The moment girls worldwide envision — slipping on a white gown for the first time, tears welling, knowing in their heart they have found the perfect wedding dress. Taya Roberts could not find this feeling. Hunting high and low, she could not find the wedding dress of her dreams, so she decided to make her own.
Intricate lace, delicate beads and sparkling sequins line the racks of HollyRose Couture’s Gold Coast headquarters; a business established just three years ago. Owner and head designer Taya Roberts prides herself on creating unique gowns for brides craving striking threads as exceptional as the individual.
When her now husband popped the question and Taya’s gown pursuit began, she became frustrated by the lack of dress diversity. “I’d seen so many wedding dresses and they all looked very generic. I was trying to look for something different,” Taya said. “I thought, well if I can’t find one, surely there must be other girls out there with the same problem.”
Sparking a new passion, Taya unleashed her dormant sewing skills to create her own wedding gown, and HollyRose Couture was born. “I’d always wanted to be a fashion designer. I’ve always loved weddings and I already knew how to sew. Designing my own dress actually lead to me creating my first collection because I couldn’t decide what I wanted!”
HollyRose Couture was an instant success as women across the country yearned for stand-out gowns. “It just kind of took off; it was insane. Before I knew it, we’d been invited to Fashion Week in Sydney and had been nominated for awards. It’s a bit surreal sometimes.”
Taya’s designs are formed from the fabrics with which she chooses to work. “I’m very texturally influenced, especially laces, and I’ve always loved the more elaborate style of bridal. I start with the fabrics and then work out how things will fit structurally.”
Nearly all of Taya’s work results in custom designs. “Although I have collection pieces that I release every year, that’s more for the girls to come in and try on and get ideas. The brides tell me what aspects they like about the dress, what they want to highlight on their body shape and what fabrics they are drawn to. We work side by side from there.”
HollyRose has won a myriad of awards, the most recent being the Bridal Gown Designer Of The Year at the Brides Choice Awards 2017, but Taya says the most rewarding part of her job is the relationships she forms with each bride to be. “Because I’m involved in such an important moment in their life, we actually get quite close. I’ve got one family where I’ve done the two sisters and the cousin and now their friend. It’s not a huge spotlight moment but it’s just a lovely thing and it really does feel so special.”
As Australian designers continue to thrive overseas, Taya aspires to “be right at the top, to be in that elite”. Until then, simply creating is Taya’s nirvana. “To be able to get up every day and create beautiful things … I can’t ask for much more.”
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