Corsets, cup sizes and curves are Odile de Changy's specialty.
On November 4, her rue Pont aux Choux boutique lifted creamy curtains
to the line of classically beautiful lingerie that takes her name:
Odile de Changy.
Odile de Changy Lingerie
Rue Pont aux Choux, 75003 Paris
Parisians who know the Marais and others clever enough to locate
her on the "Je ne sais quoi" website
are now looting her trove of exquisite pieces.
"I have always been inspired by the women of my family.
. . They had a lot of character, were very coquette, very feminine,"
said the designer. Photographs of her mother, grandmother, and
great-grandmother, preside over her boutique work station, as
if this trio of fairy godmothers could wave their wands and have
us down to our best intimates.
"I make lingerie for women, not for
"I want women to take it back. . . I make lingerie for women,
not for men", said de Changy, who, following the tradition
of these women, selects the best cottons, silks, and French spn
lace. These she transforms into pieces that are reminiscent of
the past, while wholly modern; soutiens-gorge shaped like doves,
heart-embroidered panties, and a three-piece set that makes for
a swoon-worthy trousseau.
Reviving lace lingerie wearing
De Changy's love of lingerie began as a coup de foudre one summer
while on vacation. She discovered the exquisite underclothes of
previous generations of women, stowed within the commodes of the
family château. This beauty she longed to reproduce, hoping
to "break the porno-like concept for today's lingerie. It
(lingerie) is meant to be beautiful," she explained.
In 2000, she attended a traditional lace-making school near Calais,
a city known for its textile tradition. Several years later, she
won a prestigious design contest and interned for the creative
department of Eres lingerie. De Changy's passion for undergarments,
channeled by her love of drawing, and knowledge of the female
form (she spent years dancing classical ballet), meant she knew
she had to create her own line.
As of last year, a team of Calais lace workers began meticulously
producing her pieces. In early November, these treasures hit the
delicate racks of her toile-decorated boutique. De Changy's hope
is to revive both traditions of lace production and lace lingerie-wearing.
When asked what she thinks of Dita von Teese, an American burlesque
dancer who strips classy lingerie, she said; "I love Dita
and all that she represents. . . she has done everything herself,
even created her own company."
Certainly de Changy is another "sort of Dita," for although
she does not shed her clothes; her business is to present women
with a vision of how exciting it might be to do so. The Bon Marché
placed much of her début collection front and center on
its shelves last year. Elle magazine featured her work in one
of its "most promising new designer" spreads just as
Grazia did in its recent issue of "lovely underthings."
A closer examination of de Changy's unique pieces reveal that
they are branded somewhere by the line's motif; a heart. "This
is because what I create comes from the heart. It's personal for
me and for what I do. I try to transfer the soul of the tradition
of strong women," she said.
Odile de Changy
De Changy's heartfelt love of lingerie spun with the soul of
yesterday's women (comme elles étaient coquettes!) make
for an irresistible invitation to romance.
See www.odiledechangy.fr for more details.
Una Funk has returned to the land of her
ancestors in quest of her Business Master's degree and the perfect
chocolate éclair. Her preferred pastimes as a Franco-American
are writing, shopping, and trying on corsets...