The MNY Spotlight

Meet Kristin Clamage, Fashion Industry Connoisseur and Emerging Actress

Introduce yourself! 

Hello! I’m Kristin (@kristinclamage), I’ve worked in the fashion industry on the corporate side for about 15 years since college. I love and breathe and have lived in and around NYC my whole life and am so flattered to be taking part in this tastemakers series! 

Kristin Clamage actress

Kristin wears the Georgiana Gown in Jade

What characteristics (cultural, personality etc) make you unique?

Oh gosh, I guess friends would describe me as a bit of a passionate, rebellious character. I have always beaten to my own drummer and have followed my heart blindly for better or worse. I value intellect, fearlessness, and authentic individuality.

Who is your style icon?

Wow, too many to count! Aesthetically, it’s all across the board. But the people that resonate and inspire the most are those that are effortless and define their own sensibility of cool. Carolyn Bessett Kennedy, Kate Moss, Francois Hardy. So indicative of their era but always relevant and trailblazing.

What was your biggest career learning lesson?

Again, way too many! I think that’s a good thing though, to always be open to improvement. I am incredibly stubborn by nature but genuinely always want to be the best version of myself, especially in a work environment. I’ve learned over the years that my passion and proactiveness can sometimes be misconstrued as aggressive and intimidating, and it is something I continue to work on. My intent doesn’t always match how I’m received, and I want to strive to build and support and collaborate with everyone to the best of my ability.

What is inspiring you at the moment?

During COVID I sadly lost my dream job at a fashion company that I absolutely adored. It has been incredibly difficult to bounce back in the lens of the status quo I had become so accustomed to. Interestingly though, this time has provided newfound opportunities that I otherwise would have never in a million years come across, like acting! I have honestly become so inspired by the chance to dip a toe into a new industry and meet people I otherwise would never have encountered. The level of dedication and difficulty is really unprecedented, and I have a newfound respect for an industry that I had always admired from afar. It is inspiring to have these novel experiences with people and yet find common ground in the pursuit of perfection at every micro level. 

Kristin Clamage in Mestiza New York

Kristin (@kristinclamage) overlooks the NYC skyline

Why is it important to you to empower women?

Um, because we are the best?! Seriously though, women should run everything. I said what I said. Unfortunately though, especially speaking from my own experience in the fashion industry, it isn’t always the case to build up and support each other because we’ve been indoctrinated to be so people pleasing towards men, often our superiors, and fall into learned behavioral placating and comparative patterns. In recent years this paradigm is obviously shifting and it is a very optimistic time, AND it is about freaking time (!!).

What draws you to the Mestiza brand?

Like other brands I admire and respect, Mestiza draws subtle inspiration from the past, yet has a definitive, uncompromising, and modern point of view. The opposite of trend chasing, and rooted in novel brand identity, quality, and craftsmanship.

Actress Kristin Clamage
What are your favorite ways to style your Mestiza piece?

I tend to lean into more of a minimalistic, downtown sensibility so I love to contrast the sweetness with a bit of an edge. Unexpected touches like a tabi boot or a super smokey eye. But what is amazing about these pieces is that they are all such statement garments on their own, the malleable qualities allow for unlimited individualistic interpretation.

What advice would you give to a young person who is looking to follow in your footsteps?

Be respectful but uncompromising when it comes to your trajectory and strength. Always speak up and create your own path. Be open, learn the most you can from the ground up about every department and never assume what you don’t know. Build authentic bridges, but deep down always remember that at the end of the day, the only person looking out for you is you.

Fashion Kristin Clamage

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