Pre-Gala Primp & Polish

This city's vibrant cultural institutions are a huge part of what makes it so special. They provide inspiration and opportunities for creatives of all genres, and I am incredibly grateful to have access to so much rich culture and creativity right in my backyard. They also provide education and creative space that is lacking from the public school system and certainly can't be fulfilled through video games or via the internet. Most importantly, the arts encapsulate and represent the best of humanity and without them we might get lost in the violence and chaos of these complicated times.

I generally consider myself a pretty low-maintenance girl. I don't follow trends or overthink clothes or accessories, I don't wear a lot of makeup and I don't take ages to get ready. The style icons and real women I admire pull off looking effortlessly chic whether day or night and I aspire to such grace in my own life. However, certain special occasions call for a bit more time and effort and I must admit that I do sometimes enjoy the extra pomp and circumstance. Because I am a member of several cultural institutions in New York I get invited to a number of galas and events throughout the year and thought I'd share a little behind the scenes photo diary of getting ready the old fashioned way...

This up-do is quite a departure for me, but once I came out from under the cloud of hairspray I felt pretty glam and just a bit over the top!

This up-do is quite a departure for me, but once I came out from under the cloud of hairspray I felt pretty glam and just a bit over the top!

I love adding a fun shoe or bag (like the amazing laser cut and studded Alaia above) for an unexpected edgy element to break up the femininity of my designs.

For your own upcoming special occasions and evening wear needs shop KUNG KATHERINE F/W '15 here!

For your own upcoming special occasions and evening wear needs shop KUNG KATHERINE F/W '15 here!

Last steps: put on jewelry, take a final swig of coffee and request an Uber to get there in a hurry! 

Here is a list of the institutions I support: 

The Met - my favorite place in NYC; I'm a Friday evening frequenter because most people don't know that it stays open late so you get the usually packed galleries almost all to yourself

Moma - one of the world's most expansive and extensive collections of Modern art

Asia Society - I particularly love the screenings of foreign films and talks on rare international topics

Whitney - their new location provides a unique and refreshing way to take in Contemporary American art

New York Botanical Garden - when I first moved to New York City 10 years ago, I saw Chihuly's glass installation exhibition in this magical place and was hooked immediately

Each is a worth visit if/when you're in NYC!

Cheers,

Katherine

Katerina Simonova