Kasia Dietz has creativity and artistic tendencies in her very essence. Perhaps it comes from the fact that her mother began creating block prints for tee-shirts by hand, while she was pregnant with Kasia, but most likely it comes from the values that she has learned both from her mother and from life.
Back in New York, where she is from, Kasia was ten years into a career and living the Madison avenue life, climbing the ladder to corporate success. Somehow, this didn’t seem like enough, and Kasia decided she wanted something more out of life. When you feel like you have nothing to lose, you can do almost anything, and that’s what she did. She made the choice to take a giant leap into the great unknown, and found herself with only a suitcase, traveling the world, belongings locked up in storage, caution thrown to the wind!
One year spent between Buenos Aires, Brazil, Columbia, Peru, Chile, New Zealand, Australia, Thailand, Bali, Hong Kong, Laos, Cambodia, Vietnam, Japan, China, Tibet, all over Europe, and of course Poland (to visit her roots). The list of destinations goes on. By discovering other places on earth, you also discover who you are when you are in them.
This curiosity, mixed with a passion for design, is also what led the artist to dust off her mother’s block prints and begin designing. Those prints served for her first collection of bags, and still provide inspiration in her newer creations.
Printing fabric creates the concept of wearable art for Kasia. She finds herself inspired by artists such as Paul Klee and Mark Rothko and envisions her own store someday where her bags are hung on the walls like paintings. Her idea of wearable art evolved into reversible totes, matching clutches and a continuation on the printed theme. Her most recent hits are the Rive Droite, Rive Gauche and Paris postal code bags. She also designs sashes to complement the bags. Her designs all revolve around her affinity for minimalism and versatility.
Kasia has recently enjoyed press in French Marie Claire, Bitch Buzz Style, Huffington Post Style, Style Society and Stylist.co.uk among others. She remains a firm believer in doing things herself, and makes a point of making her own painstaking prints by hand. So if you purchased a printed bag from Miss Dietz, you are sure to own something in which the artist has put her very essence.
Kasia moved to Paris in 2009 to join her Italian fiancé whom she met serendipitiously in New York City, and took on the task of creating a business with her design talent. She didn’t grow up learning to be a designer, and is a self taught artist, but then are we surprised?!? She used The Fashion Designer Survival Guide by Mary Gehlhar (a great buy, and it has a forward by Zac Posen), to help her learn how to go about designing and selling her bags and accessories. I am sure the book helped, but Kasia seems to have the ability to succeed at whatever she sets out to do! We wish her all the best and can’t wait to see her next collection! (A little bird called twitter tells me that there’s going to be some blue and gold in there!)
Kasia Dietz handbags are available at www.kasiadietz.com (international shipping of course!) and in select shops in Paris and NYC.
By Melissa Ladd / Pretemoiparis