For peeps not familiar with your company, what’s Mr. Kate?
We are an inspiring lifestyle brand catering to the “creative weirdo” within everyone. We’re all about inspiring people’s creative sparks in a very non-judgmental way. We really excel in interior design and what design and interior decorating really represents for your overall quality of life. We celebrate being able to express yourself in your external space and nurturing yourself through pretty and cool things that inspire you. Every other week we release a 30-plus minute episode of “OMG We’re Coming Over” where we redo an entire room. We have other side businesses too. We sell “beauty marks” that are faux tattoos that I hand draw and hand paint along with custom art prints and the jewelry which launched this entire thing.
Where did your creative passion come from?
I grew up in the San Fernando Valley and I went to a Waldorf Education school. It’s kinda like a weird hippie school. They emphasize creativity while you are there and I was fortunate to go there all my school years. My mother and grandmother also were quite creative and had several hobbies that I was inspired by. That led to me creating small DIY projects, creating and selling jewelry, starting a blog and then finally my YouTube channel.
When did your hobbies turn into your full-time job?
Mr. Kate became my full-time job six years ago. It was a side project for a long time while I sold jewelry and then when my YouTube channel really took off it became apparent there was really a brand there and that there was an actual way to make money. My boyfriend at the time (now my husband) joined forces with me at that time and we became business partners dedicating all of our time to it.
What does a day in your shoes look like?
It’s different everyday. We are in a pretty good flow now at this point. We film every other week and then release a video on the opposite week. We’re either prepping for a video and simultaneously editing a previous video. And then of course we still have the before and after photos, creating shopping list on the blog, prepping Instragram posts, etc. So basically I’m either prepping things (which means me in comfy clothes and no false lashes making mood boards and designing) or it’s me trying to look cute while sweating, installing a room and filming a video.
How did you find your audience on YouTube? What do you think the magic is that keeps them coming back?
That’s one of the hardest questions to answer honestly because I wish there was a true formula to follow, but I think what I’ve found has been the most consistent is my love for everything we actually do. When I would film a video every week when I started out, I would only do something I was genuinely excited about. It’s helpful that you’re creating something for people who are like you. That’s my secret sauce. I’m a creative weirdo and I’ve always been. There are a lot of people out there like me. I thoroughly fall in love with each project that I do.
You’re business partners with your husband. How do you make that work?
Our secret is that he does a lot of things I don’t do and vice versa. He’s so great with all the business stuff and communicating with our agent. He loves contracts and reads every single word. I don’t! I don’t like that stuff. It’s not fun for me and it stresses me out. On the flip side, he doesn’t want to design rooms or come up with DIY projects. We’re also very aligned personally with what we want out of life. We are able to create that for ourselves because we own our business. We can create our own work hours, take time off together and work from our couch. It’s really cool. I am very, very lucky in that regard.
What do you see for Mr. Kate five years from now?
Goals are important for any entrepreneur but it’s also important to recognize how fluid things can be and how a business can be in flux. I always want to be open to whatever comes our way. I would love to take what I’ve learned decorating spaces and fill the void with things people would really like for their spaces with licensing deals. As a consumer, I see a great opportunity doing that.
Coffee or tea?
Coffee! A Nespresso at my house with oat milk and Dolcedi apple sweetener.
What’s your bedtime?
Ideally 10 p.m. but it usually ends up being 11:30 p.m.
Wake up time?
If we are filming, 6 or 6:30 a.m. If not and I am designing it’s more like 8 a.m.
Some Like it Hot
Dream dinner guest?
My grandma because she is amazing but weird because she won’t travel and she lives in New York. I miss her!
Anywhere in Europe.
Dream partner collab?
People who know how to make a line of paints or a line of furniture.
Don’t miss Kate’s entire podcast. It’s so good! Check it out along with other Fridays with Flea Style episodes on iTunes here.