Feb 23, 2012
Pontiac native weaves wools into contemporary, fun fashion
Local designer Danni Little has woven a talent for crocheting into a dream of fashion.
The Pontiac native discovered her knack for design after learning how to crochet more than 15 years ago. At 26, with nearly nine years of design experience, her dream of being a household name is taking shape.
Little’s self-titled line of clothing and accessories blends the traditional method of weaving wools with a more contemporary approach, that is both versatile and function. Little's pieces are available for purchase and like any young designer; she is ambitious and eager for the next big step.
What sparked your interest in fashion?
I can say I became interested in fashion around my 11th or 12th grade year of high school. That's around the time I made my first crochet outfit. I actually made a commercial about my clothing line for my TV Class.
What initially inspired you to start crocheting?
My mom called me up to her room one day and taught me how to make a scarf. It was the ugliest scarf I ever made, but it was a learning experience.
How did you learn how to design and construct?
It just came naturally. I've been doing it for so long, you just get to know the body and what to do to make things fit properly.
How often do you produce a collection?
I usually try to do a spring/summer and a fall/winter collection. Sometimes, I get inspired to do more. As with any artist, sometimes, I do have to wait until I feel inspired, so that does hold things up.
As a young, up-and-coming designer, what are some of your biggest challenges?
My biggest challenges right now are figuring out the right way to market to the right customer base.
What kind of customers do you hope to reach?
The ideal girl is one who likes to set herself apart from the crowd. Not a normal, typical girl who likes to fit in, but one who has style and knows how to put a fashionable outfit together.
Who are some of your biggest inspirations?
I love Betsey Johnson because she doesn't follow the norm. I love [Coco] Chanel because she set the standard. Vera Wang is also an inspiration; I could go on and on. But I love most the unique twists that designers put on their clothing.
How do you feel about Detroit's emerging fashion scene and where does Danni Little fit?
I feel Detroit's fashion scene has come a long way and it can only get better. I don't really know how I fit into the scene. People have been telling me because of how quirky my style is, that my fashions would probably fit in more in Chicago, L.A. or New York.
In five years, where do you see yourself?
I hope to be a household name. I want people to know about my cause, which is to support the Crohn’s & Colitis Foundation and maybe become a face for them to get more recognition and help with finding a cure. I have Crohn's disease, so proceeds from my sales, I donate to the foundation. It's a very great charity and I'm trying to help out in any way possible, in hopes that their research will help find relief and some sort of cure for people who suffer from the disease.
What keeps you confident these days when everyone is so critical of fashion?
I stay motivated by all of the positive feedback I get. I don't worry about any negative comments. When you do something that you love you do it because you are passionate about it. I am very passionate about my craft, I love what I do and as long as it makes me happy that is all I need to push forward.