Happy Mother's Day! I am so excited for our next creative and incredibly gorgeous guest here on C+W! Carmen, 35, is a clothing designer with a focus on print, art, color, trend, and fabrics. She is also a mother to Graham 5, and Jane 5 months. I first met her a couple of summers ago while catching up with her husband Jack (an old high school friend of mine) and immediately felt as if i had known her my entire life (i think i hugged her like a million times). So read on, my friends, for you too, will want surrender to the chaos and perhaps treat yourself to a pretty lipstick!
Where do you live?
Brooklyn Heights in a restored Federal Building. It’s a beautiful neighborhood (America’s first suburb) on the East River overlooking downtown Manhattan. I’m a color lover, so my apartment is greys, navys and whites! It’s the only color palette that is timeless for me. If I buy an accent pillow in color, I find after 3 months I want to change it.
What makes you a creative?
I think I’m a creative problem solver. I don’t think of myself as creative as much as needing visual stimulation. I’m always doing something. I always have to have some sort of project or goal in mind. I love to plan and organize. I’m a bit OCD so our bookcase is organized by color and size. My husband is a photography book collector, and we have a big bookcase along a long wall in our apartment.
What is your style? Do you have a typical uniform?
Good question! I recently have decided on a uniform for a few reasons. Breastfeeding means access! I wear a long sleeve woven button front shirt with black leggings and nike sneakers. I’m home with my baby now, so wearing the same outfit everyday is perfect! She doesn’t seem to mind.
Any healthy habits or daily routines you follow?
I wasn’t the healthiest eater before pregnancy and breastfeeding, but now I really feel the pressure to eat the food pyramid everyday. I don’t think they teach the food pyramid anymore, but I shoot for covering each food group. They just opened a juice press in my neighborhood. It’s a good habit, but a bad habit for the $.
You have a new baby girl and a 5 year old boy and a husband who travels at times for work… how do you try and stay balanced?
Ha!! No balance! I think my organizing nature is always at conflict with how crazy our life has become since Jane was born. I always have 100 things on my to do list which drives me crazy, but I have somewhat surrendered to it. I know it will even out when Jane is older the way it did when our son was 2, so I just have to suck it up for now!
When/how do you feel most beautiful and most aligned with yourself?
After buying a new lipstick color from Sephora. (not the right answer, but the truth!) Wish I could say after mediation or a kale salad, but the truth is Sephora. (so anti-feminist!)
What are some of your imperfections and how do you embrace them?
I have so many!! I think the best way to embrace imperfection is to make fun of yourself. It’s disarming and to see one’s own flaws is liberating. My mom growing up tried to appear perfect to herself and the outside world. So exhausting!!
What is your beauty regime?
Right now I’m lucky if I brush my teeth before 3pm. I did buy a cream I LOVE from Harrods in London called Valmont. It’s awesome.
What are 5 things you cannot live without?
+ My husband
+ My kids (do they count as 2 or 1?)
+ My iphone
+ Filing cabinets
What advice do you have for mothers looking to find balance in both being healthy and staying creative.
Surrendering to the forces of motherhood, work, and wife. As I’m typing this, I forgot I was making food and just rushed to the kitchen to see what was boiling over. I think as a mom you have to admit your shortcomings, try your best without sacrificing your relationships with your family, and go to a good therapist. ;)
I think creativity is unique to each person, and everyone has there own expression of creativity. I have found a walk a day refreshes my mind, but I don’t always have the luxury of a long walk. I think accepting that your creativity is different from other people’s creativity frees your true creative spirit.
+ Thanks Carmen for all your words of wisdom and letting us peak into your wildly beautiful and imperfect life. I really loved the way you define creativity...spot on! You can follow her on Instagram and please like, share, and leave her a comment below!!
A very Happy Mother's Day to you!!