Entrepreneur, editor, curator, businesswoman, photographer, student—a single word cannot encapsulate Ekaterina Kouznetsova’s busy life. Yet between taking six classes at the University of Texas at Dallas and cultivating her career, the 22-year-old Moscow-born Dallasite still manages to have impeccable style.
Kouznetsova moved with her family from Moscow to Plano at age 10 and attended Plano Senior High School, but she wasn’t sold on the suburb. “It’s a good school, but I never felt like I fit in,” she says. “I was the first one in the entire school to wear high-waisted pants and high-waisted skirts.”
While attending UTD in Richardson—where she’ll graduate in May with bachelor’s degrees in marketing, global business, and art history—Kouznetsova got involved with every fashion show and art presentation Dallas had to offer. Her immersion in the city’s cultural scene snowballed as she co-curated an exhibition at an art gallery, did marketing for various Dallas designers, and helped with trunk shows.
And she’s stayed busy. Kouznetsova has been the fashion editor of THRWD magazine since 2014. One of her research papers at UTD was recently accepted into the American Journal of Entrepreneurship. She’s working on a new blog called Our New Monarch, which features Dallas art, fashion, cuisine, and entertainment. She’s the art chair for April’s Art for the Heart event, benefiting the nonprofit Dallas Challenge. She also has an “art analytics service” project she plans to launch this year.
“But my No. 1 long-term goal is to spearhead a cultural shift for the next 50 years,” Kouznetsova says. “Dallas is the perfect place to start. I want to harness technology and what people can do with analytics and data to make life easier.”
While it’s a lofty goal, she has a track record thus far of doing what she sets her mind to. And part of that cultural shift she wants to see is connected with style.
“One of my main idols is Audrey Hepburn,” says Kouznetsova, whose signature makeup look is a black dot under each eye. “I want to shift from having the Kardashians as the main idols that the mass population subscribes to, to more of the Audrey Hepburn, Doris Day generation—people who used their fame in productive ways to change society and to help people.”
It follows that Kouznetsova’s own style echoes that of Hepburn: classic but avant-garde. She views Dallas’ fashion scene much the same. “It breaks stereotypes,” she says. “It gives people the freedom to find their true niche and explore it. Dallas fashion leads to a lot of innovation for the people who are interested in it.”
For this self-proclaimed “Spock after art school,” it’s the ideal place to be.