How an episode of Nationwide took me from selling clothes to making them
Kate Stitt had graduated from Dublin Institute of Technology with a degree in Fine Art after four years of conceptual creativity and an Erasmus+ stint abroad in East London. Now, back in Dublin, it was time to work.
She managed to find her own art studio but, struggling to make ends meet, she eventually had to give it up. She took a job in Superdry and quickly moved up to supervisor level, but after a few years the creative itch was still there.
“I wanted to go back to college, I wanted to learn again and use my creativity, but I just didn’t know where or what. Then, one day when my boyfriend sent me a link to an episode of Nationwide telling me to watch the part about costume design. I was very dismissive at first really, but I gave in and afterwards I was hooked. It was such an obvious choice for me that couldn’t understand how I hadn’t seen it.
“Soon after, I quit my job, took out a loan and enrolled in the two-year Costume Design & Make-Up course at Inchicore College of Further Education. Two years on, and I have just graduated.
Those two years have been the hardest I have ever worked in my life – and I have loved it. The subject matter is so diverse, and it’s incredibly hands on.
"I like that I can bring some of the conceptual elements of what I learned in Fine Art, but the hands-on nature of costume design is great.
Kate has just graduated (top of her class!) and is now on the hunt for projects that she can get involved in.
“I’m keeping eyes and ears open and reaching out to contacts. It’s a very ‘word of mouth’ kind of industry so it’s important to stay connected. I’ve done work on two short films so far and helped out on a TG4 documentary on Mussolini so far. That was amazing!
“My advice to anyone thinking about changing careers is: It’s never too late. If you’re not happy – change. Never settle! I suppose you could say I took a bit of a risk, quitting my job and taking out a loan, but the work I do fulfils me."
It’s what I want to do every day, and that’s so important. Risky? Yes. Worth it? Absolutely!”