In the sun-drenched sitting room, Katherine pairs an electric-blue Maje jacket and pant with a Peter Prince Collection T-shirt.
Where were you born?
"I was born in Orange County in Newport Beach ."
Where do you live now?
"I live in L.A. now, in the hills"
Some fashionable reading material, including the newest WWW book.
Describe your style:
"Describing my own style always feels so nerdy, but Hillary [Kerr, Who What Wear’s co-founder and Editorial Director] says I 'favor a combination of classic American pieces with tough-chic, Parisian-influenced accents.'"
You run a successful website, just published your second book, and designed your first shoe line. Tell us a little bit about all your jobs.
"When it comes to Who What Wear as a company, I wear many hats—I guess that's the nature of being a startup and being the boss. I creatively direct the look of the site and the features, the concepts, and looks for our all of our photo shoots, come up with ad campaigns for our clients, guide the fashion stories, and really anything else that you see on the site. I don't do a lot of writing—that's all Hillary and her team; She is a brilliant writer and editor. Hillary and I also work together on the development of the company, building the brand, and coming up with new ways to entertain our readers. I also manage all of the celebrity partnerships, book guest editors, scout, and shoot new, young talent."
Nelson, the cat, poses for the camera. Katherine wears a Lark and Wolff sweater and Current/Elliott shorts.
When you started WWW, you moved from being an editor in print to launching one of the first fashion and celebrity-centric sites on the web. How did the switch affect your outlook on fashion and your own personal style?
"What I love about the Internet is that girls in the middle of nowhere have access to the same items that Kate Bosworth is wearing. They can find out what it is instantly, and most likely purchase it immediately online. That's the goal of Who What Wear—to make celebrity and runway fashion accessible to everyone. There is so much inspiration online when it comes to fashion; Girls share photos of their style from countries all over the world...it allows us to see what other people are wearing or trying."
Do you have any treasured items in your closet? What are their stories?
"If you know me, you know I have an obsession with little leather jackets from Simone by Katie Nehra. Last fall, she did a gray fur vest and named if after my cat Nelson. Whenever I’m away from home, I make sure to pack it and wear it—and it keeps me from missing him too much!"
A vignette from the dining room includes candlesticks, coral, and vintage fashion advertisements.
What inspires your style these days?
"People largely inspire me. It could be anyone from a designer to a blogger, an editor to an intern, you name it. I pick things up here and there from everyone. Even if you see someone wearing something you wouldn't necessarily wear, it can spark an idea; I pay attention to those things. Characters in films or old photos also inspire me. I spend a lot of time going through editorial archives—photo shoots from 30-40 years ago."
What do you love most about living in L.A.?
"I love the healthy lifestyle, the weather, and all of the pretty neighborhoods of L.A."
Left, Katherine shows off her enviable walk-in closet wearing a black dress by Jenni Kayne. Right, on the patio with photog fiancé Justin Coit.
If your style had a theme song, what would it be?
"Probably something by Prince, he's my favorite—and inspired the name of my cat."
What are the five key pieces you find yourself wearing constantly?
"I can’t live without black Jenni Kayne flats, J Brand bell-bottoms, my Simone Leather jackets, Equipment silk button ups, and my Benjamin sunglasses."
The mantle in the living room is decorated with vintage bookends and fresh flowers.
What's your secret style weapon?
"My studded Simone leather jacket—it makes anything look good. Anything."
Who are your style heroes?
"I find Carine Roitfeld incredibly inspiring."
Katherine wears a Simone by Katie Nehra leather jacket, Adam top, Topshop pants, and Maje boots.
What's your best cheap score of late?
"Zara is really on a hot streak and J.Crew has never looked better."
Do you have anything in your closet that you could never bear throwing away?
"I don’t get very attached to clothes (except maybe my Nelson vest); I clean out my closet every season. I'm trying to save most of my great vintage finds though—even if they aren't on-trend at the moment."
On the patio, Katherine wears a Joie dress, Topshop belt, J. Crew chambray shirt, Elizabeth and James shoes, and Benjamin sunglasses. Standing in front of her wall of shoes in an Equipment top, Maje skirt, Elizabeth and James shoes, Chan Lu necklace, and Made Her Think rings.
Tell us a little bit about what's new at Who What Wear.
"We are working right now on a big redesign for WhoWhatWear.com that will bring our readers much more content. Our daily readers are the most important part of the business, and we want to focus on bringing them as much as we can. Hillary and I have been so busy working on other projects, but we are really going to be taking our focus back to the site in the coming months."
You're definitely an expert shopper. What are some tricks of the trade you could give our readers?
"A mix of high and low is really important. Invest in key accessories each season, like a couple pairs of shoes, a handbag, and a great pair of sunglasses. These items will balance out thrifty thrills and some of the more trendy items you'll buy for a lower price."
Her impressive shoe collection includes high and low, from Christian Louboutin and Pierre Hardy x The Gap to W3, the shoes she and WWW co-founder Hillary Kerr designed for Just Fab.
Your house is stocked with so many amazing books What are you reading now or can't live without?
"Our new book, What to Wear, Where, of course! It's a fashion reference guide for any occasion. You can look up everything from a casual date, to a corporate job interview, to the opera. We tell you what to wear, what not to wear, and show you what we'd wear. It’s got about 50 full pages of photos. We're really proud of the way it turned out."
Do you have any particular dressing philosophies or strategies?
"I start with one key piece that I'm excited to wear, and let that set the tone of the whole look. It could be a certain T-shirt, a pair of sunglasses, a shoe, or a dress. I build from there."
Getting back to work in an Equipment shirt dress, Maje pants, H&M sweater, and Fallon necklace.
We love your red hair. Has going from blond to redhead changed the way you dress?
"Yes, it’s been very fun. I had very red hair from about 12 years old to 20 (I was obsessed with Lucille Ball and used to put Henna on my hair). After several years of being everything in between, I went red again after seeing Mulberry's spring '11 show (which showed model after model in Florence Welch-style wigs). It’s almost like having an extra accessory; You can be more basic with your clothing choices because whatever it is, the red will liven you up. I had to tone it down a bit now because it was far too hard to keep up with. I think I was in the salon almost once a week!"
What's on your spring wish list, accessories wise?
"I love all of Reed Krackoff's shoes and handbags and the teeny-tiny Celine luggage bags. I've been looking for a green one for a while, but they are so hard to find. I also love the Fallon necklace I'm wearing in this shoot."
Photos by Michael Flores