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KENNI & KAI

Designer Interviews | Oct 22, 2018

Launching in 2016, Kenni & Kai introduced a range of beautifully crafted swimwear - elegant and simple in design & perfectly flattering on the female shape. As you’ll find out from interview below, Kenni & Kai is a brand for women with young hearts & old souls. Those who love getting lost in the pages of vintage Vogue, watching a baby faced Pamela Anderson in Baywatch circa 1989 & listening to the sweet sounds of Fleetwood Mac.

The women behind Kenni & Kai are strong minded, hard working & have a creative instinct most can only dream of. Their latest range The Spy Who Loved Me is eloquent & superb. We are stoked to welcome the brand into the INC family, just in time for summer.

Cindy Crawford, Naomi Campbell, Doutzen, Gisele, Kate, Christy & Claudia. Kenni & Kai is clearly influenced by supermodels of the early 90's. What is it about these women that captures you guys & draws you back in time?

There are so many strong, stylish and uniquely beautiful women from previous eras which embody the Kenni & Kai brand. Tahnee and I draw inspiration for our designs from old vintage magazines, movies and past style icons, as no one did it better. Once we have our inspiration, we then sit down and decide on names, styles and prints for each piece and develop its story.

Where did this interest come from? Was fashion apart of your childhood? 

Tahnee and I grew up in a household with creative instincts and a huge love for fashion and travel, which stimulated our love for design. Our family has generations of experience in the textile industry, so naturally it has always been an interest of ours.

Your Instagram is jam packed full of sex appeal! For women reading this who want to amp up their own sexiness (ain't nothing wrong with that) ... tips please?!

Nothing exudes sexiness like self-confidence.  Whatever you can do to help yourself feel more confident in your own skin is worth it. We believe there’s nothing sexier than a confident woman in a cute bikini by the sea. 

Two sisters going into business together...bravo! How did it all come about and what is your working relationship with your sister like?

The saying “don’t mix business with family” couldn’t apply less to our business and partnership. Working alongside each other and being able to share this experience has been the biggest reward. There’s no one else in the world that I can trust more than my sister and being able to rely on her is definitely one of the most important parts of a business. Tahnee works on the creative and design elements, while I handle the business and production side. Combining our different strengths is how we created Kenni & Kai. 

Growing up, what brands of swimwear were common in the Atkinson household?

Esprit and Tigerlily 

You're two Perth girls! Home of saltwater, sand & sex wax. Coming from quite an isolated part of the world, what have you found to be essential in terms of growing the brand?

Social media is a powerful tool given its ability for widespread reach. Instagram is something that we have found to be extremely useful in growing our brand. It has enabled us to reach customers from all around the world. We have created a profile which not only showcases our pieces, but gives our followers an insight of things we are inspired by and allows them to join our creative journey. 

With Tahnee traveling a lot with modeling (Tahnee shot to fame after winning Aus Top Model Cycle 5), how do you two maintain seamless communication? 

These days it’s pretty easy to stay in touch regardless of where we both are. There can be days where the time difference can be inconvenient but we just make do. After all these years we've kind of figured out what works best for us in order to get things done.

Walk us through the design process. What does the K&K range prioritise in terms of the female shape? 

Our aim is to design swimwear that makes every woman feel their best. When wearing such little fabric on the beach it’s important that you feel confident, sexy and comfortable.

All our styles are carefully designed to suit all body shapes and we make sure to offer styles that have adjustable straps and full support for women with a bigger bust.



Where can we see the Kenni & Kai brand going?

We are not 100% sure what the future holds for Kenni & Kai but knowing that the passion is still alive from when we first started to now, with all the highs and lows, it has taught us that the sky is the limit and that you can have whatever you want if you’re willing to work for it. The industry that we are in is ever growing and ever changing and we are so proud to be part of it.

What song or album would you say is the perfect soundtrack to the Kenni & Kai brand? 

How can we pick one! We’re all about the classics, so a few of our favourites are Wicked Game - Chris Isaak, Great Southern Land – Icehouse and Dreams – Fleetwood Mac.

If you could open your first stand alone store, where in the world would this be? 

Somewhere in the Mediterranean.


WORDS BY TORI BOWMAN.

IMAGES OF TAHNEE ATKINSON FOR KENNI & KAI BY CAM MACKIE

Since Kenni & Kai is fresh to INC, let us in on the secret. If the brand was a she & she had a voice… 

Her top 3 favourite Instagram accounts? 

1. History In Pictures

2. Somewhere I Would Like To Live 

3. Kenni & Kai (of course)

Her daily mantra?  Stay positive and we truely believe everything happens for a reason.

Her preferred workout? Morning walks along our coastline and pilates 

Her best kept secret? Smile and listen to music 

Her celebrity crush? Alain Delon

Her absolute pet peeve? Copy cats 

Her greatest asset? Self-confidence 

Her worst habit? Sweet tooth 

Her morning alarm is set at ... 7am

The book she'll read a million times in her lifetime is ... Vintage Vogue 

The show she can't get enough of it's re-runs... Baywatch 

The way she treats herself & her body? A day spent at the beach followed by a night on the couch with a good chick flick.


The phrase she'd use more …

Less Is More OR YOLO!? 

Less Is More

Dressing on the side please. OR I'll have fries with that.

Dressing on the side please

 

The order she's most likely to go for ... 

Pasta & red wine? OR Oysters & champagne. 

Pasta & red wine

Smoothie bowl & chai tea? OR A croissant & strong coffee.

Smoothie bowl & chai tea