Seraphine offers trend-led maternity clothes that flatter the pregnant figure and allow women to hold onto their personal sense of style throughout pregnancy.
'Before Seraphine, there really wasn’t any such thing as maternity fashion,' founder Cecile Reinaud tells us.
'There was functional maternity wear, but there was nothing that would make you excited to jump out of bed and get dressed in the morning. My simple game-changing idea was that mothers are women first and foremost – we don’t suddenly stop wanting to look good!'
It all started when Cecile's friends began to fall pregnant. She soon discovered that stylish maternity clothes were virtually non-existent.
'There was nothing even vaguely wearable out there! I used to do a bit of sewing in my spare time, so they started coming to me with alteration requests and that’s when I had the idea for Seraphine. I had a passion for fashion and realized there was a niche to take.
My style is very important to me, so when I was pregnant I was determined not to lose my sense of identity. I love knowing that I can help other women stick to their signature looks at a time when it’s easy to feel out of control.'
It’s a simple formula, but one that obviously works - Seraphine's long list of high profile celebrity clients including stars like Gwen Stefani, Doutzen Kroes, Zooey Deschanel and even the Duchess of Cambridge is testament to that.
We asked Cecile about family life and the demands of running a business alongside raising kids...
'I have two boys – Lorenz is 11 and Florian is 6. We start the day pretty early, and for me the mornings are for family time. I know this makes me a little unusual, but I made the decision early on to work later hours so that I could spend my mornings at home.
I prefer to spend quality time with my boys before they go off to school, when they’re fresh and excited for a new day. We have breakfast together, then I’ll do the school run on my way into work.
There’s always something exciting going on at the Seraphine office, whether it’s working on the latest collections, planning photoshoots or meeting the press for interviews, so the day goes by before I know it.
I have a nanny who picks the boys up from school & gets them started on their homework while I’m finishing off at the office, then I’m home in time for dinner.'
Cecile loves those moments when her two boys are playing nicely together the most.
'It’s a simple thing, but it’s wonderful to see how much my youngest looks up to his big brother, and how patient my oldest can be…. And if it gives me a bit of peace and quiet, I’m all for it!
She readily admits that running a business with two young children in the picture is not a walk in the park.
'By nature I’m a perfectionist so when they were younger I used to get frustrated about not having enough time. I’ve since learnt not to beat myself up too much about not being the perfect textbook mum.
My trick is to make a list of ten things I want to achieve in a day, then cross out the four least important ones and accept that they just won’t happen today. I aim to feel 100% satisfied when I’ve reached 60% of my daily goals. With this perspective of glass half full rather than half empty I find I have more positive energy that I can redeploy to both my business and family.'
Naturally, Cecile is full of great advice for expectant mums who are trying to create the perfect pregnancy and post-partum wardrobe.
'It all hinges on great basics. I created the bump kit as the perfect starting point for building up your maternity collection. It includes a simple white vest, black pencil skirt, a comfy pair of black leggings and a stylish LBD which you can mix and match with key pieces from your regular wardrobe.
Aside from that, you’ll need a couple of pairs of stylish maternity jeans, a good collection of tops and some statement maternity dresses. It’s all about finding ways to adapt your regular style to suit your new curves.'
If she could go back in time and give her pregnant self one piece of advice, Cecile would say 'stop beating yourself up'!
'I fell pregnant with Lorenz, my first, in the first year of setting up Seraphine. I was busy growing my budding business and I was so focused on trying to be superwoman that I was in danger of spreading myself too thin. As soon as I accepted that nobody can be perfect, I was able to relax, and felt so much better for it.'
Discover Seraphine's fabulous range of maternity clothes and nursing wear here.
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