We are Wati Design.
Wati Grossman, mother, designer, eco-creator.
Welcome to Wati Design where I show you a treasure trove of designs from a broad range of traditions and aesthetics. All sit happily together and make up the Wati Design ethos of aligning a love of fashion and design with a belief in sustainable living and production. You'll see as you venture beyond this page, some designs are my own, and others belong to women designers and entrepreneurs from other parts of the globe, including India, Latin America, Scandinavia and the United States.
My love of color and design began in Australia where I grew up, earning my Arts and Law degrees from Monash University in Melbourne. Fast forward to New York City where the Fashion Institute of Technology beckoned and where I studied, made patterns, drew and sketched my heart out to emerge with a graduate degree in fashion. In the early 90's I worked at The Gap, Inc. and Levi Strauss & Co. where I built a deep love of and extensive experience in menswear. Originally from Indonesia, my parents encouraged my love of art, animals, travel, sports, food and family. I get a real buzz from mentoring young designers as well as in any way I can, reducing waste in the fashion industry production cycle.
With my pop-up stores and website, I hope to provide unique options that are not available just anywhere. If you know of beautiful products you think I should be promoting, please email me!
2004 – Wati launches girls’ fashion collection based in Palo Alto, California.
2004 – 2013 Wati Design girls’ line is available in high-end boutiques, catalogs and department stores in Japan, Korea and the United States.
2014-2016 – Wati takes a break and focuses on family.
2016 – Wati launches women’s capsule collection.
READ BELOW FOR MORE ABOUT MY BACKGROUND AND INSPIRATION...
Excerpted here is a blog interview I did back in 2015 for my twin sister Yanti Amos, ex-lawyer (like me) and yoga studio owner in New York (www.earthyoganyc.com).
"I recently sat down with my twin sister Yanti and she asked me these questions. And I created these visuals to paint a picture of who I am.
You seem uncomfortable.
Ultimately I think I’m more comfortable focusing on interviewing other people I’m interested in, or on my own creative output than talking about myself.
Borrowing from Proust here, but what is the trait you most deplore in yourself?
My lack of tidiness. I’m a pretty messy person.
What is the trait you most deplore in others?
Conformity. And laziness.
Can you summarize your career to date in 140 characters or less?
Ex-lawyer fashion designer started own line after stints at Gap & Levis. Mom animal & travel lover, partial empty-nester, entrepreneur.
Do you have any hidden talents?
Spousal haircutter. I’ve trimmed Michael’s hair once a month for the past 26 years.
What is your best parenting advice?
Provide love, structure, support and lots of attention. And then let them be who they are.
Can you share with us a quote about style that you made up yourself?
“While it is important to take care of the details, narcissism is not attractive”.
I actually believe that. Or as my children would say, “Being a Try Hard is so lame!”.
What’s it like being married to a non-designer?
My husband Michael is a very linear thinker but a great ideas person and is very irreverent. He is the neat to my messy and reminds the kids about their homework. In fact he's super Type A. When it comes to fiscal risks he will take them, but physical risks, never. He’d never go sky-diving for example.
Would you go sky-diving?
What is the scariest thing you wish you had the guts to do?
Best sporting event ever?
(Other than the tournaments my kids have competed in)...I’ve attended all the tennis Grand Slams but my answer would have to be the Olympics (Winter and Summer).
Saddest thing you've had to do?
Well the saddest thing that happened to me was that our Dad died in 1989. Looking after an animal slowly dying of cancer was tough. But the most difficult thing has been sending our eldest child off to college this year. Frankly my heart is still slowly breaking inside, (counter-balanced of course by the pride and excitement I feel for him and his future).
Are you a rule follower?
Yes and no. I like to do the right thing. But the ‘right thing’ can change depending on the situation. I left the law to study fashion because it was the right thing for me and my passion. (But it upset my Mom and her family at the time). My allergist told me to get rid of my cats because I’m allergic to them but I didn’t. One of my girlfriends described me as cheeky the other day. Am I cheeky, disobedient, stupid or doing the right thing?
Film or TV?
Both. I’m very open-minded about what I’ll watch (except horror movies). Ever since I was small, give me the sound of horses’ hooves on cobblestones and I’m captivated.
Your thoughts on shopping:
While I’m guilty of owning a few pieces of nice European leather goods, I like to keep things simple. I enjoy hunting for the obscure and love shopping in markets. It could be an interesting cheese, a beautiful box, or a piece of fruit with a strange-colored skin. In a way it’s the opposite of caring about labels.
What motivates you?
I’m aesthetically driven. My family says I’m “passionate about creating and appreciating visual beauty”. I like to make people happy. When I was little my mother used to show us she loved us by cooking. I show I care by making things I guess. It could be a shirt for a girlfriend or Halloween costume I’ve sewn, or a special souvenir I’ve framed. My children’s clothing line was definitely about making little girls happy. Making a lot of money has never been a motivation for me. I’m working on a small women's line now and that’s about providing a service that (hopefully) is needed. I feel strongly about sharing and helping, and mentoring is something I make time to do. I was mentored early in my fashion career and therefore I think it’s important to be open about my knowledge and experience. I enjoy celebrating the lives and work of some of the extraordinary women I know. Sharing information and stories and giving friends and young people the idea and encouragement that they can also go forth and do, is a huge motivation.
Best advice you received from a kid:
We were on a family trip in Turkey and my son said to me “Mom you don’t have to photograph everything. Sometimes you just have to enjoy what you see with your eyes”. "