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Talking Top Tens: Kay Lee

Founder, Otte


Kay Lee is the founder of Otte, a boutique shopping experience for women with distinct taste for understated luxury and contemporary design. From its beginnings in Williamsburg in 1999, Otte has blossomed and now boasts five retail locations in New York City, a collaborative store in Malibu on the Calamigos Ranch, and a global presence online. As Otte’s head buyer, Kay is committed to discovering and cultivating young talent. With an impeccable eye and a concrete understanding of the Otte customer, Kay has developed a down-to-earth approach to finding clothing that is both beautiful and wearable. Follow Otte on Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, and Pinterest

And more with Kay Lee…

What do you love most about your work?

I am the head buyer and founder of OTTE. I love being a buyer—every season there are different trends, and it’s thrilling to see the beautiful things designers create!

Your most recent culinary discovery and obsession:

Claudette, a French restaurant in the West Village. Their menu is really fantastic for a Sunday brunch or early dinner! Raoul’s is also great if you’re looking for a good steak, and I like to go upstairs for a tarot card reading after dinner.

Midnight snack of choice:

Whole wheat mini pancakes with a glass of milk!

Skincare product you can’t live without:

Dior purifying foaming cleanser and their makeup remover. Washing your face is the most important skincare step for keeping your skin fresh!

Go-to workout song on your most recent playlist:

I’m really into the deep house radio station on Pandora for workouts right now.

Your motto in life:

Slow and steady wins the race.

Your go-to power outfit:

A sexy pair of shorts with a feminine blouse—I like showing off my toned and tanned legs!

The pair of jeans you will never grow tired of:

My Current/Elliott deconstructed boyfriend jeans. It’s hard to find boyfriend jeans that still look sexy and have a great wash!

The trend you hope never goes out of style:

Sexy boho tops. Women are always looking for a great going out top, and the boho top looks good with just about everything—pants, shorts, skirts, jeans!

Your favorite restaurant for brunch and your go-to order:

Cookshop in Chelsea; eggs benedict!