Emma Forbes started her career in children’s Television presenting shows such as Live & Kicking. She went onto have a hugely successful career in broadcasting. Now, a mother of two to Lily and Sam, Emma runs her own style website, forbesstyle.com. Full of handy tops tips, style advice, party ideas and lots, lots more, Forbes Style is a one-stop-shop for busy women and mums like herself. Emma has also recently launched a recipe and party-planning book titled Life & Soul.
StyleNest caught up with Emma to talk, style, stocking fillers and simple (but delicious) family cooking.
Tell us about Forbes Style, how did the idea come about?
I had been thinking of how to do an online destination site for a while, and had a few ideas, but then thought why not do one where it’s everything I love doing? Everyone always comes to me for party ideas, gift ideas, etc. so it sort of made sense to take it down that route.
How do you manage to juggle such a successful and busy career with motherhood? Any top tips?
I manage in the same way other mums do – with massive organisation. When it works, it’s brilliant, but when something goes wrong, it’s chaos! My top tip would be to write things down and keep a list going. I have notepads everywhere, from by my bed to the kitchen.
Mumpreneurs are taking the online business world by storm right now. Any top tips for mums wanting to start up their own company?
I say go for it. It’s brilliant for mums to have a career alongside being a mum and I am all for it. Working from home for me has been so great, so if you are thinking of starting up your own business I say just make sure you know that you should give yourself hours at home. It’s too easy to just work almost round the clock if you are setting up a home enterprise.
When you’re not at work, what do you enjoy doing with the family?
When I’m not at work I love being with my family. Ideally we all go to see a movie together and if we are on holiday we all play a mean game of poker.
Can you recommend any great family friendly restaurants you love?
I think Byron with the kids is great – delicious food, kids menus if you need it and fast service. Love that…
We love your new cookbook Life & Soul here at StyleNest. Any top tips for party food that will please both the adults and the children?
Simple but delicious works much better than complicated and fussy. Try not to do anything too ambitious and concentrate on it just being delicious food, then you can wow them with presentation.
Any top tips for mums who aren’t confident cooks?
Start simple and try not to panic. You can always cover up a mistake in cooking. Try some of the recipes in my book – they are truly foolproof.
Are your kids adventurous eaters or do you struggle like every other mum? Do you have any secret tips to get them to eat veggies and try new things?
My kids are adventurous eaters but I encouraged that from an early age. My method was no-one can say ‘urgh’ unless they have tried it. To get them to eat veggies drizzle olive oil on, or have humous on the side to dip them in – it makes it seem much more exciting. Now when we’re out for dinner in restaurants the kids are more adventurous than me.
What’s your failsafe midweek meal that you make when you don’t have much time?
Macaroni Cheese. Easy to whip up and I always have the ingredients for it in my fridge.
With two children and a busy career you still manage to look fabulous, any top makeup tips for when you’ve only got minutes to get ready?
Invest in a great tinted moisturiser that you can just slap on. A liquid blusher and a seriously good mascara are also a must. Those are the three key ingredients and then you can add the rest as the day goes on.
What are your favourite designer and high street brands?
I adore Donna Karen, Max Mara, and Alexander McQueen. And on the high street I love Warehouse, Zara, and Jaeger.
With Christmas just around the corner, are there any unusual childrenswear brands or toy shops you’ll be buying from this year?
I adore online shopping, firebox.com has some great things as does iwantoneofthose.com for the kids presents. For stocking fillers I’ll be heading down to my sisters shop Semmalina at 225 Ebury Street, London.
If you ever get a moment to relax, how do you unwind?
Hot bath, hot water bottle, bed and rubbish telly.
Lastly, what will you be asking for this Christmas?
I’m hoping for a black handbag that will fit all the junk I need to carry about with me every day. And some PJ’s – a must for Christmas.
For more top tips and ideas from Emma visit www.forbesstyle.com. Life & Soul by Emma Forbes is priced at £20 and is available to buy online.