Tan France Shares Post-Pandemic Style Tips for Parents: 'You Get to Reinvent Yourself'
Tan France is about to add a new line to his resume. The 37-year-old fashion designer and author, who stars on Netflix's Queer Eye, announced back in April that he and his husband Rob will welcome their first child via surrogate. With Baby on the way, France is in full-on nesting mode.
"We are getting the nursery ready," he says. "It's a temporary nursery, because we're building a home we're going to be moving into next year. We're making sure that this room is baby-friendly and feels warm and inviting for him. We're deciding on color scheme right now. I think it's going to be very cute."
Like many parents-to-be, the lead-up to welcoming his son has been a bit different as a result of the pandemic. "We were not able to go to [most of the] scans or ultrasounds due to COVID restrictions," says France. "That was the hardest part-feeling like we're not able to experience as much as possible with the pregnancy. But we were able to Zoom in, which we were grateful for, and we were able to go to the last scan, which I was over the moon about."
He's also thrilled about his upcoming paternity leave. Still, France is being realistic about how life-and everyday stressors-could change once he and Rob welcome their little one. That's why he recently partnered with Starbucks to kick off the "Stir It Up" campaign and offer advice that will help streamline busy parents' style routines-a particularly timely topic, given that most of us have no idea how to wear anything other than yoga pants right now.
Here are several of France's must-know tips.
Ease Back Into Pre-COVID Style
France says there's no need to get rid of the clothes that have been comfortable-and comforting-over the past year and a half. "I've lived in sweats! I'm a normal person," jokes France. "Those things have helped us out. They've made us feel the way we want to feel during these times. I think to go from that to a ball gown probably isn't going to feel quite right for you."
He adds that parents-especially of younger kids-who've been home have had to bend down a lot, move, and chase their little ones, so they've been wearing comfortable, softer fabrics-all of which is wise to stick with. "They will still work outside of the house," says France. "Don't feel like you have to start wearing structured, uncomfortable items just because they're the dressy thing."
Instead, he recommends wearing "the nicest version" of the leggings or sweats you've been donning during quarantine and then incorporating garments or accessories that remind you of pre-COVID life. "If you're wearing leggings, maybe wear a lovely, tailored coat over it, a belt, earrings, necklaces, bags, all of those things that are easy to incorporate last minute-something that reminds you that there was a life before all of this," says France. "Even though comfort is now paramount to all of us, there are ways to elevate that comfort."
Ultimately, he recommends "easing back into" your old wardrobe, noting, "It's not a race. Everyone is feeling some kind of anxiety about going back into the world and how to present themselves."
Pick Ready-Made Outfits
Finding "ready-made outfits" like jumpsuits and dresses that are fast and easy to throw on are a great idea.
"Go for things that you know you can put together really quickly, because you want to get into a routine as quickly as possible-[especially] if you're going back to work, and that's already a shock to the system," he says.
See It as an Opportunity to Reinvent Yourself
France sees this transitional moment as a chance to rethink your personal style and adjust it to better suit your comfort. "I'm trying things out that I didn't try out before COVID, because I didn't know how to incorporate it," he says. "This is a clean slate. You get to reinvent yourself if you like."