lily_aldridge

She might be a Victoria’s Secret Angel, but she defies all model stereotypes: She’s totally down-to-earth and says being a mom is the greatest joy she’s ever experienced. We chatted with the gorgeous Lily Aldridge while she was sitting in the hair chair prepping for a Victoria’s Secret shoot at Milk Studios. The supermodel is married to Kings Of Leon frontman Caleb Followill (yes, “Sex on Fire” was written about her), and they have a two-year-old daughter Dixie Pearl. Lily is extremely hands-on, and unless it’s a quick overnight trip, Dixie comes with her wherever she goes.

The family splits their time between Nashville and New York and just returned from England where they celebrated Dixie’s second birthday at the London Zoo, complete with a cowgirl theme, of course.

Lily got real with us about how she stayed fit during pregnancy, her secret to getting back in shape, her must-have beauty products (she’s obsessed!), her genius tips for traveling with a toddler, and much much more.

Stellar Advice

I was pregnant at same time as Adriana Lima and Alessandra Ambrosio and they gave me such good advice for how to stay in shape. I did a lot of prenatal yoga and got lots of massages. I relaxed and had the most beautiful pregnancy – I loved every second of it.

Back To Work

I saw all my friends bounce back with exercise and just being healthy. It was so inspiring to me, so I never worried about that. It was hard work getting back in shape, but I did it, and I was really proud.

After I gave birth, I started doing Ballet Beautiful with Mary Helen Bowers, and she got me ready for the VS fashion show four months post-baby. Getting back in shape with her was an amazing experience. She just had a baby too, so she has a prenatal workout video.

Model Moms

Being a working mom is such a good example for your child. All my friends I work with – Adriana, Miranda [Kerr] and Alessandra – are all amazing working moms, and it’s so great to have such a support system with your friends.

On The Go, Go, Go

Dixie already has so many frequent flyer miles – she comes with me everywhere unless it’s a quick overnight trip.

I pack tons of snacks (raisins and seaweed crisps are favorites) and download a bunch of educational apps on the iPad and let her go to town. It keeps her happy and the people around us, too, since she isn’t crying. Right now, she’s loving ABC Storybots, where robots sing songs about each letter. She can count and sing the ABCs – if you find the right educational apps, the iPad is a great learning tool.

I also have this amazing thing called the CARES Harness – it’s FAA-approved and you don’t need to carry on a car seat. It’s so incredible and makes traveling so much easier.

The Perfect Pregnancy

I did not model while pregnant. I checked out and really relaxed, enjoyed myself and had a healthy, happy pregnancy. I didn’t have tons of cravings, but one night at 4am, I was really wanting dried pineapple and I contemplated waking my husband to go and get it. I waited until the morning, but when I finally got it, it was glorious. Looking back, I should have woken him up!

Pregnancy Wardrobe

I loved my J. Brand maternity jeans. I also loved Hatch – they make such beautiful dresses. I had this one dress from them, and I swear every time I wore it, I got more compliments on it than any other outfit I have ever worn. They were so cute and comfortable. I would love to do a collaboration with them the next time I’m pregnant.

Beauty Junkie

I am a beauty freak. I went to Sephora yesterday and bought like the whole store. I love Creme de la Mer moisturizer, Proactiv Plus cleanser, Pure Fiji starfruit body scrub, Fresh lemon bath cubes, Tom Ford’s Jasmin Rouge and anything Kora [Miranda Kerr’s line].

When I was pregnant, I didn’t put anything on my body that wasn’t all natural. I went a bit wild. I have a whole new respect for ingredients and products. I used a lot of Mama Mio and Kora. To prevent stretch marks, I used a lot of oils – I put as many on as I could, and it worked! Loved the one by Mother’s Special Blend.

#Momfail

I swore I was going to feed her only healthy, organic stuff, but I totally give her juice and ice cream – you have to let them be kids! Also, trying to go down those swirly slides at the park always leads to an embarrassing moment.

