updated 11 May 2012, 20:38
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Thu, May 10, 2012
New Straits Times
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Jimmy Choo's mentee making waves in fashion
by Atiqa Hazellah

KUALA LUMPUR - Dressed in a baby blue structured dress, fashion designer Ida Lundberg (second from left) looked poised for the interview at her suite in Ritz-Carlton Kuala Lumpur.

With a mentor like Datuk Jimmy Choo, it is no wonder that Ida is quickly making a name for herself in the fashion circles.

The petite 26-year-old fashion designer has already created her own clothing line in Milan.

Coming from a mixed parentage of Swedish mother Carin Lundberg and Ipoh-born father Noor Idris, Ida said she regarded Malaysia as her second home and proclaimed laksa as "one of my favourite food".

Her fixation for fashion revealed itself at the age of 7 when she saw her grandmother, a seamstress, sewing clothes at home.

"I guess that sparked my interest in fashion. I began to redesign all my clothes by cutting and sewing them in different styles."

She then attended the Accademia Italiana in Florence for a year and later graduated in fashion design from the prestigious Instituto Marangoni, Milan, in 2009 at the age of 23.

Rarely do parents consent when their children want to pursue fashion design, but her family had an open mind.

Not once did her businessman father and doctor mother ask her to reconsider her career path.

"I am very grateful and lucky to have an encouraging family who gave me the opportunity to do something I am passionate about."

Ida did not stop there. Her first collection was called "Ida Lundberg" after her name, which was launched in spring 2011.

She creates clothes by combining classical and contemporary themes for women's Pret-a-Porter and haute couture dresses to "let women feel lady-like, gorgeous and also empowered femininity".

Her first fashion show took place at the Grand Hotel Stockholm in Sweden and had the Swedish royal family and celebrities as guests.

She said it was a big break for her because her mentor, Choo, flew all the way to Sweden just to attend her fashion show.

"I learned a lot from Datuk Jimmy Choo. He helped me a lot. He advised me to believe in myself and to always be modest, regardless of my success or disappointments."

She said it felt great to have a supportive mentor who had so much credibility and creative power.

When she designs, Ida thoroughly researches for inspiration that comes from her frequent travels and visits around the world.

"I like to be surrounded by nature as I find it very therapeutic and energising for the soul. I believe that my surroundings can inspire me," she said.

For her, fabric research is the most important.

Ida uses a lot of silk, chiffon and organza in her collections that can capture the movements of a woman's soft curves.

Passionate about keeping her heritage alive, she is inspired by the mix of cultures in Malaysia.

"I plan to add batik in my designs in my summer collection that will give a new and contemporary spirit," she said, adding that she was a control freak and a perfectionist when it came to her work.

"Quality is important as my clients expect only the best."

Unfortunately, her collections are only found in Europe and in the Middle East, but those in Malaysia who would like to purchase her clothes can do so by visiting

Ida said Malaysians could catch a glimpse of her fashion line as it would be showcased here for the first time at the Asean Fashion Week in Sarawak in September.

Her future plans include extending her product lines by adding shoes, accessories and handbags under the brand's umbrella.

"It's all in the planning. But for now, I want to focus on creating clothes."

To all aspiring designers, Ida said: "Work hard and have a passion for it. It is not easy, It's a hard job."

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