Encapsulating a stellar career
PERTH’S fashion clique got an insight into the world of New Zealand fashion designer Karen Walker at the Urban Couture Western Australian Graduate Capsule Showcase on Thursday night.
The petite designer, known for her eccentric and elegant style, with an international following for her eyewear, jewellery, bags and fragrances, is this year’s event ambassador.
Walker said she was excited to be a part of the event, which included an installation of her latest collection Babou’s Revenge and a fashion masterclass at Edith Cowan University, a highlight of her visit.
“It’s always amazing to see the young people coming into the industry,” she said.
“Their energy and their enthusiasm and a little bit of fear but a lot of love for what they’re doing; that’s been the highlight so far.”
Walker, with more than three decades in the industry, has designs in 38 different countries and at more than 1000 stores, including Barneys New York, Liberty London and Harvey Nichols.
She has also dressed celebrities such as Alexa Chung, Lorde, Rihanna, Yoko Ono, Gigi Hadid, Florence Welch and Lena Dunham, and according to her, it was important to fit into the global landscape.
“That is with any business now, especially in the fashion industry,” she said.
“You have to think about finding a niche and how that fits into the bigger picture also.
“One of the best pieces of advice I received was don’t stand in a queue – make your own queue.”
Walker said she was hoping to be wowed by the young fashion designers featured in this year’s event and ended the evening with some sage advice.
“I was struck by the three things: firstly, the number of people in the room; the enthusiasm in the room; and thirdly, the intelligence in the room,” she said.
“All three are as important as creativity in the industry.
“Don’t worry about rules, do it your own way.”
New Zealand designer Karen Walker.