Shaper: Mary Katrantzou

Show aired on 14th January 2017


Mary Katrantzou

Fashion designer Mary Katrantzou was born in Athens, Greece. Her mother is an interior designer and her father worked in textile design; she was therefore exposed to design from an early age. She began her academic career at the Rhode Island School of Design to study a BA in Architecture, but then transferred to Central Saint Martins (CSM) to complete a BA degree in textile design. Graduating in 2005, she decided to shift her interest from textile design to womenswear with a focus on print. While studying, she became interested in the way that printed textiles can change the shape of a woman’s body. She subsequently went on to graduate in MA Fashion from Central Saint Martins with distinction.

Follow Mary on Twitter @MaryKatrantzou.

Listen live at 9am Saturday.

When you first start there is no brand, there is no communication with an audience. There is just you designing quite instinctively and quite naively…

The women we dress come to us for the wit that exists within the print and the art work and the craftsmanship of the textiles we design.

It is always very flattering and a privilege to see your work being worn by women you respect so much.

Wearing Mary Katrantzou means you are wearing something that is making you stand out and I think only confident women can take that on.

I can rely on amazing people who I trust to hire their own teams and manage them effectively so I think I delegate a lot more now. When I first started I didn’t have that skill. I felt a need to control everything…

I am quite democratic. I want peoples’ opinion. I will always ask…somebody who has just come in for an internship for a month to somebody who has been with me for seven years. It is equally valuable advice.

I have always been really selective about who we partner with because it is important. It is an extension of your brand and you are communicating who you are, so each collaboration has a different aim.

I don’t design just to hang it on the wall. I want people to wear it and feel confident in it and enjoy it.

You can’t be everything for everyone at all times and I think it is good to find your band width as a designer at the beginning.