Book: Contemporary Lingerie Design

Some months ago, I got this book as a wonderful birthday present from a friend. It was a great chance for me to start learning about designers and their particular style, about what influences a lingerie collection and the processes involved in the creating and making it. I was just starting the blog, and didn’t have much knowledge about the industry.

The cover – Made by Niki lingerie

So I thought that, instead of talking about the book, I could make something different. As the book talks about 30 brands, I decided to put together some of my favorite, together with a little excerpt of the book telling something nice about the brand. It was really hard to choose which ones I would talk about, because all of them are beautiful in some way.

As this is already going to be a long post, I am not putting any personal opinion, aside from my designer choices, that should be enough for you to understand a bit of my taste. The brands are in alphabetical order.

Bien Fée Pour Toi

Autumn 2009

“I have two key themes: freshness and fantasy. I’m inspired by the freshness and purity of nature (…) and then, bit by bit, I bring it together with the fantasy side”

“I think I design equally well for a passionate and very feminine woman as for a woman who is more discreet and romantic.”


Carol Malony

Summer 2009

“Lingerie gives you the permission to express yourself in another language. It can be beautifully done, it can be articulate, it can be poetic – it can be sexy!”

“It can start with a charm or even a bow and you just build it up. It’s much better to start with the materials and drape them on a stand so that they find their own dramatic style.”


Chantal Thomass

Winter 2012

“I prefer to design my ready-to-wear with inspiration taken from lingerie, such as broderie anglaise or corsets. I like the masculine/feminine element, the contrast between the suit, which is something I’m well-known for, and lingerie.”

“I like the transparency of lace, specially very fine Chantilly lace. I really like satin and the transparency of tulle. I like to visit the suppliers’ factories.”


Claire Pettibone

Heilroom collection

“There is an underlying femininity and romance in all of m work. I have developed quite a speciality for lace and embroideries, so there is a relationship there. (…) The goal is to make a woman look absolutely breathtaking.”

“All women are beautiful, and it’s my job to enhance that beauty with clothing. I see lingerie as an opportunity to step “out of time”, take a moment for oneself and perhaps share it with someone special”


Fifi Chachnil

Collaboration with Topshop, Winter 2008

“Girls inspire me – their differences and singularity are my inspiration; the shape of the body and the way girls from different countries behave. Creativity often comes out of necessity.”

“The idea was to make a lingerie collection that did not compromise on style. It was like fashion, but to wear underneath.”

Fleur of England

Jasmine collection

“It’s about beautiful, stunning lingerie that is almost a modern classic.Above all, the garment has to fit amazingly well. Fit is the most important thing. (…) Something that if your husband or boyfriend bought for you, you would think “Oh! How lovely, he’s bought me this pretty garment, he’s really thought about it!”

“Favourite design: my balcony bra: the fit is really good. It’s been in my collection since I started and it will never go.”


Summer 2008

“Fabrics and laces are the most important starting point for my designs. (…) I need to make the designs as beautiful as possible. I love fabrics that have a soft touch, very lightweight fabrics, frills, polka dots and layering lace over other fabrics.”

“I’m inspired by nature, such as as feeling for the seasons in Japan, the colour of the sky, sunrays from a cloud…’

Guia La Bruna

Touch of Gold pieces

“I think of a woman between 20 and 40, who is fashionable, quite romantic and feminine, in love with colours, prints, quality fabrics, with a slightly edgy taste. I guess someone like me”

“The inspiration: vintage-style lingerie, 1950s, divas mainly, all translated in luxurious fabrics. I wanted to create the lingerie set that I would love to have found in my grandmother’s drawer, with a retro look but modern at the same time.”


Marlies Dekkers

Exhibition in Rotterdam

“Women tend to have a different view of who they are; I try to create designs that allow women to accept themselves as they are and feel comfortable about this. I want to give them confidence and make them feel beautiful. That’s my mission!”

“I’m also very proud that I design underwear that women want to combine with outerwear. (…) I wanted to make them [the bras] so beautiful that women would want to show them off, and the buyers didn’t believe me. I’m very proud that years later I’ve been proven right and it’s something women like to show off.”


Miss Lala Presents

Summer 2009

“With lingerie, you never know who’s ging to buy what. You can think, for example, that pink gingham is for a certain age group, but you can have a fifty-year-old woman come in who adores it. Lingerie is the one place you can really experiment.”

“I’ll never stop loving polka dots. I’m obsessed with hearts. Ginghams I just adore, and also 1950s cotton stripes; I love the colours. I like a bit of bling – I like Swarovski crystals.”


Nuits de Satin Paris

Dita waspie with Dolly babydoll

“We take several vintage pieces and use one detail from one, another detail for from another – we don’t design on paper. Or we take a vintage design as a base and design around it.”

“I adore Chantilly lace, silk mousseline and silk satin, specially duchesse satin. (…) All the fabrics are French, including the silk, because I believe France has an unique savoir faire with regard to fine-quality fabrics and laces”


Pleasure State

Summer 2012

“We find today that colour is an evolution and it has little impact from the weather being hot or cold. We still refer to collections by their seasonal name, but for Pleasure State the influences are more likely to be around fashion seasons and events such a Christmas, Valentine’s Day and Mother’s Day.”

“I am very proud of our superbly fitting and comfortable bra cups, which are seamless, smooth, flattering and exquisitely beautiful.”

So, what did you think about those designers? Do you find one of them is your favourite?

Book: Contemporary Lingerie Design

7 thoughts on “Book: Contemporary Lingerie Design

    1. I must say that yes – they are quite expensive. But the great thing about lingerie is that sometimes, out of the blue, you find pieces on sale! And as you don’t have to worry about collections and seasons (at least I don’t), it’s always a good chance to get something out of your budget 😉

    1. I was so glad when I got it! I’ve seen some lingerie books I’d classify as “miss”, specially the ones that go around “how to please your man” stupid thoughts.
      But not this one! It’s really nice to see and relate the influences with the pieces, to know a little more about choosing fabrics and how the people who are already good do it!

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