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q&a: mina & katusha

Confidence, individuality and classic sophistication are three key elements at the heart of Australian fashion label Mina & Katusha’s collection of comfortable and versatile designs.

Four years ago, RMIT design alumni Sarina Zammit and fashion entrepreneur Katya Baxter began creating and marketing their designs under the name Mina & Katusha – a reference to the nicknames the two women were given as children. Since then, Mina & Katusha has firmly established its place within the unique and creative fabric of Australian fashion, and the clean lines, classic silhouettes and playful detail of their garments have earned them increasing attention from overseas.

With the launch of their new collection, ‘Encounter’, Sarina and Katya spoke to Lip about their inspiration, passion and design philosophy.

How did Mina & Katusha begin?
It all started rather organically. We met one another through Sarina doing work experience for Katya in her textile agency. We came across a great cotton print fabric and decided to design some maxi dresses and sell them to friends, and see what came of it. Four years later we are still holding onto the fabric and so ecstatic that we have a label together.  Our partnership works well as we worked together before becoming friends and we take care of different areas of the business with our different skills.

How would you describe your brand and design philosophy?
Mina & Katusha is very much based on our desires for what is missing in our wardrobes, we tend to not follow forecasted trends. We always like to have pieces in the ranges that can be worn either reversible or multiple ways, like our Double Take dress in the current Winter 2012 collection, which has removable back panels that can be worn with leather or print details, as the does the Metaphor dress with its interchangeable sleeves.

Who is the Mina & Katusha customer?
The Mina & Katusha customer likes to have fun and play with their clothing, wearing our pieces multiple ways to create their own style. Girls who like to make subtle statements with what they wear and get compliments. The collections work together to create a style, and Mina & Katusha is also easily mixed and matched with other items in your wardrobe.

What inspires you?
We are inspired by ever-changing things. We have designed collections from photographs, movies, paintings, music, colours and people. In the last couple of seasons we designed our own digital prints, which led the collections down another inspired path. We are very excited about our current Winter 2012 prints. The two featured in the collection are photographs we took and played with to create an emerald butterfly print photographed in Singapore and a mosaic door collage photographed in Argentina.

How do you want people to feel when they wear your clothes?
Beautiful and confident.

Mina & Katusha is available in selected boutiques and online.

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