I first came across the gorgeous Clare Grove about 2.5 years ago when one of the sweetest, most caring colleagues of mine left the UK to go back to her wonderful Australia! As a goodbye gesture, the whole team decided to each give her a book that we felt would be special to her and she could keep on her shelf at home and think of all of us. The first thing that sprang to mind was that she loved, and I’m sure she still does, shoes!!! She used to come to the office with her designer and high street purchases and rock the look!
I randomly googled something along the lines of “yummy mummy shoes” And low and behold I was presented with the most beautifully illustrated book i’ve ever seen. There was a problem though- it wasn’t available in the UK, so here started my mission (which was so easy as Clare is a godsend & sent it to me via her adorable parents who live in the UK) to get this book as it was so perfect in every way.
Clare has recently just added a new book to her line: ” my mummy loves handbags” (*cough cough* anyone who knows me, you know this has my name all over it) and an absolutely fantastic emoji fashion app which is just the dream for the start of LFW on Friday!
What is your background?
I worked in fashion for years in London before starting work as a full time illustrator. I’ll never forget my time at Matches in Wimbledon Village in my early 20’s where I worked as a sales assistant at the Max Mara store. It was here that I learnt the importance of using beautiful fabrics in clothes and tailoring. With my salary I bought a classic camel Max Mara coat which I still wear today!
What made you pursue your book illustration and writing?
I had always dreamed of writing and illustrating a children’s book based on fashion. When my second child came along, I had a ‘Now or Never’ moment so decided to start sketching out ideas for a series of books. The journey of self-publishing has been an awful lot of hard work but also incredibly rewarding. I have crossed paths and made lifelong friends with some of the most creative, talented people that I would never have met if I hadn’t taken the step towards owning my own business.
When did you leave London?
I’m British, born in London and raised in Surrey. I Left London over ten years ago as I married a Kiwi (we met in my last week of travelling Australia and New Zealand). We are now settled in Herne Bay, Auckland with our three children. It’s very different from London but I feel it’s my second home and I love the lifestyle here.
What are your 5 essential items as a mummy?
Baby wipes (carried at all times), my children’s favourite toy/game/book, a regular fashion fix, reading the latest glossy mags oh and let’s not forget wine.
If you had access to any designer/artist/illustrator/etc who would you choose and why?
My favourite illustrator of all time has to be David Downton. I am inspired by his work every day. He is an incredibly accomplished fashion illustrator and captures the essence of the person in just a few brush strokes.
Visit her website here: www.my-mummy-loves.com
My Mummy loves shoes & My mummy loves bags books:
The fashion pack app:
From the highest heel and perfect Breton Tee, to the ultimate smoky eye, they’re all here, but it doesn’t just stop at clothes, beauty and accessories. There’s the Prozac pill you’ll need when you see that culottes are making a comeback, the Botox syringe to iron out any wrinkles and even the naughty fry-up you’ll crave the morning after too many vinos with your fellow fashionistas. And when you want your friends to be sure which Fashion Week you’re referencing, just add the appropriate flag!