Today we’re excited to share with you an interview we did with local fashion designer Kristina Kozak. While Kristina’s preparing her Spring/Summer 2011 collection, she took a quick timeout to answer a few questions. So check out the interview and some of Kristina’s design’s, we promise you’ll fall in love with these heels!
First things first, how and when did you get into the wonderful world of shoe design?
“Well, I’ve been interested in shoes since I can remember and I had always dreamt of designing my own but I never knew it was actually possible. It wasn’t until I worked at Louis Boston, where I was exposed to beautiful, almost art-like footwear and clothing, that I knew I had to find a way to design and make my own. I found a class in New York City so every weekend I would travel to take classes with Emily Putterman. She taught me everything there is to know. Originally it was just for fun, but after I made my first pair I knew it was what I wanted to do. That was in 2004 and I’ve been designing ever since.”
Having your own shoe line in this day and age is pretty impressive, how did you go about accomplishing that?
“Thank you… It’s been quite an interesting and enlightening journey! I didn’t follow the traditional route of going to fashion school and/or interning for a designer so I knew I really had to be resourceful. I did as much research as possible and then contacted everyone I could think of in the Boston area and tried to set up a meeting with them. I picked their brain and soaked up as much advice and knowledge as I could. I volunteered my time, worked for free, attended shoe shows and events where I learned and also networked. Those contacts combined with endless research and determination helped get me to where I am today.”
Your shoes are very bold and anything but ordinary, where do you get your inspiration from when designing them?
“My mom says I can find beauty in a pile of junk… so I guess that’s a big part of how I see things and it becomes reflected in my designs.
In a nutshell, I find inspiration from everything! Walking around the city, people watching, pieces of artwork, architecture, nature, old films and music never fail to provoke great design ideas. I know it sounds a bit cliché, but I truly believe beauty can be found in all that surrounds us. There is so much wonder in the world if you just open your eyes and allow yourself to see it.”
We agree, the world is a beautiful place. You mentioned you were working on Spring/Summer 2011 collection what can we expect to see?
“For Spring/Summer 2011 you’ll find my signature fun, quirky designs. The collection will feature a mix of high heels, kitten heels, and ballet flats in a variety of bold black and white patterns, neutral tones and bronze metallics, crystal and grommet embellishments, bow ties, and beautiful textured python leathers.”
Now that you’re working on your Spring/Summer 2011 collection what’s a typical day like for you?
“I wish there was such a thing as a “typical” day! But no such luck. The responsibilities for each day vary so every day is always different and brings it’s own challenges and opportunities along with it. Since it’s a small company I’m in charge of everything from designing to marketing to selling to shipping to contacting stores and replying to customers.”
Wow, it sounds like you’ve got your hands full. Out of all the shoes you have designed do you have a pair that is your favorite or a pair that is your ‘Sistine Chapel’ so to speak?
“This is a hard question to answer because all of my shoes are so different from one another. Plus they are like children. I love them all! But if I had to pick it would be the Gold Minx – 4” metallic gold Mary Janes decorated with mink tails on the back strap and a silk magenta ribbon closure. They were the first pair I ever made. After making them I realized that I had to follow my dream of designing shoes.”
Your shoes are absolutely adorable where can we find them?
“You can find my entire collection on my website (http://www.kristinakozak.com). Around the end of April 2011 they will be available at selected small boutiques such as Stel’s on Newbury Street in Boston and Surfaces in Marblehead, MA.”
Is there anything else you would like to add?
“Thank you so much for including me on your Open Runway Blog! It’s been wonderful to discuss my upcoming Spring/Summer collection. If anyone has any other questions or wants more information about my shoes you can contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org.”