The Name Game

I love classic names. I loved the name Pearl and my husband is Southern and he loved the name Dixie. We had two names picked out, and when she was born, I looked at her and just said, she’s a Dixie Pearl! She is such a firecracker and has so much personality – her name suits her perfectly.

Downtime

If you granted me three hours alone on a Saturday afternoon, you’d find me in bed watching House of Cards or Orange Is The New Black being so happy.

Lifesaving Baby Products

Water Wipes are so gentle and amazing, I now use them on my face! Other wipes were irritating her. I’m obsessed with Waxolene as a cure-all because it’s all natural and works. The Fisher-Price swing was a life saver, but next go around I’m getting the mamaRoo that sits on the floor.

The Challenge

Right now, Dixie is so social, and I’m really trying to teach her manners and to share, but it’s really hard to teach a two-year-old. I throw a full-on party in the street when she shares something with anyone, even me!

Night, Night

One of the greatest things I’ve done as a mom is put Dixie on a sleep schedule, using The Dream Sleeper book. It helps everyone get through the day – she knows when it’s time for a nap and is a great sleeper, and I can schedule workouts around that.

Yes, She Eats

I am a huge foodie. I appreciate delicious food, whether it’s a $1 taco or dinner at a five-star restaurant. One of my favorite meal is the roasted chicken at Barbuto, and the chef Jonathan Waxman just opened a restaurant in Nashville that I haven’t been to yet. When we land there tomorrow, the whole family is going directly to Adele’s for dinner. We are so excited he came to Nashville!

Fun With Dixie

We are members of The Nashville Zoo, which is incredible – one of the best zoos I’ve ever been to. At the end of my pregnancy, I would walk around there all day trying to get my labor started.

Dixie and I are obsessed with the homemade popsicles at Las Paletas and it’s right next door to the park, so we get popsicles and go to park and that’s my idea of a perfect day.

Alice Ryan

Family: Husband Kirk Miller, daughter Elliott Grace (3), sons Grey (7) and Barnes (4 months)
Lives: NYC, East Village; weekends on the North Fork of Long Island
Spends her days: Running her own PR and events company for luxury brands like Bonpoint and Estee Lauder

What are you obsessed with right now?

With a 3-month-old baby and two older children, finding better methods of organizing my schedule, investing the time for work and client meetings, ensuring that family time is uninterrupted and that my husband doesn’t feel like a spare part.

What’s stressing you out right now?

1. Finding the right double stroller so that my nanny can maneuver the streets of NYC with my youngest two.
2. House hunting in LA and trying to determine if life is truly better on the other coast.

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What song do you never skip over when it comes up on shuffle?

Chris Brown’s “Fine China” – I only listen to Hip Hop and R&B. It doesn’t remotely mirror the person that most people see, but I don’t listen to anything else.

What TV show are you into right now?

I’m not a TV watcher, but I’ll get totally immersed in a show during a flight and can happily watch Ray Donovan on repeat.

Favorite form of exercise?

SoulCycle has been my only workout since meeting instructor Laurie Cole six years ago. Sometime she encourages me to try Body By Simone, but to date I have not strayed.

What are you getting better at?

Saying that I would love to be there but sadly I can’t make it. I always want to support everyone who helps me, but It’s not always achievable. There is something every night, and once upon a time, I was a little more dynamic after hours!

What are you getting worse at?

Getting dressed. I have my go-to outfits, and the rotation is getting smaller and smaller. Thank goodness for chic girlfriends who inspire me to up my game from time to time.

Would pay good money for…

The perfect wardrobe – I would gladly give it all away and start over!

Career highlight?

Traveling to Japan and Moscow with Ralph Lauren, and everything working out precisely to his liking (even though I didn’t even speak the language!). There were many beautiful events with incredible press, and he was thrilled with me. Sheer elation.

Career lowpoint?

Arriving late for a meeting with Anna Wintour. I’m a subway girl, and somehow I broke my cardinal rule that day and took a taxi. For shame!

Favorite vacation spot?

