Rights offering detail :
The First Lady of Underfashion: The Inside Story of Olga Erteszek's Lingerie Empire
Apr. 16, 2018
Christina Erteszek
Non-fiction: Pop Culture
Olga. From the 1940s through the 1980s, the name conjured up both a beautiful woman and the state-of-the-art lingerie that she designed. Olga Erteszek’s face graced the label of countless bras, girdles, daywear and sleepwear worn by her loyal customers for five decades. She was the First Lady of Underfashion and also held the record for the number of patents awarded to any woman. Ask any American woman over the age of 45 about Olga; she will remember her.
While Olga’s genius for design, and her chiseled European features, made her the most recognized intimate apparel designer of the 20th century, her husband and business partner Jan Erteszek created the visionary Common Venture employee profit-sharing system that made Olga one of the top 100 American companies to work for during that time. Her signature hangtag read, Behind Every Olga there really is an Olga.
Written by Olga’s daughter Christina Erteszk, The First Lady of Underfashion: The Inside Story of Olga Erteszke’s Lingerie Empire and Her Astonishing Rise from War Refugee to Fortune 500 Celebrity is a behind-the-scenes account of the real Olga, her rise from war refugee to Fortune 500 celebrity, a severed family, and the company to which she gave her name. The First Lady of Underfashion is the story of the rise and fall of Jan and Olga Erteszek’s historic fashion company. It recounts their rags-to-riches immigrant saga, beginning with their unlikely escape from the Nazi invasion of Poland on the eve of their wedding in 1939.
Drawing in part from their own vividly written firsthand accounts, it follows their arduous journey across German- and Russian-held territories as hidden Jews, taking more than a year to reach the US. Here, in a success story that as Olga said, “could only happen in America,” they began with a ten-dollar investment and went on to create an enormously successful Fortune 500 company with nearly 2000 employees.

Christina Erteszek reluctantly came to work for The Olga Company as a young baby boomer, at first simply to please her father. Almost immediately she began her own label, Olga’s Christina, and went on to invent and patent the earliest sport bras and a new and popular nursing bra style, which is still in use today. The Olga and Olga’s Christina lines continue to be sold in the 21st century under Phillip Van Heusen. She is uniquely suited to tell this story. In addition to being the closest confidante of both her parents, she witnessed much of the growth of the company firsthand, and was a pivotal participant in its transition through the many changes in fashions—and in women’s lives—throughout the 1970s and 80s. She was also a firsthand observer to the events that led to the hostile takeover in the mid-1980s. Christina is an experienced public presenter, and has been featured in profiles and/or interviews in Vogue, Elle, Vanity Fair, Women’s Wear Daily, and many other publications, including major newspapers, television and shopping networks.
The First Lady of Underfashion explores the price of success, the cost of hidden secrets and the journey of a daughter navigating her parents’ complicated life in search of her own. It is also a true story of love, war, secrets, ambition, corporate crime, and much, much more. This is the first and only book about the legendary Olga—the brand and the woman behind it—told by the ultimate insider: her daughter. The projected word count for The First Lady of Underfashion is 95,000 words and estimated delivery date for the completed manuscript is June 30, 2018.
Rights available:
World Rights
Leticia Gomez
Savvy Literary Services
phone: 281-465-0119
3 Griffin Hill Ct., The Woodlands, TX 77382
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