On my recent travels I was lucky enough to stop by Florence, Italy. There I indulged in copious amounts of gelato (an absolute must) but I also visited Leonardo Leather Works - a showroom with a variety of leather products made in true Florentine tradition. Of course shopping was on the agenda, but first I sat through a leather demonstration where an expert taught us the difference between fake and real leather. She gave us tips on what to look for, how feel and touch is important and why most places spray that 'leather smell' to try and trick you.
Start the day
I am an early riser! I’m usually up by 5 am and can’t start my day without a Bikram yoga or boot camp session, or a nice run on the beach with my dog Frankie. This hour of the day that I have to myself to centre and focus on what is to come. Once I arrive home, crazy starts! My husband and I get our sons Kingsley and Kobi out of bed and school ready… who would have thought brushing teeth is such a huge task?! We prepare their lunches and also work with them on homework tasks. Once we actually get the boys with all their books, pens and shoes out of the house and on their bike, we ride them to school. I absolutely adore our morning rides! Everybody is refreshed and happy and we play Eye Spy and First One To Spot which provides loads of giggles. Gosh, I don’t want them to grow up! (laughs)
Back home, I’m diving straight into my first meeting of the day: my husband Darren, our CS Managers and I discuss the tasks ahead and identify any issues we might have. This gets us aligned for the day. I use zoom to connect to the offices in New Zealand, the production sites and agents in Australia, to see what’s going on. I am very passionate about our brand, so I like to be on top of everything, from production to sales.
Until 2.30pm I am usually doing a lot of office work. Nobody likes to do admin or accounting! However, I am very hands-on in our business. I absolutely love planning and design work – so before picking up the boys from school I play with new patterns, designs, materials and colours. This is what I love most about our brand – I can incorporate my creativity and see it in physical form in the end.
After 3 pm I transform from business woman to Mum again: I chauffeur my kids to their after-school activities or we simply have a family visit to the beach and play. We all need such an afternoon every now and then, as it brings us closer together as a family. I wouldn’t trade this time in for the world. I consider myself very lucky that I can spend so much quality time with my family and am able to run a successful business at the same time. In the early evening usually, I help Darren prepare dinner – and I’m purposely saying help because I am the worst in the kitchen! (laughs) I am good at being helpful, but that’s about it. However, you have never seen a better dishwasher than me!
At around 8 pm Kingsley and Kobi are well and truly ready for bed. A little bit of story time and the boys are out for the day – time for me to switch back to business. These two hours until 10 pm Queensland time are reserved for meetings with the US and South Africa. Although working this late sounds like a nuisance, I have to say that I actually love this time of day. I can check my emails without having a phone ring or people distract me, pottering along at my own pace, listening to my favourite music. I wouldn’t change a thing!