by Christina Erteszek
A daughter recounts how her parents fled war-torn Europe for the US and built the popular Olga brand.
The First Lady of Underfashions is a nonfiction saga-like memoir written by Christina Erteszek and including excerpts from her parents' unpublished memoirs. It is a complex, layered, and nuanced story that bridges the violence of war, the innovation of thought, the singularity of religion, the quest for identity, and the intrigues and intricacies of family life.
Jan and Olga escape from World War II Europe and arrive in the US with just a few dollars. They turn their paltry savings into a multi-million-dollar fashion business. Olga becomes a leading patent holder of female lingerie, a trendsetter in the industry, and is widely known for her innovative business tactics. But as this husband-and-wife team think of retiring, they decide to merge with another fashion company, which proves to be a fatal move when a loophole in the agreement allows for a hostile takeover.
This is also a story of a daughter's need to find herself. Along her path to self-discovery, she discovers her parents have many secrets, some of which will never be revealed.
Christina Erteszek is the daughter of Polish Immigrant parents who escaped from war-torn Europe in the 1940s and famously started the Olga Company, where Christina eventually worked as a designer of Olga’s Christina line. She taught at-risk youth, created and manufactured her own clothing brands, and works with several nonprofits. Christina lives with her husband and a dog named Blu in the foothills of the Rocky Mountains.
top of page
bottom of page