My Baba – interview

I meant to post this weeks ago when it was published but all kinds of things have got in the way of ANTW recently. Un-forgiveable really.

Anyway, I was honoured to be interviewed by the fabulous My Baba blog and so I thought I’d share my words of wisdom answers with my very own blog.

And here it is, you can click HERE to go to the original My Baba page too :

 

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Lucky Seven Caps fashion label boss Mel Moss talks to My Baba this week about life as a successful working mother. Mel runs Lucky Seven Caps with her husband Jay Jay and they have two children, Cash (5 years) and Carter (3 years). The family live in the Cotswolds with one dog, two cats and six chickens. This doubles as Lucky Seven Caps’ HQ, where Jay Jay’s Dinersaurs are currently hibernating!

You own the awesome Lucky Seven Custom Made Caps, how did you come up with the concept?

Well, to be fair it was Jay Jay’s baby really and we met 10 years ago just as he’d made his first patch…ENCOM….and taken delivery of a load of trucker caps and captain’s crests. He’s an artist by trade and an ardent individual when it comes to what he wears. He hates anything with screaming logos and brash branding so Lucky Seven Caps started as the antithesis to the Von-Dutch explosion which was happening at the time.  He was inspired by the fictional logos from some of his best loved films and tv shows so ENCOM is from Tron and NOSTROMO is from Alien and so on and so on. In the early days there was nothing on the cap which said “Lucky Seven” which made it a nightmare to PR but great for those who wanted to wear a brand quietly.

You work together with JayJay, what’s it like working with your husband? 

We’re actually a pretty good team and although we have our own roles in the company, we make all the big decisions together. Jay Jay is head of all creative and so he’s in charge of designing the perfect caps and patches, which he does brilliantly. I look after all the PR and Marketing as well as special collaborations and partnerships, which are growing by the minute! We have a great team in the studio too who make sure that each and every custom made cap is of the highest quality. We’re not an off the shelf cap brand so each cap order is put together by hand, boxed and dispatched by a member of the L7 team. We take it all very seriously indeed!

You recently collaborated with Jamie Oliver. What was that like, working together? 

Jamie is an old friend of ours and someone we have the upmost respect and love for. We have been working with him and the team on patches for his various restaurants for a long time now and have just completed some fantastic caps for Jamie’s Italian in Moscow, Singapore, Istanbul and Canberra which has been great fun. Jamie loves caps as much as Jay Jay and was one of our very first supporters so it’s really cool to be able to work with him on Lucky Seven projects.  Jay Jay and Jamie also recently collaborated on The Diner, a pop-up Dinersaur restaurant in London. It’s full of Jay Jay’s artwork and sculptures and serves up the best burgers and hot dogs in town. Well worth a visit and it won’t be there forever.

Are you a huge foodie? What’s your favourite family recipe?

We absolutely love cooking and love recipe books! I’ve been stuck on my favourites, Polpo and Ottolenghi, for some time now and Jay Jay is addicted to the fabulous Pitt Cue book so we cook quite a range of things. In terms of a family recipe I think it would have to be Jay Jay’s Sunday American style pancakes with streaky wafer thin bacon and Maple Syrup. It’s become a bit of ritual in this house and the boys get thoroughly involved in both the making and the eating of it all.

What’s on top of your to-do list this week?

We’re working on a few new collaborations for Lucky Seven at the moment so this is probably top of the list this week.  Although, mending my childhood Paddington Bear is also up there as I’ve promised my 5 year old he can have him and at the moment he’s in a rather sorry state!

How has life changed, since having children?

It has changed absolutely for the better. I can’t really remember what it was like before but it must have been pretty boring! We have 2 boys, Cash (5) and Carter (3) and they make me laugh every single day and I think they’re completely brilliant. I’m constantly exhausted and forever chasing my tail but secretly I love every moment. We moved out of West London when Cash was 18 months old and now live in the Oxfordshire Cotswolds so I suppose that has been the biggest change. I adore it up here, wouldn’t want to live anywhere else right now. It just works for us as a family and for the businesses too, it provides lots of space to think.

Did you children inspire you to sell kids’ hats on your website?

