Tell us a little bit about your blog, Hunters & Heels.
Hunters & Heels is a British Lifestyle Blog. My lovely husband came up with the name for my Instagram account, long before the blog existed and it stuck! Now if people recognise me they will usually say “you’re Hunters and Heels aren’t you?” So I’m sticking with it. I hope my blog, Instagram and YouTube capture the essence of both town and the country lifestyle with a focus on family, fashion, make-up, food and travel.
With three sons, Archie, Ollie and Rory, how do you balance motherhood, working and running your popular blog?
Oh that’s a great question. I’m not sure any of us have really found the perfect balance, but we have to try to follow our heart and listen to what makes us happy. I love being a mum, and I know these days where they’re so little are over quickly. Therefore I rarely compromise on weekends and my set days off that I’m with the children, that time is gold. But, I also love working, to have some time to focus on my own business and growth. They say it “it takes a village” and I have found this to be true, I need the support of my husband, friends and family, in order to be one step closer to finding that perfect balance.
Congratulations on your recent marriage! Were your children involved in the wedding planning process?
Thank you!! It really was the best day of our lives. Ollie and Rory are still very young, but Archie is 10, so he was involved from the very beginning. He was actually with us when we found the perfect venue Lemore Manor, booked it on the spot, then took this snap of us outside the venue when we signed the contract! He was co-best man with Col’s brother, and he did a beautiful reading in the ceremony right before we tied the knot.
How important was it to you and your now husband Colin, that the boys were a big part of your special day?
You know, I never thought my children would be with me on my wedding day. Col and I ended up doing everything a little bit backwards, but now we can’t imagine it any other way. It was so special waking up with them that morning, seeing them run down the aisle towards their Daddy and to be able to have them in all of our pictures too. It was perfect.
With that said, how did you make sure to involve them - were they given a role in the actual ceremony or was there anything you let them personally choose?
Yes! The littlest two were our page boys, and walked hand in hand down the aisle with their big brother leading the way. Archie, our eldest (my stepson) was co-best man with Colin’s brother. He chose a beautiful reading called “Little Yellow Leaf” that he bravely read during the ceremony.
If you could give your three top tips for ensuring children feel an important part of their parents big day, what would they be?
1. Take the pressure off them, and yourself. It doesn’t matter if things don’t go to plan, if they sing or shout or cry, they are children, and people don't expect anything more. Rory was only 1 and a half on our wedding day, and Ollie was 3. Even right up to the last minute we reminded them that they didn’t have to do anything, and simply to enjoy it, which they most certainly did.
2. Make sure you have a photographer that captures candid moments. You will want as many pictures of your children as possible, but they won’t want to stand in line posing for a long time, that’s not fun for anyone. We whizzed through a few group pictures and as soon as the children got bored, they went off to play. Some of my favourite pictures Lydia Harper captured are the candid ones of special moments we didn’t know would happen.
3. Delegate. If you have very young kids at weddings, like we did, it might be a good idea to ensure someone is responsible for certain roles throughout the day. We decided to employee a nanny (a key worker that they both know and love from Nursery) for the day, and we were so happy we did. She took them off for their naps when they got tired, changed nappies, kept them safe when they were playing and entertained through the speeches. She was amazing and it meant Colin and I could have them with us and relax in the knowledge that she was there to help too.
Dressing young children for a wedding can be difficult. What did you consider when picking the boys wedding outfits and how did you dress them?
With Colin’s Scottish heritage, the groomsmen all wore kilts, but I felt Ollie and Rory were too young for that. I wanted something timeless and elegant that would still be comfortable and make them feel like themselves. We had an October country wedding so opted for the tweed bloomers, and a hooded coat rather than a restrictive jacket. They looked incredibly sweet in their bow ties and their coats kept them cosy.
What would your top picks be for Archie, Ollie and Rory for boys wedding outfits from our current collections?
I discovered Childrensalon while googling kids wedding outfits, but now I’m hooked! I tend to dress Ollie and Rory the same, but Archie is definitely developing his own style now. These are some of my favourites...