Q&A with Trelise Cooper

Q&A with Trelise Cooper

Always one of the most glamorous shows of Fashion Week, Trelise Cooper promises not to disappoint this year with a show she guarantees will “light up” the venue. Plus, for the first time, she will also be showing at Fashion Weekend – meaning the public can see the best of her creations on the catwalk. Viva is delighted to have two front row tickets to her Sunday public show to give away to one lucky reader. The winner will also be given the amazing opportunity to meet Trelise after the show.

To enter, go to and enter the keyword “Trelise Cooper” on the VIP Viva page, along with details. Entries close at 11.59pm on Sunday, September 2. For terms and conditions see the website. Tickets for the sh29-ow cost $15-$25 and are available to buy from

What we might see at your Fashion Week show?
The show will be about the reflective quality of material and media. Our invitations light up, our show bags will light up and the set will too. It is about the way light reflects with fabrics that have light in the form of metallic and Lurex threads, modern glamour in the form of beadings and embellishment, rich and sumptuous fabrics, bejewelled and luscious.

What is the biggest challenge bringing this collection together?
It is always the lead time between the conception of an idea, the milling of the fabric, the interpretation of that idea, the time it takes to get prototypes made and then our salesmen samples. And why? We can’t miss the deadline called Fashion Week. We can’t be a day out or we won’t have a show.The pressure is on my team to perform and to ask our manufacturers and suppliers to commit to and honour critical time paths. Communicating the idea and having it interpreted by patternmakers, cutters, manufacturers on how the end product will look is the other biggest challenge. Because my clothing is anything but simple – it is layered, textured, detailed with many different components, lace, beading, zips, trims.

The greatest pleasure?
The moment before the music begins at the start of the show when all my models are lined up, styled and dressed, hair and makeup done … We have a collection and winter selling is about to begin in earnest.

You love travel. Where have you been lately and how has this inspired your design?
This year so far I have travelled to Shanghai, Tokyo, Hong Kong, Delhi, Paris, the Middle East and the South of France. Each country gives me different aspect for inspiration; the broadening of horizons, the quiet reflective time the stepping away from the day-today hustle and bustle of business, and naturally the sights, smells, flavours – all of the senses are engaged.

What was the last thing you bought?
A pair of incredibly high, very sexy Christian Louboutin shoes that look fabulous but really do kill me and by the end of the night I can’t walk.

What are you recommending to friends right now?
I bought the box set DVD of Suits – just finished watching the second series. It is the hot new drama set in New York and very cool. Great scripting and set detail. The fashion is great too.

What is the most important lesson life has taught you?
When life is difficult, know “this too will pass”.

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