Anywhere in the Bahamas: Old Fort, Lyford Cay, Eleuthera, and Harbour Island being the favorites. Pink sand and my children on the beach brings unparalleled joy.

Where do you go to be alone?

A tiny nail salon in the East Village that I’ve been going to since I moved to New York. I can close my eyes and nobody needs to ask me a thing.

First site/app you visit every morning?

Undoubtedly Instagram: It covers what I would see in WWD and allows me to glance at the people whose lives and work interest me.

Describe your “comfy clothes”

Always Hatch Collection (whether pregnant or not): The clothes are my favorite look. My latest is the Twilight Romper – it gets a lot of compliments!

Airbnb or resort?

I love a little hotel living, so I will naturally gravitate toward a resort, but One Fine Stay is truly genius – the fancy version of Airbnb.

Pregnancy style: boho or bodycon?

A blend of both – early on, a little less form-fitting is more forgiving but as the bump is more pronounced, a body conscious silhouette is gorgeous.

Favorite brand for you?

I am leaning towards my husbands line Millers Oath. He has made beautiful tailored pieces for some of my girlfriends, and I think it’s time he takes over my look!

Favorite brand for kids?

Bonpoint for the color palette, exquisite fabrics and the most divine party dresses and shoes. It’s the only European element to my all American family!

Babies are…

The center of my universe!

Favorite kids food?

Homemade waffles with apple sauce and strawberry jam.

What’s your “mommy drink”?

Anything that my husband puts in my hand. He favors Hendricks Gin, and that seems to go surprisingly well with anything found in the fridge. Left to my own devices, always a large glass of chilled rose.

To push present or not to push present?

I wouldn’t ever dream of asking for a push present, but my friend Jennifer Fisher has always sent me gold initials when a new arrival comes, so I’ve certainly been spoiled!

On Our Radar: July 23, 2015

primaryicecream

primarysheets

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primarypremama

Ruby Rocket’s
WHO: Kids, grown ups… anyone who loves a popsicle.
WHAT: These new healthy ice pops are made of fruit and veggies – and have a max of 6g of sugar and 40 calories – but trust, they’re delicious!
WHEN: You need to cool off on a hot day.
WHERE: Online or find them near you.

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Modern Burlap Swaddles
WHO: Soon-to-be parents with a minimalist design aesthetic (i.e. don’t want any of that pink and blue crap!).
WHAT: Sweet, chic black and white prints (think XO, shapes, letters) are refreshing stand outs in a baby world of pastels.
WHEN: Makes a lovely gift (hint hint).
WHERE: modernburlap.com

Belly Armor Nursing Cover
WHO: Anyone who wants to take extra precaution against radiation from devices harming your baby.
WHAT: Belly Armor’s new nursing covers cancel out ambient radiation from smart phones, tablets, and laptops by neutralizing 99% of the incoming electromagnetic waves.
WHEN: We all log countless hours on our devices while nursing, so be proactive.
WHERE: bellyarmor.com

Premama Lactation
WHO: Breastfeeding moms who want to increase milk supply.
WHAT: Forget the tea and the pills, this is a berry powder (made of fennel seed, fenugreek, and blessed thistle) you mix with water, like Emergen-C.
WHEN: You want to up your stash.
WHERE: cvs.com

Angie Keiser

The internet can be an icky place. Click bait. “Which color is THE DRESS?!”. Sweepstakes. But then every once in awhile, the beast introduces something so beautiful, so genius, so wonderful you can’t help but forgive it for the rest of that crap. For us (and for VOGUE and Jenna Lyons), it’s been Angie Keiser (aka @2sistersangie) and her wildly creative, adorable 5-year-old daughter Sydney, known to most as her internet nickname, Mayhem – after those kooky Allstate ads.

When the Ohio-based mom and photographer started Instagramming photos of Sydney in paper dresses invented and designed by the then-4-year-old, it was all in the name of play. But fast forward about a billion articles (BuzzFeed, Glamour, the works) – not to mention Mayhem’s Fashion Week debut and CFDA shout-out), and the family (don’t forget dad, Keith!) maintains an IG audience that’s creeping up towards 500k and a J.Crew collaboration that’s just hit shelves (yes, any little girl in your life is going to want this tassel sweatshirt).

