Rachel Turone of lifestyle blog Rachel the Hat in her own words, ‘has been taking photos of her outfits and getting funny looks from her Welsh neighbours for the past 5 and half years!’ She documents outfits and style posts from a busy 30+ mum’s perspective with a wide and loyal following.
After having her son, she found she had lost her identity in a sea of nappies and sleepless nights but one day turned it around and has never looked back.
With a positive outlook she aims to ‘dress happy’ each day and put her best foot forward, whether that be on the school run or in a meeting. Rachel is also a gluten-free vegan and is a huge advocate of eating tasty, wholesome, vegan meals.
If you’re ever looking for her she can probably be found cooking something up in her postage stamp size kitchen.
Describe a typical day for you?
On a week day I’m an early riser, I like to get a cup of coffee in me before I face any other humans so, me and my dog Cassy head down stairs normally around 6.30am.
I let Cassy out to do her doggy deeds and then make myself and the husband a much needed coffee before the chaos ensues of getting the kids ready, packing lunches and generally family madness.
I get my son and my two step children up and nag them to the point of irritating myself to make sure we all get out the door on time. I usually make a quick smoothie to tide me over until I get back. Once everyone is in their designated places, Cassy and I go for a long walk.
I love to walk in the morning, I find it clears my head for the day and organises my thoughts to a more coherent order, enabling me to work far more productively through the day. Without that I’m just usually a manic woman slamming on her keyboard in panic, throwing my hands up in the air exclaiming ‘It just can’t be all done’… which also sometimes happens.
After our nice walk through the Welsh hills, Cassy sleeps for the rest of the day(oh to be a dog) and I sit at my laptop with a home-made breakfast bar (I batch make these at the weekend), and a big glass of water and start on emails. Firstly replying to anything that’s come in over night, and then starting on any fresh correspondence.
After emails are complete, I start on blogging work, creating content for future blog pieces or taking flat-lay photos of products, which I always enjoy producing fresh new arrangements.
After any photos are done I start writing, and I get lost in a whole little world of my own. I love to write but have to have complete quiet to concentrate.
Usually my tummy is rumbling at this point, and lunch is always welcome.
I head on in to my teeny tiny kitchen and start on a bit of lunch. I am vegan and love to cook. Lately I’ve been loving home-made guacamole and hummus with crudities, which can be anything I have in the fridge, usually cucumbers, peppers, sweet baby beetroot and carrot sticks.
I sit back at my desk and binge watch YouTube videos, before I know it half an hour has passed, my lunch has been devoured and I’m ready to start back to work.
Then back to the laptop and on with some social media, before I know it hours have flown and its time to pick up the kids!
Come 3.30 I walk Cassy again to go get my boys from the bus stop. I always make sure I take them a little treat, which they’re always more glad to see than me, with exclaims of “What do you have mummy” as soon as they got off the bus.
We walk back and they have some down time playing whilst I head in to the kitchen and start cooking dinner. I switch my ‘work hat‘ to my ‘mum hat‘ and get cracking.
Depending on if Salvatore my husband is working away or not, we either wait for him for dinner or crack on. I love to make everyone sit around the table, we’re all so busy but to grab a meal time together is so important to me.
I ask each child what their favourite part of their day was, and we all have a chat, that is until Neo my youngest gets bored and flings a potato on the floor (thank god for the dog, she’s like a little vacuum) and Talyn my step son wants to Xbox, my teen step daughter goes back to her room, and I’m left with the dishes.
At this point I clean my kitchen, do the evil pack lunches (which is my most abhorred task.. I bloomin’ hate doing pack lunches, doing four of them and everyone wants something different!), and once all that’s done I set to doing Neo’s reading homework with him. We aim to read each evening which has helped him immensely.
I then make all my kids bathe and rid the grass stained knees, then put my youngest to bed with a story, a kiss and a snuggle.
I shower in the evening and change in to comfy pj’s as it now finally my down time. I sit with hubby (if he’s home), he taps away on his computer, I read and we listen to music most nights, it can be anything from Mumford and Sons, Damien Rice, Jose Gonzales to Pink Floyd and Led Zepplin.
Sometimes we’ll be in to a box set and watch that (Stanger Things most recently, which was fantastic), but lately I’ve been consuming books at a rate of knots.
Once the elder kids are in bed we will finally take ourselves off to bed, in hope to reach the land of nod.
What do you feel are your biggest achievements?
My children and marrying my husband. Sounds soppy but marrying him was the best thing I’ve ever done. He makes me a better person, plus he gave me my step kids and we made our son which is definitely my biggest achievement.
What’s in your handbag?
Usually a ton of discarded shopping lists and receipts, always a red lipstick (red lipstick just makes everything better!) and what I lovingly term as my ‘mum Kit’ which basically holds something for every eventuality, such as plasters aloe vera for sores and headache tablets for when it all gets a bit much. I did a ‘what’s in my bag’ summer edition recently here.
What are your ambitions in life?
Personally, to raise wonderful caring children who grow to be empathetic, caring adults.
Career: to grow the blog, to work with more fabulous ladies and to one day be a published writer (either fiction or a recipe book.. or both if I’m being really ambitious!).
What advice do you know now, you wish you had pre-kids?
Your body is a magnificent thing, look after yourself and wear what the heck you like! Also travel as much as you can, take every possibility, as once children come, your funds are magically depleted :).
Where do you see yourself in 5 years time?
I hope to be content in my mid 30s with a garden full of home-grown veggies, possibly some chickens and living a happy, authentic life. I would love more time to spend with my husband, so as our children get older, the odd date night would be lovely too.
Career wise, I would hope to still be writing in some capacity and producing engaging, relatable content.
What advice would you give a budding blogger?
Just go for it. Yes there are a ton of reasons why not to something, and sure there may be others doing something similar, but they aren’t you. They aren’t you with your voice, and your ideas are worth perusing. Do it for yourself.
Tell me more about becoming vegan?
Having eaten vegetarian for some time, my husband and I stumbled upon some documentaries regarding the Dairy Industry and then from there, watched many more Youtube videos on Veganism and simply couldn’t deny the facts. Since then, we live a completely vegan lifestyle, from food to clothing (non leather) to my beauty products and household goods.
It can be quite daunting at first as it’s a complete lifestyle change but I can honestly say that I have never felt happier, healthier or more grounded. It really opens your eyes to the world on an ethical level and has emphasised my empathy towards others, whether that’s people or animals. I have also never felt better. Having tried many diets over the years with a weight which tended to yo-yo, my body has now found its natural happy weight, I am fit and healthy and feel more energetic.
Describe your style?
My style is varied and I dabble in lots of different locks. Ultimately, I am a jeans an tee girl at heart, comfort will always be key for me as my lifestyle is one that doesn’t demand many fancy frocks or finery, but if I had to pick my top 5 pieces for the season, it would probably be my vegan biker jacket, Topshop skinny jeans, a winter maxi dress, a striped sweater and a faux leather skirt.
Remixing is really important to me as I work to a capsule wardrobe of around 38 items per season. Only items that will work hard for me and that I truly love make it in to the capsule which makes getting dressed every day a lot easier!
Finally, happiness is…
Sitting in the sunshine with my family all around me, drink in hand, music in the background, listening to everyone giggling and being happy, eating food I’ve created and generally loving life.