INTERVIEW // DAN JONES
Name: Dan Jones
Location: Sydney, Australia
Current Title / Company: Designer/Director of Dan Jones
WHAT WAS YOUR FIRST JOB OUT OF UNIVERSITY?
I worked for Collette Dinnigan doing quality control. I was offered a part time position after 5 weeks of work placement. The position was for 2 weeks of work to help through out busy period before the Paris show but I ended up staying for 3 years.
WHAT INSPIRED YOU TO CREATE YOUR BUSINESS?
When I left Collette Dinnigan I really wanted to make something of my own. Starting a brand involves a lot of finance so shortly after creating a small collection I had to find another job to survive. Trying to balance growing my own brand/working for other designers became a little complex and finally after sometime I was not really employable. Designers knew who I was due to press my brand was getting, but I also needed a job because my brand wasn’t making money. After much pressure from 2 of my closest friends I decided to dive into bridal.
TAKE US THROUGH A DAY IN THE LIFE OF YOUR BUSINESS
There are many emails and phone calls that go back and forth. Im either at my computer working from home, laying out laces and working out placements with my Right Hand Woman or sitting on the cutting table talking numbers, clients and meterage with my cutter.
HAS ANYTHING SURPRISED YOU ABOUT THE JOURNEY TO CREATE YOUR BUSINESS?
The most surprising thing is I was never really interested in Bridal, but my brand only became
successful when I launched a bridal line.
OBVIOUSLY YOUR BUSINESS HAS GROWN! TELL US ABOUT THE PROCESS OF
FINDING FUNDING FOR YOUR BUSINESS.
My business has always and still is self financed. I think what is most important about a business that is financed by its owner is you have to be patient and allow time for it to grow. I took quite an organic approach to growth and expansion, I reached out a little and I waited a little for people to come back to me. Its taken 5 years so far BUT the best feeling is knowing I did this myself and that I don’t owe anything to anyone, which is very rewarding.
YOUR BUSINESS HAS DEVELOPED QUITE A FOLLOWING. CAN YOU TELL US A LITTLE BIT ABOUT MARKETING YOUR BUSINESS? HOW DID YOU SPREAD THE WORD?
Ive also approached this quite organically. Marketing campaigns can cost a lot of money and today they are a dime a dozen. Real brides have been very important in spreading their experience with us and showing our gowns in the best possible light. When the time has come and collaborations have felt right, I’ve taken the opportunity to go for it. Most recently we shot our 2018 Collection Campaign with The LANE and now we have aligned ourselves with Love Find Co. Its always been important to make sure that we align with people I feel are a good marriage to the brand.
WHAT DO YOU THINK IS THE KEY TO THE SUCCESS OF YOUR BUSINESS?
I try to keep the brand as pure as possible. I don’t find myself very trend driven, rather putting out a vision that feels right to me at that point in time. I think this has helped the growth of my brand in terms of offering something unique from other bridal brands and their seasonal collections.
WHAT HAS BEEN THE BIGGEST MILESTONE FOR YOU AND YOUR BRAND?
Ironically, being successful in bridal, because it was never my intention nor was it even of any interest to me in the beginning. It was a last resort out of desperation, so I always pinch myself when I think how it all began
FAVOURITE BRIDAL TREND AT THE MOMENT?
Super clean silhouettes with matching chokers.
TELL US ABOUT YOUR CURRENT COLLECTION
The 2018 collection was based on 90’s supermodels. The idea was to focus on my favourite supermodels by designing gowns that showed that clean, fresh and free spirited mood that was often captured by the iconic photographers at that time. Think Peter Lindbergh and Stephen Meisel, Claudia Schiffer, Naomi Campbell and Christy Turlington
YOUR FAVOURITE PIECE FROM YOUR CURRENT COLLECTION?
‘Schiffer’ … its beautiful blush silk gazer layers, and embroidered spot tulle looks stunning when put together. The dress is dreamy, demure and just plain beautiful
Best advice you ever received? Don’t give up!
I wish I knew how to… find balance in my life :/ !
What is your coffee order? I don’t drink coffer. I’ll have ice tea, watermelon is my fav!
TV show do you wish was still on the air? I don’t own a TV either, I really suck at this point of the interview haha!
Next travel destination? Fingers crossed I’m off to Europe this year! Paris to visit a new store and Croatia to visit a close friend
What advice would you give your 23 year old self? Don’t be so hard on yourself! Make sure its fun along the way!