But what’s perhaps more surprising than how such a humble hobby could draw up a crowd (“No one has been more surprised than I have that people cared about paper dresses,” Angie told us), is how she’s managed to keep Sydney a curious and generally typical 5-year-old, grounded. Angie filled us in on why they say no more than yes to the requests that come in (no, you will not see a #FashionbyMayhem reality show), the values that matter most to them, and the social media safety precaution you should adopt NOW.

Meet the inspiringly normal, lovely, anti-stage-mom Angie.

Following Her Lead

When Sydney was 2, someone gave her some dress-up clothes she was really into. And then one day she brought me a pillowcase and a clothespin and she said “put this dress on me, mom.” It was one of those frustrating days, and I looked at her and said “that’s not a dress.” As soon as I heard the words come out of my mouth and watched her face – the disappointment! – I realized I never wanted to do that again. I decided that day that if she thought she saw something, I would do my best to help her make it happen. She will do things like take all the toilet paper off the roll because she wants to make something out of it – life gets messy, yes. But the imagination is mind-blowing.

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Playtime 101

Becoming a mother made me define creativity a little differently – more broadly. I was already a professional photographer, so there was a lot of creativity in my day-to-day, but staying at home with a child is a very different type of imagination. I had one big advantage: Having photographed other people’s children for 13 years before having one of my own, I learned how to interact with kids. You have to get down on the floor on their level and be silly in order to get the shot – and totally get over feeling like a fool yourself!

Safety First, Social Second

My biggest advice? Never post anything with a location tag in real time. If we’re posting that we just had a great lunch in Central Park, that was at least a few hours ago.

“Hi, Jenna Lyons here”

I got an email from Jenna Lyons that said “Hey, I read your story, and you might think this is crazy, but I want to do a small collection designed by a 4-year-old. If you think that would be fun, let me know.” We had a call with her and Jenny Cooper, the head of crewcuts, and it was funny because they were like “we have absolutely no idea how this is going to work, but we love that she is doing this and having fun with it.” Before we came to New York, I talked to Jenny about Sydney’s nap schedule to make sure we set up times that were easy for her and never an all-day thing. The team was literally on the floor with her, folding paper and watching the way she works, asking her about colors and showing her how they’d interpret her ideas with beads and other pieces. We could not have been more thrilled – it was a once in a lifetime experience!

Manners Matter

My husband and I have a photo studio, and since Sydney was little, she’s had little jobs around here, like getting bottles of water for clients. We don’t have a nanny, so she’s with us all the time. We always felt it was important for her to be able to interact with adults and know how to behave – we wanted to raise not just a great kid but a great person. We taught her to shake hands and look people in the eye when they come in the studio. Of course, we have our struggles… she is a regular 5-year-old!

No, No, No, YES!

Sydney’s health and well-being is our biggest priority. We’ve had opportunities to do a reality TV show and to read for a movie, but I don’t want to do anything that would dramatize or traumatize my family. When it’s an opportunity for Sydney to learn something – like the J. Crew collaboration – that’s interesting to us.

Aren’t You That Little Girl…

People do come up to her on the street – hey, aren’t you that little girl who makes paper dresses?! – or when she meets someone new and they say “I know you! I love what you do!” – she has a pretty good feel for what Instagram is. We tell her, hey, there are a lot of people out there that have a lot of followers and you’ve gotten to do this cool stuff so that’s how they know you. We try to keep her in the attitude of gratitude… which can be tough when people give her a lot of attention. We try to stay away from anything that becomes too much pressure for someone who’s 5.

Comments = Chaos

Within 48 hours of our story going viral, I knew I could never read the comments. Most of the comments are positive and fulfilling but it only takes one to make you feel bad… and I do not voluntarily do things that make me feel bad!