Words and pictures by Jamie Gray
How do you be a mum, dropping kids off at schools or nurseries, running a household and dealing with everything life throws at you, whilst looking fabulous, fashionable, and stylish? Well approximately 40 mums found the answer at a recent workshop organised by The Parent Pause. The style workshop was the 2nd event organised by the Rugby-based Parent Pause, which was setup to organise events in the Rugby area to bring parents together.
Fashion blogger Zoe de Pass AKA instagrams @dresslikeamum was on hand to answer questions from the floor, alongside women’s retail expert Louise Golding, owner of boutique Sass in Regent Street. Hosting the event was The Parent Pause’s creators Natalie Bullard and Holly Milner.
Bacco Lounge was the perfect venue to host, the child friendly cafe had the right amount of space and comfort. Tea, coffee and pastries were on hand as the audience of mums, some with children, chatted and met new friends before the workshop started. Talking to one mum at the event, she expressed how valuable she found the premise of The Parent Pause as a way to meet other parents, and become informed about issues she’s interested in, as well as others she isn’t.
The informal events are aimed at bringing mums and dads together to hear inspirational speakers, and hear stories which will enrich, empower, and inform. There’ll be many more events to come so keep tuning into their website theparentpause.co.uk to discover more.
Below are a few questions and answers from the event. From M&S pants, to getting over the skinny jean fad, Louise and Zoe shared their insights into a fashion minefield.
Holly; We want to talk about pants [knickers], and M&S, god bless M&S, are the standard go-to for a good pair of granny pants. What is your best alternative for a good pair of granny pants? Where else is doing really good underwear right now?
Natalie; I was talking to someone about this the other day and she said ‘I love M&S it’s great, I really love their colours and everything, but, I’m picking up pants next to seventy-year-olds and I feel like I should be going somewhere else’. So (to Zoe and Louise) what’s the alternative?
Zoe; I actually bought some pants from M&S the other day and they are amazing, I go for three-for-two and I always get seam-free ones. I got pink ones, leopard print and nude.
Louise; I totally agree on the M&S pants, very comfy. One of the other places I like is H&M for underwear, H&M are really good. They do some very pretty styles. And Gap, and Matalan. Matalan have some great little finds, they do seam-free quite pretty but funky, there was a leopard print pair with fuschia pink lace going on so if you want something different that’s a really good place.
Holly; So athleisure, does everyone know what I mean by athleisure? So basically, this is my understanding but I may be completely wrong, I’m not the fashion expert, but it’s where you buy sportswear and you don’t do sport. I go for a run in the morning -I know you’re all looking at me and thinking she doesn’t run- but I do run, not very far, not very fast, but every now and again. And I’ll stay in that kit all day and pickup my kids from school. So am I right, is that the right take on athleisure?
Zoe; I think Wikipedia calls it clothes usually saved for exercise worn in everyday. Comfy, stretchy, leggings basically, or a hoodie.
Louise; It’s okay to go to school in your workout leggings and hoodie, just put a leather jacket on or a blazer. Also trainers, trainers are brilliant. I used to find I would never wear trainers outside of a gym but I’ve completely eaten my words on that. I’ve now got a wardrobe devoted to trainers.
The end of skinny jeans?
Natalie; Can we talk about jeans, I know you talked about buying a good pair of jeans as a good investment. We all love a skinny jean, and I’ve noticed on influences like yourself we’re seeing less and less of the skinny jean. Can you talk to us about other jean styles we could try?
Zoe; I’ve been wearing a lot of cropped jeans recently, looser ones. I’m kind of bored of skinny jeans, they’ve been around for 14 years, and I know when skinny jeans came in I was like ‘I’m never going to wear them’ and obviously wore skinny jeans for 10 years. There’s so many styles of jean around at the moment, High Street-wise I like Topshop and M&S. Topshop I’ve always shopped for jeans, they are reasonably priced and they last. There’s a lot of statement jeans around at the moment and that’s an easy thing to wear, you dress up and down. The cropped jean’s really nice, especially in this weather. Dungarees are still going strong. Don’t assume you won’t suit them until you try them on, because when you get stuck in a jean rut of skinny jeans, once you try some on you’re like ‘actually these are more comfortable’.
Louise; High waist jeans are still the most comfortable. Curve fit as well, something that sits into the lower back so when you’re bending down with little ones you’re not going flash everyone your pants.