KCFW Q&A: Barbara Bultman

If you’re looking for the opposite of the little black dress, Barbara Bultman’s collections are for you. The St. Louis-based designer makes clothing for the “fearless woman,” using leather, fringe, and sleek-but-powerful silhouettes to create pieces that demand attention. Bultman got her BFA from Lindenwood University in 2015 and went on to win 2016 Couture Designer of the Year at Phoenix Fashion Week. She’s been a regular at Kansas City Fashion Week for a few years now, showcasing original clothing and jewelry collections every season. We talked to her about the line she’s presenting in Saturday night’s closing runway show.

Your designs communicate fearlessness, and your current collection is, quite literally, daring us to wear your bold designs. How did you develop this approach to clothing?

The brand Barbara Bultman Designs was developed to make someone feel empowered and confident, because we feel it is important in life to believe in yourself. And when you have on something amazing and unique, it makes a person feel powerful.


Your collection features a lot of fringes. Could you talk about what inspired that?

As a person I have always had a love for fringe. I feel it makes a person more radiant, and once again brings a sense of power. It’s also exciting to see fringe on the runway because it’s all about the movement! Like I always say, “Fringe is my favorite color.”

You’re based in St. Louis. What makes the Kansas City fashion scene different?

While there is a fashion scene in St. Louis, I feel that Kansas City has an amazing Fashion Week where they bring everyone in the industry together to create two amazing shows — one in the fall and one in the spring. It’s great to see the community come together as a whole. It’s always one of my favorite shows to be a part of.

What’s catching your eye right now? Tell us the trends, colors, or shapes currently inspiring your creativity.

One of the trends that has been catching my eye this season are the bold colors designers are using. As a result, I am testing out some bold prints, flares, bell sleeves, and, of course, slits. My main inspiration was Andy Warhol pop art prints. The 70s are back.

What’s next for Barbara Bultman?

After KCFW I will be heading to Nashville, Tennessee.

Barbara Bultman Designs

Saturday Night Runway Show
March 30 at 6:00 p.m.

The Grand Hall at Power & Light
1330 Baltimore Avenue
Kansas City, MO, 64105