If you ever met the wonderfully down-to-earth Denisse Marianela Vera, you would never guess just how out of this world her success is: she is the 29 year old Aussie designer behind Denisse M Vera, a label that has inspired and led a fashion trend that has seen her dress the likes of models and celebrities around the world.
She works tirelessly, hand-crafting garments for the fierce, adventurous woman, while fearlessly tackling the challenges of fast fashion rip-offs. We think she's super inspiring, so we thought you should meet her.
I was born in Australia and my parents are Chilean so I feel very Australian in many ways but I feel very closely connected with my Chilean roots.
When I was younger I felt very different because my hair, skin and features were different to my friends, but once I left school I really came into my own and embraced all of those unique elements of myself. Now my big curls, lips, nose and dark skin are the things that I love most about myself. I love my unique look!
When I was in my teens my hair straightener was my best friend. The first time I straightened my hair was when I was 15 and my brother did it with a domestic iron.When I left high school and started university, that's when I truly embraced my curls. From then on I have loved leaving my curls big and natural.
My Dad taught me to sew in my teens and I began making simple skirts and doing alterations for my family members. I then became interested in sketching and I did a short course at Whitehouse Institute of Design and then I was hooked.
My ultimate goal was to study Fashion at UTS and I always wanted to have my own business. I achieved both and am very proud of myself, so now I am striving for new and greater goals.
I learnt the art of macramé from a Chilean artisan I befriended when I was backpacking through South America.
It’s physically quite tough but the level of intricacy that can be brought to life is exquisite and very rewarding aesthetically.
I feel very connected to my creations; one because they’re created by my bare hands and two because they represent the strong connection that I feel with my cultural heritage.
Denisse M Vera is the embodiment of my obsession with garments, quality, intricacy and business. I always looked up to my Dad who also owns his own business and my mum who has always worked with passion and determination... my parents have been key motivators for me throughout my business journey.As my label has grown and my clientele has expanded, my main motivation has become my clients, the people I create for... the happiness that my garments bring to my clients is an incredibly strong driving force.
When I moved out of my home studio [is my proudest moment with Denisse M Vera so far]. This change was incredibly exciting and encouraging for me. My proudest moment was when I saw my first client in my new studio.
I put a whole lot of love and time into styling it so when I saw my client standing in her macramé wedding dress, surrounded by her loved ones in my new space it was an overwhelming, special moment.
I will also never forget the moment that I saw Chanel Iman wearing my designs at the Teen choice awards. Her stylist, Monica Rose, had requested the look months before so it was a surprise when it popped up on my Instagram and I couldn’t believe my eyes. That was an incredibly proud moment!!
Working primarily with women throughout the life of my business has been very eye-opening in relation to women and their perceptions of themselves.
I myself am content and comfortable with my appearance and it’s upsetting to hear some of my clients' thoughts of themselves, when in my eyes, they are so beautiful.
What I love about my job is that a client can come through my doors feeling self-conscious and lacking confidence and they always leave feeling uplifted and beautiful.