Last week, me and my petit Toronto abode were featured by Youthful Nest – a one-stop online resource for all your baby/kid interior design needs.
Thank you, lovely Lisa, for thinking of The Rebel Mama for your site – it was a pleasure giving you a peek into my tiny slice of the city.
Q&A WITH THE REBEL MAMA CREATOR & CONTRIBUTOR: NIKITA STANLEY
Q: WHAT WAS GOING ON IN YOUR LIFE WHEN YOU DECIDED TO TAKE THE PLUNGE OF POURING YOUR NON-JUDGMENTAL HEART AND INTERESTS INTO A BLOG FORMAT?
A: I started blogging about 7 lifetimes ago (technically it was 2012). At the time, the site was called “Ooh Nikita” (a nod to the Elton John song after which I was named). I would post there randomly, but once I got pregnant in 2013 and started posting about that experience in my typical no-holds-barred style (from the moment I learned how to talk, it was the truth and nothing but the truth that came out of my mouth), my readership started to increase. It increased even more after I had my son at which point I thought, “Oh Sh*t – This is a mom blog now!” I rebranded, committed to publishing regular content and the rest, as they say, is history.
Q: YOU’VE GOT A WELL-ROUNDED TEAM OF FEMALE CONTRIBUTORS WHO ARE SMART, STYLISH AND INSPIRATIONAL – HOW DID YOU FIND THEM OR DID THEY FIND YOU?
A: Neither, really. We sort of found each other. The first person I ever asked to contribute to The Rebel Mama was my good friend, Aleks Jassem (who has since become more of a wing-woman for all things Rebel Mama rather than ‘just’ a contributor); after she came on board, we started throwing out names of other powerhouses in our combined network who we thought it would be fun to have help us build a more multifaceted platform – they’ve all been amazing. They’re such awesome chicks!
Q: WE LOVE YOUR BEAUTIFUL HONESTY AND KICK-ASS APPROACH THAT COMES ACROSS IN ALL YOUR WRITTEN AND VISUAL POSTS. WAS THIS SOMETHING THAT JUST CAME ORGANICALLY OR WAS IT SOMETHING DELIBERATE…MEANING FOR EXAMPLE DID YOU SEE WHAT WAS BEING SHARED ON “MOM-BLOGS” AND DECIDE THAT WASN’T RESONATING WITH YOU AND YOUR GROUP OF WOMEN?
A: Yeah, that’s exactly what happened! Whenever me and my girlfriends with young kids or babies would get together, we would sit around and talk about the real nitty gritty side of motherhood. We’d curse, tell inappropriate jokes, laugh, drink scotch, and we’d wonder where the heck the moms who were like us were hiding – we knew they were out there somewhere, but all the mom-content we were reading was completely unrelatable to us so I just said to hell with it, I’m going to make The Rebel Mama into a mom blog for the rest of us! And that is what it remains today.
Q: WHAT IS YOUR OWN PERSONAL HOME DÉCOR STYLE?
A: Many years ago, Nate Berkus was on Oprah and one of his interior design tips was to style your home like you’d style yourself so that you always look good in it. I thought that was friggin’ brilliant and I’ve totally taken that advice to heart. My home and my wardrobe are both weighted heavily with neutrals – mostly black, white and grey. Colour is added moderately and mostly in accessories – in my closet, that’s often in footwear and jackets; in my home it’s mostly in wall art and floral arrangements.
Q: WHO IS YOUR GO-TO HOME FURNISHING OR DÉCOR BRAND WHEN LOOKING FOR PIECES FOR THE KIDS’ SPACES?
A: For my first son, I was all about Oeuf and I fell in love with a crib by Spot on Square that cost me $1000. It’s beautiful, but now I kinda want to go back in time and smack my 2014 self in the face and say, “ARE YOU NUTS?? BABIES DON’T NEED THOUSAND DOLLAR CRIBS!” hahaha In true to form second child fashion, my 5 month old’s room is decorated entirely with Ikea.
Q: HAVE YOU OR ANY OF YOUR CONTRIBUTING LADIES HIRED A DESIGNER FOR YOUR KIDDOS BEDROOMS OR BABY NURSERY?
A: I have not. I personally enjoy the challenge of finding suitable decor for a space – it’s another creative outlet that allows me the chance to play and have a little fun. Hand me a few million dollars, though, and I bet I’d change my tune!
Q: I HAD A FRIEND WHO ONCE SAID, “HOW COOL WOULD IT BE IF MUSIC FOLLOWED YOU AROUND LIKE IT DID IN THE MOVIES!” WHAT SONGS WOULD YOUR LIFE’S SOUNDTRACK INCLUDE?
A: The Cinematic Orchestra, To Build a Home
would probably play on a loop all day. Kanye West, Fade
would play anytime I was up past 10:30pm! (That is pretty solid demonstration of the fact that I’m basically a walking series of contradictions! Ha!)
Q: AS MOMS WHO ARE WORKING AND RAISING CHILDREN ALONG WITH YOUR HUSBANDS, HOW DO YOU FIND PEACE WITH THE QUALITY TIME YOU SPEND ON EACH – WORK, HUSBAND, KIDS AND LIFE?
A: It’s hard. You kind of feel like no matter what you’re doing something is suffering as a result. A friend of mine often tells me, “Nikita, you can have it all! You just can’t have it all at once.” And it’s so damn true. Sometimes I just have to decide, Ok I’m with my kids and I’m ignoring everything else, or, Ok I’m with my friends and that’s it… but again, it’s easier said than done. If you know someone who’s got it all figured out, please send me their contact info!
Q: WHO’S YOUR SOCIAL MEDIA STYLE CRUSH AND/OR FAVORITE BLOG?
Giovanna Battaglia at Dolce & Gabbana FW2015
Q: WHAT’S NEXT FOR THE REBEL MAMA?
A: Things are crazy these days here at The Rebel Mama! We recently launched the eCommerce component to the site and we are OPEN for business and shipping internationally!
Next on the agenda is a few new styles for Spring and a little something for the kiddies in time for FW17.
We’re also planning to continue hosting events, organizing pop-ups and just generally trying to create safe spaces for women to be able to come out, meet like-minded mamas, and find a little peace and comfort with their new mommed-up selves (the early days especially can bring about a bit of an identity crisis!).
Another huge goal for 2017 is to partner with some really cool, edgy brands and businesses to hook our Rebels up with some sweet deals on things that are a bit more exciting than diapers and wipes… Stay tuned!