Kate Matthews is a Fashion Wardrobe Stylist and Art Director. Strategy meets Creativity. Menswear stylist.
Interview with Kate Matthews   

Q: How did you get your start working in music and fashion?
KM: 
“I’ve always known that I would use my Marketing degree in the arts world, I just wasn’t sure exactly how it would come to fruition. I’ve always been very passionate about music and fashion (cliché, but true!) and I’ve lucked out being able to work in both worlds. About seven years ago, I started an artist management company. Through that, I had the chance to work in many different areas of the music industry. What I’ve enjoyed most and excelled at in my career is the image related work I’ve done. I love styling, branding and design. I’ve been styling unofficially for years but started doing it professionally in my role as an artist manager. Working at ELLE magazine made me realize that it’s possible to do it as a career. This business is a way for me to branch out to working not only with bands, but individuals, and editorial and commercial clients as well."
Q: Does your marketing degree help with your styling efforts?
KM: 
“Definitely. Clothes are a marketing tool and an outfit speaks a thousand words. Because of my background and education in Marketing, I have a unique understanding of how wardrobe can portray and elevate a brand. I think I’ve got the perspective and skill set to use clothes in a way that the next person may not think of. I’m always very conscious of what message an outfit is sending––it can be subtle or in your face, but people pick up on it either way. Just look at Alice Cooper or Katy Perry––you’ve got an idea of what they’re going to sound like before you’ve heard a single note. That’s the power of styling and branding working in unison. As I work in an image focused business, understanding marketing and branding has definitely been an advantage for me.”


Q: What's your fashion philosophy?
KM: 
“I love the art form of fashion and the transformative ability that it carries. It pulls together so many worlds, ideas and inspirations and that has always fascinated me. I dislike the judgmental, materialistic side of it. Great clothes can make a person feel confident but it shouldn't be about feeling superior or inferior. I think it’s important to wear what you like, do what inspires you and be who you are––and that could mean trying brave new things no one else is doing, following every trend to a T, sticking to the classics, or not giving a cr*p about fashion at all… whatever makes you happy! I think it's about celebrating art, diversity and individuality.”
Q: How would you describe yourself in a few words?
KM: Creative, observant, resourceful, good-humoured, curious, compassionate, animal-lover...wordy!”

Q: What can clients expect working with you?
KM: 
“I like to keep things fun but I also work very hard. For years, I worked two or three jobs at a time while going to school and maintaining good grades. I apply that same work ethic and dedication to every client project. A big part of my process is collaboration. I like to get to know my clients and understand their personality and what they stand for, what they like, what they don’t like––basically, I’m looking to identify the ethos of their personality and their brand. Keeping my clients involved really helps me to bring out their individuality and make sure that they’re comfortable in what they’re wearing and with how they're being portrayed. When I’m working with bands, I find it helpful to immerse myself in their world a bit so I’ll listen to their music, watch their videos, try to catch a show, read interviews and reviews, etc. Ultimately, I want my client to look amazing and to love what I’ve put together for them and I won’t stop until I’ve accomplished those things.”

Q: What do you like to do when you’re not working?
KM: 
“Travel, go out with the girls, dream about riding horses, spend time with my mama, read, do yoga, run...and binge on Netflix when I’m beat from a big shoot!"



Q: Where do you go for artistic inspiration?
KM: “Inspiration is all around us, I think you just need to keep your eyes and your mind open as much as possible. I find inspiration in the collections, on the street, online, traveling, nature, books, movies, magazines, friends, strangers––everywhere. I’m very observant so I really do see it everywhere, it can be distracting but it’s a useful quality for this type of work. Once I’ve got my inspiration, interpretation is the key to new ideas. One tip I think is worth offering—when I want a big dose of inspiration, I hit the Art and Design section at the library and pore over all the gorgeous books!”



Q: Who are some of your fashion idols?
KM: 
“There are so many! I like different things about different people but if I had to narrow it down… Johnny Depp and Keith Richards for their boho rockstar cool. Kate Moss, as she's the pioneer of the nonchalant mix of high and low. Lady Gaga for her bold, artistic choices and her 100% commitment to her image. I also loved how Pat Fields dressed the ladies in Sex and the City––she harnessed the power of clothing to communicate so much about each character. Fields is so creative and takes a lot of chances and I love that about her styling. Some of my favourite designers are Hedi Slimaine at Saint Laurent, John Galliano at Margiela, Rick Owens, Olivier Rousteing, Elie Saab, Sarah Burton at McQueen… this list could go on and on!”

Q: Three things most people don’t know about you. 
KM: 
1. "My favourite song is Coat 
of Many Colours by the legendary Dolly Parton. I've loved her since my Grandma and I used to listen to her records when I was a kid on the farm. She's such an original and I adore her sense of humour. On my 25th birthday, I received a personalized signed photo from Dolly. I cried when I opened it!"

                   

2. "I’m a Trekkie. Lieutenant Worf, the honourable yet badass Klingon, is my favourite."

3. "M
y mother is a brilliant music-loving fashionista and my father was a pro photographer who played music for most of his life. They’re the reason I’m in this business.”



4. "I adore animals and plan to have lots of horses, dogs, cats, you name it, someday when I don't travel so much.

5. "I grew up between the city and the country and was lucky to have spent all my school holidays on the farm. One summer, my Dad rigged-up a hay bale to look like a steer and set-out to teach me to rope. I could already ride, so he figured this was the next step. Despite wearing a dress to all of my lessons, I learned how to rope and could still catch a (slow-moving) steer to this day if I needed to! Proof that you can't take the 'city' out of the city girl, or the 'country' out of the country girl."



Q: Did you interview yourself for this interview?

KM: "I sure did!"

News + Projects

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TV Highlights Reel
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Whether behind-the-scenes or on camera, I love being on set. The energy, the teamwork, the fast-pace—I love it all! Here  are a few fun shots from some of my latest projects…

 

Working on Chef Lynn Crawford's show was an absolute blast! I loved the crew and we shared a lot of laughs.

My Field Producer getup for a CityTV pilot had me feeling pretty badass!
I pulled double-duty as Wardrobe Stylist and Casting Coordinator for a couple commercials raising funds for the SP Hospital Foundation.

More double-duty acting as Field Producer and Wardrobe Stylist for a popular CityTV reality show (wearing my one of my fave necklaces while I'm at it).