IN CONVERSATION WITH DIJANNA MULHEARN
What was your inspiration behind the Kata Coat?
The Kata Coat was inspired by a trip Ljubenka and I did to New York. We traversed the city streets non-stop in search of the perfect pair of jeans, designer sample sales and thirst quenching margaritas, found at Rosa Mexicana by the way.
Being surrounded by a dense forest of buildings, the urge to look up was irresistible and the iconic Chrysler Building is still a favourite. I love its (now retro) take on futuristic architecture; it always reminds me of the ancient movie Metropolis, and the perspective I found myself admiring it from was at its corner. The way its curved layers join at its corner felt very feminine and I started to think about how I could use these lines for Sestre. As they are such an eye-catching feature on the building, it was natural to make the curves a feature on the coat. The fact that it draws the eye in to form a narrow waist, whether you have one or not, was a totally unexpected bonus. When I made the first sample, it was a joy to see the curves form perfectly and to this day I think of that great trip with a smile whenever I see the Kata Coat.
What process did you go through to design this garment?
I started by sketching, or doodling really, the lines and curves that feature on the building, sometimes small, sometimes exaggerated. I then started drawing garments around the lines. Once I decided to use the back of a coat as the canvas, I started to draft pattern pieces in paper and put them together. After talking with Ljubenka, we decided we wanted the coat to be something that looked upmarket yet comfortable. We decided to go with Italian Ponte because it holds the tailored shape while stretching for comfort.
It has been the garment that women smaller than the Sestre size range have been begging for, however we make it exclusively for sizes 14 and above.
How did you transform the Kata Coat’s design into the Kata Skirt and Jacket?
Once we made the coat and fell in love with it, we decided to expand on it a little. The Kata Jacket is simply a shorter version; however, we gave it a kick at the hem rather than a flare, that way it creates a smooth silhouette while playfully bouncing over the tummy.
I call it the ‘have your cake and eat it’ jacket, because I feel like it covers up my evidence.
The Kata Skirt came about when we found the Ponte so easy to work with – we decided to make a suit out of it. It is slim over the thighs and into the leg with a flirty kick at the hem, making everything look in proportion and creating killer curves.
Surround your curves in the sophistication of New York with your own Kata Coat, Skirt or Jacket, available to purchase now