At Luv Lou we are always inspired by the women around us, especially those like the beautiful Eleanor Pendleton, the founder and editor-in-chief of online magazine and website Gritty Pretty.
We were lucky enough to speak with Eleanor about the trials and tribulations of running your own business whilst becoming a new mother and dealing with all that 2020 is throwing at the world. Plus, of course, what Luv Lou sunglasses she's wearing at the moment!
What do you love most about running your own business, Gritty Pretty?
I love that I get to create content and bodies of work that speak to women and inspire them.
One thing that no one tells you about starting your own business?
How hard it is!
What does a day in the life of Eleanor Pendleton look like?
No day is ever the same. At the moment, I work four days from home and one day in the office. And certainly covid-19 changed a lot of plans for how I was going to come back to work after my baby. Most days start at 6.30am when my son wakes up. I'll feed him in bed, get him ready for the day and have him enjoying some play time before I either go into the office or log on for a zoom meeting with my team. Then, my day consists of managing different parts of the business, different people in my team and making sure that we are delivering content according to our deadlines as well as brainstorming new and creative ideas. And all the while I'm doing that generally with a baby who will wake up every couple of hours, so it is a bit of juggle. It usually means that I might be sitting at my computer for two hours and as soon as my son wakes up, I need to be with him for the next two hours. It is certainly a juggle.
How are you finding being a mother to your beautiful boy Banjo?
I always wanted to be a mother and I think I was lucky because I have a number of friends who have children so I was always aware of how amazing but also how hard it could be. But I don't think you fully understand that sentiment until you have children of your own. When my son was born, it was the most explosive love I've ever felt in my life. It's a feeling where it literally makes your body ache thinking about your child.
It's also the hardest thing you'll ever do because your entire life moving forward is completely selfless. Every single moment of every day is no longer about you. It's always about looking after this beautiful little baby that you've grown and created. So, I think it's definitely been an adjustment but is also the most fulfilling role I think I've ever had. I feel very lucky that I've had the career I've have and I worked really hard for it, I will say. But I look at him and think he is my biggest achievement. I just think 'oh my god, I grew you' and I'm so proud to be his mum.
What are your handbag essentials?
A lip balm, antibacterial gel, a bottle of water, my Elvie breast pump, my An Organised Life diary, my computer and then baby stuff. And, of course, sunglasses.
What is the best advice you've been given / What is your favourite quote to refer to?
I really like and live by the quote "know your why". I think it's something that's always really resonated with me. I think when you own your own business, you definitely have moments where they're more trying than others and you'll be tested. But if you can always come back to knowing why you're doing something, you will stay on the right path.
What Luv Lou style are you wearing currently?
I have the Harley in Orange Tort, which I love!
What do you like about this shape/style?
I'm a big fan of cat eye sunglasses because the frame really suits my face shape. I think it's about finding what works for your features and for me, I always feel they are the most flattering.
What do you like about Luv Lou eyewear?
I like that it's affordable and they they come in both classic and trendy styles. I feel like they just pull everything together. I never leave the house without my sunglasses.
What have you been doing to stay positive during this time?
I have just been spending as much time as possible with my family. When we went into isolation my son was only six weeks old so it was definitely a scary time. There were moments when I thought my business could really be under threat but I think it has been such a blessing living in Australia. We are so fortunate to be supported the way that our government has supported small business owners. But I also think being able to spend every day with my son and husband has been the greatest blessing, and perhaps an opportunity we wouldn't have been given otherwise.
What is the first thing you will do when life returns to normal?
I will be going to a restaurant with my girlfriends and be having a really amazing long lunch. I'd leave my baby at home with his dad and enjoy good wine, food and conversation. And I would hug everyone.