I recently sat down with Danielle Vagner, Creative Director and Owner of Kookai – the first of my “People With Substance” series – and what a lady to begin with!

Danielle Vagner, Creative Director and Owner of Kookai

danielleIt’s no secret that Kookai is one of the most loved brands from Australia. It’s not often that you get to hear the inspiration behind what you’re buying from your favourite shops season after season, so I thought I would share some insight into Kookai, Danielle’s life and every day inspiration.

I love Kookai for it’s beautiful basics and classic lines and they also do really great prints each season. The new collection boasts beatiful textures and embroideries.  At present I am obsessing over the white jumpsuit from this season. I wore it in the Trade Secret ad and everyone was commenting on it. And I of course couldn’t go past this white dress, which I am wearing today (and can’t take off). White textured dresses, get me every. single. time!

I am so inspired by ladies who have a “can do” attitudes. And Danielle definitely embodies that. So be sure to read on!


Tell us a little about yourself – has fashion always been a big part of your life?

Absolutely – I started modelling in my teens and then just feel in love with everything that fashion stands for…its exciting, inspiring, full of wonderful and creative people and will always be a big part of my life.

What is your favourite piece from the new collection?

This season it would have to be the Minoko trench – both black and frappe. Its perfect for layering / dressing up and down / and works with both flats and fabulous heels. It’s a must have!

What trend should we be looking out for SS 15?

  • Body Chains – they are amazing
  • Jumpsuits – they are so elegant and our collection offers beautiful details and are very flattering
  • Off the shoulder & splits – feminine and pretty with an underlying feeling of sexiness


How do you stay fit between work, being a mum and everyday life?

I walk – its great for the mind and the body. I can walk anywhere around the world – I listen to music and its my down time.

What is your go to outfit?

I am currently loving the new boy meets girl look – the split between masculine and feminine – leather bikers with feminine tops and pretty, layered fine jewellery…ripped and distressed denim with heels and a tuxedo jacket. Its confusing and surprising.

What inspired this collection?

The new season represents two distinct style directions…East is bohemian / exotic and playful – as seen on Talia Richman. The West is sophisticated / tailored / structured / textured / colourful with touches of lace and embroidery with Josephine Skriver showcasing this striking look perfectly. The collection was inspired by the meeting of these two worlds.


 Who is your style icon?

Carine Roitfield  – former editor in chief – Vogue Paris, Emmanuelle Alt and of course my mother Marcia…I used to watch her dress up as a young girl and she was gloriously inspiring and stylish.

Paris or New York?

Paris in a heart beat.

Leather or Denim?

Can I say both?!


Big thank you to Danielle!

Have an amazing weekend everyone.


66 The Label Hat, Kookai Dress, Emelli Earrings

Author: Ally Carey

Hi, I am Ally, a writer and creative at Substance. I have worked in the fashion industry for 6+ years as a model and now on Substance. Substance is a lifestyle blog about fashion, beauty, health and self-improvement; hoping to inspire you to live a life filled with Substance. For more: @AllyMayCarey

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