Intl Womens Day – dāl the label

6 Conversations With The Women Of Dāl This International Women's Day

Words by Alice Hartwell

6 Conversations with the Women of Dal

March emerges hosting its annual International Women’s Day, an occasion observed worldwide and spent honoring the road paved by the collective action of our female ancestors. A moment dedicated to celebrating the women who warm our lives, and a chance to openly reflect on all that remains to be achieved in the name of gender equality.

Dāl is a brand propelled collaboratively by the powerful, creative forces of women, each entwining their unique talents, insight and feminine energy into the very heart of our label. Today, we sit down with 6 of them for a candid conversation about female empowerment through fashion, inclusion in the industry and the interconnection between sustainability and women’s rights.

Meet the women of dāl

How does fashion serve as a source of confidence for you?

“As a 35-year-old mom of two, fashion serves as a source of confidence by allowing me to express my personality, feel comfortable and embrace body positivity.”  - Dana

“Fashion empowers me to express myself creatively and project more play and joy in my life!”  - Cory

“Fashion functions as a catalyst for confidence in my life. I firmly believe that when I present myself well, I inherently experience a boost in self-assurance. The correlation between looking good and feeling empowered is undeniable.”  - Ayla

“A good outfit makes me feel like the best version of myself, ready to take what any given day holds in my stride and with confidence in my step”  - Alice

“It allows me to express and reflect my mood through my clothing choices. When I'm feeling upbeat, I gravitate towards bold colors and statement accessories that reflect my inner energy. On days when I have a large workload, I choose simple yet timeless, foundational pieces that empower me to tackle challenges with confidence.”  - Shalina

“I feel fashion is a source of confidence when I dress in an extension of my inside world rather than looking for too much inspiration on the outside”  - Karina

This year’s IWD theme is ‘Inspire Inclusion’ - how does this campaign speak to you personally, as a woman working within a creative industry?

“In a creative field, embracing inclusivity drives innovation and creates a culture where everyone feels valued and empowered to share. We're committed to this ethos at dāl the label, a women-owned business. We work with a team of talented women, creating a community where every voice matters. Our brand celebrates inclusivity not just in our designs, but in every aspect of our business.”  - Dana

“Working in PR and having a role in representation, it's important to me that my clients, the creatives, content creators and outlets we work with include a wide range of women from different backgrounds, nationalities, different body types and ages.”  - Cory

“As an Arab woman immersed in the creative industry, the theme holds profound significance for me. In a world where stereotypes and misconceptions persist, this campaign underscores the importance of dismantling such barriers and showcasing the rich tapestry of talent, perspectives, and stories that women from different backgrounds and experiences bring to the table.”  - Ayla

“I feel it's imperative to work with creative, talented women who hail from a diverse range of backgrounds and experiences. It’s so important for me as a writer to ensure I’m amplifying an array of voices and stories”. - Alice

“This campaign speaks to my commitment to fostering an inclusive environment where everyone feels empowered to bring their authentic selves to the table. By celebrating and amplifying diverse voices, we can unlock new levels of creativity and perspective, driving positive change within our industry and beyond.”  - Shalina

“This campaign makes me think of unconditional support and uplifting other women without considering how it would benefit me. We all have a unique human experience, yet we're all connected and I'm a strong believer that every person, and in this case, every woman, is in our lives for a reason.”  - Karina

6 Conversations with the Women of Dal

Which style staple consistently makes you feel strong?

"A perfectly tailored, structured blazer”  - Dana, Cory & Ayla

“A longline, oversized coat”  - Alice

“Lately, slim and form-fitting luxe tops paired with straight-leg denim.”  - Shalina

“I have moments of experimentation with color, especially after a long winter, but most of the time I feel strongest in muted tones.”  - Karina

How do you perceive the connection between sustainable fashion and gender equality?

