Kate Austin Designs emerged organically from Kate's surface pattern design passion and practice. "It started when my favourite vintage yukata was wearing thin, and I needed a replacement-- so I thought, why not design one!"
Kate began with a line of essential kimonos, and now produces an ever- growing collection of timeless staples. Kate's lines are created in Toronto and made in collaboration with fair trade artisans in India and South America. "I only design clothing I want to wear every day. I am all about travel, so everything has to be easily packed and look good right out of my suitcase-- who has time to iron when there's adventure waiting?"
Kate's fabrics are natural, colorful and very wearable. "I want for me and my friends to be able to ride our bikes, hang in the park, dance, do some sun salutations, cook, laugh hard, go to a gallery or a cafe straight from the beach or the pool--and I want us all to feel great and look great doing it!" Kate is committed to a life of social justice activism, feminism and environmentalism- these values guide our production and business practices. "I'm inspired by incredible women making the world a better place through art, music, fashion, literature, activism and philosophy. I want to pay homage to my personal heroines, so every style is named for someone whose work I admire deeply" Our pieces are named for Frida Kahlo, bell hooks, Buffy Sainte-Marie, Simone de Beauvoir, Joni Mitchell, Billie Holliday, Alanis Obomsawin, Lena Horne, Audre Lorde, Maija Isola, Anni Albers -- of course there are many more to come.
"Working with beautiful cloth, bringing colour and pattern into our everyday lives, celebrating positive energy-- this is what it's all about for me"