Armed with her passion for both summer and fashion, designer Terri Donna challenged herself to create effortlessly stylish, free-spirited and adventurous swimwear.
A summer holiday in Europe impelled the launch of her namesake label terridonna; based out of Brisbane, Australia.
The label designs and creates its garments in-house, arranging for local printers to transfer its distinct prints inspired by Australia’s natural environment onto Italian Lycra.
From classic styles to retro shapes, each garment is made-to-order and can be customised to meet individual requirements at the drop of a sewing needle.
NSS Editor, Michelle Larin, recently interviewed Donna about her label, which she says is aimed at channelling ‘every woman’s inner goddess’.
Q: Terri, tell me about you as the designer. What drives your passion for swimwear?
A: What fuels my passion for swimwear is summer! Growing up, my family visited Fraser Island every year where I lived in my bikini for two weeks and returned nice and brown.
As I got older, my obsession for fashion grew. As I found new and interesting labels, fashion became an increasing passion throughout my life. While I was studying fashion, I was buying a bikini almost every week during summer and, as soon as I learnt how to sew, there was no stopping my obsession for swim!
Q: What philosophy does your brand possess?
A: At terridonna we want every woman who wears a bikini from us to feel comfortable and confident. We want to bring out the inner goddess in every woman and promote a healthy, happy and active life. We hand-make every garment in-house as a customer orders, so they know each piece is made with love.
We create unique designs, bold prints and colourful plains to make a statement! Each design has a small creative detail that can be obvious or subtle. terridonna is about promoting Australia and the Australian summer.
Q: Describe, in more detail, terridonna’s style and fit.
A: We make sizes 6-14 (US2-10). We design styles for women of all ages and sizes; we don’t discriminate. We create something for everyone. Because we make to order, we have the ability to customise a bikini for our customers where requested.
Q: What inspires your designs?
A: I am inspired by everything around me. Australia is the main inspiration for the brand: the weather, the endless coastlines, our wildlife, flora and fauna, the lifestyle we live and the Australian spirit!
Q: Tell us about some of your past swimwear collections.
A: Past collections have been inspired by Australia’s flora and fauna, the red back spider, Great Barrier Reef and Tasmania.
Q: What does it take to run a swimwear label in Australia? What differentiates terridonna from other brands?
A: It takes a lot of dedication to run a swimwear label in Australia. To keep everything Australian made and owned requires attention to detail and perseverance. Our customers keep the brand going; their love of supporting Australian brands and their thirst for something different.
terridonna is different to other labels in the swimwear market because we make everything in-house. We can modify a style as per a customer’s request.
Q: Describe the essence of the woman who wears your brand?
A: The terridonna customer is a free-spirited soul. She thrives on adventure and the warmth of the sun. She loves the feeling of the sand between her toes and the salt water in her hair. She doesn’t run her life with material things and is passionate, kind and giving to the environment and human nature.
Q: Define ‘Australian beach culture’?
A: The Australian beach culture is spending endless days at the beach, skating/riding down to the local store wearing your thongs and bikini/boardies, getting up early to catch the morning waves, or simply to breathe in the fresh sea air before starting the day.
Q: What do you love most about Australian summers and beach culture?
A: Summer fills me with light. I love the carefree spirit of road trips and eating ice-cream. Summer and our beach culture encourage adventure, motivating people to step outside and take in the beauty of our country where we create new, exciting memories.
Q: When you hear the words ‘women and swim’ what comes to mind?
A: I picture a healthy curvaceous woman in a red and white polka dot bikini lying on her towel on the sand at the beach.
Q: What does beauty mean to you?
A: Beauty isn’t always physical. It’s the spirit of a woman which makes her beautiful. It’s her pleasant nature and smile. It’s the look in her eyes when she’s in love. It’s the rush of adrenaline when she’s happy. It’s the light surrounding her when she herself feels free to say she is beautiful.
terridonna swimwear is available to purchase online at: www.terridonna.com
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