“Sustainable fashion and gender equality go hand in hand. It gives women fair and safe work conditions, empowering them economically. Plus, it promotes diversity in leadership roles and encourages consumers to make mindful choices.”  - Dana

“With sustainable fashion’s roots being in social change and intentionality, this can be extended in their approach to uplift and support women in the workforce. Sustainable fashion brands must take a holistic approach when building their business, including prioritizing environmental sustainability and challenging racial and gender inequity within the industry.”  - Cory

“Women make up a considerable portion of the workforce in the garment industry, and many are subject to unfair wages, unsafe working conditions, and limited opportunities for advancement. By promoting ethical labor practices and fair wages through sustainable fashion initiatives, we can empower women workers and advance gender equality.”  - Ayla

“Fast fashion can never be feminist, it always comes at a cost, primarily to young women of colour in developing countries left vulnerable to physical and sexual exploitation. The future of fashion must become more sustainable to protect the future of these women and girls.”  - Alice

“Sustainable fashion encourages consumers to make mindful choices, challenging traditional gender norms, and fostering a more equitable industry that celebrates individuals of all genders.”  - Shalina

“Sustainability to me is much more than just being environmentally friendly. A sustainable business should be able to stand for a long time, and it should make sense for everyone involved, including women.”  - Karina

Can you share a glance into a moment where you felt truly empowered?

“When I finally launched my brand. Putting it out into the world after years of hard work filled me with pride and confidence. Seeing others connect with my vision reaffirmed my belief in myself and my abilities, reminding me that anything is possible.”  - Dana

“Starting my own PR company almost 7 years ago made me feel truly empowered. I was able to choose who I worked with, create a brand rooted in my own values and call the shots.” - Cory

“I used to play the piano, and the sense of empowerment it once brought me is something I deeply miss. I’ll definitely be picking it up again soon!”  - Ayla

“I started freelancing just over 2 years ago. It was the most terrifying yet ultimately empowering decision of my life. I don’t think I truly realized my own strength and tenacity until then”   - Alice

“A few months ago when I was giving a short presentation for a digital product I was helping design. I had flown to NY to meet the rest of the team, and there was a great synergy between everyone in the room. These moments of empowerment come from self-belief and sharing my voice - it's not something that comes easily to me but I'm recognizing that I have it within me!”  - Shalina

“Lately, I've been learning a lot of hard lessons on releasing control, and, ironically, this has made me feel more empowered than ever.”  - Karina

Share a woman, or group of women, that you’ll be honoring this IWD

“My mother. She's been a constant source of strength, wisdom, and inspiration in my life.”  - Dana

“This year, I'd love to honor my friend Justine Hernandez. She owns the vegan bakery Just What I Kneaded and Justine's Wine Bar. I recently went to a Galentine's Event at her wine bar and loved that she created such a fun party to celebrate female friendship.”  - Cory

“I have to shout out 5 women, whom I adore with all my heart: my grandma, mom, mother-in-law, sister, and best friend.”  - Ayla

“My mum (of course), my best friend, my circle of fellow female freelancers and my sweet niece, because I can’t wait to see the woman she becomes."  - Alice

“Anyone who cannot freely share their voice and thoughts.”  - Shalina

“My mom, who passed away 10 years ago. She was endlessly kind and tender, and I will always remember her support of me.”  - Karina

6 Conversations with the Women of Dal
6 Conversations with the Women of Dal

What does dāl embody or represent for you?

“dāl embodies authenticity and empowerment. My wish is not just to build a fashion brand, but a platform for telling stories, breaking boundaries, and inspiring confidence in every woman who wears our pieces.”  - Dana

“Sophistication, quality and intentionality.”  - Cory

“The commitment to sustainability, impeccable craftsmanship, unique aesthetic and stunning design truly set it apart!”  - Ayla

“Being confident in your own skin, and honoring timeless fashion to bolster that.”  - Shalina

“To me, dāl is the brand for a strong, independent woman. Dana has done such an amazing job in showing that dāl is more than clothing - it's a responsible, kind, and ambitious attitude towards life.” - Karina