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Kathy Rose: "My Heart Skipped a Beat"

Winner Kathy reacts to her big win, talks about her line, and gives her advice to aspiring designers. How did it feel to make it to the finale?

It felt surreal when I made the finale! It hit me that I might win actually win!! Competitions have always been so weird to me...they can generate insecurity and fear. I tried hard not to get in to that frequency because then you lose all the love and focus for why you started in the first place.. It was perfect having Emil as a partner, because we are very similar in that regard. I am so happy it's over now though.. It has been so hard to keep it from all my friends and family! It was pure torture!!! Torture! Sitting at dinner with friends...talking to my family...everyone asked me, "who won"?! I was like, "WATCHHHH and find out!" I asked my daughter last night, 'Who do you think will win?" and she said,  "You mommy... you!" That's my girl! I feel so blessed..Im overwhelmed with love and emotion.. ahhhhhhhh!!! Who did you think was your biggest threat? What was your biggest fear for the final launch?

I just wanted to focus on my designs, so I was never motivated by if someone was a threat. Each week was different and everyone was talented; we really never knew who was going to stay on and who was going to be kicked off. I just had to be good for me. Describe the three new looks you had to create. What was your inspiration?

The three new looks had to be a gown, a cocktail dress and a garment with a pocket. The gown became the sister to the kimono. This was a black long knock-out with open back and blue lining. It had a peek-a-boo slit in front. The pocket/animal dress had the genius pocket that Jim crafted. The red dress.. ohhhh god!! When Holly walked on that runway and opened the show with this spectacular red dragon dress, my heart skipped a beat. I hope I can buy this one on Rue la la and wear on Valentines Day. Talk about your line as a whole. Who is the woman you envision wearing your creations?

My line as a whole unfolded to this symphony of color and vibration. My clothes are for special women who are confident, alive, leaders, mothers, artists…my clothes are for all women! It was like the United Nations when they all came out on that runway! Describe how your jewelry pieces match the clothes.

My concept was for my jewelry pieces to work with the clothing. I had my jewelry in mind for every piece. For example the yellow dress was to be stacked with my snake and eagle bangles (of course every outfit should be!) The long backless dress, my long rose cut diamond chain and arrowhead. Basic idea: deep low cut fronts and backs for my link chains; bare ankles for jewelry; bare arms for cuffs; deep V’s for my whale and flamingos. I could go on!! You obviously had a set-back when you couldn't find Jim. What were you thinking and how did you deal with the pressure and the drama of that situation?

I thought it was all set up. I thought, "Wow... this is it. I have worked so hard and it's going to go down like this." But he showed up and he knocked out that black gown in one hour! I did a lot of 'Nam Myo ho Renge Kyo' chanting and Ujai breathing till he showed up! Talk about how nature comes into play with your designs. It's obviously a central theme for you!

Nature, nature, divine nature! Thank you, thank you, thank you for letting me draw upon you. To be inspired by your colors, your seasons, the majestic blessings you give us; I am forever grateful to animals and nature and I never lack inspiration from this incredible world. How helpful was it to go back and revise your previous looks? You took the tentacles off your kimono for starters...

How helpful?? That's why we won! First thing was first... CUT THE TENTACLES! Clean up belts and incorporate same fabrics in other garments so they could flow in a collection. Clean up garments, lengthen and take out quills/feathers. It was so helpful to be able to do this, however we also had to throw in 3 new outfits as well! Arghhhh!!:))) The judges said your designs were polished, elegant, sensual, and calm. Would you agree with that assessment?

When I heard them say this I truly had an out of body experience and went mute. I knew what I had felt when I saw the models hit the runway. Polished, elegant, sensual and calm. Wow. That's everything that I want to be. I am still learning but I couldn't be more proud of what we designed. What's your favorite piece in the collection?

My favorite piece is a toss up. OK.. I have two faves!! The ball gown (Out of Africa dress..ohhhhh my heart!!) And of course the yellow dress! My first dress... I was so proud. I could have been kicked off then and I would have been happy just to have had the opportunity to have given birth to that dress alone. What did you think when Fergie walked it?

Fergilicious!!?? My god is this woman hot! Dean and Dan said we could be sisters. Thanks for the compliment, boys! She was so fierce and confident. She loved the black long dress and all the garments. I only had a few minutes with her because Jim still had not shown up. I can't wait to design jewelry and clothing for her one day! How did Emil help you along through the entire process? What have you learned?

I would not have been able to win without Mr Emil Gampe, Couturier. He is not only a class act, he is a master in what he does. When I first met him I asked him what his sign was and he said Cancer; I knew we were going to get  long. I'm a Capricorn and we are a match made in heaven! What were you feeling when they said they were launching your line?

I blacked out. I didn't hear a thing and all of a sudden I saw the judges get on stage and the models come on with champagne glasses. It was surreal. I didn't really understand what was happening. Emil and I looked at each other and said, "What just happened??!" What's next for you and Native Rose?

Rue La La, Native Rose, Bravo, Roseark, my new jewelry designs, infinite possibilities; the world is my oyster! I had the best time and I am so honored and proud to represent Native Rose and Bravo!! Any words of advice for people out there looking to launch their lines?

Listen and educate yourself. Throw away the ego. Research. Don't be stubborn and a "know it all" just to wear the designer hat. Think outside of the box. Don't copy and pose. Don't be resentful, be a lover, not a hater. Know that you have plenty and everything is the divine appointment of time. Take risks and dream big!

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