Yes I suppose they did really. Jay Jay always wore a cap as a kid. There isn’t a photograph of him as a boy where he isn’t wearing a baseball cap. We started the kids caps when Cash was about 2 years old and began with the cloth Kid’s Army cap before going in to the Kid’s Deluxe Trucker which is ideal for kids to teens and beyond.  I have so many friends who struggled to find a hat their child would actually wear but I think if you’re able to sit with them and let them design their own online, it becomes all the more exciting and you can make it completely individual to them. We have a great and loyal young following for Lucky Seven Caps and the “Dinersaur” caps Jay Jay did when he opened The Diner with Jamie, are a particular hit with the boys!

What’s the one baby product you couldn’t have lived without? 

I think it would have to be Diprobase….a strange one maybe but both my boys suffer from excema and it is just the best thing in the world when it comes to keeping skin soft and happy.  We go through tons of the stuff.

Would you ever consider launching a children’s clothing line?

Yes, absolutely. It’s something I’ve wanted to do for a long time and we have all kinds of plans for the kids divisions of both Lucky Seven Caps and Supersaurs. Watch this space…

How would you sum yourself up in one sentence?

Happy and hard working with a touch of maternal multi-tasking anxiety.

 


Marvellous Moleskine

I’ve always loved a notebook. I also love a scrapbook and when I had more time and more adventures, I used to religiously record things in scrap / notebooks of all varieties. They weren’t so much the Dear Diary kind but more a visual record of the bits and pieces I’d collected along the way and didn’t want to forget. I have recipe books of the same ilk which are stuffed full of torn out pieces of cooking inspiration. I also have a massive box of torn out pieces of cooking inspiration which have never seen a stick of glue and will probably never make it in to a book. I’m keeping them for a rainy day when I have more time.

Along with my love of what is essentially just collecting and cutting and pasting, comes a love of Moleskine notebooks. I have lots; diaries, sketch books, journals….all sorts. I like their sturdiness and I particularly like the piece of elastic which keeps them all neat and uniform. A stack of Moleskines is a very exciting sight – to me anyway. I don’t buy them nearly as much as I used to but then I stumbled on Urban Cottage Industries which, amongst other things, has a fabulous collection of Moleskines for sale in all kinds of colours AND they personalise them with your own chosen text.

I ordered one as a Valentines experiment for Jay Jay and it’s gone down very well indeed. It’s a perfectly simple present which not only has lots of uses but also offers something bespoke which is special on any occasion.

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ps. It’s my birthday on Monday…I think they do next day delivery.


The Quinoa question

I imagine there are quite a few of us determined to radically change our eating and drinking patterns after a season of gluttony. I’m constantly trying to eat better, drink better, think better and generally be better and after reading all kinds of books and blogs, it would seem Quinoa has managed to put itself highest on the list when it comes to general well being.

Now don’t get me wrong, I’ve eaten the stuff before. I’ve had it in Pret pots and at the occasional lunch or dinner party but it always seems to taste the same…which isn’t of very much at all. And then I had an idea – warning : this is not by any means a new, life changing idea so I apologise now if you’ve all tried it, I could be joining this Quinoa cooking party just as it’s time to leave.

Here’s what happened, I was going to cook brown rice for dinner last night to accompany my Wagamama Salmon Hot Pot which is a bit of a staple in this house and very delicious indeed. When there was no brown rice in the rice box, I spied a bag of lonely looking Quinoa and decided to pretend it was rice and cook it in just the same way. I sautéed some onion and added cumin, turmeric and a few coriander seeds before throwing in a cup of Quinoa grains and mixing them around for a bit. Then I added 1.5 cups of home brewed chicken stock, turned it down to a simmer, covered it with a lid and let it bubble away contently for 20 minutes. When its time was up and all the liquid had disappeared, I turned off the heat, covered the pan with a clean tea towel, put the lid back on and left it until we were ready to eat. It was very good indeed, we all thought so, well my husband did at least, and so we are happily joining the long list of Quinoa converts. Turns out that all it really needs is a bit of love and stock, which is fair enough when you’re battling to change world grain.

Click the picture to read all kinds of fascinating Quinoa facts.

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And one last thing….is it pronounced keen-wah or quin-oa ..? You’d imagine it was the latter by the spelling but I just can’t say for sure.


