Last week, we were at the openingsshow of the Dutch Sustainable Fashion Week. This edition’s theme was ‘Talking Trash’. With a dress made with a fabric of rejected tampon strings – yes baby – Danya Weevers stole the show. That’s why we interviewed her, about transparency, life in the East of the Netherlands and her background as a model.
The dress – photo: Danya Weevers
The girl behind the dress
At the age of twenty-three, the talented Danya Weevers, is already becoming recognized as a cutting edge fashion designer. The girl from Hengelo wasn’t, a she says herself, a really easy student.
‘’I was very stubborn and I caused a lot of trouble at school. Characteristics I benefit from now, because I developed my own sense of style from a young age.’’
‘When there’s a will, there’s a way,’ is Danya’s motto. She isn’t afraid of the unknown and devolps herself in various areas – ranging from plant-based painting, accounting to entrepreneurship – by following courses. This helped her create her own, and up to now, succesful businessplan.
Danya’s business is now established and based in Hengelo, a city in the East of the Netherlands. She consciously choose for this location because it is here that she finds a sense of calm and enjoys the down to earth attitude. Because of basing her business in the East of the Netherlands, she has the possibility to produce her designs locally, in Enschede.
Danya Weevers is a fashion brand that stands for for quality, durability, ecology and fair trade. Her designs are graphic as well as timeless. Storytelling is very important in her work. In her earlier collections, she her designs were based on themes like the fragility of human beings and the power of women. We like.
‘’My FW 16/17 collection was about the power of women. We women are a lot more sensitive than men, that’s why we often get described as unstable. But being sensitive doesn’t mean we are unstable, it can make us stronger.’’
Sustainability and transparency are really important in Danya Weevers’ business. She uses sustainable, mostly organic dyes and fabrics. She tries to work with sustainable-minded wholesalers.
According to Danya demand for sustainable fashion is increasing. At the same time consumer trust is decreasing. That’s the reason why every item of her newest collection has a QR-code. By scanning this code, anyone can see the whole production process of the product, from A to Z.
The ‘Tampon dress’
Commissioned by the Dutch Sustainable Fashion Week, Danya designed this beautiful item. In conjunction with Annemieke Koster, she was able to use a fabric made out of rejected tampon strings.
Pictures by Agne Kuceviciute and Baldwin Henderson
For her, tampons are a very interesting product to work with. Not just because it’s a beautiful product – we agree – but also because tampons are an unique form of trash. Most of the people do not know tampons undergo such a very strict assessment. Beyond tampons, she also used dried flowers and a wedding dress in her design.
Her choice of materials bring a number of female cliches together. This is how she aims to challenge people’s judgements and prejudices. ‘We all should get to know people first, before we judge someone.’
Her life as a model
This power woman is a jack off all trades. Besides of being a fashion designer, she is also a model. At the moment she has been focusing on her work as a designer and not as much on de modeling. But her experience and network as a model comes in handy, making organizing shoots peanuts for her. Besides that, her experience helps her to direct her models.
‘’Being a model sometimes really sucks. The circumstances can be difficult, nobody takes your needs into account and your not given the breaks you might need. From that perspective I can empathize with my models and I make sure to treat them right.’’
Danya’s key to success
- Listen to others. Sometimes they are the kick under your butt you haven’t realized yourself you need.
- Don’t compromise your own principles.
- Life is a two-way-street, it’s a game of give and take.
- When there’s a will, there’s a way. Just go for it.
Pubic hair or armpit hair? Pubic hair
18 children or no children? 18 children
Feminism or veganism? Feminism
Man or woman? Woman
Fashion or timeless? Timeless
Phone or letter? Letter
Organic or cheap? Organic
Make up every day or never again? Never again
Amy Winehouse or Michael Jackson? Amy Winehouse
Vintage or modern? Modern
Book or documentary? Documentary
Ambition or wisdom? Ambition
Uterus or clitoris? Uterus
Boobs or butt? Boobs
Cake or taboos? Taboos
Bend or break? Bend
Give or take? Give
Make or buy? Make
Pads or tampons? Tampons
Do you have a very good (tampon)idea or more questions to ask for Danya? Send an e-mail to: firstname.lastname@example.org <3