If you’re into both fashion and ‘real talk’, it’s likely you’ve come across Rachelle Rowlings on instagram before now. If not, let us introduce you… a babe’n mum of two and part of Who What Wear’s INF / Network, Rachelle can be seen styling up the latest Gucci, Balenciaga and Kacey Devlin like a boss, while sharing the realities of her version of motherhood.
Tens of thousands of women follow her (more than 23,000 actually) both for her refreshing and honest captions as well as her on point style. Us? Well, we love her because she’s a KD Girl – a brave, bold, confident woman who isn’t afraid to be uniquely herself. Her smile can light up a room and her ability to make any outfit into #runwayready is enviable. We stole five minutes of Rachelle’s time to find out more about her everyday look and what makes her feel most confident.
KD: Rachelle, you’ve become a bit of a poster girl for mums everywhere – someone who keeps it real whilst looking a million bucks! But lets be honest, it’s not just mums following you – your bright and confident approach to fashion is so unique and so FUN! Tell us, how would you describe your style?
RR: My earliest memory is having a pair of purple tights ripped off me because I misbehaved. My mum had threatened if I acted like a little diva one more time she’d take my favourite tights and the entire contents of my wardrobe. And she did. All I had left was a pair of black tights and a black t-shirt. I remember thinking; this is absolutely no way to live (ha ha ha).
From then on, I dressed as bright (and somewhat tacky) as I could. I adore colour. I adore a red lip. I think the world can sometimes be grey and downcast enough; our clothes don’t have to be. I would have to say my style is a little bit of chaos, a little bit of humour and a whole lot of pizzazz.
KD: You have an obvious appreciation for designer garments, how does this play into #mumlife? Do you always look so glamorous?
RR: I promise you that 99% of the time it does not look like the photo and that’s the main goal of why I started my instagram. I never wanted to lose myself, the clothes and dressing up. But there was no time for it. I didn’t understand how other mums seemed to look like they had it all when I could barely spray deodorant on without having my ankles severed by a teething nine month old.
A photo takes a second, yet it can make people think it’s reality. My reality is that I wear those clothes for a photo and then I go back to being Mum. It’s my creative outlet and my sanity and I love styling myself and (trying desperately) to keep up with fashion trends. But sadly, most of the day I am in my husband’s clothes, my Year 9 camp pyjamas or the same thing I’ve been wearing for five days straight. And on the days where I can’t even fathom putting decent clothes on, I just pop on some lippy, over-the-top glasses and a cute jacket (over the top of pyjamas) and do the day care run.
I also find it very therapeutic to add as many items to my net-a-porter cart as possible and pretend I am going to proceed!
KD: When you get the chance to get glammed up, what do you wear for an event? or for date night?
RR: Ohh it’s been a long time since one of those (thanks breast feeding) but if we were going out, it would be a mini dress with some big heels. I am very much into bell sleeves at the moment as well as pastels. And considering most of my upper body is savaged by my children (biting, scratching, nibbling) I am all about getting the legs out at the moment. Obsessed with my Kacey Devlin Bloom Mini Skirt paired with an Ellery bell sleeve top!
KD: And for a more pared back ‘day look’ running after the kids, what is your go-to outfit?
Always a tee and jeans/shorts! I personally love a Kacey Devlin relaxed singlet (or my latest obsession, the see-through Cult Metallic tee) with a pair of Bassike jeans or shorts. Always with some lippy and big glasses!
KD: Kacey Devlin garments drape around the female form as an expression of pride, confidence, strength and even armour. The cuffs of the Cy Cy Wrap Blouse as an example were specifically designed in a triangle shape so that if you’re nervous, you can cover your thumbs with the fabric and twiddle them without being noticed. It’s like a little secret between the wearer and the garment. What makes you feel most confident?
RR: I was always incredibly insecure, as we all are. My clothes were always my protection. If I dressed up then I felt less nervous. Now that I am a Mum and have watched what my body has been through to create these two perfect little beings, they are my confidence. I know that to them I am invisible so I will try and live like that for them!
KD: Who and what are you inspired by?
RR: My Mum. She wore Carla Zampatti when Carla was just starting out. She would dress like an extra off The Great Gatsby when she was young – super chic matching suits, shoulder pads & very Miu Miu style vests! She now is a little more tame but will vicariously live through my crazy outfits! I am now inspired by her as a mother – what she did, does, sacrificed and the way she loved/loves us even after the rough road she has been on. She still smiles and loves us like nothing else in this world.
KD: What’s the bravest thing you’ve ever done?
RR: We lost my Dad when I was 23, I liked to think I was brave standing in front of everyone he knew and loved and spoke about him and his life. But now, I can add two caesareans to my bravery!
KD: Do you think fashion has the ability to impact your mood? How?
RR: Of course! I remember walking through Pyrmont when I had my first job. I was wearing a black Cue suit. Everyone was in black. It was overcast! And I felt sad. Stressed and sad. I used my first pay to go back to Cue and buy a mustard jacket and matching skirt. I think I wore it to death. It was also the outfit I met my husband in so maybe that does of colour and happiness worked.
KD: It’s common in interviews to be asked about the best advice you’ve ever received, but at KD we think it’s about time we gave ourselves a pat on the back. What’s the best advice you’ve ever given someone else?
RR: Life is too short to be unhappy.