When you’re trying to find the perfect wedding gown and nothing grabs you, what do you do? In the case of Sydney based fashion designer Johanna Johnson (link), you create your own instead. Within a very short period of time, other brides-to-be were clamoring for Johnson’s nouveau take on the opulent designs of old Hollywood and the 1920’s (think Great Gatsby). While she opened her first store nearly ten years ago in Australia, Johnson was not widely recognized in the United States until 2011, when “Mad Men” bombshell Christina Hendricks donned a custom beaded gown. It was a turning point for the designer, whose website literally crashed amid the buzz. (A bit of backstory: Hendricks had made it very obvious in the press that she was disenchanted with the fact that unless you were a size 2 or 4, you’d have a hard time getting a designer to offer up a glam gown for Awards Season). Soon other celebrities followed suit, and now the designer dresses women like Emily Blunt and Meryl Streep.

Plus, starting this August, Johnson’s bridal and evening wear will finally make their stateside debut – Neiman Marcus has picked up her latest collection. The designer took time out of her busy summer schedule and talked with Destination Luxury about her paramount TOP FIVE.

My Top Five is a new Destination Luxury column, where key individuals who appreciate all things luxury will discuss some of the objects, places and moments that are important to them. Whether it’s a favorite restaurant, location, or perhaps, a just a wonderful experience, they’ve agreed to give Destination Luxury an insider’s point of view into the things they love.

1. BALTHAZAR NY: I love their steak frites. I fantasize about them on those cold winter days when I’m home in Sydney.


2. JJ CASHMERE: It’s the best for traveling, either by road or air. The comforts of home.JJohnsonCASHMERE1heroWeb


3. Only an hour and half flight from Sydney, One & Only Hayman Island is the epitome of Whitsunday luxury.

4. I never see my little sister enough. She lives in London and she’s about to have her first baby over there, and there’s nothing I would love more than to sit down and have a glorious cup of Earl Grey tea with her at High Tea at the Ritz in London.


5. Of all the gowns I’ve designed, the one I created for Christina Hendricks for the 2011 Emmy Awards is one of my personal favorites. From that treatment, I also created my SS2014 hand beaded ‘hero’ gown, which weighs about 13kg and was recently on loan to De Beers in London for their showcase. christina-hendricks-2011-emmy-awards Johanna JohnsonFor more on Johanna Johnson, you can check out her website here.


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