Let’s face it: My time is running out. Lola will be 9 in less than two months, and the other day, I think I detected an eye roll. I ignored it because for now, she is still mine, all mine. (A little bit of Kevin’s too, but mostly mine.) I still get bedtime snuggles and morning hugs goodbye and I still have the sweetest little face next to mine in the mirror, wanting to do what I do and wear what I wear. She wants to try this lipgloss and that mascara, the perfume and the powder. She even wants to shave and use deodorant. She wants to be just like me, and I am going to enjoy every moment of it. (My 7 year old, Eva, asks almost daily to go back home, into my tummy, where she claims she had a bed and a kitchen. So clearly she’s in no hurry to grow up.)
Lola’s upcoming birthday may be fueling my current obsession with matching mommy/daughter style. Or maybe it’s the fact that I suddenly have some adorable new options. Naturally, most of these options come from other moms, moms who just get it, like designer Alicia Bell. This month, Bell launches Little Bell, a line for girls ages 2-7, that has me swooning. The collection is fresh and contemporary, full of crisp cottons and vibrant prints that make me long for warm weather outings with the girls. Bell has nailed the whole matching mother/daughter thing, which is no easy feat, and these are exactly the kinds of clothes I want to live in all summer long. So I was thrilled when she agreed to share the secrets behind her mom style, her low-key approach to makeup, and her signature accessory.
What is your secret to getting dressed on a busy morning?
Every morning is busy when you have 2 children. It takes me about 20 mins to get ready. On average I throw my gym clothes on and work out after I drop the kids off at school.
How do you approach coordinating mom/daughter style?
I design pieces my daughter would wear and look cute in and then I use the same print and design a more mature piece that I would wear. Sometimes I take a design from the women’s line that is very playful and duplicate it for the Little Bell. I make sure to offer all the same styles for the girls as for the moms and the same prints. In the end it will be up to the customer to decide if they want to match their daughter identically or if they want to buy a similar piece.
Name your favorite shops/favorite brands?
My favorite is Bell (obviously) and Chloe. My favorite shop is a store in Australia called Mamapapa. I actually have never been in person but discovered them on Instagram and I’m dying to visit it in person. It is such a beautiful store filled with beautiful items. Their Instagram name is @virginemamapapa.
How has motherhood changed your style? Has it changed the way you design clothes?
My style has become much more simple and non-fussy since I’ve become a mother. Motherhood has changed the way I design clothes. Since the women buying my clothes are my age or older and have kids so I can definitely relate to what they need to wear. I like things that are comfortable and cute without being over the top. I like to keep it simple and classic with a feminine twist.
Name 5 things you can’t live without.
My husband, my 2 kids, my cell phone, a bottle of Evian water, and a good face cream, preferably Eucerin.
Do you wear makeup every day? What are your favorite beauty brands?
I actually never wear makeup and when I do, it’s just a touch of mascara and eyeliner.
Who/what do you look for when you need fashion inspiration?
I look to myself and fabrics. Fabrics are what inspire me the most and then I design a collection based on what I need or would like in my wardrobe with those fabrics.
What is your go-to mom look? Describe your signature style?
During the spring and summer seasons I love to wear a colorful flirty printed tunic dress with a scarf and cute sandals or Birkenstocks. If I’m not in a dress, I’m in jeans and loose tunic with sandals. In the winter I love to wear jeans or leggings with tall boots and a simple tailored shirt or flannel plaid tunic. My style is a little bohemian, a little preppy, a little classic, a little girly – but overall easygoing.
What is one thing you do every day to pamper yourself?
I have a glass of wine at the end of the day.
If you could only apply one makeup item, what would it be?
Favorite denim brand?
Color, neutrals, or both?
For home décor, always neutral. For Bell, definitely both and for myself, it depends on the occasion, so I’d have to go with both.
Name the one signature accessory you are never seen without.
A shade of red on my nails.
Are you as inspired as I am? Then you’ll want to see more. To view Bell’s breezy, beautiful collection, and to get the first peek at Little Bell, visit AliciaBell.com. (And while you’re there, check out two of my favorite pieces, the Bib Polo dress and the Sam tunic.) Happy shopping!