As devoted fans of scarf savant Alyssa Wasko, the force behind modern label Donni Charm, we were thrilled to include one of her pieces in our fall Box of Style. Exclusive to us, the modern black-and-white cape lends luxury and warmth to one’s wardrobe while also demonstrating complete versatility in styling. We caught up with Wasko and got the inside scoop on her inspiration behind the USA-made design, along with insight into her brand beginnings, industry challenges and fall wardrobe essentials. Read on to get to know the label.
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Get To Know Donni Charm Founder Alyssa Wasko
The Inspiration Behind Donni Charm
"My Dad. It was all an accident or a blessing in disguise, depending on what side of the fence you are on. I made the first scarves right after he passed away, it was a coping mechanism for me; I needed to find some sort of a creative outlet to channel my grief. So really everything I do, I do to make him proud, including naming the line after him. His name was Donald and the people closest to my dad nicknamed him Donny. Everyone used to call me his lucky charm, thus 'Donni Charm' was born. Attached on every scarf we include a hidden angel wing charm, as a reminder of protection, luck and love."
How Alyssa Launched Her Fashion Career
"I moved to New York when I was 18 to intern for Chanel. I worked long and hard, and went back every summer of college. After graduating, I became a full time consultant for several years. My experience was far from glamorous, but I wouldn’t change it for the world. I learned so much and fell even more in love with fashion, and of course New York. I was doing DC simultaneously until it became clear the time was right to see my vision through."
The Most Challenging Aspect Of Designing
"Balancing my creative nature. One side of me just wants to design product, pick fabrics, and style photoshoots. But the other side knows that I am now running a business and I need to be a good leader. This is no longer just my passion project, it’s a business. Thankfully, I have the most passionate team, each member treats DC like it’s their own--and that is truly so special. I am very grateful for Team DC."
How Alyssa Conceived The TZR x Donni Charm Cape
"When we were asked to work with such an iconic brand like The Zoe Report we were thrilled—and the ideas started pouring in. Our team spent months developing the softest, most versatile, and yet most stylish cape for this Fall’s Box of Style. We wanted to design something that would look good on everybody and match with any wardrobe. For me, when it’s dark outside and freezing cold, I don’t want to get out from under the covers, let alone change out of my cozy pjs. When the time comes to put an outfit together, I want something easy that I don’t have to think about. With this cape I can just throw it on with jeans and a turtleneck and look chic – that’s the perfect accessory!"
Don't Leave Home Without
"A neck scarf and/or cape (obvi), vintage Levis and slip-on mules."