- Who are you and what is the name of your blog?….My name is Monique van Tulder and I dispense advice on the good things in life at The Urban Mum; a Luxury Travel & Lifestyle blog (…for families that like to travel in style…).
- What is your blog about?…..I began writing under the guise of a Domestic Goddess; I basically ate my way through Nigella’s books; took pretty pictures, and offered up my take on being a Mum & Nutritionist. It was loads of fun and I had lots to say about Parenting – eventually though it wore thin, because as much as I love baking – I love travel more than my kitchen. Essentially I wanted to have someone cook for me…My professional career was in the Travel Industry: Airlines; Hotels; Destinations. I travelled (a lot) for twenty or so years for work. Now I travel for pleasure (and write about how to do it with kids in tow…a whole new ballgame…) I do love food so I sneak in a story about yummy things on occasion (these days it is usually reviews about good places to eat…)
- How old is your blog?…Nearly four years old – although I did take a mini-break last year while I focused on Travel Writing for various publications.
- What made you start blogging in the first place? ….I love writing…I have written three novels (unpublished and probably never to see the light of day…). With a blog it is brilliant to have your own space to fill with whatever lovelies float your boat. Editorial control is luxuriously self-indulgent; and if people respond to my words it is a fabulous bonus.
- What was your last big purchase?….Oh dear; I wonder if The Husband is reading this…I am a shocker; Summer wardrobe at Fleur Wood; prior to that a new handbag in Hong Kong (cost per wear it is a fantastic investment – I will continue saying that to myself for a while). Earlier in the year I visited India with girlfriends – let’s just say I now have enough textiles to last a lifetime. I don’t think Father Christmas needs to visit me this year…
- Any favourite online shops?….Book Depository; Susan Avery Florist & eBay (I know there are more thrilling online options – I just seem to find whatever I need on eBay…). Net-A-Porter for dreaming…
- What’s the one thing you can’t go a day without?….Coffee and exercise – I am so much more pleasant having indulged in both. Oh and a cuddle from my boys; even the pre-pubescent 12 year old who now grunts instead of speaking…
- Ideal Saturday night?…. Thursday night is Date Night; by Saturday my energy levels are low, very, very low – I am only capable of holding a glass of wine while slumped in front of Breaking Bad (late to that party, loving it….).
- Do you have a particular style?….Monochrome – black, white, grey – classic. I like quality over quantity. I have some gorgeous Vintage Pieces that add a unique feel… For resort holidays I love lots of silk and bright colours.
10. Any advice for mums who might be stuck in a bit of a rut? ….Take some time out for yourself – as big as a holiday or as small as a walk around the block. If you are refreshed and your soul replenished; most other things in life; family; and business fall into place.
If you are in a style rut; get an amazing classic haircut then think about who your style icons might be (I love Jackie Onassis on holidays in the 1970’s; Emmanuelle Alt from French Vogue; and Sarah Harris from UK Vogue). You don’t need to shop big to emulate your style dream – just clever. Target, Seed and Country Road always have great pieces at good price points. If you have items in your wardrobe that don’t make you feel amazing – get rid of them. It is a bit of a cliché – but the French women really do chic well.