StyleNest caught up with the incredibly beautiful and talented, Jasmine Guinness to talk fashion, beauty, toys and Christmas. Model, Mum, Designer and Business Woman, is there no end to the talents of Jasmine Guinness?
Once famed for her modelling career, she can now add designer and successful business woman to her CV. Her collections for Very.co.uk were a huge hit, whilst her latest venture HONEYJAM is proving to be the go-to store for London mums.
Jasmine along with life-long friend, Honey Bowdrey opened up the magical toy shop in 2006 in London’s Notting Hill. The traditional inspired toy store was an instant success, “Honeyjam is inspired by our own childhood memories, we remember toyshops crammed to bursting with the most marvelous & desirable things – toys hung from the ceilings and tables laden with pocket money treats. Here at HONEYJAM we have all this and much more”, Jasmine Guinness.
For those not based in London however, HONEYJAM have a great selection of toys and treats to buy online at Honeyjam.co.uk.
We love HONEYJAM at StyleNest. What gave you the idea to start open the store? Where did the name come from?
We opened the shop because we couldn’t find anything different or unusual in any toy shops and we wanted to open a shop that would be exciting to kids and parents alike. The name is a mix of Honey’s and my nickname which is Jam. It’s also easy for kids to say!
You must be so organised to keep on top of everything – with a successful business, career as a designer and mum to two boys. Do you have any top tips on how to stay on top of it all?
I have a diary that I have to look at 50 times a day!
Do you struggle to maintain a good work / life balance?
I think lots of mums find it hard to balance work and home life and I’m definitely one of them. The guilt of not being there every moment for them is hard too. Sometimes you just have to think that they are only kids for such a small amount of time that we have to put everything else on the back burner and put them first. I try to make sure I do their homework with them every night and spend time with them no matter how exhausted I am.
With a career as a model and a designer we imagine you have a rather enviable wardrobe and never have any difficulty looking stylish. Do you have any top styling tips for mums out there?
Find out what suits your shape and then decide what style you want to apply to your shape. Every shape has lots of options. There are so many great designers and shops out there and something to suit everyone. We all have to make the best of what we have, we are women and we are all beautiful.
How would you describe your style?
I’m not sure as it seems to change all the time. My daywear has not changed much! Its still jeans, trainers, cashmere jumper or cardi and a hoodie.
Many mums can lose confidence in themselves after having children. Did you find it difficult to embrace your new role as a mum or did it come naturally?
I think every time I had a child I had a bit of an identity crisis! It is so hard to get back into the swing of life as it was before you had a child, or another child! You do get it back but it takes time and effort.
You always look so beautiful and must have picked up some great make-up tips as a model. Do you have any tricks and trade secrets to share with our readers?
Always blot your lip stick! Drink water to keep your skin clear and sleep as much as you can.
Which three beauty products couldn’t you live without?
I love Nubo serum and night cream. Also Shu Uemura cleansing oil or Clarins multi jour day cream.
Owning a toy shop must mean your house is brimming like a treasure chest with toys and games. Do you have any storage tips for mums?
My house is organised chaos and sometimes not very organised!
Your shop is located in the heart of fashionable Notting Hill. Can you recommend any great child friendly restaurants nearby?
There are so many great things to do in Notting Hill. My favourite restaurant for kids is Mike’s Cafe, they have everything you could possibly want and great puddings too.
Are there any particular attractions or parks you love to go to with your children?
I love Hyde Park. Whether it is just for a long walk or for playgrounds. My kids love the Princess Diana playground with the pirate ship. It is a really well designed playground with lots of things for kids to do.
Are there any mums in particular who really inspire you?
All mums inspire me. The things we have to do! It is many jobs in one. Cleaner, dresser, driver, waiter, cook, laundry woman to name a few, and of course all with lots of love and support on top.
There are so many great childrenswear labels but are there any in particular that you love for your boys?
I love H&M for my boys but there are so many great labels out there. Now I have a little girl I can buy dresses which is a whole new world! I Love Gorgeous is a great label for little girls and Caramel Baby is another favourite for both boys and girls.
There are so many great children’s books available nowadays but do you find it difficult to get your little ones excited about reading?
My oldest son was hard to get going but he loved the Beast Quest books to read himself and I have always read to them at night. Some that I remember from my childhood like Orlando the Marmalade Cat and Tintin or longer books like The Wind on the Moon or my husband’s favourite book, The Phantom Tollbooth.
We love the traditional toys at Honeyjam. Do your boys choose to play with these or are they like most boys nowadays and obsessed with computers?
They love digging about on the pocket money tables and sometimes even get to spend their pocket money there! I get them to help me choose things for the shop, as does Honey with her kids, so there is always something they find exciting there. They love computers but are not allowed to play their XBox except at the weekends which is great as then they really look forward to it.
What’s on your Christmas wish-list this year?
Trees! I want evergreen oaks and lots of them, maybe a pear tree and an apple tree. Other than that I have not thought about it at all yet. All I can think about is toys at the moment! I love this time of year, it is so exciting as we are unpacking masses of boxes everyday and the stock in the shop changes everyday.
How do you spend your Christmas day?
Stockings first. I love that bit! Then a big breakfast and off to Mass, then on to lunch at my mother-in-law’s. After lunch we all give each other their presents and hopefully there is something good on the tv. After all the washing up of course!
Any New Years Resolutions?
Same as every year, to do some exercise!
What’s your motto in life?
I’m not sure. My grandmother always said “Never complain, never explain” which is pretty good. “Hope springs eternal” is always what I think of when I feel stressed, you just have to keep on trucking.
HONEYJAM, is open Monday – Saturday 10am – 6pm and Sunday 11am – 5pm. For more info call 020 7243 0449 or e-mail us at email@example.com