'Loki' Costume Designer on Making Sophia Di Martino's Costume Nursing- and Pumping-Friendly: 'So She Could Be a Strong New Mom'
It shouldn't be hard for working moms to breastfeed or pump while on the job. After all, research shows that nursing has numerous physical and mental health benefits for both mother and child. Yet, many women report multiple barriers to breastfeeding once returning to work.
In a recent Instagram post, Loki star Sophia Di Martino, who plays the Loki variant Sylvie in the Disney series, showed off her strategy. According to Metro, the 37-year-old welcomed her first child in 2019 with actor-writer Will Sharpe and started filming Loki in early 2020.
After sharing that "it's not easy being a working mama," Di Martino explained how the show's "genius" costume designer Christine Wada added "concealed zippers" to the chest area of her costume so that she could pump and breastfeed in between takes. "It's little (big) things like this that made it possible for me to do my job AND be a parent," she wrote. "I'm forever grateful."
As this is Wada's first time making a costume that accommodated nursing, Parents.com caught up with her to talk about her motivation and inspiration to support the new mom on set.
Parents: What was your creative process for creating Sophia Di Martino's 'Loki' costume?
Christine Wada: I began creating Sylvie's look by searching for nomadic influences. Where would she have grabbed pieces from? And from what time period? There's a great book called Un-Fashion by Maira Kalman and Tibor Kalman. The photographs are inspiring manifestations of style born of function guiding form. I began with those pages and expanded my journey by diving into some of the Marvel language of Loki patterns and colors.
P: What inspired you to add the concealed zippers to the costume?
CW: I have always considered that the costume should facilitate the performance in more ways than just fashion. Design should help define a character and function. Often the best costumes go without notice because they just are so believable and natural to a character. Achieving that includes considering how the costume functions to allow the character to come through. In this case Sylvie the character needed to be a fighter and feel strong. And to portray that with confidence I felt Sophia needed to feel like she could be a strong new mom! At the end of the day, you just want people to succeed.
P: How beneficial do you think concealed zippers and similar new mom modifications in costumes would be for working moms in Hollywood that are breastfeeding/pumping?
CW: I think these considerations are beneficial for all parties involved. Mom, baby, and production.