Dame Trelise Cooper is a celebrated New Zealand fashion designer known for her beautiful garments that make women look and feel fantastic. Her remarkable career as a designer and businesswoman has spanned over thirty years and her eponymous brand is known around the world for its elegant womenswear.
Trelise has had a life-long love affair with fashion and has honed a sharp eye for impeccable tailoring, sumptuous fabrics and flattering silhouettes. She has an intuitive understanding of how women want to look and feel, and creates appealing designs that make women’s fashion dreams come true. Whether she is turning her hand to classic power suiting with Trelise Cooper flair or an ethereal party dress with layers of tulle, Trelise knows exactly what she’s doing.
It has been many women’s hopes and dreams, as well as her own, that Trelise has had in mind since she opened her first boutique in 1985. From the beginning, she wanted a welcoming space where women could come and not be judged while enjoying a fabulous shopping experience. That ethos has carried through to today where the Trelise Cooper brand has ten boutiques and over 300 stockists in Australasia.
That’s a pretty magnificent achievement and Trelise has done it all her way, relying on her intuition, a lot of hard work and her belief that she could make women’s lives better with fashion. And it’s that transformative power of dressing that has attracted some of the world’s most famous women to Trelise’s gorgeous garments with the likes of Julia Roberts, Liv Tyler, Miley Cyrus, Jane Seymour, Catherine Zeta Jones and Fleetwood Mack’s Stevie Nicks among the brand’s fans.
When it comes to the clothes themselves, there often aren’t enough superlatives to describe a Trelise Cooper collection as they feature a rainbow of charming colours, delicate beading, exquisite lace and enough sequins to liven up any party. Not to mention a cascade of amazing prints, surprising details and enough florals to make you feel like you’re in the most glorious garden.
Trelise recognises that by building the business of her dreams she is in a fortunate position to give back to the community and relishes the opportunity to do so. She is honoured to have been patron of the Breast Cancer Research Trust and Auckland Returned Services Association for War Veterans. Trelise and her team compassionately support several charities each year and she is committed to doing as much as possible to improve the lives of those around her.
Those benevolent humanitarian efforts were recognised by the Crown in 2004 when Trelise became a Member of the New Zealand Order of Merit. And in 2014, Trelise was knighted as a Dame Companion of the New Zealand Order of Merit for her services to fashion and the community.
It’s been quite an extraordinary journey for the young girl from suburban Auckland who grew up to become a household name for her sublime designs. But this is just some of Trelise’s inspiring story and there are many more beautiful creations to come too. Trelise Cooper knows better than anyone that anything can happen if you’re dressed to take on the world, and wants all women to have the confidence to live their dreams too.