There’s a special bond between Emanuela Tellaroli and Roberta Marchesini, and not just because they’re mother and daughter. The Italian duo are also co-founders of sustainable fashion label Tema Moda.
“Tema Moda is for women who want to look stunning and be comfortable in their own skin while supporting sustainability,” lead designer Emanuela says. The ready-to-wear collections are made by local artisans in Italy, where Emanuela is based, and inspired by Australia’s landscape, where Roberta – Tema Moda’s CEO – lives in Sydney.
Emanuela says: “Australian fashion is based a lot on practicality, on feeling comfortable, and in reflecting the optimism of its people. Italian fashion is all about elegance, sophistication and above all, quality. With Tema Moda you get the best of both worlds as we are based in both northern Italy and Australia. As we say in Italy, it’s la dolce vita, a life that is full of pleasure and luxury.”
Emanuela is based in Garda Lake, a cultural city in northern Italy. Growing up surrounded by Italian art, fashion, and beauty, she developed a keen interest in fashion from an early age.
“I have been passionate about making clothes since I was 14,” Emanuela shares. “Growing up in northern Italy as a child, I would use every piece of material that I could find at home and make clothes. I would drive my mother crazy!”
Since her time as a young seamstress, Emanuela has worked with some of the world’s most renowned fashion houses, honing her skills and expertise in couture. And when you see her work, it’s no surprise that she’s developed a reputation for tailored quality and affordable high-end elegance.
“Long hours, attention to detail, and a creative love of beauty has made me an overnight success after 50 years of experience,” Emanuela says.
Like mother, like daughter
The seed for Tema Moda was first planted after Emanuela returned home from a trip to Australia to visit Roberta, who moved to Sydney at age 25.
“My relationship with my daughter is very special. When Roberta had her first child, Massimo, I travelled to Australia to meet my grandson. It was during this trip that Roberta felt a little nostalgia for home; we would talk till late into the evenings about how we could stay connected together, and to our Italian fashion heritage,” she shares.
After Emanuela returned to Italy, Roberta reached out with the idea of creating a clothing label together. Through Tema Moda, they can bond over their mutual love for fashion whilst bringing a piece of contemporary Italian fashion Down Under.
“And the rest is history, our ready-to-wear Tema Moda collection was born,” Emanuela says. “Today, because of Tema Moda, we are close again and I do not feel so far away anymore. We connect every day to discuss designs, colours, models, and themes for our collections. We have found the perfect solution to keeping in touch, not just as mother and daughter but now as business partners.”
Sustainable fashion and style
If just three words could sum up the design ethos at Tema Moda, they would be: elegant, sustainable, and authentic. Emanuela agrees: “Our Italian background and handmade craftsmanship blend beautifully and harmoniously to create something special for our customers, something that’s unique and exclusive.”
Every season, the Tema Moda team identify new trends and fabrics whilst Emanuela seeks design inspiration from around the globe.
“We are constantly finding innovative solutions, such as our material bags which are made with remnant fabrics,” Emanuela reveals. “We tend to find ecological Italian fabrics produced with natural fibres, through a protected supply chain aimed at minimizing waste, pollution, and with zero exploitation of workers.”
Sustainability is stitched into every step of the process, from a design model that can be reused to the materials used, the quantities produced, and the final packaging. For the mother-daughter duo, it’s important that people can express their personal style without harming the environment.
Emanuela adds: “We design clothes to make women feel beautiful at all times of the day, and our collection reflects that. Italian beauty and elegance combined with sustainable practices, and Australian comfort; It’s a dream come true.”