Kate Gordon, Co-Director and Creative Director at Robert Gordon.
Join us for a chat with Kate as we discuss her thoughts on International Women's Day and what her experience has been like working in the homewares industry for 22+ years.
How long have you worked at Robert Gordon for?
I have worked full time for 22 years. However, if you count the times I worked during school holidays, paying my way through Uni, it is more like 30 years!
Please describe a typical work day for you.
My work day is varied, no two are alike. I could be meeting with collaborators, the design team, discussing new collections, choosing colours or glazing pieces. There's lunch in there, cups of tea and most often than not a bit of a laugh. I love what I do.
Do you think that you work in a male dominated industry? Are there many women working in your field?
Yes, the homewares and gift industry is very male dominated, historically speaking. However, I have noticed a recent shift in the rise of companies being run by very strong, independent women. It's exciting to see this change. About time considering 90% of our customers are female!
What does International Women's Day mean to you?
It's a celebration of the changes we have made, and the distances those who have gone before us have travelled. It is also a reminder of how far we need to go.
You have daughters, do you think that they will grow up in a different world to the one you have?
I have two little girls, Thea and Ellis, and I want for them a very different world to the one I grew up in.
I’m not going to tell my girls they can do/be/have anything they want - that’s confusing. But I do want them to know, with all their bones, that they have the right to try.
I grew up a painfully shy kid who was taught from an early age that you don’t brag about your achievements. I think that attitude can start to change now - I feel the shift
May the world continue to be ever changing and may my girls know a different reality. May they be blessed to know true confidence.
What female(s) do you admire?
I have BIG admiration for young females leaping into the industry and running business their way. Kip and Co is a very successful textile design team, ran by three strong women, who have taken on the world of traditional bedding and turned it upside down. I love what they do.
I also have enormous respect for the Jumbled online team - ran by Pip at its helm, and Jess by her side (along with a team of amazing women).
Pip is the epitome of a strong female role model in the industry, who does things with humility, care, and respect. The feminine is to be celebrated with Jumbled, and I love seeing that.
Photography: Martina Gemmola