewellery and leather designs are taken from my paintings, which are up close images of bark of trees or culmination of plant material.

 

Name a person that has been a creative leader?

When that question is asked to me, there are two people that come to mind; my mother and Florence Broadhurst. I think there are both as mad and eccentric as each other. I find Florence Broadhurst designs to be amazingly dynamic, her personality jumps out of the patterns. They are bold and courageous, whislt simple and sophisticated and so balanced whilst interesting and stimulating.

My mother is creative and everything she does from cooking, fashion design, gardening and interior design has been a creative lead to me.

 

Who is someone that has inspired you from your field?

Since I was a teenager, I looked up to fashion designers like Lisa Ho and Collette Dinigan as demi gods. I have always found fashion designers to have a sense of equanimity and poise.

 

 What has been your most exiting project?

The last month in Bali when I have been doing major production, even though there has been a lot of hiccups, it has been the most exciting and dynamic time of my life. I have felt so much joy, alive and in the flow. All the creation brings me alive, whether it was getting the swing tags right, or the look book or graphics.

 

How would you describe your style?

My personal style is relaxed, self expression, tactile, light on the eyes, balanced, flowing, beautiful, sophisticated, elegant, easy, flexible, adaptable, raw, comfortable with a cheeky splash of color.

Do you have a particular material or object you love to use?

Every bit of my clothing I am obsessive about it how I look after it.

Also my mother just recently bought me a clothes steamer and I have never got so much joy out of using that tool. I play with it almost every night. Quite sad really!

 

Where would you like to travel to next?

I am constantly travelling. That is probably my other obsession. I have on the horizon plans to get to Morocco for leather and India to pick out the amazing silk pattern fabrics. The colors are amazing in India. I would love to do rugs too.

 

What is your favourite building?

It would have to be every building in Paris. Paris is the most inspiring city in terms of design and creativity in the world. It is so feminine and beautiful. And soft. Everywhere you look you see something beautiful including the people ..ha

 

What is your favourite interior style?

Cote Maison – all interiors in these magazines. French, rustic but beautiful and elegant. This was the style I was brought up with, my mother being a designer in all terms of the word.

 

If you could choose a piece of furniture that you could add to your collection, what would it be?

I have so many pieces of furniture that I would love to buy. A table and chairs is always very important. I love really good quality timber. I also love a great comfortable sofa with lovely linen soft fabric to relax in.

 

What is your essential piece of clothing?

A well designed little funky black leather jacket and black leather boots. I know it is not what I design but I would like to move into it but.  A good stylistic, versatile leather jacket can really dress up a lot of outfits.

 

What is your favourite piece of jewellery?

At the moment a silver 12 band Russian bracelet that I have designed – Xavier Silver Russian Bracelet.

 

What is your favourite restaurant?

My favourite restaurant at the moment is a little tiny French restaurant in Ubud, Bali called Kebun. Its tiny but so well designed and quaint. It has great food whilst not at all pretentious and the bathroom it also really cute. It is known for the best red wine in Ubud.

 

Where do you go out to in your town?

The beach is the centre of my existence in Bondi.

 

What is your favourite piece at the Henry Corbett & Co. boutique?

It would be the whole concept. I think it is so minimalist and consistent and balanced. I love the consistent sense of style which I know is not easy to do. As a creative person, I know you have to fight to stay on track and retain your integrity. Balance is what makes people feel comfortable in a room or with clothing.

 

My favourite art piece:

Picasso or Chagall or Brett Whitely. I do love my best friend Daniel Stephens art work too.

 

Inspiring advice you would give to people starting in your field

I put off being a fashion designer for probably 15 years. My mother and I joke that when I cant sleep, I dress myself or people and that puts me to sleep.

I think is so important to follow your dreams because what you are passionate about, you will be good at and that is where you will find your success.

What is the best thing about being a fashion designer?

Ha ha I laugh because everything I do in my life is to do with creativity, fashion being a large part of that creativity.

I have always thought what a great concept it would be to make people over from the inside out as well as the outside in. In that looking good on the outside is important to make sure from the inside out you are putting your best food forward every day to live your fullest potential.

 

 Tell us about what you do?

Help people feel good about themselves. I have always noticed that people struggle to dress themselves well and for me, feeling good about myself and how I present myself is so important to my sense of worth.

Photography by: Simon Scott Photography

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