30 YEARS OF DINNY HALL
Marking 30 years in business, Dinny Hall has created a brand new collection called Hall of Hoops. Here she talks about the inspiration behind it, what she’d tell her younger self and what the future holds
What was the inspiration behind the Hall of Hoops collection?
Over the past thirty years I have developed a passion for hoops in all sizes and in many guises – from tiny little hoops that just cup the ear, to super-sized styles that the rest on the shoulder. They have always been intrinsic to my style and regulars in my collections, so this year just seemed the right time to celebrate the iconic design and tie it in with a landmark moment for the brand.
It will be exclusively stocked at Liberty, but any chance we will get to see it in Angel?
The Hall Of Hoops will be exclusive to Liberty, however we will continue to have a range of different styles on offer in both our Upper Street and Westbourne Grove stores.
Were you always planning to do a special collection to mark 30 years in business?
I think it’s a great opportunity to celebrate a big moment for the brand. We toyed with a few ideas, including looking at older best-selling collections, but I wanted to do something that wasn’t all about looking back, something that shows the relevance of the brand today.
How different are you now as a designer compared to three decades ago?
I still love to do all the same things that I loved to do in my twenties – running my own show, designing jewellery, cooking, walking, travelling, enjoying culture, navigating the highs and lows of life and trying to be a kind person. Having fun is still quite high up there too.
If you could say one thing to your younger self back in the early days, what would it be?
NO!! You are NOT fat!
What would you say has been the secret to your success?
If it’s true that successful people never give up and work relentlessly to achieve their goals against all odds, then in that sense I’m successful. The secret is to perfect making it seem as though you’ve got everything under control, then everyone will believe you have!
Do you have a favourite collection from three decades of designing?
The Dome collection, which I designed in 1987, is a favourite and became quite synonymous with Dinny Hall for many years. Now I have favourite pieces from different collections, but mostly I wear quite understated jewellery. My current favourites are the statement Talitha earrings and mid-sized classic hoops, worn with little precious studs, and I very often wear my Tapering signature bangle.
You started in Notting Hill, but why was Angel a good destination for a showroom?
I lived off the Essex Road whilst I was a student at Central St Martins and then moved to Notting Hill in 2000, where I fell for a loft overlooking the Regent’s Canal on Wenlock Road. My love for both North and West drove my decisions to open stores there.
How has Islington changed since you first opened here?
What’s so fantastic about Islington is that whilst it has changed, the architecture still represents London’s past in its little streets and passages. Now things are just a little bit smarter, which means you can eat better and shop for nicer things.
Where would you go in Angel to relax?
A stroll in the churchyard at St Mary’s under huge London plain trees, the Little Angel Theatre, or The Indian Veg on Chapel Market.
Do you have a favourite anecdote relating to your Angel showroom?
When we were planning the shop we wanted to restore the old Edwardian shop front and council planners tried to stop us. So we went into the archives and found out that the store had been a funeral parlour – we found the original shop front and won our case to restore it. Before we renovated there was still an oblong trap door where the coffins were lowered, so I decided that I had to spend time alone downstairs where the bodies were kept (to check out the vibes) and duly pronounced the store free of any malignant spirits. In fact the store has an amazing feel to it and it is a lovely place to work.
Finally Dinny, what does the future hold for you?
The little way that I can see into the future, I can say that there are plans for our first store in W1, a new concession in Knightsbridge, and maybe even moving back to Islington!
Words: Mark Kebble
See more at dinnyhall.com