INTERVIEW

KATE SCHELTER

02.26.15

Kate Schelter wears many hats (and she owns over 50!) identifying at different times as a stylist, a creative director, an artist, but always a mother. She has learned throughout the course of her career not only to be able to seamlessly transition between the titles, but understand how one role influences another. Her life, her work, her job are all Kate Schelter. With many fashion friends and loads of client testimonials her eye is truly unique and original as her own. From branding to styling to private wardrobe consulting – Kate kinda does it all. A not to forget her gorgeous, one-of-a-kind illustrations!

As a stylist, creative director, and illustrator – you’re juggling a lot of roles. How do you stay organized?

Motherhood is the hardest one of all —and the role that keeps me efficient and organized. Creating the look and feel comes very naturally to me—I have always worked across many mediums—they all inspire one another, and they are basically all about a point of view, a taste level, and presentation of a story. My life and my work are pretty seamless…what I am noticing, what I am drawn to, what I want to show, and communicate to the world.

Is there a title you define yourself by more than another?

No, but I have had so many inconclusive conversations with myself about which ONE is the one. And I can never settle on the one. The only “one” is my name. That embodies everything about me. Titles are confusing when thinking about one’s self, but they help others understand me and my work.

Your illustrations are gorgeous and so sweet – have you always been an artist?

Thank you! Yes, I have always drawn, painted, collaged and made things for as long as I can remember. I won an art prize in high school and was very lucky to go to art school (RISD) which was the best thing I did in my life up until that point. It felt like winning the lottery and I loved every second of my education there. All I did was work and I was so, so incredible happy.

Where can we purchase your prints?

ArtStar.com has limited edition prints.

Kate Schelter Studio for original paintings and private commissions, you can email me at info@kateschelter.com.

John Derian Dry Goods for original paintings

What does style mean to you?

Style is made up of the things that your eye comes back to, over and over again; your default setting – your loves – your you-ness – your uniform – your essence.

How would you describe your personal style?

Breton stripes. Denim. Leopard Print. I am always wearing one or all three of these. I am guilty of wearing a uniform every day. I like few things and I own multiples of them. It’s so much easier to get dressed that way, and things survive for decades, outliving fleeting trends. People think it’s a faux pas to repeat looks but my mantra for all my clients is “buy better, buy less”. Much better to consistently look smoking, that to wear something new every ten seconds. (except maybe at nighttime when it’s fun to experiment with party dressing). I love menswear (a smart jacket), buttoned down collared shirts, pencil skirts, jumpsuits, high heels, and hats – I own over 50 hats.

In what ways does your personal style influence your work?

In every way, I’m sure. For one, I often use my own things in my styling kit (or similar pieces when pulling from a showroom). I also watercolor paint a lot of my favorite accessories: Chanel ballet flats and 2.5 bags, Louboutin heels, Stan Smith sneakers, lipsticks. My paintings are very much a cataloged archive of my personal style and belongings.

Do you have a favorite thing about living in New York City?

I love the street culture, the food the diversity of people and the way everything is smashed together and juxtaposed so sharply. I just love walking around the West Village and Gramercy Park. The historic sections are so romantic — you feel like you’re in a story book!

How does your New Yorker status inform your point of view professionally?

This city is all about the New Yorkers who live and work here. I feel very lucky to know some amazing people who inspire me every day. It’s truly a hub for movers-and-shakers. People are working incredibly hard and making things happen. I think for many points in my career is has enabled me to be an insider with an ear to the ground – you see and get everything firsthand. I love that immediacy. Not to mention all the talent and energy that oozes out of my fellow citizens. Now I’m at a point in my career where I really enjoy traveling as much  possible. It really helps inspire my creative process.

What’s the best part of your job?

It’s all the best part. I love everything I do and realize how lucky I am to say that. I mean it, truly. I also relish the hours painting in my studio listening to Terry Gross’s Fresh Air interviews on NPR. Happy place!

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