Danielle Nicole DiFerdinando, a designer everyone should get familiar with. Her designs are fresh and totally fabulous. Classic styles with a modern twist.
From an early age, Danielle had a great passion for designing. At first her focus was designing custom neckties, then later went on to handbag design.
She attended the Fashion Institute of Technology and later went on to study in Europe, amongst design houses like Hermes, Yves Saint Laurent, Fendi and Prada. Danielle eventually went on to apprentice at companies such as Bergdorf Goodman, BE&D and Gucci.
Then in 2006, the young designer launched Danielle Nicole Handbags. Today, you can find the full collection of beautiful pieces, crafted in the finest materials such as Italian lambskin, crushed patent leather, and French embroidery fabric, by the 22-year old designer at danielle-nicole.com
And I recently got the opportunity to exchange a Q + A with this fabulous designer…
Jennifer: What was your very first handbag that you created?
Danielle Nicole: The Samantha Bag was the first bag I ever created. I made it while I was still a student at FIT. It took me over 20 hrs to make it by hand!
Jennifer: What’s your design philosophy?
Danielle Nicole: Function is key! Whenever my team or I are designing a bag we always think, “How is the customer going wear and use this bag”. All of my bags are lined with washable ultra-suede in anticipation of make-up spills. The make-up stains on the interior of the bag will come out with soap and water! Also, I love designing bags with adjustable straps. Many of our bags have straps that convert from a shoulder bag into a messenger. I try to incorporate outside pockets as much as I can so customers can have easy access to their keys, cell phones, and wallets. Another important decision I made a long time ago was to use light weight leather. Lambskin is soft and lightweight. With all of the things women throw into their bags, the bag itself shouldn’t weigh the customer down.
Jennifer: Tell us about your current Spring 2009 collection. And what was your inspiration behind this season?
Danielle Nicole: Spring is about waking up from winter. I used bright, bold colors so that my customers could stand out and feel good! It’s always fun to add a bright, fun handbag to your everyday wardrobe!
Jennifer: Any hints as what to expect for next season?
Danielle Nicole: Next season is a berry inspired collection; red and purple are going to be popular! I wanted to incorporate the signature earth tones of fall. The Lindsay Clutch is one of the new styles that I am introducing for fall. It was featured on the cover of Women’s Wear Daily this past April. I’m very excited to see the collection in stores!
Jennifer: If you were to pick one bag out of all the collections that you’ve created, which is your number one favorite bag of all time?
Danielle Nicole: I would have to say the Kristi Mini. It’s the perfect size. It’s not too big where you can’t find your things, but big enough to fit everything I need, and it is so light weight that it matches my lifestyle perfectly.
Jennifer: Who are some other designers that you admire?
Danielle Nicole: I love Bottega Veneta! Their quality is impeccable and their craftsmanship is beautiful.
Jennifer: If you weren’t in the fashion industry, what would you be doing instead?
Danielle Nicole: I would be working at my father’s company, Boardwalk Fries. They’re delicious!
Jennifer: Which handbag are you carrying at this moment?
Danielle Nicole: The Melanie. It’s ideal for New York women! It has the adjustable strap so I can wear the bag over my shoulder or as a messenger. The Melanie has a large extior pocket so I have easy access to my Metro pass, cell phone, and keys. The interior pockets help me find my wallet and other essentials, and the large main compartment allows me to throw in my extra shoes, book, and umbrella.
Jennifer: And what are some items that you can’t leave the house without?
Danielle Nicole: I always have antibacterial and tissues in my bag. I’m a bit of a germaphobe!
Jennifer: What’s next for the Danielle Nicole brand?
Danielle Nicole: We’re currently working on a vegan line called Elle Nicole. The collection will be made out of leather alternative.
Danielle Nicole’s Random Fav
Movies: Annie Hall, The Hangover
TV shows: The Tudors, The Real Housewives of New York, True Blood
Vacation Destination: Amalfi Coast in Italy