After winning Love Island with her former partner Jack Fincham in 2018, there’s no denying Dani Dyer now has a blossoming CV.
Not only can she add fashion designer and style influencer to her list of achievements – previously working alongside online retailer In The Style – but Dani is now mum to one-year-old Santiago.
It’s clear her self-confidence has grown since entering the villa, both in her style choices and in taking more risks. She told OK! , “Now I’m always ready to try something new.”
She gave us the lowdown on her latest collection for Girls On Film launching this autumn at Matalan, how she’s found a new love in designing clothes and shares top fashion tips for busy mums.
Plus, she told us what it’s been like to work on a new show with her famous dad, Danny Dyer, who she fondly describes as her “best friend”…
Congratulations on your collection for Girls On Film. What was most important to you when designing this range?
I’m constantly thinking about what the new trends are, what people are into. I absolutely love style and fashion – I didn’t realise how much until I got involved with this campaign. I enjoyed talking to as many people as I can about it, because something that I like, someone else might hate.
I have never been a fan of knitwear, but I know other people love it, so my task was designing something that’s perfect for people who do and don’t like knitwear. And this team is lovely, it’s been such an exciting time putting this collection together.
How did you find the design process?
When I was on Love Island, I didn’t really know anything about styling and designing clothes, and when you come out of a show like that, everyone focuses on what you’re wearing and how you put your clothes together. Then it ended up becoming something I really enjoyed.
Now I’m with this new production team. It’s a long process, but once you start putting one collection together, the next one becomes easier because you know by then what you like and don’t like. I just feel I know what I’m doing now so I enjoy taking risks. I think I was a bit boring before, but now I’m always ready to try something new.
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Do you find it rewarding to see your ideas come to life?
Oh my God, absolutely! Sometimes you can go back and forth for ages when designing something, umming and ahhing, but once the decision is made and you see the pieces all together, it’s so worth it. Nothing incredible comes together without hard work, so when it does – wow! It makes you feel amazing.
There’s a 1970s feel to the collection. Why did you want to create that?
Because colour is so in at the minute. I remember meeting all the girls on the team and they suggested adding a 70s look, and I said I’d felt like I’d been wearing 70s things for a while without having realised.
The autumn wear was particularly fun to create – like maxi dresses that you can throw on with some boots and a fun jacket. It’s great. I’m excited for people to see it, because it’s not a style I think I’d be known for, but I thought I’d take a risk.
What is your favourite piece from the collection and why?
There’s a lovely black, glittery, chiffon-style dress with a side split – it’s not too revealing, but a little bit sexy. I love it because you can dress it up or down. We’ve got a lovely jumper dress with buttons in the middle, which is really flattering, too.
What advice do you have for people who find it difficult to experiment with fashion?
Do a big clothes order – of things you would usually wear and items that are a bit out of your comfort zone – and have your friends round and try the clothes on.
My friends and I would do this and take pictures so we can see what we look like. Your friends are always going to be honest with you, and as long as you’re in a comfortable environment, have a go at branching out into new areas.
What’s the one item every woman needs in their wardrobe?
A jumper dress – I love them. You can dress them up for a night out or keep them really casual for daytime.
What does body confidence mean to you?
It doesn’t matter what size or shape you are, when you love yourself, everyone else will love you. Every decision you make, do it for you. Everyone is beautiful in their own way, and we need to start recognising and believing that.
You have such a busy life as a working mum. What are your top tips for getting ready quickly?
A Red Bull… No, I’m joking! When my son was first starting to walk, I’d be like, “Oh my God, how am I ever going to get ready if he’s wandering around, I’ll have to keep an eye on him?” But I just got used to it. I never know when I’m going to have the chance to shower nowadays, but I’ve got a little hair and make-up station downstairs so I can watch him. We make it work.
If you could send your younger self a message, what would it be?
Not to put pressure on myself. I’d tell myself to be happy and stop people-pleasing. Saying that, though, I do believe that the decisions we made in the past lead us to the future we have, and I’m so happy with where I am now, so I have no regrets.
What’s next in the pipeline for you?
Me and my dad have just filmed a travel show together, which was incredible. Honestly, working with him has been a dream – he really is my best friend. We get on so well and had so much fun. And I’m starting a brand-new show soon, which I can’t talk about just yet, but it’s very exciting… More than anything, I’ll be being a mum and catching up with my washing!
Girls on Film by Dani Dyer is exclusively available online only at Matalan.co.uk from 7 September. the 24-piece autumn collection is available in sizes 6-22 and prices start at £18
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