Erin Dana liberates ladies of all shapes and sizes from the dreadful task of purse-holding, and gives dance a chance. A Q&A with the designer about her courageous contribution to the comeback of the fanny pack.
Your bags are very interesting. What was the inspiration behind the belt/bag design?
I'm a festival gal. I love live music and dancing. Every time I would go to a show or out with my girlfriends, I would get so annoyed holding a bag, not to mention growing up in a city where at least one of my girlfriends would lose or leave their bag somewhere. I started doing some research on the fanny pack, and talking to my mom and other age groups. After hearing how open they were to bringing that style back, I said to myself, “that's it, I'm making it! If all else fails, I’ll wear them all!” Luckily, all else hasn't failed; in fact, responses have been great!
How would you define your style?
My style is tough to define as I can go from dressy to super casual or from bohemian to trendy. I think those that know me will say I lean closer to the bohemian side though. I love mixing and matching and taking risks, but one thing I always look for is quality—I don't like to purchase pieces that don't last long.
Your line gives off a very laid back feel, is it meant to just be for casual outings or nights out as well?
To me being laid back is a state of mind. It is being happy, content, positive and free, which is exactly what our line is about. We have women wearing our bags to the beach and then to formal events. It is meant to go from day to night, from casual to dressy.
What type of women are you trying to embody through your designs?
When I design I try not to focus on one particular type of woman but instead to think about every unique woman. I really embrace my femininity and I love the female body. I believe that every woman can be sexy and look great no matter how they are built, which is why I decided to go with a woven leather chain rather than a regular leather belt when I designed the Evan Belt bag. I find that the chain will hug a woman's hips or waist in a much more flattering, form fitting way. And it doesn’t discriminate! This bag looks sexy on my mom, my girlfriends, my 16-year-old cousin, and even my grandmother takes walks around Forest Hills with it! It's a very versatile bag. We’ve also included an extended bracelet in order to make the chain longer or wear the small pouch on your upper arm.
Is there a particular process you go through when choosing fabric for pieces in the line?
The process I go through is grueling! I spend a ton of time sampling and sourcing leathers with the right durability, quality, and look. Sometimes it takes me months to find the right leather, hardware and lining. And if it ends up not looking right in production… I am known to be a sort of stickler about it. I believe in bringing my shoppers a product that is luxurious without cutting any corners to get to the price point we sell at. We take the concept of affordable luxury very seriously.
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