Project D is one of our favourite brands here at the Dressing Room – in this interview, we talk about the brand’s origins; how the girls work together, their style icons and what to expect from future collections…
We know that you two lovely ladies have been friends for years but how long after knowing each other did your dreams of working together become a reality?
We had been friends for several years and always toyed with the idea of working on a clothing line together, but it was on a power walk only about 18 months ago that it just clicked and we thought ‘yes, we have to do this!’
Were you ever worried that it could put pressure on your friendship or would you say that is has brought you even closer together?
We were just so excited about working together we didn’t really worry about that. Even when things are stressful we manage to find something to giggle about.
Who decided on the name Project D?
Project D was a kind of code name we used in the early days when we were trying to keep everything under wraps. When it came to naming the brand it just seemed to make sense to us that this should be the name.
Are there a team of designers working together with you and if so how big is the design team?
The two of us design together – we bounce ideas off one another, share inspirations, talk each other in and out of the latest crazy brainwave and make it all happen as a team. We also now have a fab technical sketch artist and an in house pattern cutter who help us make all of those ideas a reality.
How would you describe the concept of Project D?
Our collections are always based around the same principle – beautiful pieces that make a woman feel feminine and confident. We want to take the stress out of dressing for the modern woman – fashion should be fun so we do the hard work for you.
Who is the Project D Woman?
We don’t follow fads or trends and we are both very different shapes so we can understand how different women approach fashion. We hope that whatever shape, size or age you are, there is a Project D dress to suit you. Dannii likes structured dresses with nipped in waists that really accent her petite figure, while Tabs loves dresses that skim her curves.
We consider the fact that some women like to cover their knees or hide the tops of their arms and we recognise that some like to highlight their cleavage or a tiny waist – there is something for everyone!
There definitely seems to be a Bond theme with the names of the dresses this season. Moneypenny, Goldfinger for example. Who is the closet Bond fan and how do you come up with the names generally?
We both love watching old Bond films and find inspiration in the glamour of all the old Bond Girls (who doesn’t secretly want to be a Bond Girl?!). Generally we brainstorm at the beginning of each season and come up with the names over a bottle of wine. Who said work couldn’t be fun?
Spring summer 2011 is a simply stunning collection but what was the design inspiration?
As always, we wanted to create a collection that could take a woman from day to night with cute day pieces such as the gorgeous printed Anya dress for summer garden parties, right through to the chic and structured Moneypenny with butterfly crochet for more formal occasions.
We all have our favourite dress, what is yours to date and why?
D: I love love love the Domino. It’s a gorgeous layered one shouldered maxi dress. I wore the black version on last year’s X Factor and had an amazing response. It is so nerve wracking wearing one of our dresses on the show but the reaction was amazing! It also comes in a gorgeous antique cream – perfect for summer weddings.
T: I love our red carpet looks but I think from this collection, the dress I’ve worn the most is the Mimi. It just works for any occasion. I can wear it with flats in the day at work and then with some killer heels and fab jewels for the evening.
Some of the dresses feel vintage inspired, who would have been your biggest style icon of decades gone by that you would have liked to see wearing a Project D dress?
T: Marilyn Monroe
D: Audrey Hepburn
They are both incredibly beautiful women who became icons of their time. Audrey Hepburn’s understated elegance is still recognised today as the epitome of chic, while Marilyn Monroe’s vampish style oozes a timeless sex appeal.
Can you give us a little insight into what exciting pieces we might expect to see in the fall collection?
We’ll be continuing with the Project D signature – lots of glamour, gorgeous original prints and ultra-feminine shapes.
What are you ultimate goals for the brand and what can we look forward to seeing in the next 5 years?
Without giving too much away (!) we want to slowly develop Project D by building on our strengths and ultimately create a real lifestyle brand. We have so many ideas. There is a lot to be excited about!
Okay girls time to dish a little dirt, who panics most under pressure and any annoying habits you’ve discovered about each other that you didn’t know before?
Ultimately we both thrive under pressure but we are also really good at keeping each other calm when we need to. We laugh a lot which helps too. There are no annoying habits but we do work rather differently. Dannii likes to be tidy and very organised while Tabs is perhaps a little more chaotic in her approach!
Do you find it hard not to talk shop all the time even when you are out of the office?
Not really. First and foremost we are friends so any work chat generally descends into a good girly gossip anyway!
You can shop our fabulous range of Project D dresses online or instore at The Dressing Room right now!
Interview by Tanya, The Dressing Room’s PR guru!