Synonymous with glamour and luxury, Italian designer Danny Wise creates sumptuous luxury items from an alligator golf bag to the most eye-catching ball gown
Ong Chin Huat finds out in an exclusive interview where this jet-set maestro’s inspiration comes from and which celebrity had worn his creations.
Glamorous and luxurious could be superlatives which one could use to describe the creations of Danny Wise and categorise him as a man of exquisite taste and a style arbiter who adds the sparkle to any evening gown or dinner jacket he has designed. As a child, Wise grew up fascinated with beauty and fashion and was constantly dreaming of how to make his own clothes look better. Becoming a model in his early years only accelerated his trajectory into the high fashion world. Today the name Danny Wise is synonymous with dazzling red carpet gowns, European aristocracy and super luxury living.
LM: When did you become interested in fashion?
DW: I think since I was eight years old. I remember going to Paris to buy ties and cardigans and when I got back I would modify my shirts by taking off the buttons and altering the cuffs on my shirts so I could use cufflinks. I recall my grandfather telling me I was a little monster, even though I was an infant, I had an old soul. Then at 13 or 14 years old I started to model.
LM: What was the first thing you designed?
DW: It was in 1993 and it was swim wear but the year before I set up a fur atelier in the Navigli district of Milan.
LM: Where do you get your inspiration from?
DW: Beauty inspires me. I love beauty and I see beauty in everywhere I go and everyone I meet. I’m inspired by France in the 16th century, American during the roaring twenties, the English sense of style, the Mediterranean as well as colours from tropical countries.
LM: Do you prefer designing for men or women?
DW: For woman! I’m always thinking about how to make women more beautiful. As for men, I design for myself. Many men have approached me while I am in cities like Paris and New York and asked me about my clothing and once I tell them I am a designer, they become my clients.
LM: How do you define good taste?
DW: Oh! Good taste today is rare. It is culture, class, elegance, finesse, good manners, a cut above the rest and its beauty because I love beauty.
LM: What’s your favourite item in your wardrobe right now?
DW: Well , I love to see it all put together like an art private gallery, and if I do have a free moment, I’ll rummage through my clothes, seeing and touching every single creation and feeling the fabrics and materials, understanding it and appreciating the quality.
LM: What is the best-selling item in Danny Wise?
DW: For women, it’s our evening gowns and for men, it’s our coats and tuxedos. If you drive Roll Royce, must wear Danny Wise tuxedo.
LM: Do you have any favourite designers? If yes, who are they and why?
DW: I admire Yves Saint Laurent for his tailoring. In fact I met him once in Paris and he complimented my suit and told me I had a good future designing Haute Couture. I also greatly admire Valentino Garavani for his elegance and beautiful creations.
LM: What are you hobbies and interests?
DW: To be honest, I not have a lot time for the any hobbies. I read and study for my work and I love to travel. I guess those are my hobbies but I do them because they are part of my work. I am happy doing what I do and work around 16 to 18 hours a day.
LM: Could you share with us who are some of the celebrities who you have designed for or who wear your creations?
DW: I have many celebrity clients. They are generally princesses, duchesses, countesses, and heads of state like Ronald Reagan. Hollywood celebrities whom have worn my creations include Salma Hayek, Liza Minnelli, Jody Foster, Mariah Carey, Barry White and Frank Sinatra.
Danny Wise – Where and how?
For more information, please visit www.dannywise.com