After having passed through different houses such as Balenciaga, Balmain, Lacoste or Perrin Paris, the all-rounder Kitesy Martin launched her eponymous brand of upcycled jewellery in 2018.

She received us in her workshop, where she decided to pose with the prototypes of the denim and workwear sets we came to present to her.


"I admit that clothes are rather superficial, but I still find that they give us a kind of magical power."

can you introduce yourself?

My name is Kitesy Martin, I am 38 years old, I live in Paris and I grew up in the Paris region. I have a stylist formation , I went through the Arts Décoratifs de Paris. I have worked in several houses as a stylist and now I have my own upcycling brand which bears my name, Kitesy Martin.


The brand was created with the circular economy in mind. What I will definitely keep to the end is upcycling. The fact of starting from something existing to create a new piece. That's something I'm keen on, I would like to become one of the references in upcycling.

And I want to take the brand towards something more upmarket and more creative. I think I want to have more fun in the creation, I want to find a balance between permanent collections that bring the brand to life and very creative collections that bring image. That also allow me to find well-being in my own brand.

And then, the big desires, the big objectives, is to collaborate with brands that make me dream, like Loewe, Marni... I think that these brands need to integrate upcycling into their designs.


Here we are in my office, in the Ateliers de la ville de Paris. I joined this residence less than a year ago, in September. It's a big help to have a studio in the centre of Paris.

It allows me to have meetings with super competent experts, each in their own field, as well as connections with bigger structures.

It's both my workshop for making accessories, where we take photos, where we brainstorm with the team, and my meeting place for external service providers. All the production is done here or with freelancers, which are also in Paris.

It's where the essence of Kitesy Martin Studio is and I feel very comfortable here.

We talked about your approach to your art, do you have any aesthetic references? Creators who inspire you?

Yes, there are plenty! I look at contemporary art quite a lot. It's always the starting point. The luxury brands I admire are inspired by contemporary art or architecture too, that's not a coincidence..

I'm not saying this because there's an exhibition going on at the moment, but Thomas Demand has always been the artist I look at the most. I think I've been a fan of his work for 15 years. I have a lot of his books at home.

He photographs scenes from everyday life or key life scenes in terms of history. He takes existing photos and remakes them into wall scale models, which he photographs from the same angle as the original photo. In fact, it's a kind of balance between something pure and at the same time impactful.
And that's what I'm constantly looking for in the designs we come up with, something uncluttered and at the same time visually impactful. I think that's why I like his approach, it's that from the outside, you say that it's just beautiful, the form is very efficient, but in fact, the content goes further.

After that, there are many others. I love Erwin Würm.

And then, I think I quote Loewe a lot because they have a good balance between craftsmanship, super demanding, and modernity in their images and in their designs.

So, let's talk a little bit about clothes, your style, what are the details that are important for you?

My relationship with clothes... has changed a lot. I think it has to do with my age and the fact that I have become a mother. Today, comfort is the key.
I know that at one time I was fascinated by Balenciaga, at the time, Nicolas Ghesquière. As I had done an internship there, I had Balenciaga jackets, it was very structured, very stiff. It made a great silhouette, it was very beautiful, but I could hardly bend my arms.

Today, I'm still fascinated by the cut, looking at the details, but I couldn't wear it anymore. So there is a notion of comfort that has come into my life.

I admit that clothes are rather superficial, but I still find that they give us a kind of magical power. I thought to myself earlier, when I wore your clothes, they're new, they've just come off the hanger, they're all clean, and when your wear it, you gain confidence points. And I find it's quite fascinating that one piece of clothing can change your day. I think I'm one of those people who says "If I'm not dressed the way I like, I don't feel good".

As I'm a clothing designer basis, I look at the materials, I look at the details and I'll get stuck on little things, like you. I will appreciate a nice button, a nice buttonhole, the detail, the material, it makes sense in my choice of clothes.

And your style, in the broadest sense?

So the first thing that comes to mind is that I'm not girly at all, or at least not always. I admit I like unisex clothes, so I steal a lot of my boyfriend's clothes. And so I would say that my style is more oversized. I also like minimal silhouettes. I like it when there's only one colour that stands out. I think it's great to be able to play with my figure.

For example, when I go out, when I have to look for an outfit to party, that's when I'll have fun mixing genders, where I'll put on a super feminine top, steal a stocking from my guy or a jacket from my guy. I think that from the outside, a successful silhouette is a balance between the masculine and feminine sides.

Do you have any news or future projects you would like to tell us about?

Lots of projects. I think we have new ideas every day!

The next short-term project is making furnitures. That's why I collect chairs like this one in the street for the upcycling.

We really believe in manifestation here. We've been talking about making chairs for a week and I found two in the street that fit the bill. So we're going to do a small installation where I show furniture, at least small furniture for the moment. It's going to be small tables, two seats, things like that. That's the project that's going to come up in the near future.

The second objective is to make more furniture during Paris Design Week, but big furniture.

And the big project is to make the eShop more upmarket. That's why, lately, we've been doing shoots that are intended for the eShop and not just for Instagram. We want our eShop to be as inspirational as our Instagram page. That's a big topic at the moment.

There's another project coming out in June. It's another experiment in sales with a place, a real place and a collaboration.

If you were to add one or more songs to our playlist of the month?

It's funny to say, but I listen to very little music. It's quite strange. I'm oppressed by music all day long, I listen to it when I'm doing my lab sessions, when I'm just starting to do tests and I don't need to think too much. There, I put some music in the background.

So, very little new stuff. For example, the last time, we put Aya Nakamura on and we all sang in the studio and we were very happy.

So we'll go with that. You can put Djadja.

A mantra to finish with?

Slow down. I say it all the time: "Do less, but better".
It's the thing of the moment, along with meditation.

Kitesy Martin wears:
- the cloud sweater size S for woman,
- our workwear set samples size M for man
- the Ellipse trousers size 28 and the 222 jacket size S.

Photo credits : Enzo Lefort