by MIKE CHAIKEN
Connecticut’s own swimsuit designer, Kasia Roginska of KARO Swimwear, is still making noise overseas.
She already has seen her swimsuits in Sports Illustrated, Vogue UK, ELLE UK, Glamour UK, Cosmopolitan UK, and Tattler UK.
Now, her swimsuits will be in Harper’s Bazaar UK and Red magazine in June.
“I was trying to get in (Harper’s Bazaar) for years and always hash-tagged the best magazines on social media. And when I got email from Hearst UK group asking if I want to be part of it as I was their old client because we worked previously together in other publications, I was ecstatic,” said Roginska.
“Harper’s Bazaar is very luxurious magazine and it was another dream come true,” said the designer, who is based in Berlin, Conn.
This opportunity to appear in another European magazine will be helpful for her brand, Roginska said. “I think U.S.A.- based magazines are very focused on celebrities and bigger brands… The UK is very open to newer brands and often publish them, which I think is actually greater exposure than here locally.”
“I do want KARO Swimwear to be recognized as an international brand and being published in international magazines could be one of those outlets for great exposure,” said the designer.
Harper’s Bazaar UK is featuring a swimsuit from a new line in which Roginska has teamed up with a fine artist, Mathieu Jean, to create the prints.
Mathieu Jean’s pieces have been collected by the likes of Ringo Starr, Matt Sorum (Guns n’Roses, The Cult, Velvet Revolver, Kings of Chaos), Oscar Santiago (Il Nino), Jenn Lowe, Telefunken Studios, and more.
The partnership began when Roginska met Mathieu Jean at a fitness photoshoot.
“We stayed friends and I have followed Mathieu’s social media and always liked his work… I’m in love with the colors and different details in his paintings,” said Roginska.
”One day it just hit me– I wanted to have some of his artwork on my bathing suits,” said Roginska. “I called Matt, we met over cup of coffee and talked about it. He was very excited about this… It just felt that these paintings belong somewhere else, not only on the walls in the art gallery.”
The designer picked a few paintings of Mathieu Jean’s and worked with a manufacturer to bring the ideas to life,
In addition to the swimsuits, the collection also features a full sarong that in many ways is like a wearable painting. KARO also has expanded from women’s swimwear to maxi dresses, children’s swimsuits, and men’s board shorts.
In addition to the Mathieu Jean pieces that will be featured in Harper’s Bazaar UK, Roginska said, “I’ve created two sets of reversible collections that can be worn multiple ways with interchangeable beads laces and buckles. Also I was very proud to create a sheer, burnout velvet line that’s inspired by lingerie but it’s very functional as swimwear. Also a couple of pieces can be worn out with favorite skirt or jeans as luxurious velvet touch to your wardrobe.”
KARO has been around for several years now, and the designer said the brand and its business approach has evolved over time. “(You) make mistakes and try not to make them again. I never think of a mistake as a failure but try to see it as something new I tried and learned from it.”
“During the first three to four years, I enjoyed all of the fashion shows, publications,” said Roginska. “Now, I have started to think a bit more as a business owner.”
To the end, said Roginska, “This year, I’m working on building my team. I’m hiring brand ambassadors who want to work and grow with KARO, attending one trade show in Orlando, and trying to generate not only some sales but clientele…. (Also) there’s a few new pieces being developed, of course. My mind is always coming up with new ideas.”
For more information about Kasia Roginska and KARO Swimwear, visit www.KAROSwimwear.com or add the brand on Facebook and Instagram.
PHOTOS by MIKE CHAIKEN
Model Martha Boltromiejuk of Plainville, Conn. wears some pieces from KARO Swimwear by Kasia Roginska of Berlin, Conn.
Photographed on location at Wadsworth Falls, Middlefield, Conn.