Jewellery designer Jennifer Loiselle talks to StyleNest about IT bags, mummy bloggers, and the importance of a good red lippie.
Jennifer Loiselle is an Australian-born, UK-based handmade accessories designer with a penchant for statement pieces incorporating unexpected combinations of materials and techniques. She has a huge fan base including, Susie Bubble, Tavi, and Madmoiselle Robot. Jennifer is also mum to the gorgeous Allegra.
Where did the idea for your accessories label come from?
Before I had my daughter I worked in a fashion-related job but in a back office role I wasn’t really enjoying, and was actually quite relieved when I went on maternity leave. It probably sounds a bit silly but I was having a really hard time finding any clothes I liked to wear when I was pregnant and pretty much the only thing that wasn’t growing was my head, so I started making my own hair accessories at first to jazz up boring maternity wear, and then jewellery grew from there.
Did you find your style changed when you entered motherhood?
Most definitely. I ditched the high heels for a while (not recommended; it took ages to re-train my feet) and I definitely made less effort when my daughter was a newborn; style just wasn’t a consideration when I was running on two hours of sleep a night. My daughter’s a toddler now, so thankfully I think I’m not far off from where I was in my pre-mama days.
Are there any mums out there who really inspire you?
My own mum; she raised three daughters and travelled all over the world with us pretty much single-handedly, was and still is always there when we need her, and she can cook a mean Laksa!
What’s your failsafe look when you have moments to get ready?
Red lippie and statement jewellery can be very distracting and help hide a multitude of sins.
Any styling tips you can offer our readers?
Definitely avoid ‘trends’ like the plague. Know your style and work with classic pieces.
What beauty products couldn’t you live without?
Ren glycolactic radiance renewal mask, Laura Mercier mineral foundation, and MAC Ruby Woo red lipstick.
What could you never travel without?
Sadly,my trusty iPad. Not only does it store all my holiday reads, but it’s a sure-fire way to keep a toddler entertained on long haul flights.
What book are you reading at the moment? What’s your all-time favourite read?
I’m currently reading Anthropology of an American Girl by Hilary Thayer.
I have two favourite all-time reads – Mrs Dalloway by Virginia Woolf, which I read in high school: so influential to me as a teenager, and What I Loved by Siri Hustvedt; the first book I ever bought my husband.
You are a super stylish mum. But what’s your home style like? How to you manage with kids’ toys everywhere?
Unfortunately, there are toys literally everywhere in our house; I spend my life tripping up over scooters, toy dinosaurs, and toy kitchen accessories, one of the reasons for the refurb (we’re building a playroom). In the meantime, we’ve found these great oversized lego storage boxes which have been great for compartmentalizing toys from Aplaceforeverthing.com.
Mums have a real voice nowadays through social media; are there any mummy bloggers you follow?
Jenny at www.mothers-meetings.com, a very cool site for creative, contemporary mums.
When you’re not at work, what do you enjoy doing with the kids?
We live just outside of London in Buckinghamshire, so we often visit a great kids playground on the banks of the Thames in Marlow which has a lovely organic café attached to it. When we do venture into London, the Natural History Museum is always a winner.
Do you make New Year’s Resolutions? What will yours be for 2012?
I always make resolutions, although keeping them is another story. For 2012, I’d like to work harder, but somehow spend more quality time with my family; how’s that for a resolution?!
You must be very organised to juggle a business with motherhood. Do you have any top tips on how you stay on top of it all?
I think I’m actually very disorganised; I live in a pretty much constant state of organised chaos. I stay on top of it all with a mixture of obsessive list-making and maximising every single spare second I get.
Do you have a particular restaurant that you love going to but is also family friendly?
We like eating at Wahaca – quick and easy, and they do kid-sized portions of all their meals.
Where do you get your creative inspiration from?
Everywhere: books, art, film, friends, blogs, travel. It only takes a tiny detail, a random image, to inspire.
If you could own one Investment IT bag what would it be?
Feels like the whole IT bag thing has gone insane over the last few years, both in terms of prices and just how quickly individual styles can come in and drop out of fashion; true design classics are timeless and never age. My mum gave me a classic quilted Chanel chain bag of hers many years ago and I’m sure I’ll end up giving it to my daughter too. But if money really were no object I wouldn’t say no to a jumbo Birkin!
Jennifer’s unique jewellery is available online at Jenniferloiselle.com.