We had the good fortune of connecting with Zlata Kotmina and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Zlata, how has your work-life balance changed over time?
For me, it’s all about the stage of life that I am experiencing at the moment. For example, when I was in my 20’s, I was 200% full throttle about fashion styling, I was getting my hands on any project I can and created a never ending work environment for myself. This was an essential part of who I am in my career today, an important building block. Now in my 30’s I’m focusing on the work that I know is beneficial for me in every aspect. I have to be selfish with my time, since I have a family of my own. In my experience, my work life balance scale evens out with age, because I begin to comprehend that either it’s all work or all family, I have to be able to curate the best projects for myself and have time for my family as well as myself, and my well-being.
Alright, so let’s move onto what keeps you busy professionally?
I’ve loved styling since I was a kid. I often found myself choosing looks for friends and family and hosting a pretend runway fashion shows, to show them off. It’s an incredible feeling that I encounter when I see a transformation. Clothing is a personal statement. It can make you feel powerful, sexy, cute, comfy, glam, it could also remind you of a special moment, when you wore that particular piece of clothing. It’s something that I carried throughout my childhood to this very day. I create a specific look to make someone feel a certain way. For instance, a fashion editorial that is supposed to make you feel fierce and edgy, I create looks that are heavily influenced with leather, belts, high heels, boots, bulky jewelry; it’s a mood. Essentially I am a story teller, some people convey it through writing, some by singing, I am a story teller through clothing. I remember one of the most recent shoots, I was working along side a very talented fashion stylist in Palm Beach, we worked on a project for Gray Malin. We had to create looks that portrayed a 1950’s-1960’s era. Projects involving vintage clothing are one of the most challenging, because you have to source clothing through personal connections with designers and large costume warehouses, it’s not something that is readily available. This was a new challenge and I learned a lot on set. Everything is in the details. With that said, the final results are breathtaking and worth all of the hard work.
If you had a friend visiting you, what are some of the local spots you’d want to take them around to?
I just moved to Brickell Miami, this is my new stomping ground that I have yet to explore since of the covid19 restrictions. I have been social distancing myself for the safety of my family and others. But one of my favorite places in Palm Beach is The Royal Poinciana Plaza. There you can enjoy everything, truly! From a quick smoothie from Celis Produce, to a delicious lunch/dinner at Sant Ambroeus, retail therapy at so many boutiques, the beach is minutes away!
Shoutout is all about shouting out others who you feel deserve additional recognition and exposure. Who would you like to shoutout?
Love the shoutout series! Our success comes from mentors and people who love and support us through it all. I want to dedicate my shoutout to Lola Thelin, she was the Editor in Chief of Muses & Visionaries magazine. I worked closely with her first as an intern then as a Fashion Editor. She has taught me a lot about magazine business from print to digital. Her work ethics influenced my future ventures in a grand way.
Irina Smirnova, Garrin Evan, Olya Helga, Nick Mele, Sasha Benjelloun