Creative agency Mrs&Mr on righting the ratio

Mrs&Mr talk to CR about why only 1% of creative agencies in the US are founded by women, and how they’re creating an environment that plays to everyone’s strengths

“Australia takes a more generalist approach to design,” says Kate Wadia, founder of New York-based creative agency Mrs&Mr. “Schooling in America often seemed a bit more siloed, whereas we didn’t come out as a ‘packaging designer’, a ‘typographer’ or ‘art director’. It’s more of a Swiss Army Knife training I would say.” 

This approach has been fruitful for Kate, who runs the studio with her husband Daniel Wadia, in that it follows the thinking that if you can apply design thinking to a logo or branding project, you can apply that to anything and essentially solve any creative problem. “In the beginning this didn’t always serve me well as people couldn’t place me when looking at my portfolio,” Kate says. “However, now that we live in a world where design and branding is more holistic, now it’s been a real benefit that I’m able to flex and work across book design, environmental design, fashion design and interiors.”  

The creative director spent over a decade working at the helm of other creative agencies and building up brands like Clinique, but in 2016 she founded Mrs&Mr. The agency has since created work for Tabasco, SoulCycle, Walmart, Plenty of Fish, and most recently worked with Pepsi on the brand’s new visual identity.

All images: Mrs&Mr

Daniel looks after the strategy side of the business and fell into the industry due to his curiosity around what he couldn’t do. “I can’t design, I can’t create, and I basically can’t do what Kate and our design team can do. But I felt that if I could help unleash ideas and insights that could fuel and foster great design and creative then that was a career that was exciting for me,” he explains.