I have been designing jewelry and costumes since I was little. I fondly remember my Halloween costume from the 6th grade. I was a blonde Greek goddess draped in a pink satin toga. Not exactly traditional. My toga was accessorized with a huge iridescent blue and fuchsia glass brooch. It was designed by Schiaparelli, a famous mid century fashion designer. That brooch was amazing! It was my grandmother's and she had quite the collection of designer costume jewelry. I think she had a big influence on my taste in fashion, especially the jewelry!
For me, creating is exploring, being adventurous and curious. That attitude has led me to a lot of experimentation. I have designed Tudor and Elizabethan costumes, quilts, knitted garments and accessories, and created recycled cashmere coats. I was featured on a program called “That’s Clever” on HGTV where I demonstrated how to knit, felt, and embellish a purse with jewels. However, I always end up returning to creating jewelry and my favorite material to work with is metal. I also happen to be a collector of antique and vintage jewelry and you will see almost all of my work is influenced by designs from multiple eras ranging from Victorian to Mid-Century modern. Once again I have my grandmother's influence to thank for this passion.
I am celebrating the 13th year of Dania De Bortoli Designs. The saying “necessity is the mother of invention” fits my life experience. My business was born out of the need to have flexible hours to support my son who was born with Autism. Over the years, my business has ebbed and flowed in size but my son always came first.
During this journey, I discovered I prefer to create one-of-a-kind or small batch designs versus large production. It allows me to keep fresh and quickly change direction. I really enjoy creating ornate large statement pieces with bold, intense, and sometimes edgy designs.