Tell us about yourself...
My name is Julie and I live in Kent with my husband and two children. I have an honours degree in Humanities with Art History and have worked in the arts and museums sector for the last 15 years. I am also a fashion blogger and started my blog mainly as a creative outlet, but also to empower other busy women to enjoy fashion and grow in self-confidence.
Working in the museum sector, I’m inspired greatly by the collections I spend time with – I wear a lot of vintage! But I think its people who inspire me the most. As well as the historical personalities we research in my job, it’s my friends, other bloggers, and everyday women out on the street that catches my eye. I was born in South East London and it’s a place I constantly return to people watch for style inspiration. In fact this is where the shoot for the Amilu Rye zebra print clutch bag took place, in one of my favourite East End haunts near Spitalfields market.
What does a typical working day look like for you?
I wake early at around 5.30 to 6am to walk the dog and try to squeeze in a run or the gym. I’ll then cook breakfast. I eat a lot in the morning to set me up for the day. It’s then get ready as fast as we can to get out the door for the school drop off. I arrive at work around 8.30am and will usually lead a staff briefing to prepare and plan for the day’s events. My working days really vary which I love. It can be anything from working on new interpretation resources, delivering family events, analysing data and surveys, guided gallery tours, or generally managing the maintenance of an old historic building. It’s usually a mixture of all these things with a lot of meetings thrown in. I get home around 6pm, and it’s then all hands on deck to walk our dog, get dinner ready, and prepare for the next day. I usually collapse with a nice hot bath and camomile tea (or G&T!) around 9pm, catch up with my social media, and try to get an early night. It’s all incredibly rock and roll!
As a busy working mum how do you feel fashion helps maintain your identity?
Fashion helps me to feel like me and to express myself. I think it’s so easy to prioritise everything else when you’re mum. For me my clothes are my daily armour, they give me confidence and the get up and go I need to face the world. Fashion helps to lift my mood - bright colours and a good fit make me smile. On a day where I feel less than fabulous (which does happen often) I’ll put on a slogan tee, a slick of bright lippie and give myself a good talking to.
What's the hardest working piece in your wardrobe?
A 1980s vintage pink and black pinstripe Betsey Johnson Jacket. It fits like a dream and has the most amazing slightly puffed shoulder detail, which is really flattering. I’ll wear it to work meetings with cigarette pants when I want to feel more confident and smart. But will also dress it down with jeans and heels for dinner. Every girl should own a great versatile black jacket or blazer.
If you could only ever wear one shade of lippy again, which would it be?
MAC cosmetics Lady Danger. I love red lips, especially a retro red matte that MAC are well known for. This red has a beautiful orangey tone which makes my blue eyes pop.
What’s your year-round beauty must-have?
Bourgeois blusher pots. I’ve used them for years. I’ve played around with bronzers, highlighters and cream blushes, but for me nothing will beat the bendability and colour palate of these sweet little powder blushes. My favourite shade is Rose D’or, which gives a gorgeous pink blush to pale skin like mine.
Where do you hope to visit this year?
Paris to visit one of my oldest and best friends. We have sons who are a similar age, so it will be gardens, museums, and watching the street dancers by the Eiffel Tower. We are also planning a family Mediterranean escape later in the year, probably the Balearics islands which are always so beautiful and really family friendly.
What do you love about the Amilu Rye Crossbody bag?
Oh god everything! Firstly the zebra print and cerise pink leather contrast, it’s so bright, playful and fun. It’s just the perfect size for an evening clutch, with enough room and compartments for the essentials. But I also love the fact you can then add the strap to wear as a cross body bag, which gives it the versatility of a great little day bag too. It’s both practical and beautiful. It’s a perfect match for my love of bright funky colours and animal print.
What’s on your reading list at the moment?
I’m currently having a moment with historical underwear and working on a project with a stylist friend of mine, so Valerie Steele’s The Corset, and Fetish: Fashion Sex and Power, are top of the list. In stark contrast I’m also reading David Walliams’s Grandpas Great escape with my 9-year-old Son, which is brilliantly hilarious and heart warming.
What’s your favourite quote?
Something I saw on a giant light box in the Statford Westfield Misguided store when I was shopping with my daughter, its now my motto and blog strap line:
If we peeked into your handbag now, what would we see?
I’m just having a look! My purse, a moleskin diary that goes everywhere with me to organise my life (I have to have a paper diary), IPhone (of course), woollen mittens as my hands are always cold, carmex lip balm, red lipstick, a vintage art deco compact mirror and a Ceylon Fortnum & Mason green tea bag.
Recreate Julie's look with the Amilu Rye clutch in zebra print Italian leather.
Pop over to Instagram to peruse Julie's beautifully curated feed @mother_with_style