Ever since she was a little girl, Maitland resident and Winter Park High student Kate Bartlett always knew her passion. Whether it was walking around in her mother’s high heels or gluing scraps of fabric together to make dresses for her dolls, Bartlett was always fixated on style.
The 17-year-old’s passion for fashion has led her to a unique opportunity. Bartlett is set to host and emcee the Bloomingdale’s Teen Back-To-School Fashion Show on Friday, Aug. 3, at the Bloomingdale’s inside The Mall at Millenia.
Bartlett even will help with the styling of the outfits, and the fashion show will feature models from the Maile School for image, modeling and acting based in Winter Park.
“I am beyond excited for this fashion show, and I really hope that it can get girls excited and inspired for back-to-school fashion,” Bartlett said. “Back-to-school is not always the most fun time for a teenager, but shopping and putting together new outfits to wear always gets me excited. I want girls to feel confident when they walk back into school.”
Bartlett’s opportunity can be traced back to her blog, “Kate Bartlett Blog,” which discusses everything fashion and beauty — from outfit ideas to go-to products. She first started the blog in November 2017 and has been adding content ever since.
“On my blog, I really try and focus on writing about subjects teens can benefit from,” Bartlett said. “Being a teen myself, I have experienced first-hand girls struggling with how to find their own personal style and express themselves through clothing. My goal is to be able to provide inspiration and advice to these girls on how to dress confidently to express themselves.
“Another thing I like to emphasize is that dressing well does not have to be expensive,” she said. “So many people have the misconception that in order to look good, you have to spend loads of money. But I want to show girls that you can dress classy and unique for cheap. Some of my blog posts feature entire outfits for under $50, I once even featured an entire outfit, including shoes, for under $10.”
Bartlett met the coordinator of the Teen Back-To-School Fashion Show, Bloomingdale’s Marketing and Special Events Manager Jennifer Bentson, at a Orlando Blogger event hosted by Bloomingdale’s a few months ago.
The two started talking about collaborating on projects, and in the spring, Bartlett partnered with Bloomingdale’s for a prom promotion, where she blogged about her shopping experience and finding the perfect prom dress.
It wasn’t long after that Bartlett was asked to host the Teen Back-To-School Fashion Show.
“It is extremely special for me to be working with Bloomingdale’s — a store that I have loved for years,” she said. “When I started my blog a few months ago, I had no idea that I would have the chance to collaborate with any major brands, let alone my favorite department store.”
Bartlett also made sure the fashion show benefited a worthy cause: the BASE Camp Children’s Cancer Foundation, which provides support for children and families fighting cancer and other life-threatening hematological illnesses. Customers who mention the organization when checking out at Bloomingdale’s will have 10% of their total purchase donated to the BASE Camp Children’s Cancer Foundation.
Bartlett loves every aspect of fashion but is particularly interested in the business side. Her dream is to become a full-time fashion blogger in New York, acting as a stylist, merchandiser, editor, creative director and publicist all at once.
“Fashion interests me because it is ever-changing, and everyone has their own take on it,” Bartlett said. “The combination of creativity and business is fascinating to me.”