Having a conversation with Katie Lockhart is like falling down a rabbit hole. Her story gets more fantastical at every turn. After graduating from design school in New Zealand she showed her final year project to fashion designer Karen Walker and became her first design assistant. Two and a half years later, Katie decided to go to Milan. While there she met Francesca Taroni and Silivia Robertazzi who were leaving Italian Vogue to set up Case da Abitare. Katie became a regular contributor and continues to style for them. The magazine ships furniture to her studio in New Zealand such fans are they of her work. Since returning to live in Auckland, Katie has continued to work with Karen Walker - styling shows and designing stores. Five years ago Katie also launched Everyday Needs, a shop that focuses on beautiful utilitarian objects. Most recently she has opened a capsule collection in a pop-up shop at Poepke, a fashion shop in Sydney.

Which five words best describe you? Hawk eyes, gardener, mama, working.

How did you get your career start and what path have you taken since? When I graduated from the School of Architecture and Design I showed my final year project to Karen Walker and she hired me as her first design assistant. This was a defining moment for me and I only left to live abroad in Milan where I turned my attention back to interiors and started to style for Italian interior magazines. After a few years of living and working as both a stylist and interior designer in Milan and London I returned home to New Zealand to open my own practice. Five years ago we extended our offering to open Everyday Needs as well.

What’s the best lesson you’ve learnt along the way? To trust my intuition. Sometimes the scariest times are the most defining creatively.

What’s your proudest career achievement? Having my own practice.

What’s been your best decision? To return home to New Zealand.  

Who inspires you? Family and friends. Especially my husband.

What are you passionate about? Interiors that reflect their owners, gardening, handmade furniture, my husband and kids.

Which person, living or dead, would you most like to meet? I would have loved to have walked Derek Jarman’s garden with him.
What dream do you still want to fulfil? I really feel like I am living it.

What are you reading? In praise of shadows by Junichiro Tanizaki.

images courtesy of katie lockhart and, from top, mark smith, tash hopkins, sait akkirman, darryl ward and todd selby

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