Furious brides have lashed out at celebrity fashion designer Johanna Johnson, after discovering they could lose their wedding gowns when the business was placed into liquidation.
The designer, whose gowns have adorned a bevy of celebrities including Madonna and Mad Men’s Christina Hendricks, has been pursued in court by the Australian Tax Office (ATO) and former employees for more than $1 million.
A NSW Supreme Court order to place the Alexandria-based business into liquidation came into effect today.
Tim Cook, from court-appointed liquidator Balance Insolvency, told the ABC he would now assess, secure and sell the designer’s assets.
He said he would also investigate whether any misconduct had occurred.
Johanna Johnson has been contacted for comment.
One bride-to-be, who did not want to be named, told the ABC when she confronted the designer about the future of her wedding dress, just hours before the business was due to be placed into liquidation, she was told to “just breathe”.
“She still maintains everything is going to be fine,” she said.
The woman, who has already paid for her $2,500 dress, said she believed she would never see her dress again, and had begun to search for another gown ahead of her August wedding.
“It’s just devastating … it’s heartbreaking,” she said.
Another told the ABC she had spoken to Ms Johnson several times, and had received similar assurances.
Johanna Johnson’s Facebook account has been inundated with messages from other women set to tie-the-knot, concerned they would also not receive their wedding gowns.
On April 26, just hours before the business was due to be placed into liquidation, one woman posted on the Facebook page: “I have been advised that the Court has appointed a liquidator. What does this mean for your ‘restructure’?”