Image courtesy Kate Cutler and Tal Winter
Interview

Kate Cutler and Tal Winter

10.13.15

Former lawyers, Kate Cutler and Tal Winter, quit their day jobs to develop a product they believed in. The San Francisco-based friends and adventure lovers chose to explore the redesign of a fairly every day item – the water bottle. Their beauty routine consisted of a wholesome approach to life: good sleep, meaningful work, and fun. Cutler and Winter also understood the importance of taking care of one’s self, especially hydration, as part of this routine. The women created a purpose from their values and developed bkr – a line of clear glass, soft shelled water bottles that are reinvented each season based on trends presented throughout fashion month in New York, London, Milan, and Paris. The bottles look and feel like a luxurious accessory, and just so happen to be really, really good for you.

Interview

How did you come up with the fashion water bottle?

We made the exact thing we wanted but couldn’t find anywhere – a water bottle that would replace our addiction to toxic, wasteful and ugly, disposable plastic water bottles.  Why couldn’t a bottle be so subtle and chic that it would compliment the nudes and pastels of the season and be as loved as our Chloé suede bag or Saint Laurent army jacket?

Did you anticipate this angle? Or did you sort of evolve into it?

We always knew we wanted it to be beautiful. What has evolved organically is that bkr has become a beauty essential. Our customers went from telling us that they were obsessed with their bkr to telling us that it was a game changer. It was making people drink more water. We hear this constantly and we still ask people why. It’s some magic combination of things: its soft, it’s pretty, it’s effortless, it’s glass, it has a small mouth and the end result is it makes drinking water a joy.

Where are the bkr bottles produced?

bkrs are responsibly made in Shenzhen, China.

What are they made out of?

bkrs are made from soda lime glass and soft silicone.

Do you collaborate with designers?

We haven’t yet—we have our hands pretty full, but if the right opportunity came along we’d be open.

Each season you release new styles based on the fashion weeks around the world – what city have you found to be most inspiring?

Runway in Paris is everything but we also love New York, London and Milan. For Spring 2016, which we’re working on now, we were most inspired by Gucci, Saint Laurent and Céline.

These bottles inform a lifestyle – what is the message you want to share?

Water is the foundation of your beauty regimen. You need to be drinking it constantly and if you’re in love with your water bottle you will. We’re also helping people say no to the disposable lifestyle — there is something amazing about having less things and only things you love. People tell us that they haven’t bought a single plastic water bottle since they got their bkr.

Does your healthful approach influence the industry in any way?

We’re influencing the industry to stop using plastic – we’ve replaced plastic at luxury fashion shoots, backstage at fashion week and in the hands of influencers from Gisele Bündchen to Sarah Lucero. The shift is happening.

Are you still based in San Francisco?

Yes, we love San Francisco – Kate is a native and Tal has been here a long time – it’s definitely home for both of us.

What’s next for the brand? Will you roll out new products? Baby bottles?

We are planning to grow in the beauty world —it’s our home and where our customers expect to find us.