We sat down with Trigirl designer and triathlon coach, Kristin Duffy, to ask her a little about herself, how she started designing triathlon clothing, and the exciting new Trigirl 2017 collection. Here’s a sneak peek into the collection and her triathlon world.
Kristin, how did you get into designing triathlon clothing for women, of all things?
I’m originally from the States and was a children’s designer for Gap in New York. For a time, I was designing boy’s activewear. As a triathlete, I thought that it would be great to design triathlon clothing someday.
When I moved to London, I met Trigirl founder, Pat Victor, during a weekend away with my running club. She mentioned Trigirl and I “casually” mentioned that I was a writer and a designer. I’ve worked with Pat as both!
You mentioned that you’re a triathlete yourself. As an athlete, what is the most important thing you yourself would want from a trisuit?
Performance-wise, I’d want comfort – it has to dry quickly (I hate being cold and wet!) and it has to have a comfortable pad for the cycling leg. That same pad has to feel like it has magically disappeared when I’m running. I don’t want to run a race feeling like I’m wearing a nappie! Fortunately, we’ve done a lot of work to make sure Trigirl offers quick-drying fabric, an amazingly comfortable triathlon pad and a lot more.
Otherwise, I’ll admit, I want to look good wearing it. When I first started triathlon, one of the hardest things was for me, a fashion designer, to resign myself to wearing the kit. Most of it was really ugly and did nothing for my thighs! (laughs) It’s great to design triathlon clothing that is made just for women, so it fits well, isn’t some shrunken-down version of what someone designed for a guy and looks great. I’m convinced I’m faster when I feel confident.
You develop new designs every year. Where do you get your inspiration from?
Part of it is looking at what has worked in the past. We want a fresh look, but the main objectives are still what works technically and what our customers loved/ what’s worked for them.
That said, as a designer, you’re always excited about what’s next, so it’s seeing what’s out there. I look at design trends in both the fitness and ready-to-wear markets and I’m inspired by everything from architecture to art to bike design.
What can we look forward to in the new Trigirl 2017 collection?
I’m really excited that prints have been embraced in the fitness fashion world, but they’re not always easy to get right. At Trigirl, we are introducing beautiful prints into the 2017 collection that really go along with our design aesthetic: flattering, strong, gorgeous! I think they are the best in the market!
And, of course, you can expect our commitment to fit, form and function- triathlon clothing that performs.
And what are you personally looking forward to in 2017, triathlon-wise and beyond?
I’m looking forward to getting back into slightly longer triathlon races. For the past few years, I’ve been busying coaching, designing, writing, going to drama school (that’s a whole other story!) and on top of all of that, I’ve had a few annoying injuries. All that has meant less racing for me, but I plan to fix that this year. I have a few fun races in the diary, including a middle distance in September, plus lots of running races and I’m currently searching for a good swim challenge or two.
I’m lucky to work for a small, personal company like Trigirl. I get to design, write, coach – and I still get to work on my own projects and race. As always, I’m looking forward to fitting it all in!