Today’s working wardrobe is incomplete without jeans which make you feel fabulous. There is no better place to go for denim inspiration than Donna Ida’s boutiques. All of my best denim purchases have been made under the watchful eye of Donna.
Donna launched in 2012 and quickly became London’s jean queen. She started as a denim boutique with a curated selection of the best denim brands. She went on to create her own label and has recently re-launched as a lifestyle brand with the introduction candles, nightwear, outerwear and accessories.
We asked Donna what motivated her to start the business, the secrets of her success and where she plans to go next.
What inspired you to start Donna Ida?
The lack of service when buying jeans in London. Department stores had everything I wanted to buy without the service. I wanted to cut out the denim section and drop it into a boutique environment.
What do you think has been the secret of your success?
Persistence and determination.
What advice would you give women running their own fashion business. What skills do you think are essential?
What has been your most challenging time in the business?
Turning the business from a multi brand model into our own brand. We slowly turned the ship and we are now on our own course – you will only find the Donna Ida brand at Donna Ida now!
How much time do you spend on the shop floor? What is a typical day for you?
There is no typical day or week for me, and I would say that goes for any entrepreneur. There is always a million things to do, whether it is working on the business plan, designing, selling the collection, speaking to press, working with the team on any number of things. Each day is a challenge. I am in and out of the shops all the time and really need that shop floor time to hear customer feedback.
Over the past few years you have grown your own label range. How has this changed the direction of the business?
It has completely reinvented it. We have acquired new customers and we are now in control of our own destiny.
How do you see the brand growing over the next 5 years?
We will lead with digital and wholesale, creating an International brand.
How important are social media and influencers for you?
Social media is key, we have always been active on it. We don’t formally work with influencers but of course there are a lot of bloggers and influencers who are natural fans of the brand.
Do you have a Donna Ida muse?
Not really, I keep a few girls in my head of who the Donna Ida girl is. It is not one person, it is more a group of girls.
You are the ultimate Jean Queen. What items should every working woman have in her denim wardrobe?
A skinny, cropped bootcut, boyfriend jean, flare, straight or cropped straight depending on your height.
Lastly, if you could give one piece of advice to other founders what would it be.
Never never, never give up. Straight from Churchill’s mouth.
We picked a few of our favourites from Donna’s Spring/Summer 18 collection