I’ve been sewing since I was 7 years old, and have great memories of sewing clothes for my teddy bear, in front of an open fire on a cold New Zealand winter night, and listening to my mum’s machine going at night while in bed.
I began Sweet May 5 years ago, after my first daughter was born, as a way to keep myself busy as a stay at home mum, and it quickly progressed into a very productive business.
I’m a fan of all things vintage and classic and I love nothing more than seeing my two beautiful girls dressed in clothes I have made myself.
I love sharing the joy of my creations with others also and especially delight in custom orders and the happy snaps I receive from my clients.
I share my creative space with my wonderful hubby, my two little girls and two adorable dogs who advise and critique me in all areas of my life and I’m totally ok with that.
Did I mention that I love cake? …….. And icecream?
Textile Fashion and Knitwear Designer
With an eye for design and a passion for painting, drawing, screen-printing and sewing, it was only natural that Tanja Kozub would pursue a career in fashion design. Her artistic talents were soon to be recognised by many; Tanja was accepted at RMIT where she successfully completed a Bachelor of Arts in fashion. This was followed by a diploma in Textile Design and Production at RMIT Textiles.
After having worked as an Assistant Designer for Geoff Riddell, Tanja soon realised that her dream was to produce her own clothing line. Discovering a love for Australian yarn and the ability to create fabrics rich in texture lead her to pursue a career in knitwear design.
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Specialising in women’s day and eveningwear, the concept behind her ranges is to develop unique pieces by both hand and knitting machine. Tanja Kozub designs and produces all her own garments from jumpers, cardigans, wraps, shrugs and much more. Working with various combinations of yarns, fabrics and beads, leather, lace and more, Tanja is able to create innovative textures and colour combinations rarely found in today’s fashion market.
“Essentially, I am inspired by the endless variety of knitted designs one can achieve and how naturally knitwear works with the body.”
Known for her one off pieces, body hugging shapes and wonderful use of colour, Tanja’s clothes are for the self-assured woman who exudes femininity and sexiness. All of Tanja Kozub Designs are made in Australia and can be found at various Melbourne boutiques and makers markets; they have also been used in local Australian design labels such as Mimco and Rich Clothing, where Tanja has designed and produced special pieces for their labels.
How did it all start?
I have been making clothing and toys as gifts for family and friends for many years. I’ve also made costumes and wire framed faerie wings (even a pair that was spring loaded so that the wings could flap!). I was fortunate to move into a house with the most amazing workshop / shed out the back. I also started collaborating with two gorgeous creative friends. Together we created some fantastic items. And the most enduring of these was the creation of the precious little sakura logo and label. For this I am forever indebted to the illustrator / designer (check out their blog – http://littlesumo.wordpress.com/).
I started making elephants as gifts late 2011 and when one was posted on Facebook with the friend tagged, a friend of theirs commented and placed an order, and from there many more elephants have been made! I’ve ventured into deer as well as designing and creating reindeers.
Along the way I’ve also made clothing. It’s been a great way to bring together the things I love — the challenge of making things reversible, Japanese style / design and retro prints.
WHAT IS IT?
Currently the range is hand made furnishings — cushions, mobiles, plush toys both two dimensional and freestanding – there are birds, elephants and deers. Watch this space… I’m going to experiment with some more complicated designs and maybe even some different creatures entirely! My greatest pleasure comes from custom orders.
WHO IS IT DESIGNED FOR?
For both little and big girls and boys! A special place to display brooches, something pretty to look at, or a little something to hug and kiss!
WHAT ARE THE MATERIALS and WHERE DID THEY COME FROM?
I find absolute joy in vintage fabrics & buttons — you could say an obsession for many, many years are my big jars of mixed second hand buttons (sorted now of course) and an extensive collection of fabric. I also love giving something a new life, a
precious piece of fabric, an old item of clothing… the possibilities are endless! My creations are made with a combination of repurposed, vintage and contemporary fabrics.
I hope you have as much fun looking at and watching the unfolding of the precious little sakura label as I am sure to have in the creating and making!