The woman who introduced the world to chic, form-fitting designs that celebrate the pregnant woman's bod is shaking things up again! Six years after introducing her maternity line to the masses through her collaboration with Target, Liz Lange is debuting more beautiful duds to flatter burgeoning bellies.
The Brown University grad and former Vogue editor, is relaunching her high-end line of maternity fashions after taking a year-long hiatus to reassess her business. The new Liz Lange Collection, which hits maternity shops and Nordstrom.com this week, includes dresses, silk blouses, skirts, pants, sweaters, jackets, and for the first time — denim!
The designer took some time to chat with us about her latest line, how to get the most bang for your buck with a maternity wardrobe and the ways she juggles work and motherhood.
lilsugar: Tell us about the new line. What are you most excited about?
Liz Lange: Even though I adore the collection that we do for Target, my roots and my beginnings are always in the high-end collection. That’s where I started it all and that’s where I got to work one-on-one with customers and with all of the celebrities I dressed over the years. We took two seasons off and so I'm just so excited to be relaunching in general. It’s really a continuation of everything we always did. We’ve always been about really, really wearable clothing even when we do trends, its always in a pretty and wearable way and not too out there. Really good quality stretch fabrics, clean silhouettes and classic American style, very uptown NYC, where I got my start.
To see the rest of Liz Lange's answer and her thoughts on the pregnant figure, read more.
One thing that is somewhat new about it is that I was never able to do denim in the collection before. It was always something that we would offer in our shops, we would just take in other brands, but I was never able to source it properly. So we found this phenomenal denim resource and now we are doing all Liz Lange branded denim and it comes in like every different wash – from the lightest to the darkest – all different silhouettes – the pencil, the boot, all of them – and it has our signature chunky gold hardware and all the rivets all the detail is Liz Lange branded and of course it is all super-stretchy. So I’m really excited about that.
I have a personal love of dresses and I think we’ve done a lot of really great dresses this Spring in all different ways. A lot of stretch silk dresses. We’ve done short dresses, little shifts, wear to work dresses, long, maxi-style dresses, short dresses with matching jackets that feel very 1960’s clean and classic — great to wear to work. I always think of our collection as dressing a pregnant woman in all of her needs. I find that so many pregnant woman today [are] working women, executives, and I think we have always been a great resource for that. We have a lot of great suiting, so its not just about great denim and t-shirts and little dresses, although we have all of that.
lilsugar: Women tend to complain about their figures during pregnancy, but you celebrate the expectant body with your designs?
Liz Lange: That’s just what I’ve always believed. I feel that pregnancy is a really, really beautiful time and I do think that the world has kind of come around to that — with the celebrities showing off their bodies on the red carpet all the time now. I started the line over ten years ago because I saw a friend wearing maternity clothing. I hadn’t been pregnant yet, and when she took off the maternity clothing and just put on one of her old sweater that was stretchy and still kind of working, I thought, my God, she looks so much tinier in that little sweater where I’m just seeing her belly than in that big schemata she walked in wearing. So I am a firm believer and that is why I have always used so many stretch fabrics because I don’t want to have to make things oversized, but I understand that a woman’s body is constantly growing, so stretch fabric allows it to be a little fitted and still grow with you.
lilsugar: Were you comfortable with your own body during your pregnancies?
Liz Lange: I certainly wore all of my own clothing. My children are 8 and 10. My first pregnancy was during the first year of my business. It was a very small business back then and I only had about eight designs on the line and then with my daughter two years later it had grown quite a bit. I would say it was with both pregnancies that really helped me define and grow my business. In the beginning I was very inspired by Donna Karan. [She] had her eight easy pieces, and I felt that my collection, when I first got started, would just be these eight easy pieces and it came in like navy, chocolate brown or charcoal gray and they were very, very fine Italian stretch wool and I did a cashmere twin set that was one of the eight pieces and it was literally that you just picked the color and if you had the eight pieces you could just mix and match and that would be your wardrobe. And that still, in a weird way, is the essence of my collection. But when I was pregnant I discovered, low and behold, eight pieces is not enough. 'Maybe today I don’t feel like wearing a pencil skirt, I want to wear a short A-line skirt.' Or 'Hey I feel like wearing a t-shirt and I didn’t have one on the line.' So I started to grow the line based on my personal needs. At that time I didn’t want there ever to be any prints or patterns and then I realized, 'Gee, I’m pregnant for nine months and sometimes I feel like wearing a print or a pattern.' So all of that stuff evolved during my pregnancy.
Check out what Liz Lange had to say about shopping for a maternity wardrobe in tough economic times and what to expect from her Target collection in tomorrow's post. View the fabulous selections from her new line below.