Kerry Leikus, 44, took an unconventional route to becoming a designer. While on sabbatical from her job as an attorney, she decided that if she couldn’t find the accessories she wanted, she’d design them. Her first line of belts were a hit and now, more than ten years later, she’s expanded her brand many times over. She is known for her bold colors and retro vibe—a distinctive style that you’ll immediately recognize once you see her designs. You can find her latest at her site.
As one of the designers featured in our upcoming issue, we wanted to know what inspires her. Be sure to check out the full fashion spread once the April issue hits newsstands.
Baltimore STYLE: What about Baltimore inspires you?
Kerry Leikus: I am inspired by the incredible talent that our Baltimore designers possess. Having been in the business over a decade, I have watched my contemporaries grow, change and blossom. It was very exciting to see their latest works at the photo shoot. I am humbled to be in their company!
STYLE: What has your journey as a designer been like?
KL: I began designing fabric, used primarily for woven belts. I then expanded into leather goods and outerwear. My most recent designing endeavors have led me into the world of interior design. For years, I enjoyed decorating homes of friends and family. I now provide such services regularly as an offshoot of my business. Design consulting and staging enable me to use all of my design skills while collaborating on projects that are as unique as the homeowners themselves. With each job, I learn about the family, the artifacts and artwork that hold special meaning to them, their needs for comfort and utility and ideas for better use of a space.
STYLE: Who are some of your favorite designers?
KL: Nicolas Ghesquière is my absolute favorite—everything he designs turns to gold in my book.
STYLE: What is your favorite piece you’ve designed?
KL: One of my first coats that we have continued to carry—the original Keggy coat featuring a square neckline and plaid trim.
STYLE: If you hadn’t become a designer, what would you be doing?
KL: Practicing law.
STYLE: How would you describe your own personal style/how you dress on a day-to-day basis?
KL: Truth be told, I love my patterned leggings and warm wool sweaters most of all. I like to mix stripes with floral patterns and favor color over neutrals.