As long as we’ve known Lauren Conrad—first from MTV’s reality hit Laguna Beach: The Real Orange County and then on The Hills—she’s had a posse. The designer is relying on her inner circle now more than ever as she operates a fashion/lifestyle brand that includes running laurenconrad.com and designing for Kohl’s (where she just launched her maternity line) as well as creating looks for her boutique label, Paper Crown. In her corner: Conrad’s musician-turned-lawyer hubby, William Tell, her parents, his parents, her coworkers, and her closest girl friends. They all have her back while she preps for the next stage of her life: parenthood.
Fun before fam
“I always thought, ‘Someday, I’ll have a family.’ But it wasn’t until I was married that it was a real conversation. I think your 20s are about figuring out who you are and finding a career. Then once I got married, William and I wanted a couple years to ourselves. When you’re a mother, you’re no longer your own top priority, and that idea was a little scary to me. But we’re ready for a baby now.”
“Our parents did pressure us for grandkids, in an emotionally playful but persistent way. They would team up on us, which could get intense. My parents were young when they had babies—they had me at 25—and they loved it, so they encouraged us to do it sooner rather than later.”
Her big OMG moment
“Aside from William, the first person I told about my pregnancy was my best friend, because my initial reaction was to freak out—in a good way. I wanted to be able to tell our parents later in a calmer, celebratory fashion. But my girlfriend has known me since we were in elementary school, so she was my choice for a freakout.”
“I must have been eating more cheese and wine than I realized, because I’ve really been missing them. I haven’t had crazy cravings, but I’ve had some food aversions. For a while I couldn’t eat meat.”
“I started showing fast, and it was tricky to hide. I wanted to share the news with everybody, and posting my sonogram felt like the simplest way to do it. I was aiming to be a lot more clever—I feel like a lot of people are adorable in the way they announce—but I honestly didn’t have any bright ideas.”
Sweetest advice from her doc
“Early in my pregnancy I was nauseous all day and having difficulty putting on weight, which was funny because I’ve never had that issue in my entire life! My mom told me to start drinking milkshakes and my doctor said to go for it—to have a daily milkshake.”
Her sweat sessions
“In my second trimester I returned to my exercise routine. Now I hike with girlfriends and I do classes using weights, tailoring moves to my body so that I’m not lying on my back or doing stomach exercises. I still do the treadmill, but I push the power walking instead of running.”
“Last night I ordered a book on putting together a birth plan. My main concern is doing whatever’s right in the moment. My friends have said, ‘Have a plan, but don’t be so committed that you’re unwilling to change if you need to.’ I’m not worried about the pain that comes with giving birth. Maybe I’m just naive, but it’s pretty low on my list of concerns. I feel like women have been doing this forever.”
Coworkers on the bump watch
“A maternity line has always been a possibility at Kohl’s. In meetings with the team there, I would make fun of them for listing it on memos, ‘pending LC status.’ I was like, ‘Guys, you have to stop!’ Of course now I’m grateful that Kohl’s is excited. After I had tried shopping for maternity clothes myself and then was ready to design my own, they said, ‘Great!’"
“I felt that if I was having difficulty finding maternity pieces I wanted to wear, then my customer probably was as well. I want pregnant women to still feel like themselves. I tried to create looks that are appropriate for work, for going out to dinner, or for a girls’ night out. The line is very personal to me.”
“I’m running my own businesses, so it’s difficult to give myself maternity leave. But I’ve put things into place so I’ll be able to spend time recuperating and adjusting after I give birth. I made a big effort over the last two years to build a team that I trust, knowing my end goal was to be a mother. I’ve gotten to the place where I feel confident that I can step away for a minute and everyone will be able to carry on.”
The sharenting question
“I’m going to have to figure out how much of motherhood to share on social media. Obviously you want to protect your child in every way you can. At the same time, my brand is based on being accessible and sharing the milestones of my life, and I’m so excited about it all. I’ll find a middle ground.”
Love for her little
“I’m thrilled to be having a boy. I really wanted a boy. My husband kept saying, ‘We just want a healthy baby.’ And I’d say, ‘But a boy would be nice!’ I was a wild little tomboy, so I think I understand boys. My mom always told me that nobody loves you like a son does, especially when he’s young.”
Inner circle welcome!
“Once he’s here, all my friends and family are invited over—the more the merrier. Especially since it’s our first, I want to make sure we have lots of people around for support and to be sure that we’re doing everything correctly. Both of our families live only 15 minutes away, so that’s nice for babysitting!”