But if you would really make me choose just one? Colourful. In her designs, her view on life and the way you feel after meeting the inspirational woman behind Katelyn Aslett Couture.
I met Katelyn when she was in Townsville setting up marquee light installations for the widely acclaimed Australian Festival of Chamber Music. The vivid colours of the reef themed fabrics dancing in the wind were the perfect introduction to this talented artist who hails from North Queensland.
Somehow she found time to hand-deliver the installations in the middle of building her fashion label and putting the finishing threads on a showcase collection for the prestigious Mercedes-Benz Fashion Festival.
Oh and did I mention she’s just opened her first store in Brisbane’s lively upper Paddington as well? (I warned you she was passionate!)
It’s any wonder Katelyn has time to pick up a needle and thread. But she does. In fact, she does more than just sew a few fragments of material together. Katelyn is known for the fabrics she uses just as much for the striking designs she dreams up. This artist turned designer draws and colours all of the fabrics she uses in her fashions, interiors and decorations, creating pieces that are as individual as the woman who dreamt them up. It’s this unique touch taken from her own artwork that will really set the Katelyn Aslett Couture‚ Old World Glamour‚ collection apart at the Brisbane Fashion Festival.
“This year‚ Fashion Fest is going to be better than ever. It will be very different to anything I have done before. It’s a mixture of vintage inspired, romantic lingerie and fabulous evening dresses that have elements of the 30s, 40s and 50s but with a very contemporary feel due to the fabric. The feel is about glamour, romance, sophistication and style,” Katelyn explains.
“My design practice comes from a love and drive to create. Particularly I love fabric and designing colours and texture that provoke beautiful emotions and happy moments. I love colour and how you can put colours and textures together. I dream and imagine colours and designs all the time and am driven to put my imaginings into reality. I love being busy with my hands and I love to take my thoughts and make them tangible.
“I’m bored with mainstream and safe. I love making things that represent the unique differences and the varying emotions in us all and that make each day a work of art.”
“I never really intended to do this. It wasn’t like I sat down and thought, I will be a designer‚ or‚ I will be an artist. The things I want to do I just do them fully and I don’t really care what other people are thinking I should be doing because it doesn’t really matter what other people think I should be doing” she says.
For Katelyn, the best things in life are created when someone has the courage to stand out.
“These days it’s too easy to try and fall into what you think friends or family expect of you or society expects of you. But I think when you enjoy finding your own niche, then you should be able to do anything. There’s so much knowledge out there. Why conform? Because we can be so many different things. I’m bored with mainstream and safe. I love making things that represent the unique differences and the varying emotions in us all and that make each day a work of art.”
Such bold and daring individualism – not passing seasonal trends and colours – was the inspiration behind Katelyn’s stunning marquee decorations that captured so much attention at the Festival of Chamber Music in Townsville.
“With events you shouldn’t be afraid to be true to what you want to do. I think quite often people feel they’ve got to conform to what’s the fashion, or the trend. These days you can theme it up anyway you like. So just enjoy it. If I make something and I want to wear it and I enjoy wearing it, I don’t care what anyone else thinks. I quite often wear quite weird things that people wouldn’t think to wear. But it’s fun. Life’s too short to just do what you think everyone else wants you to do.”
“Usually if I’m making a fabric I’ll get an explosion of happiness when it works. You just get this feeling and I have to stand up and look at it from every angle and I bounce around and I just get such an adrenalin rush. And it’s not about what anyone else is thinking. It’s when it works for my eyes and it makes we feel the way I want to feel. If you are creating you’re always trying to chase the next rush of excitement when you do something good. And that’s the same with events. If you put the effort in you can create a fabulous event with your own unique touch.”
“It’s kind of like playing dress ups. When you’re a little girl you can just dress up in whatever you want. It’s so much fun. It’s nice if we can be creative expressing ourselves. And that can be different because sometimes it might be more dark and moody and other times you want to be bright and happy. I think that’s what I love about coming back to colour and making fabrics that do that.”
“When you’re a little girl you can just dress up in whatever you want. It’s so much fun. And it’s awful that society makes us feel like we’ve got to look a particular way all the time.”