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Making Mom look good

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Heidi Klum's New Balance collection focuses on active daywear in soft fabrics designed for a mom's busy day. Prices run from $32 to $168.

NEW YORK » Heidi Klum has a closet full of stylish clothes for her public life on television, red carpets and the party scene. It was harder to find things to pull off the "cool mom" look, though, so she decided she’d start designing them herself.

Klum already dabbled in design with jewelry, jeans and maternity, but, of course, she is best known for modeling and TV’s "Project Runway." Her New Balance collection, to be sold exclusively on Amazon, is her most complete design project.

"I definitely design with myself in mind — I always have myself in mind with everything that I do. I think it’s all organic to me," Klum says. "I shouldn’t have to wrack my brain of what I’m going to do next. It’s what I do with all my business; it always comes out of something I love."

And, she says, she loves uncomplicated clothes that make sense that also pull your look together.

Being who she is, with the career she’s had thus far, Klum says she can’t ever be "schlumpy" — even when she’s not on official duty. "I asked myself, ‘How do I start my day?’ and then I worked in chronological order. These are the go-to pieces that are stylish and comfortable for running errands. … The collection will build out to other things. Maybe someday there’ll be something for a sexy dinner with your husband."

But, as she says, the pieces now focus on active daywear: loose tunics over seamless leggings, microfiber hoodies over ruched cropped pants, a boyfriend-sweater dress nipped with a belt at the waist.

On a recent episode of "Project Runway," the aspiring designers were asked to create basic, wearable pieces, and Klum says that’s when it hit her how hard it is to jazz up a hoodie compared with an evening gown. (She ended up buying some pieces for her New Balance line designed by the winner of that challenge, Hawaii’s Andy South.)

"You can’t do feathers when you’re dropping the kids off at school, but you want to be a cool mom or a cool executive. I’m always looking for things that make you stand out and get compliments." And, she adds, should you see someone pulling off a great, everyday style, tell them. She does.

"It’s nice to give compliments, too."


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