Dan Jones never wanted to work in fashion. A classically-trained pianist with a passion for lighting design, he was more interested in what goes on behind the scenes rather than on centre stage.
Though at 17, after not getting into the design school of his choice, Jones decided to apply for fashion college where a five-week placement with Collette Dinnigan led to a three-year tenure under the iconic Australian designer.
"I always knew I wanted to be creative and loved anything to do with design. Fashion school wasn't my first option but as soon as I started I became completely immersed in it," Jones told The Huffington Post Australia.
More of a muso than a fashion person, Jones had no idea what was to come of his first month of employment with Dinnigan -- it was Paris Fashion Week -- and at the time, she was the only Australian designer to have been invited to show at the Haute Couture week.
"It was crazy. I had no concept of how big any Fashion Week was, let alone Paris -- and couldn't believe how serious everybody was -- it was mind boggling to me as an 18-year-old boy," Jones said.
"After a little while though, I began to realise this woman [Dinnigan] is super successful and it was all because of fashion -- that was intriguing to me -- that you could build an empire on lingerie and dresses."
Jones moved up the ranks quickly, from clipping threads from hems and checking each garment's hook and eye to production before getting his own makers underneath him.
After that, he went on to beading before finally gaining access into the very secret design room where he was part of developing new embroidery techniques, cuts and completing each sample.
Now, almost a decade later, Jones will showcase his namesake label, "Unbridaled by Dan Jones" -- a bridal gown collection that steers away from the traditional -- at New York Bridal Fashion Week in October.
Since launching in 2014, Jones' sleek, no-fuss gowns have become a favourite amongst both Aussie and international brides with stockists in Europe, U.S. and Canada.
"My focus right now is to deliver something amazing in New York that intrigues because it is interesting and unique."
With more than 300 guests attending the New York show, Jones admits there are days he is completely pedantic.
"It's nerve-racking that's for sure, but I have to remind myself that at the end of the day, it's just a dress," Jones said.
His need to be across every detail is something he said he took from Dinnigan.
"She was so dedicated to her brand and incredibly determined. I appreciated the fact she was in control of almost everything," Jones said.
This will be the third collection from the 28-year-old Australian designer, who sources much of his inspiration from music.
"This collection was inspired by Aretha Franklin and 70s soul. I love movement in clothing so I've tried to incorporate that into the skirts in this collection," Jones said.
"I love when a woman looks free and liberated. It's really about making the bride feel comfortable and sexy, no matter her shape or size," Jones said.Suggest a correction