Featured Indie Designer – Zombie Kitten

Rockabilly cuteness by Shelley of Zombie Kitten!

Zombie Kitten skirtYour Name: Shelley Smatana
Age: 32
Hometown: Houston, TX
Current Location: Los Angeles, CA

How did your interest in fashion begin?
Subcultures were what got me into fashion. I love youth uprisings that have their own politics, fashion and music and their opposition to the values of the larger culture. There is so much passion associated with subcultures, and I found that very inspiring .
In addition, I enjoyed the style of fashion in the B-movies from the 50s-60s era. Those movies that featured bad girls with switchblades, all girl gangs and juvenile delinquents and were fun to watch.
What motivated you to start selling your designs and what were your expectations when you started?
I was a bit frustrated with pencil skirts that just did not fit like the ones I saw in the movies, and I felt that other gals were too. I really did not have any huge expectations when I started making Zombe Kitten skirts. This has ALL been very flattering and surprising to me. I still blush and get all shy when people come up to me telling me how much they love the skirts. I really never imagined my skirts would take off the way they have!
Do you have any formal training in fashion, art or design?Zombie Kitten skirt
I have no formal training in fashion. My mother taught me how to sew. I do, however, hold a degree in sculpture. Deep down I am still an artist.
Is Zombie Kitten your primary job?
Zombie Kitten has become my primary job…it is an exhuausting job! I work 7 days a week about 10 hours a day.
How many people are behind the scenes at Zombie Kitten?
For years it has just been me flying solo…. however, I just hired my mom to help! YIPPEE!!
What are some of the best and worst aspects of being an independent designer?

Zombie Kitten skirt

Worst: Long hours, not too much free time, and copy cat “designers.”

Best: I have met some wonderful, generous models, photographers and a makeup artist that have all put in some super time, I am very thankful for them. I am also very grateful for my customers and their support. If it were not for them Zombie Kitten would not be.
Where do you get inspiration for your designs?
Horror, Hotrod and Sci-Fi movies from the 50s-60s era.
How would you describe your designs?
Quirky, kitsch, 50’s, horror, sci-fi….modern day juvenile delinquent.
Any advice for aspiring designers?
ALWAYS….Ask yourself: “What is NOT out there? What new thing can I bring to the table?”
Do you have any interesting hobbies?
I love going to car shows, I drive an old rusty 63 Thunderbird (that needs a BUNCH of TLC). I also collect Fire King mugs and bowls. I love going to galleries and museums and looking at Modern Art. Reading is a favorite pastime also.

Check out Shelley’s designs on the Zombie Kitten website
Ebay: Zombie Kitten
and Etsy: ZombieKittenO.etsy.com

Zombie Kitten can also be found at:
Inked Flamingo, Angry, Young And Poor, Lucky Kat, and Beyond the Trap Door

4 thoughts on “Featured Indie Designer – Zombie Kitten

  1. Great interview! I am a big fan of Zombie Kitten and Shelley does an amazing, professional and very collectible item of designer clothing. Every gal should own at least one Zombie Kitten original. I love my skirt and it does fit so much better than the average pencil skirt.
    Keep up the great work Shelley!

  2. I LOVE Zombie Kitten skirts. I own 5 of them and will likely buy more! They fit so well and look great, I get lots of compliments when I wear them. And Shelly is so friendly and helpful, great customer service!

  3. Zombie Kitten skirts are top-notch, in every way. The craftsmanship, style, quality… and by way of second hand info… every woman I’ve bought ’em for has loved the fit and comfort, too.
    Oh… and boy do they look good on ’em, too!

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