Celebrity mother knows best (or how to dress your baby)

They may be style icons, but as Myleene Klass becomes the latest famous-mum-turned-designer, should they be telling us how to clothe our children? By Susie Mesure

Never mind that celebrity mums (or dads) rarely make the best role models – think Britney Spears, Kerry Katona or even Kate Moss – superstars from the pop, fashion and movie worlds have decided that they know best when it comes to dressing your newborn child. Not content at dabbling with perfumes, party frocks or even bed linen, celebrities now believe that the humble babygro is somewhat lacking when it comes to showbiz buzz.

Retail experts predict a rash of copycat collaborations after the first items from Myleene Klass's new range for Mothercare hit the baby specialist's stores this summer. The pop-star-turned-bikini-model, who recently joined the new mums' club, has lent her name – and design input – to a collection that Mothercare hopes will boost its share of the UK's £1.4bn babywear market. Baby K, which is Klass's first step down the celebrity-endorsed clothing road, will feature clothing and accessories for newborns to three-year-olds.

Klass, who approached Mothercare about the project when she was three months pregnant, told The Independent on Sunday: "I want to provide a range that's practical as well as beautiful .... I've been extremely hands on [with the design process]. I brought in samples, sketched ideas and explained the concerns I have from embroidery rubbing to buttons, washing, quality, safety and practicality – trying to button something in the middle of the night can prove a test in itself! I even brought one of my own dresses in as inspiration to be reduced to one-20th the size."

Mothercare is jumping on board the celebrity bandwagon for the first time as it battles intense competition in the fastest-growing area of the childrenswear market. Babywear sales soared by 30 per cent between 2005 and 2007 with the growing contingent of older mums spending more on dressing their new arrivals. Fashion chains such as Primark, specialist retailers like Mamas & Papas, the big grocers and even luxury brands from Marc Jacobs to 3.1 Phillip Lim are all rolling out new babywear collections.

Vivianne Ihekweazu, senior consumer analyst at Mintel, said: "People like to emulate celebrities' styles and how they dress their children. Given that there seems to be a celebrity baby boom this year, celebrities are definitely a potential new force in this [the babywear] market."

So far, just a handful of famous mums have launched children's collections. Madonna followed her debut as a children's book author last autumn with a clothing range called English Roses; Gwen Stefani's Harajuku Lovers label has a baby line; and the supermodel Stella Tennant has had a range called Tennant & Sons. Celebrity dad designers are somewhat rarer, although Bon Jovi's drummer Tico Torres has his own baby products company called Rock Star Baby, and Martin Sheen is an investor in the childrenswear company Jackson Clay, which has links to his family.

But celebrities are queuing up to get in on the act, according to the babywear chain Mamas & Papas. "We get offers from celebrities all the time but have declined them all so far because we can't see what a celebrity, even someone who is already a well-known designer, could bring to our brand. When celebrities design clothing lines it's normally about reflecting their style, which is difficult to do with their babies. The benefit to the customer isn't apparent," a company spokesman said.

Other high-street chains are keener. New Look, which launched Lily Allen as a designer, said it would "love to do something" with the right celebrity. And Topshop also said it might consider expanding its "Topshop mini" collection with a designer-inspired line.

Not all baby pundits are convinced about the merits of this new wave of designers. Stephanie Neuman, editorial director of Babyworld, a website for mums, said: "Celebrity collections will have a novelty factor and could be popular at baby showers. But I don't think that just because Myleene has had a baby she suddenly knows how to design baby clothes."

PROMOTED VIDEO
Life and Style
ebookNow available in paperback
ebooks
ebookPart of The Independent’s new eBook series The Great Composers
News
Buddy DeFranco
people
Arts and Entertainment
British actor Idris Elba is also a DJ and rapper who played Ibiza last summer
filmIdris Elba responds to James Bond rumours on Twitter
Arts and Entertainment
Lena Headey as Cersei Lannister in Game of Thrones
film
News
i100
Sport
Yaya Sanogo, Mats Hummels, Troy Deeney and Adnan Januzaj
footballMost Premier League sides are after a striker, but here's a full run down of the ins and outs that could happen over the next month
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

ES Rentals

    iJobs Job Widget
    iJobs Fashion

    Recruitment Genius: Business Manager

    £32000 - £40000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: A Business Manager is required ...

