MMM: Modern Mum – Look’s Style Director Zoe Aird

Look Magazine’s Style Director Zoe Aird, 36, spends half her life shooting the glossy weekly’s main fashion in exotic locations.

But Zoe – who lives with partner Nathan – is also a busy mum to three and a half year old Oliver (that half is very important).

Look is a magazine geared up to bringing readers the hottest on the high street every week. So it is fair to say Zoe has her finger firmly on the fashion pulse.

Here she talks to MMM about how she has created her own work / home style balance.

Modern Mum Zoe Aird

CREDITS:

  1. A very glam shot of Zoe taken for Look Magazine
  2. ‘Things I am loving this Autumn includes this leather bag from Zara, £69.99. I love how minimal it is.’
  3. Zoe looking chic at work in black and tan
  4. ‘This Reiss blouse, £110 is a gorgeous fabric and gives a very glossy Seventies feeling.’
  5. A snapshot from Zoe’s recent work trip to NYC
  6. (Right) Zoe and her little man, Oliver; (Left) Zoe’s top shoe choice for AW – from Next.
  7. ‘I love this leather skirt, £95, Boutique at Topshop. Wear with a fine knit sweater tucked in.’
  8. (Left) A recent snap of Zoe and Oliver; (Right) T-shirt, £44, American Vintage at Matches Fashion. ‘I discovered these tees in Century 21 in NYC – a huge discount store that’s a bit like TK Maxx, but with even better labels and discounts! These tees are so soft and very nicely loose.’
  9. Zoe styling up a shoot in the office

Q&A:

How would you describe your style? Has it changed since becoming a mum? I aim for a chic/cool mix (how well I manage that depends on sleep:wine ratios), one bit scruffy, one little bit boyish and one bit chic. It hasn’t really changed but honestly – it did take me a little while to get out of pregnancy brain and get a bit more stylish again.

Where do you get your creative inspiration from? Is there anyone who inspires your look? I love looking through fashion reference books like Diana Vreeland’s The Eye Has To Travel for inspiration from decades past. I love old 70s and 80s movies (I’m currently going through a Woody Allen phase: Manhattan is a fave). Also I love all the chic French girls like Vanessa Paradis. I am a car boot addict – I love rooting around other people’s old stuff for house and fashion inspiration!

‘Shooting a main fashion story for Look on a rooftop in New York. Straight after this shoot I got a flight home as it was Oliver’s first ever school play the next day!
‘PS The model had size 9 feet hence why she hasn’t got any shoes on.’
IMAGE COPYRIGHT: Zoe Aird
Do you dress completely differently out of work? Not really – maybe a bit more relaxed, sweaters and jeans – the main difference is footwear. At work I pretty much always wear heels whereas the weekend is for Converse and flat sandals. Heels and a child whose only speed is ‘run’ don’t mix!

Is there an item or accessory you could you not live without? Not really, though each season there are certain things I try and get a new version of. I’m always on the hunt for that ‘wear all day’ perfect heel. I am also a sucker for the perfect jean (at the moment I’m loving my Kasil Workshop ‘Minx’ jeans and I’d be pretty lost without these at the mo! Oh and my iPhone makes life generally a LOT easier!

Zoe at work in her Minx jeans and heels
What says ‘cool mum’ to you? Is there an item or accessory you’d recommend that could instantly update a simple look? To me a cool mum is one who looks like she’s enjoying spending time with her child though that doesn’t mean style has to leave the building! I do think Mums look cool in Converse. They’re practical and comfortable – you can quickly run but you look cool – and young-ish!

Zoe and Oliver

Is there any practical style advice you’d give women who don’t want to live in pyjamas or tracksuits after having a baby? As someone who was still wearing maternity jeans three months after giving birth, with hindsight I’d say ditch them sooner rather than later – it spurs you on to get your figure back. Go for a high-stretch comfortable pair (pref dark colour or black – more flattering). Topshop do great uber stretchy skinny legs for about £35.

Also blouses and cardigans are good for breast feeding – obviously buttons make life easier. I like men’s cardigans best – they are over-sized so you still get the comfort of a tracksuit but much more stylish (steer clear of black though – it shows up every bit of goo/snot/milk – I found shades of camel were good at stain hiding).

Some people (hello Gwyneth Paltrow) swear by control pants to help get your tummy muscles back where they belong but I didn’t try it. Also if you’re not feeling your best figure wise, I liked trapeze line tunic shape dresses – they don’t cling around the hips and tummy and the A-line makes your legs look slimmer – bonus!

What three things should women buy as wardrobe must-haves? A great coat – it doesn’t matter what you’re wearing underneath (and let’s face it when you’ve got a new-born there isn’t really time for outfit planning!) so you can just throw it on and – hello – you look great.

A big enough leather handbag for hold your bits (that now includes your child’s bits too).

Comfortable yet stylish flats. Post-child, flat shoes have become a far bigger part of my life.

Where do you tend to shop for your child/children? Why? Polarn o Pyret – it’s a brilliant Swedish store that stocks reasonably priced, colourful comfortable separates that make kids look like kids. Gap is brilliant for basics and Their Nibs have gorgeous printed jersey pyjamas.

Kidsen is an independent store near where I live which is run by a Scandinavian lady who brings a stylish and unique eye to kids stuff. It’s pricey but stocks the most gorgeous stuff. I am a fan of Mini Rodini in particular.

Kidsen shop, Kensal Rise, London

Petit Bateau – great French chic – you can’t really go wrong. Sainsburys –I do get some of Oliver’s clothes like swimming stuff, shorts and jelly shoes etc from good old Sainos. Its cheap as chips and they do have some surprisingly good bits! The one thing we do spend more on is good quality leather boots – they seem to last longer than anything cheap so its worth it.

I don’t really spend silly amounts of money on Oliver’s wardrobe – he grows at a rate of knots.

Also it’s worth checking out the sale shops at Bicester village, in particular Bonpoint. And Marie Chantal tends to have a great sale.

QUICK FIRE QUESTIONS:

  • Flats or heels? Both!
  • Shoulder or across-the-body bag? Shoulder
  • Leather jacket or parka? Leather
  •  Blow dry or scruffy bun? Scruffy bun
  • Mr Tumble or Mr Bloom? Mr Tumble – kids love him don’t they?
  • Comments ( 1 )

  • avatar
    Alison, Not another mummy blog

    Ahh some lovely tips there – can’t believe I haven’t heard of Polarnopyret. It looks fab.

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