Pregnancy lingerie? Bit of a push, even if you are a supermodel

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Martin Moodie
Martin Moodie is the Founder & Chairman of The Moodie Report.

Natalia_Westin_Bl_500If I ever were to become pregnant (no Mum and Dad, I’m not announcing it this way), I hope I manage to look even half as effortlessly chic as Russian supermodel Natalia Vodianova (above), writes Brands Editor Sarah Lysecki. While I may not possess her svelte 34-24-34, 5 foot 9 inch frame, I think I could just about pull off a cape (or, failing that, a ‘slanket’) at seven months pregnant. (Vodianova is expecting her first child with billionaire boyfriend Antoine Arnault.)

I had the pleasure of meeting the Etam Brand Ambassador and mother-of-three at a press conference at The Westin Paris – Vendôme, ahead of the French lingerie brand’s Paris Fashion Week show. That evening, Etam showed off its latest lingerie, nightwear and swimwear collections, including Vodianova’s seventh for the brand, at the ‘Live Show Etam’, staged at La Bourse de Commerce (Paris Stock Exchange).

Etam invite

As a side note, given how a selection of my male colleagues clamoured (or more likely, begged The Moodie Report Executive Director – Editorial, Rebecca Mann) to attend the Victoria’s Secret cocktail featuring Angel Adriana Lima at the TFWA World Exhibition in Cannes last year, the sight of 80 models in Etam lingerie would doubtless have rendered them incapable of speech, rational thought or delivering coherent copy.

This time around, I was the exclusive travel retail journalist present. The other writers and bloggers mostly hailed from fashion publications, websites and television stations based in neighbouring European countries – and some as far away as China. A fortnight ago it was London with Toni & Guy; last week it was Paris – I’m fast becoming a model travel retail writer, on several levels…

While it was interesting to hear how Vodianova was inspired by a personal trip to Peru for her latest collection, my ears perked up when one of the bloggers asked her for pregnancy style tips and if she would consider designing a pregnancy range of lingerie and swimwear for Etam.

Natalia Vodianova collection for Etam
Natalia Vodianova’s latest line for Etam was inspired by Peruvian feather-work she saw while on a trip to Peru

A cape is one thing but what heavily-pregnant woman, even if you are a supermodel like Natalia Vodianova, wants to be seen in an, “itsy-bitsy-teenie-weenie-yellow-polka-dot bikini?” I thought.

Expecting the question, Vodianova quipped, “How did I see this coming?” before beginning her answer. Her main piece of advice? “Don’t take pregnancy as an excuse to do nothing.”

“It’s really important to keep yourself active if you can. There are many women who experience much more difficult pregnancies than I have. It is very challenging and I do get tired,” she replied. Vodianova went on to say that she finds her three children keep her busy and that her other commitments, including her involvement with her charity Naked Heart Foundation for special needs children, travelling and photo shoots also keep her on her toes.

Being heavily pregnant, she said she wasn’t planning on running for her charity at the Paris Half Marathon this year, as she has in previous years. “I’m escaping this time,” she said, adding that she would be there on the side lines cheering on her team.

As for a pregnancy line with Etam, Vodianova said the subject came up when she and Arnault, Louis Vuitton Moët Hennessey (LVMH) Group Director and son of the group’s owner, Bernard Arnault, were discussing the Etam show and whether she would be taking part in it.

“Someone asked if I would be doing the show and I said that would be quite awkward. Antoine remarked, ‘well, it would be the most Tweeted picture in the world. Forget about Demi Moore on the cover of Vanity Fair’.”

Whether she meant to be ironic or not, she added, “I think that the pregnancy line is a bit of a push.”

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