    Recruitment Genius: Operations Manager

    £45000 - £55000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This is an exciting opportunity...

    Recruitment Genius: Panel & Cabinet Wireman

    £20000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: Panel Wireman required for small electro...

    Recruitment Genius: Electronics Test Engineer

    £25000 - £27000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: An SME based in East Cheshire, ...

    Day In a Page

    Ed Richards: Parting view of Ofcom chief. . . we hate jokes on the disabled

    Ed Richards: Parting view of Ofcom chief. . . we hate jokes on the disabled

    Bad language once got TV viewers irate, inciting calls to broadcasting switchboards. But now there is a worse offender, says retiring head of the media watchdog
    War with Isis: The West needs more than a White Knight

    The West needs more than a White Knight

    Despite billions spent on weapons, the US has not been able to counter Isis's gruesome tactics, says Patrick Cockburn
    Return to Helmand: Private Davey Graham recalls the day he was shot by the Taliban

    'The day I was shot by the Taliban'

    Private Davey Graham was shot five times during an ambush in 2007 - it was the first, controversial photograph to show the dangers our soldiers faced in Helmand province
    Revealed: the best and worst airlines for delays

    Revealed: the best and worst airlines for delays

    Many flyers are failing to claim compensation to which they are entitled, a new survey has found
    The stories that defined 2014: From the Scottish independence referendum to the Ice Bucket Challenge, our writers voice their opinions

    The stories that defined 2014

    From the Scottish independence referendum to the Ice Bucket Challenge, our writers voice their opinions
    Stoke-on-Trent becomes first British city to be classified as 'disaster resilient' by the United Nations

    Disaster looming? Now you know where to head...

    Which British city has become the first to be awarded special 'resilience' status by the UN?
    Finally, a diet that works: Californian pastor's wildly popular Daniel Plan has seen his congregation greatly reduced

    Finally, a diet that works

    Californian pastor's wildly popular Daniel Plan has seen his congregation greatly reduced
    Say it with... lyrics: The power of song was never greater, according to our internet searches

    Say it with... lyrics

    The power of song was never greater, according to our internet searches
    Professor Danielle George: On a mission to bring back the art of 'thinkering'

    The joys of 'thinkering'

    Professor Danielle George on why we have to nurture tomorrow's scientists today
    Monique Roffey: The author on father figures, the nation's narcissism and New Year reflections

    Monique Roffey interview

    The author on father figures, the nation's narcissism and New Year reflections
    Introducing my anti-heroes of 2014

    Introducing my anti-heroes of 2014

    Their outrageousness and originality makes the world a bit more interesting, says Ellen E Jones
    DJ Taylor: Good taste? It's all a matter of timing...

    Good taste? It's all a matter of timing...

    It has been hard to form generally accepted cultural standards since the middle of the 19th century – and the disintegration is only going to accelerate, says DJ Taylor
    Olivia Jacobs & Ben Caplan: 'Ben thought the play was called 'Christian Love'. It was 'Christie in Love' - about a necrophiliac serial killer'

    How we met

    Olivia Jacobs and Ben Caplan
    Bill Granger recipes: Our chef's breakfasts will revitalise you in time for the New Year

    Bill Granger's healthy breakfasts

    Our chef's healthy recipes are perfect if you've overindulged during the festive season
    Transfer guide: From Arsenal to West Ham - what does your club need in the January transfer window?

    Who does your club need in the transfer window?

    Most Premier League sides are after a striker, but here's a full run down of the ins and outs that could happen over the next month