Michaela Jedinak was born in Czekoslovakia, but her family moved to Germany when she was a child. Perhaps, being an immigrant shaped her ambitions: she wanted to become an actress, a barrister, work for the UN and have her own vet practice – all that by the age of 30! At the very least Michaela wanted to travel so after graduating with a law degree, she moved to Prague where she worked for the Cosmopolitan, then to Italy where she learned product design and finally to Britain, where we landed a role in advertising.
Michaela’s sense of style was inherited from her mother, who insisted that she should never looked scruffy, put on occasional wear on Sundays and be aware of her body shape when choosing clothes. It came to her as a surprise that women in Britain would rather spend money on celebrity fashion and try to dress as Kate Moss than find quality clothes that would accentuate their personal styles.
“It was strange to find that there was no professional wear in the UK that would be durable, comfortable and truly feminine.”
Encouraged by her husband, Michaela trained as a stylist and spent the next three years helping women navigate the world of fashion. To supplement her income, she worked as a sales assistant at Escada, where she previously shopped.
“I sacrificed my comfortable lifestyle but it was worth it. I learned a lot and hatched a dream to create my own range of dresses for women, matched to a variety of body shapes.”
Michaela thought she lacked authority, so before she turned to product design, she founded a website, Joy of Clothes, offering style advice, styling tools and shopping recommendations. It took her two years of coding to build a virtual styling avatar, allowing women to create a model for their body shapes and try on different looks online. With Joy of Clothes fulfilling an educational mission and becoming one of the most successful styling websites globally, Michaela felt ready to design her dresses.
She found high quality Italian wool, a small factory in Britain, designed seven dresses matching seven female body shapes and launched her collection of “desk to dinner” dresses online. Each dress (priced at £495) is made-to-order within seven days and is aimed to create a “signature look” for a professional woman.
Just one year on, Michaela Jedinak dresses are worn by such TV personalities and businesswomen as Fiona Bruce, Arianna Huffington and Cilla Snowball. The brand has been praised by the Wall Street Journal, Grazia and The Times, and Michaela launched her second pleat collection with flattering tailored fit.
Behind every great, stylish product, there is a Lady Who Impresses!