Seed and Stem….new stock and a bit of a SALE

I’m still cutting and pasting and cutting and pasting over here and have added a few more products to the Seed and Stem stationery range.

The Gift Tags are particularly lovely and the Note Cards make the perfect thank you card or simply as a “why not send something pretty through the post”. We all need a little bit of happy, real life post from time to time.

 

Flower notelets

 

 

 

Gift Tags Herbs and Veg

 

Gift Tags Flowers

 

 

And if you add JAN2014 at checkout, you’ll get FREE SHIPPING for the rest of the month

 


Avene and Avene and Avene…

I’ve never been terribly good with treatments and pampering, I always thought it was a little self-indulgent and something I’d embrace when I grew up. And then suddenly I realised I was grown up and my skin was screaming for some kind of attention. It’s happening, the wrinkles are starting to show and the irritating patches of dryness and redness are beginning lash out in all their frustrated glory. It’s my face mainly (nothing too noticeable) which apparently hates the Winter along with Christmas, stress, lack of sleep, the list continues and to add to the gripes, it has now decided to reject my moisturiser of choice for the past 15 years.

I have sensitive skin, always have, and so to find a facial routine which doesn’t leave me spotty and sad has taken me a very long time indeed. I went for Kiehls and it worked. Well it did. And then suddenly, around the 20th December I think it was, my skin started to revolt, literally. Dry patches and redness which worsened as the day went on accompanied by the odd blemish here and there. I googled, I questioned, I almost cried, I slathered my face in the children’s excema emollients and then I discovered a small, sealed canister at the back of my bathroom cabinet. I’ve had it for an age and never opened it, Eau Thermal Avene Water Spray. I held down the nozzle and a fine, gentle, reinvigorating mist covered my face. And now…15 days on….my skin is happy again. With my thermal mist (whatever that is) and accompanying Eau Thermale Avene Hydrance Optimale Rich moisturiser – for sensitive and atopic skin – the patches have gone and the dryness is no more.The wrinkles are being a little more stubborn but if anything can, Avene can.

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Seed and Stem Greeting Cards

To say I’ve been slack in posting recently would be an understatement. I’ve been darn right lazy. Don’t think I haven’t been busy though, I have, I promise, been really very busy with all manner of things. Movember somewhat takes over around this time of year – it’s the busiest time in the Lucky Seven Caps calendar and therefore the busiest time in my own work / home / life calendar. It’s all worth it though, every single second and I’m very proud of all that we’ve achieved at this point in the Movember month. If you have no idea what on earth I’m talking about you can take a look around the STORE or watch the VIDEO. Enjoy.

I have managed to sneak in a bit of creative cutting and pasting though when no one’s looking. I’ve started making my own little greeting cards using my treasured collection of vintage French seed packets which I’ve had for years and have desperately wanted to put to good use. So, I bought some A6 Kraft cards and envelopes and a few postcards too and started sticking, packing and uploading and the result is enormously satisfying and so I thought it time to share.

Each and every card is handmade and most are completely unique so once they’ve gone, they’ve gone. They make the prettiest greeting card and the postcards make the loveliest note cards. The ideal thank you for all those Christmas presents perhaps…..just an idea. Feel free to share. I’m in danger of getting far too attached to them and I don’t know nearly enough people to send them all to.

You can see the current range on the Seed and Stem Store. It’s ever changing and ever growing so keep checking back. There are big plans ahead….

 

carotte rouge longue saint

 

reine marguerite folded card

 

radis national

 

soleil double

 

 

 

group of 4

 


Clever Zara

I’m aware that this isn’t exactly breaking news but I ventured in to Zara at the weekend and if you haven’t been recently then you MUST GO. Immediately. You’ll never want for another coat, knit, skirt, dress, trouser….the collections are incredible and with price tags to match. I was in a smartening up kind of mood so went for the kind of things I wish I wore every day but know I’ll probably only get to wear once a month.

I didn’t get everything I wanted, that would have been both ridiculous and bad for my marriage, but I did get a couple of things which will be worn the moment the temperatures drop and I have somewhere deserving to dress up for. Clever Zara.

 

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check dress zara