Jessica Bratich-Johnson’s well-organised walk-in robe is full to the brim with towering heels, designer dresses, a bevy of bags and even a baby section — clothes the new mum said had seen better days since giving birth to daughter Rubika.

The 31-year-old former karate champion turned handbag designer and wife of Australian cricket team fast bowler Mitchell Johnson, Bratich-Johnson said she organised her wardrobe by colour rather than season and had no problem discarding clothes when she tired of them. Letting go of shoes was another story, however. “I don’t tend to throw out shoes as I find styles often make a comeback, ” she said.

The wardrobe has separate full and half-length hanging sections as well as generous open shelving for her costume jewellery, clutches, handbags, hats and jeans — and more clothes are in built-in drawers.

The space between the ceiling and top of the wardrobe handily stores larger bags, while well-placed hooks hold more handbags and some jewellery on adjoining walls. Her shoes are lovingly laid out in banks of open shelving with guard rails.

Bratich-Johnson launched her self-named handbag line, which has been spotted on the arm of former Spice Girl Mel B and on the catwalks of New York Fashion Week, about 21 months ago after always coming home empty-handed when handbag shopping. “I could never find handbags I liked when out shopping so decided to design my own.”


Not content with sharing a walk-in robe with her husband Peter, Darlene Gianoli did what most women dream about — converted a spare room in her East Perth home into a dedicated dressing room for her covetable collection of clothes.

Previously a yoga/meditation room — which Ms Gianoli had created for Mr Gianoli’s birthday one year — the fashionista, singer/entertainer and force behind e-boutique and showroom Style Palace had customised floor-to-almost-ceiling height cabinets installed along two walls, and a custom-built dresser fitted in the middle of the room, which already housed a doored built-in robe.

The set-up includes an open section for hanging garments accessories, and the double-sided, eight-drawer dresser for folded items which also houses jewellery stands and beautiful beauty products displayed on top — a visually attractive as well as a practical idea.

Ms Gianoli said the customised, adjustable melamine wardrobe system was designed by Rochelle King from Creative By Design.

Each component was carefully planned out, with the perfect amount of room allocated for Ms Gianoli’s different requirements — small shelves for hats and clutches, wider shelves for jeans, tall shelves for big bags and two full-height wide banks of shelves for shoes.

“Because I was turning an existing spare bedroom into a walk-in wardrobe I wanted it all open so I could see everything and have easy access, ” she said.

“I am always rushing around and need to be able to grab and go — I needed shelves for bags, hats and shoes but the shelves and racks are all adjustable so if I need higher shelves or longer/shorter racks it is possible to easily adjust everything.

“Rochelle was so helpful and understood exactly what I wanted — she also specialises in wardrobe consulting and design, so understands exactly what wardrobe dilemmas girls have to deal with!”


Bursting with vibrant prints, bold brights, fluoros and enough pairs of shoes to rival Sex and the City’s Carrie Bradshaw, Poppy Lissiman’s wardrobe is full of fun and personality — just like the young fashion designer.

With so many clothes and shoes (Lissiman says she has more than 50 pairs, an occupational hazard after working at shoe retailer Zomp for six years), the four-door built-in robe in her parents’ North Fremantle home has been divided into winter (jackets and boots) and summer clothes and shoes, and then again into colours, blacks and long dresses.

There are also pull-out timber drawers and wire baskets for Lissiman’s unique and colourful collection of sweaters, printed jeans, tops, handbags, clutches, belts and scarves, jewellery and sunglasses, with a Chanel handbag she chose over a 21st birthday party from her parents one of her most prized possessions.

“The wardrobe was actually put together with customised Ikea units, so all the shelving, wire baskets and shoe shelves are from there, ” Lissiman, 24, said.

“There wasn’t really any reasoning for choosing certain units for the wardrobe other than what most of the clothes were going to fit in.

“We had the unit put in about eight years ago when we built the house and I was still at school — I’m actually about to move out and I’m terrified I won’t have as much space as I do in this wardrobe because it will mean I have to do a wardrobe cull.”


© The West Australian

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