Donna Ida Thornton
Curator of the modern wardrobe with two eponymous boutiques, an online store donnaida.com and lifestyle brand IDA
Jean Queen Donna Ida Thornton is the curator of the modern wardrobe with four eponymous boutiques, an online store donnaida.com and lifestyle brand IDA; a collection of high-waisted denim and luxurious separates.
Born and raised in Sydney, Australia, Donna Ida Thornton moved to the UK in 1999 for a career in marketing when she spotted a gap in the market. While out shopping one day Donna realised she couldn’t find anywhere to buy jeans that she felt truly comfortable in. Department stores had a great selection but she couldn't get the service she needed. So when a friend suggested that Donna should open a boutique that just sold jeans, she did exactly that.
Donna opened the doors to the first Donna Ida boutique on Draycott Avenue in the fashionable Chelsea area in October 2006. Three more boutiques quickly followed, Westfield London in The Village in 2008, Elizabeth Street in Belgravia in 2010 and Guildford on Swan Lane in 2011. The boutiques stock a roll call of the latest and most sought after denim brands in sizes 23-34 forming the basis of every wardrobe from J Brand, IDA, FRAME Denim, Goldsign, James Jeans, Mother Denim and Current/Elliott. Donna Ida completes the modern wardrobe with a selection of tops from Equipment, Carven, Mother of Pearl, Emma Cook, Markus Lupfer, Leon & Harper, Tucker, Wildfox, Elizabeth and James, Simeon Farrar and Boy by Band of Outsiders. Finish off the Donna Ida look with handbags from Sophie Hulme, Sheriff and Cherry sunglasses, Vita Fede jewellery, shoes from Penelope Chilvers, scarves from Becksonderguaard and VPL free thongs from New York lingerie brand Hanky Panky.
In April 2013, Donna Ida’s flagship Chelsea boutique was refurbished and features a brand new shop front, sweeping denim bar and revamped new changing rooms. Donna Ida boutiques are designed with the customer in mind and all feature the famous ‘Denim Clinic’. At the Denim Clinic, customers can book a one-to-one appointment with a style advisor so they can find the perfect jeans. The directional concept boutique has a bespoke interior that includes distinctive features such as a full-length, three-way mirror for the customer to admire their jeans from every angle.
In 2008, Donna launched www.donnaida.com to mirror the in-store experience. In September 2013 the website will be re-launched with improved functionality and user journey, introducing new features including fully integrated social media links, quick view availability, scrolling home page, Live Chat and comprehensive Denim Clinic with Designer Encyclopaedia and Denim Dictionary. Donna has over 7,500 followers on Twitter Donna Ida (@donnaida) on Twitter which she entertains with her daily news and insights into her working life.
Donna launched her own brand IDA in 2012, an entirely new concept in denim which is dedicated to celebrating the ‘iconic woman’ silhouette with a collection of true-waisted and tailored jeans with classic co-ordinates to complement them. Drawing inspiration from quintessential British elegance and sophistication, Donna Ida Thornton has introduced a collection of styles with a contemporary aesthetic and attitude to denim. IDA is a label with an achingly cool take on the way a modern woman dresses; a little bit lady, a little bit rock ‘n’ roll and a lot of chic.
Donna Ida Thornton explains; ‘I'm inspired by women past and present who all know what a waist is. I look to the likes of Marilyn Monroe, Bridget Bardot, Katherine Hepburn, Marianne Faithful, Anita Pallenberg and Kate Moss. I found that more and more of my customers were looking for a high-waisted jean that gives shape and holds you in. One person in particular Jeanie would always ask me for high-waist jeans and I felt I was letting her down. It soon became clear that there was a gap in the market for a denim brand dedicated to true-waisted jeans, and so IDA was born.’
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