Karyn Bello

This week's radical is Karyn Bello, a fashion designer behind the forthcoming Zhe by Karyn Elizabeth collection of lingerie designed for transgender women. After Karyn's daughter came out as trans in 2014, Karyn has sought to address the lack of inclusion in intimate garments so that her daughter—and others—will have underwear they feel good in.

During the course of our discussion we cover Karyn's transformation from hockey mom and court reporter to fashion designer, the challenges of designing complex garments, and the importance of loving your children no matter what.

Some Questions I Ask:

  • What can you tell us about the Zhe collection? (1:00)
  • How do you go about finding models for fitting as a fashion designer? (4:48)
  • Where did you grow up, and what brought you to studying fashion? (8:40)
  • What was the next step after working at New York Fashion Week? (15:54)
  • What major roadblocks have you had to overcome? (32:40)

In This Episode, You Will Learn:

  • All of the technical things that go into designing lingerie (2:56)
  • Karyn’s first career as a court reporter (10:27)
  • The epiphany that defined the direction of Zhe (16:42)
  • How Karyn’s transformation into a fashion designer corresponded with her daughter’s transition (23:01)
  • About Karyn’s “cheerleader” approach (37:07)
  • How Karyn flips the script by centering trans bodies and comfort in her lingerie (42:07)


Zhe by Karyn Elizabeth website

Follow Zhe on Instagram

Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.