I’d like you to meet Lotte of The Rest, despite never meeting her in person I think that if I got to spend 5 minutes with her in the flesh I’d decide that we should be good friends & haaaang. Lotte is a Waikato gal {I’ll let her tell you more about that in a second} & like me she has three small boys. Inspired by her boys, former school teacher turned designer Lotte is the brilliance behind The Rest and the dreamiest jammies for your little sleeper. All her products have ‘rest’ in mind. The all-consuming sleep {or lack thereof} when having kids becomes a huge focus, so that’s where ‘The Rest’s’ focus lies. This Summers range is aptly named "Happy Here" a sweet little collection of summer pjs, nighties and baby basics inspired by the places we love and the places we long to go. Garden adventures, picking flowers, building sandcastles and the comfort of home! Let’s get chatting to Lotte...

Lotte - you’re from Aotearoa, tell us more? Where? When did you leave? What do you miss? When are you visiting next?

Well my entire family comes from Holland actually. My parents moved to Morrinsville just before I was born, so I was always referred to as ‘The Kiwi.’ I absolutely love NZ, especially the Waikato area. It’s been 12 years since I left, I miss it terribly & it will always be home to me. NZ has become the perfect holiday destination for our little family now though. Maybe one day I can convince my husband (a real Aussie bloke) to move there with me.

Right now you reside in Bendigo, Victoria & it’s been a year huh?! We can’t just dance around the C-word {COVID not Christmas} Victoria did it long & hard, how are you feeling now? I love that your latest collection is so appropriately named “Happy Here”!

Gosh its been a hard year, there were definitely ups and downs. As it would have been for everyone, 2020 tested me big time. I released our winter collection when Covid initially hit and working from home suddenly lost its charm. Work was busy, which was great, but with the addition of home schooling, (it is impossible to teach your own kids) looking after 2 little ones and all the general stuff that comes with being a mum, while being stuck inside. It was tough…...many, many late nights. Second lockdown was much nicer, we knew what we were in for. I had to let go and ride the wave, everyone was much happier and we got to spend some quality time together at home. 

What gets you most excited about your work, about your business?

Designing a new collection is the favourite part of my job. I studied Industrial Design down in Wellington but was always drawn to the graphics side of my projects. I love picking colours and seeing where they’ll take me with each range. 

Can you impart your tips on how parents can get some “REST”?

Those first few years of parenting are so hard and so busy. So many new things to learn, to juggle, you feel like there is never any time to just sit and be, because really there isn’t. For me, rest isn’t taking a nap or blobbing out in front of the tv for a few hours (which are two of my favourite things) it’s taking time to have a break from the repetition of everyday. Catch up with girlfriends, go out for dinner with your partner, go for a walk. Things that give your mind clarity and make you feel like you again. So often when you’re parenting, you feel like you lose a little bit of yourself and it’s like a breath of fresh air to get a bit of that back.

Success - what is that to you?

Balance. I am at my happiest when I can balance mum life and work life. I’m a better mum, wife and business owner when that happens and when it does, everything just seems to flow. Surely anyone would agree that the key to success is happiness. It’s definitely been the biggest learning curve for me, it’s not easy to switch off from either at any particular time, but I think I’m getting better. 

You & I chat in DM’s frequently about our days, this year I’ve learned to prioritise myself - I’ve found Reformer Pilates & Tuesdays to myself & I’m a better human for it but I want everyone out there reading to know how you take care of YOU. What does Lotte do? What is self care to you?

Gosh Reformer Pilates sounds like something I need to look in to. Now that I’m out of the ‘baby stage’ I’ve found a bit more freedom to do the things I enjoy. Walking, biking, getting my nails done or a facial. My 2 childfree work days have also been amazing. There is nothing like working uninterrupted for 6 hours straight lol. My husband and I have both started biking together, which has been so nice. I absolutely adore my three boys but after this year, it really has been lovely to have some time apart, even just an hour here or there. I think they would probably agree.

Are you a handbag gal? What are 3 things in your handbag you CANNOT live without?

Oh no! I am not a handbag girl at all. I never had a baby bag or anything like that. I’m a ‘toss it in the bottom of the stroller’ type of gal. My wallet is oversized though, so I always have my Ashley & co ‘soothe and zap’ it’s a hand sanitizer/handcream in one, amazing!! Thanks Covid! Lip balm (also ashley & co, love them!) and my phone.

When we’re allowed to travel again, where are you going?

Hands down! NZ, I miss my mum and dad and sisters and brother and nieces and nephews and friends…

Your guilty pleasures, what are they?

Oooh there’s a few. I love true crime documentaries, people watching (in a non creepy way) Lindt balls, fixing things, vacuuming, road trips, listening to a good song on repeat, chai lattes, clean sheets, a fully fuelled clean car...gosh I could go on forever

What’s your biggest takeaway from 2020?

As difficult as this year was, it’s just a bump in a long road we all had to travel, some much larger than others, which is heartbreaking, but it will eventually be a moment in history that we can look back on and remind us of how resilient we can be. It’s made me realise how lucky I am, how fragile things can be for anyone. This pandemic showed that no one was off limits and we really had to work as a team to get it under control. We should all be proud of ourselves for contributing to that.

We’re so grateful for your time Lotte - I know there aren’t many spare minutes between raising small humans & launching epic summer collections. Thank you!

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