Karen Walker

Karen Walker gets the sartorial edge

Karen Walker designs have always had a bit of edge. Described once as the “consummate collision of attitude and aptitude”, Walker has added a more literal edge to her latest collection, Bad Apple.


Karen Walker


Inspired by a day at an orchard in Upstate New York, the new ready-to-wear collection is marked by apple tree references, but in classic Walker style, there’s a wry twist; look closely and you’ll see that medieval apple tree print has a small serpent concealed within its branches.

We caught up with up with Walker to discuss the collection and what the New Year has in store for one of the country’s most beloved designers.


Can you tell us a bit about your new ready-to-wear collection Bad Apple?
It’s preppy dressing for people who want to misbehave with lots of print and tailoring and denim.


What does the collection mean to you and what are your favourite pieces?
I love the apple tree with the hidden snake print especially and also the denim suit (featured on the cover) which we’re thrilled to have had to release early after Mrs Obama wore it on her recent book tour.


What do your upcoming collections have in store for us?
Our March 2019 collection pays homage to two great female chess players.


You’re in a high-paced creative role, how do you unwind and prevent burnout?
Handstands on my yoga mat, chess with my daughter (she’s yet to beat me), reading, playing piano and playing tennis are, I find, all pretty good ways to unwind.

Also, I do find myself anxiously waiting through autumn until there’s enough snow on Coronet Peak to get the snowboard out and I’ve also recently taken up running (thanks to my new Adidas UltraBoost runners!) and I find I love it.

I do also love a history podcast, especially the BBC’s In Our Time. Also, Glenn Gould playing absolutely anything but especially his first version of the Goldberg Variations.


What’s your design philosophy?
Does it make me smile?


Where do you draw your inspiration from?
Anywhere and everywhere.


What does personal success mean to you?
Waking up looking forward to and excited by my day.


What are your New Year’s resolutions?
I don’t do New Year resolutions. I try to go into every day of the year with focus, clarity and passion.


What are you most looking forward to over the next 12 months?
We’ve got some very exciting projects in place for 2019 and I’m looking forward to pulling them together and seeing what we can create.



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