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Catherine Holstein

Founder & Creative Director, Khaite

The designer behind one of New York’s hottest brands is a multi-time CFDA nominee known for designing womenswear without overtly feminine details.


Catherine Holstein is a designer and the founder and creative director of New York womenswear label Khaite.

Holstein, who was born and raised between Southern California and London, started her career as a student at the Parsons School of Design in New York when Barneys New York ordered the collection she created for her junior thesis. That kickstarted the life of her first eponymous label: She dropped out of school to pursue design, and the brand went on to be stocked at 40 retailers worldwide, from department stores like Saks Fifth Avenue to high-end boutiques such as Kirna Zabête in New York and Louis Boston.

In 2009, some years after launch, Holstein shuttered the line and turned her focus toward working on other brands, leading her to stints at Gap, Vera Wang , Maiyet and The Elder Statesman over the next five years. 

She launched Khaite in 2016 with the backing of holding company Assembled Brands. Named for the Greek word for long, flowing hair, Holstein designs womenswear without overtly feminine details. The brand, now a fixture on the New York Fashion Week schedule, is stocked by retailers including MatchesFashion, Net-a-Porter and Bergdorf Goodman, among others. It’s also a Hollywood favourite, seen on the likes of Katie Holmes, Hailey Bieber, Kaia Gerber and Dakota Johnson.

In 2021 and 2022, Holstein was nominated for American Womenswear Designer of the Year at the CFDA Awards. 




Founder & Creative Director



Parsons School of Design

Parsons School of Design

Vital Statistics

1 December 1983

United States

United States
Member since

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The people shaping the global fashion industry, curated by the editors of The Business of Fashion, based on nominations and on-the-ground intelligence from around the world.