Welcome to The Juggle: A new blog series where Pepa talks to inspirational mothers all around the world, delving into family life and what it means to be a working parent today, discussing family traditions and how to cope when life sometimes gets too much.
This week we chat to Sarah Harris; Deputy Editor and Fashion Features Director at British Vogue. Becoming a parent has meant that Sarah has had to find the perfect balance between work and home life and has faced many challenges on the way.
Hi Sarah, tell me about your family.
I’m married to my lovely husband and together we have a 3-year-old daughter called Dree.
How did life change when you became a mother (apart from the obvious)?
I think it gives you a great perspective on life, on what’s important; on what matters, and how to prioritise. It also makes you quick with decisions, there isn’t much time left for procrastination.
How do you define your parenting style?
I try not to sweat the small stuff.
How does your sense of style impact your daughter’s?
It’s funny, I think you can’t not impart your style on your child. Since she was a baby I dressed her in a palette of mostly grey, white, beige, navy and some pink, and always leggings and cashmere and tracksuit trousers: comfortable, cosy clothes that feel great next to skin, which is pretty much how I approach my own wardrobe. Then she turned 3 and suddenly had an opinion on what she wants to wear, and it’s always a dress; and then I realised, I literally deprived her of dresses for her first three years. The idea of a day dress is completely alien to me, it has never existed in my wardrobe, but with Dree, it’s all she only ever wants to wear right now.
How do you juggle career and children – what are your three pillars for keeping it all together?
‘Three pillars’ sounds like something I probably need to adopt; a sense of structure! I think you never really feel like you have the balance quite right, but I wouldn’t have it any other way. It isn’t easy, but we have a brilliant nanny who I know Dree is happy with and that’s a huge help of course. I try to put my phone and laptop down by 6:30 so that I can have her dinner with her, bath her then put her to bed every night. She goes to sleep around 8:30, and then I pick up work again to catch up on anything that needs attention.
What are the rituals that keep you grounded?
Lockdown has probably made me appreciate London more than ever. I don’t think I’ve ever stayed in one place for so long. The simple things: a walk in Hyde Park, coffee on Portobello Road, dropping Dree off at nursery.
How do you carve out time for yourself?
I haven’t quite figured that one out yet. I’m relatively low maintenance, but a good facial is one of my favourite things on earth, so if I can get a few of those in every now and then, then I’m good.
What pieces of wisdom are key to pass on to your children?
Two words: dream big. I hope she grows up knowing that she can do anything. Oh – and manners – good manners will take you far in life.
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