Karolina Zubkova-Mattes

World Bloggers Awards 2019 Winner “Best Haute Couture Influencer”

Good Morning, thank you for this interview and so nice getting to know more about your work. By Jaime Acevedo

You just won the award as the Best Haute Couture Influencer.

How many years have you been in the fashion business?

Hello Jaime, thank you very much for your time. Once upon a time… 3 years ago, everything began as a hobby. My passion for fashion started very early on. I loved watching my mother getting ready and walking around the house in her heels and wearing sunglasses. I always admired her sense of style and confidence. It became an actual business for me, while being the youngest top brand ambassador and haute couture influencer. In modern society, social media is an important communication channel, especially for the fashion and lifestyle industry, which gives us the possibility to share information and inspire people, instantly across the world.

What do you think about Haute Couture these days?

For me, Haute Couture represents the intersection of fine art and fashion, the development and maintenance of rare craftsmanship on its highest level, using the finest materials and unique fabrics, sewed with extreme attention to details and hand-made techniques.

In the past, all great designers had their own collections, but today more and more is being designed for Prêt-a-porter.

What is your opinion?

The 1960s were all about creating new fashion, where creativity had taken hold and nothing could stop the flood of ideas. The 90s almost killed the industry, where the ideas floated into everything but Haute Couture. Modernity changed the way Haute couture works, for example what Christobal Balenciaga designed for Grace Kelly is no longer something that can be found often these days.

Haute Couture is one of a kind, it is exclusive and expensive. Each piece takes between 100 to 800 or more hours of finest workmanship, putting together the perfect attire for the lady expecting nothing less than perfection.

Ready-to-wear lines are all about producing what’s trending and what the public wants: fast, efficient and affordable for everyone.

Unlike ready-to-wear, couture in France is protected and governed under the Federation de la Haute Couture at de la Mode – only few selected designers are permanent members, like Chanel or Dior, however there are also plenty of new talented designers. Each member needs to follow exact and rigorous rules, which makes it difficult to become an official haute couture brand.

Who are your favorite Haute Couture designers?

I have a few favorite designers, each of them have very different style and different techniques. I love the very clean and elegant design of Chanel, and the prettiest fairytale gowns are made by Zuhair Murad or Elie Saab. I always admire the extravagant and sometimes bold Jean Paul Gaultier. I also like the lavish and British based Ralph & Russo. I always pay a lot of attention to new and upcoming Lebanese designers, where so much talent and incredible embroidery work can be found.

There is always competition between Italy and France,

but many other nations are growing spectacular, what do you think?

From my perspective maybe there was competition between Italy and France, but not anymore, for sure not in Haute Couture. Today we can notice that more and more Lebanese designers have entered the industry with the official recognition of being a real Haute Couture House. I always search for new talent and new inspiring designers to share with my followers.

How did you start your career as influencer?

Many people have been asking me, “why don’t you have Instagram?”, so eventually I decided to open an account, called it @KarolinasFairytale and started sharing images and stories from my fashion life. Soon after it totally exploded, I wasn’t able to use my phone for days due to follow notifications and I didn’t know how to switch them off, because I was new to the app. Today my community is very strong and engaging. I feel very humbled and honored that my fashion influencer profile “@Karolinasfairytale” has become such a success: I work with top haute couture brands like Zuhair Murad, Elie Saab or Ralph & Russo, support upcoming, young and stylish brands and have a very active community of around 300,000 people from all over the world which is growing continuously. This also imposes a great level of responsibility for me, which I take very seriously.

I always try to inspire my followers and make them a little happier everyday while also providing advice and keep them up to date with the latest trends. Almost every day I’m helping out girls to figure out what to wear for the wedding or how to put together a look for a special event. Since day one I’m getting great feedback and very touching letters from people from all over the world, expressing their gratitude, how they feel inspired and how they are getting happier after watching my stories. This gives me the necessary drive and makes me excited.

When you have an event, what is the first thing you think when choosing the right dress?

First of all, it’s important to analyze what type of event it is, in what kind of location it is, what the dress code is and what other people would be wearing. It’s also important to consider the weather and its potential impact on the location.

Accessories are very important, what is your recommendation?

I love accessories! Couldn’t live without them! For me, everything is allowed, from high jewelry to bijouterie, always depending where I’m planning to go. I’m a huge millinery fan and I often like to complete my looks with gloves and a little head piece if appropriate. I own many gloves and a very large collection of millinery, one of my favorites is London based Haute Couture milliner Philip Treacy.

And shoes, sandals, which are your favourite?

Sandals –not really… I’m more a décolleté girl, my favorites are So Kate by Christian Louboutin or plexi pumps by Gianvito Rossi. Chanel is the only brand where I love all kind of shoes, from boots to heels, sneakers and even flipflops (which I usually would never wear). I find them very comfortable and timeless, but if you want to have a beautiful long and sexy leg, you will have to get used to walk in So Kate’s !

We are based in Marbella Spain, have you ever visited us?

Not yet, but I would love to! I hear it’s a wonderful place to discover.

The Glamour in Cannes during the Film Festival has become one of the most important places in the world, how did you see the events this year?

I’m attending Cannes Film Festival since 7 years. My first time, when I was 22 years old and being raised in Lugano, Switzerland, I was very impressed by the amount of champagne and high-end luxury events filled with the most famous actors and producers… and a lot of Haute Couture. That’s actually where everything really started. My forever favorite event is the Amfar Gala, which is being held every year in the incredible Hotel du Cap Eden Roc. It starts with a red carpet, where the most beautiful actresses and celebrities are showing their Haute Couture gowns, continues with a cocktail during sunset and finishes with a grand gala dinner and auction, all for the important cause to fight AIDS.

Every year I select very carefully what to wear during Cannes Film Festival. I pre-select different designers for each and every red carpet event and also love to present new and upcoming Haute Couture designers. This year I was wearing Fouad Sarkis with a very linear and incredibly elegant red dress, combined with a custom red wide brim hat and gloves – which got a lot of attention and interest. It was a great pleasure for me to introduce something new to the society.

Thank you for this interview, and we hope to see you in our beautiful country.

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