San Antonio

Cinco Preguntas with Kaia Dublin: Fashion Entrepreneur and DJ

March 05, 2024 at 10:33am

Kaia Dublin is a fashion entrepreneur, DJ, and businesswoman based in San Antonio who is helping to shape the landscape of the fashion industry in Texas.

Kaia Dublin

Her fashion line, KAIA DUBLIN, is a contemporary womenswear brand that is geared toward a petite frame and seeks to empower the next generation of CEO's through edgy, sexy and sophisticated fashion. They believe what you wear has an effect on your mental health and they want their customers to have the best positive experience while feeling their most empowered selves when wearing their brand.

We sat down with this fascinating female entrepreneur to discuss her projects and how she is making efforts for positive change in the Texas fashion industry.

San Antonio
Kaia Dublin then and now.

MiSA: You have a sleek and timeless aesthetic. How has your style developed over the years? 

KD:  Thank you so much, it has been an exciting and challenging journey to finding my personal style. Growing up I've always loved a high chic fashion look however I had to learn how to tailor it to fit a modest budget. One of my main inspirations has always been the women from the classic James Bond movies (some would call me an old soul) . To me, they embody femininity, elegance and above all sophistication in which I hope to always emulate in my day-to day-style and brand KAIA DUBLIN. The evolution of my style has taken about five to six years to curate what it is today and I am still building upon the aesthetic. I started off purchasing clothing (this is called white labeling. I am not a designer, I am a retailer who selects clothing from wholesalers) for my brand depending on the market and truly wasn't happy. As a business owner in retail, they say, you shouldn't select items that you personally want, but to select those your customers want; however, I have learned that my customers love what I wear and so I just started to lean into my style and continue to improve the quality of clothing and customer experience with the brand.  

DJ performance by Kaia Dublin.

MiSA:  We have observed that you have skills as a musician, are frequently a DJ for some exclusive events in town, and often fuse music with fashion. Please tell us how you like to bring these two passions together in your work. 

KD:  Absolutely. My brand, KAIA DUBLIN, is a fashion, beauty and music company. What I love about these two industries is they go hand in hand. Initially, I learned how to DJ from TABU, to help me raise funds for the clothing division of my company; however, I quickly found my niche and passion for playing house music for fashion shows, retail stores, such as Neiman Marcus, Saks, Robert Graham, as well as private events. I believe anyone can learn how to DJ; however, the real magic happens when you learn the art of storytelling through music and being able to read the room. It's all about evoking an emotion from the crowd and both fashion and music do just this. I am still learning and growing as a DJ/MC and hope to sing and produce my own house music in the near future but I am enjoying every event of elevating my customer experience. 

Co-producer, Kaia Dublin, at Models of Texas event.

MiSA:  Tell us about your role and involvement in Models of Texas. 

KD:  I am Vice President of Models of Texas company and Co-producer of the events. I help to organize the company's daily operations, as well as co-coordinate the fashion productions that have created jobs for multiple roles in the industry. It has been a pleasure working with Santiago Gonzalez, owner of MOT, for the past two years. When I joined MOT, Santiago was new to producing fashion shows; however, was an expert at marketing/social media and had already had a successful fitness brand. With my 7 years of fashion industry experience in Texas specifically in San Antonio and building companies/organizations from the ground up, it has been a great partnership. 

Kaia Dublin with husband and collaborator, TABU (left). Kaia Dublin Phygital jacket (right).

MiSA:  You frequently partner with your husband and fellow visionary, TABU, with melding fashion and technology. Please tell us about TABU's GENESYS Phygital Techwear and your co-collaborating on this collection. 

KD:  TABU's vision for Techwear and the GENESYS BLACK Collection came from his passion for tactical gear, fashion art, and the Cryptocurrency and NFT space he had been researching for years. Since launching Metaverse Nights in 2023, a fashion, art and tech series he created to educate the San Antonio community through the NFT craze, he also wanted to come out as a fashion artist designer to launch the first Phygital Collection (physical and digital garments, referring to integrating the physical and digital worlds in the fashion realm) in Texas. For me, this was an easy collaboration in that I truly enjoy pushing the boundaries and expressing myself through fashion art wearables, such as the first 3D printed skirt worn at the 2023 Texas Fashion Industry Awards. With TABU's constant research and knowledge, coupled with our passion to create together as husband and wife, we brought his vision to life by incorporating 3D printed elements and customizable digital tags embedded in the clothing that can be programmed to the customers needs, such as linking the clothing chip to social media, or a website to read more about the fashion art garment itself. At this time, we have two (4) GENESYS BLACK Fashion Art designs in physical form and digital form that can be found and purchased through Web3 on the blockchain (for those who are familiar with Web3). 

Kaia Dublin clothing line

MiSA:  You are CEO of Fashion Business Professionals. Tell us about the vision behind this organization and how it plans to help designers navigate the market.
KD:  My vision for my newest platform, Fashion Business Professionals, is to have a global style network, showroom and an education tool for industry professionals to learn more about the business side of the fashion industry. Since starting out in the industry as a Junior, a journalist for a local style network from 2018-2021, I really enjoyed researching trends, writing and reporting on fashion business news. Through the FBP Network, I plan to use my master's degree in Psychology and Behavior Analytics to help study the market trends, and consumer behavior to help my fellow fashion mentees and colleagues navigate the industry. I also plan to support the many issues that face the industry today locally and globally, such as mental health, how to be a fashion professional, fair wages, and business education while also, showing off the latest in fashion trends that catch my attention. For the past six to seven years, I have supported other organizations through volunteering to grow their mission and vision while continuing to build my personal brand and I am very excited to have my own platform to support the fashion industry. 

Be sure to support your San Antonio fashion industry by attending fashion shows and choosing to shop local.