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In Conversation with Kat of KAT ROSE

KAT ROSE: the brand who dressed Dua Lipa and opened up the world to secondhand craftcore.

Drawn-on-denim, wearable art, patchwork illustrations... the list goes on. Simply put, there is no way to categorically define @LoveKat95 and her hypnotising work. Discover how we try to make sense of it.

What does sustainability mean to you? Why is it integral to your brand?

Sustainability means putting thought and love into something no matter how long it takes. Sustainability means that every piece I make is always going to be completely unique to the other and unable to be mass produced.

What is the inspiration behind Kat Rose? How did it come about?

I started hand drawing and selling t-shirts in 2015/16 when I was in my first year at university (studying Illustration). And then last year I got inspired by my friend Alicia Lane to start painting and drawing onto jeans and I’ve never looked back! I sold my first dress last summer and first bag only in December so I feel like the brand is still in it’s baby days but I always wanted to be a fashion designer when I was wee and I’m so lucky I get to draw onto clothes and call it my job (sort of). One-of-a-kind brands like Juliet Johnstone and Anna Castellano inspire me to carry on.

Hand-painted clothing and craftcore has become a major trend. What do you think makes Kat Rose a standout brand within this niche?

Probably my illustrations! It was hard to figure out whether they’d ever look good on a dress or bag but they work. I think it’s nice that I can still be in touch with my illustration roots and that people want to wear something that’s almost like a 3D version of my sketchbook.

What was it like to see Dua Lipa in one of your pieces styled by Lorenzo Posocco? How did it impact your brand?

I literally fainted and paced up and down my bedroom and then ordered a pizza! It was so unreal, I kept looking at the post and smiling. I made those jeans in the first few days of U.K. lockdown #3 and it was really significant seeing them come to life in reality. Lorenzo was so kind and supportive and I’ll always be thankful to him! Since then I’ve been working on more custom pieces, such as Dua jeans which are inspired by the jeans Dua wore. I have a 4 month long custom list which is something I could never have imagined last year! It’s crazy but I’m so so thankful.

How do you keep your inspiration flowing when creating one-of-a-kind pieces?

Pieces I’ve made before and colour, I like to see the clothing as an extension of my sketchbook so I kind of just let the drawings come out of me.

What's on your playlist when you're designing?

Right now it’s a lot of Olivia Rodrigo (it would be a dream to see her in one of my pieces), Baby Queen, Nicki Minaj (Barbie Dreams on repeat!!!!!), Megan Thee Stallion, Taylor Swift, Lorde and Paramore- I like stuff you can sing along too really loudly.

Why do you think small brands are having a moment? What is the value in shopping small and sustainably?

I think people are realising (and have been realising over the last couple of years) where their clothes are coming from and how fast fashion has affected (and is affecting) the environment and workers rights. I think in shopping small you’re buying something that has a lot of love in it and can’t be replicated which I think makes people excited to wear something so unique.

Do you think sustainability and responsibility is something celebrities and influencers should be actively promoting?

Yes definitely! I think it’s great that people who have amassed such large followings in an industry not usually recognised for it’s positive impact on the environment want to be a part of making the fashion industry a much better place to be!

What do you hope the future of fashion will be and does sustainability play a part in it?

More kindness and patience ! I think a big part of sustainability is recognising that people aren’t factories and that mass production is extremely harmful to both the environment and the lives of workers.

I hope to see more stylists support small brands, and more high street brands reducing the amount of clothing they churn out, and encouraging their customers to donate or up-cycle their items of clothing once they’ve stopped wanting to wear them.

What's next for Kat Rose? Any new exciting projects or developments we can look forward to?

I’m currently working on an in store collection for Bleaq ( a really cool store that supports small brands in Brick Lane, London) and I have plans to release small collections of jeans and dresses in the summer in-between working on customs. I’m moving to London in the summer too so I’m excited to call that my base and see what happens………


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