Danielle Larkin is the founder and director of d+k, an active and lifestyle wear company based in Brisbane. A proponent of healthy living, her journey to successful business owner was inspired by a lifelong love for fashion, art, and even industrial design.
She followed her passion after leaving school and enrolled in courses in both design and creative arts. “I suppose it was the creative arts side that helped lead into activewear, especially after ergonomics,” Danielle explained. She was fascinated by how much problem solving was required to create comfortable exercise gear.
Danielle said, “I work with the shape of the body, and I really take the time to think about how people move and feel in their clothing, and what I can do to make that a better and more positive experience for them,” she said. “That’s what I believe is missing in the fitness industry; a focus on choosing internal wellbeing and self-love, rather than trying to look a certain way or adhere to a certain fitness regime.” d+k products are made in Australia using ethical practises. Danielle’s father is a builder, and she has always appreciated “the hard work that goes into each and every component of a completed piece of work.”
Danielle visited international manufacturers and fabric suppliers, though she refused to bring her creations to fruition at the expense of someone’s exploitation. “It’s simply not fair, and I saw a hell of a lot of it in my travels,” she explained. Dissatisfied with the subpar patterns, Danielle returned to Australia, found a first rate patternmaker, and built a great “Aussie team”. Though it was not easy work getting d+k off the ground, Danielle said that she is constantly reminded of the payoffs of her hard work. “When you have so many people offering their input and differing opinions, it can really confuse your thought process and decision making,” she said. “I had a turning point when I came into the office one weekend while it was empty, and I looked around at what I had built and realised that it was my own. My dream, my passion, my brand. I remembered that I was strong, capable, and that I had to stay true to my vision.”