Kate Fowler: Photographed by Alexa (4) and Saachi (3)
Name: Kate Fowler
Place of birth: Sydney, Australia
1. What do you love about being a Mama?
The perspective that comes with it. Seeing life through little eyes again has been such a gift. It’s magic. Then, slowly, they start to express themselves. They start to find their words and teach you about who they are. I love watching their friendship grow. Listening in on their conversations and games. The world they have is so special. Soon you’ll discover their strong ideas and opinions… whilst it’s not always convenient (e.g. mealtimes!) it’s really great to see.
2. What do you find the hardest thing about being a Mama?
Bedtime at present! Saachi does a lot of running down the hallway since she’s moved into her big bed. But it’s tricky because Alexa is arguably more tired since she no longer naps. I’m waiting on a bunk to arrive so we can do bedtime altogether - fingers crossed! It can feel like everyone else has it sorted, but when you mention it to other parents, you realise everyone is in the same boat!
3. What are your go-to beauty products and favourite brands?
Like many Mothers, I’ve really struggled with pigmentation since my pregnancies. Pigmentation is tricky to target, and the products were worryingly toxic. So I was really excited to hear about Kiwi brand Emma Lewisham’s Skin Reset which targets pigmentation with no nasties. I was unsure at first that a natural product would be able to get the results I was after, but it had tested really well, so I gave it a go. It’s so good to see products in this category really standing their own. Their sunscreen is great too - super luxurious and hydrating. I also like knowing my little girls are using something natural on their skin too. We’re outside and reapplying so much over summer months.
I use a Vitamin C serum in the morning and Vitamin A at night. Since having my girls, I have realised how important it is to look after my skin. Chanel Baume’s Essential Golden Glow has a really sheer, bronzy tint which I use on eyes, lips and cheeks. It’s great to have something that multitasks, so you can get out the door quickly. Chanel also makes a palette which has a concealer, blush and highlighter combo. This is a great sort of one-stop-shop to have up your sleeve (in the car or handbag) for days you are a bit behind. But if I had to just do one thing though, it would be brows.
4. How do you manage to stay in shape?
My girls keep me moving for the most part but I have got back into tennis. I’ve always preferred playing sports than going to the gym. Yoga and Pilates have been my main thing since kids though. I struggle to get to classes as regularly as I’d like so I have started to practice at home with apps. The best time is before the kids wake up or whilst Saachi naps. FluidForm Pilates have released a great one which is exciting. I realised racing to and from a yoga class kind of defeats the purpose!
5. How do you find time to rest and relax?
In short bursts! Haha. We like to play music at home. It’s amazing to watch how it settles the girl’s moods after a big day. I also find calm music helps them delve even deeper into their play. I’ve also ditched Netflix lately to get back into reading in the evenings. It’s so much more satisfying and I find it makes it a lot easier to wind down and sleep better too.
6. Where are your favourite places to go in Sydney?
We’ve always really loved Parsley Bay because there is plenty of shade and we can choose our own adventure. There’s a great little bush walk up to the waterfall where you can spot water dragons. There are also lots of big rocks to climb, a good playground, the beach for paddling, and of course a café which is always handy! For hot days, we really love the fountains at the Wild Play Park in Centennial Park. It’s also unreal for nature walks - it’s like an enchanted forest. Camp Cove in Watsons Bay is another favourite at the moment when I can find an extra pair of hands to assist with the parking challenges haha.
My foodie all-rounders include Shuk Cafe in Bondi (there’s a kids area with lots of toys for weekend brunch excursions). Coogee Pavilion and Totti’s are great for kids too.
If I have some time without the girls, I love to go to the furniture auctions in Leichhardt. I have only lived here for just over five years, so there is still so much to explore.
7. What are your favourite things to do together?
Just add water! My girls would swim all day if they could. It is such a beautiful thing to do together. There’s no distractions and you can really connect - they’re grinning and laughing non-stop. You can see it’s such a thrill for them to be mastering all those new skills too. Watching Alexa’s confidence grow to a stage where she no longer needs floaties is magic. It really feels a bit like a superpower to her.
8. Any travel tips with small children or a new baby?
Don’t bother with big prams. Instead, invest or borrow a YoYo (they have a bassinet attachment for younger babies) or Nano (mountain buggy). They fit into the overhead compartment so you can have a free escape from the airport. When my girls were smaller, I would plan in-flight feeds and sleeps around the time zone of our destination. Also and don’t worry about packing many toys - there is so much newness for them on holiday, you’ll find they're just as interested in playing with ordinary objects.
9. Where is your favourite place to vacation with your family?
Auckland is very special for us. We have a big close-knit family in Auckland who love to see the girls. Many of my school-friends have also started to have their own families, so it’s really fun to get our kids together. My girls really loved Croatia and Mallorca too - basically anywhere on the beach. And when we went to Los Angeles to visit my sister last year we made it out to Disneyland - which was what dreams were made of!
10. What is your signature style and favourite fashion brands?
I am not huge on brands on the whole. But it’s fabric, cut and workmanship that makes me the most excited. It’s pretty rare that I would buy something new because I enjoy the hunt. I love Apartment 57 in Double Bay and Di Nuovo in Paddington. I also enjoy apps like TheRealReal and Vestiare. It’s a win-win as far as I’m concerned. I give something beautiful a second chance and pay less for it too. Saaki on Queen Street Woollahra has the most beautiful fabrics from India and colours that make me swoon. I always come back to Paris Georgia because their clothes are easy to wear but still always feel really strong and special. My signature style since having my girls is probably chunky sandals or sneakers, wide-leg cropped denim, a twist on a tank top, 90s sunnies (from Abe & Sara usually) and a vintage bag (woven, beaded, metallic - you name it!).
Kate wears Verse Love Letters AS necklace in 18k solid white gold.
Film photography: Alexa (4) and Saachi (3)