by Dawn Klingensmith
Get plastered during pregnancy? Go right ahead. More women are doing it.
We’re talking about belly masking, or the use of gauze strips and plaster to create a lightweight, durable mold of the pregnant belly. The mold is often painted and displayed in the home. Women on the East and West Coasts have been belly masking for years, and the trend is catching on in Chicago.“It’s becoming one of those common rituals of pregnancy, like a baby shower,” said LaGrange artist and belly masker Theresa Suchy McGraw (708-588-0275, www.artbodyandsoul.com).
The Celebrated Woman, a very popular Naperville day spa also offers belly masking to its clients. Owner Felicia Tyler is in high demand for her belly masking capabilities. “I am doing more belly masking in my spa parties and women love it”, said Tyler.
Costs for undecorated masks range from $85 to $200.
For the mother of all pregnancy monuments, belly on up to Great Lakes Art Studio in Evanston (847-869-5850, www.greatlakesartstudio.com). Besides belly masks, Donna Zarbin-Byrne makes life-size bronze replicas of women’s swollen stomachs. Statues start at $800.