Q. Tell us a little bit about Dolce Couture.
Dolce Couture is a local fashion brand that brings unique, unconventional, fun, high-fashion garments to Tampa Bay. The one-of-a-kind garments are meticulously constructed by hand with design elements that give each piece its own unique look and include anything from rubber ducks to French lace. The designs are bright and edgy, yet classy, adding twists of humor when possible.
Q. How did you get into the fashion industry?
A. I’ve always had my own unique style. I used to cut up my clothes (and my sister’s) to make my own outfits. I would design dresses, and my grandma would sew them. I got into the local fashion industry after being introduced to a local fashion event, the Dunedin Wearable Art Show, that I fell in love with. I modeled in it for two years, then the following year I submitted designs and was accepted as a designer. After that, I studied fashion and volunteered at every local fashion event to learn as much as I could about the local industry. Little by little I pushed myself to learn and design. By 2017 I was selected to be a designer in the Tampa Bay Fashion Week show and was invited to the New York and LA Fashion Week shows. I have also been awarded Creative Loafing’s Best of the Bay “Best Local Fashion Designer” in 2017 and 2019.
Q. How would you describe Tampa’s fashion scene?
A. Right now Tampa’s fashion scene is slowly growing with the potential to become a national fashion hot spot. Tampa has the talent, and with the community’s support for local designers, I can see Tampa becoming as big as Miami, and even New York, for fashion.
Q. What are some of your favorite local boutiques?
A. A couple of my favorite local shops are The Look Boutique, Sweet Southern Chic, Uniquely Yours Boutique and DKM Accessories.
Q. Where do you like to head for a night out with the girls?
A. A fun girls’ night out is anywhere we haven’t been to yet. We love trying new restaurants in Tampa, and there is always something new popping up.
Q. Where is your favorite local place for arts and culture?
A. My favorite place for local arts and culture is Curtis Hixon Park. I love all the art festivals, music fests and other events that happen throughout the year. I also love the Tampa Museum of Art and the Dalí Museum.
Q. Where is your favorite place to get outside in Tampa?
A. My favorite local place to get outside is Davis Islands. I love the mixture of the airport, beach, sailboats and dog park.
Q. What is your favorite Tampa hidden gem?
A. One of my favorite local hidden gems is the Hillsborough River State Park. It’s a little frightening at first with hundreds of alligators all around you, but it’s a beautiful and peaceful place to go canoeing or kayaking (just don’t fall in!).