Interview with Laura Bennett (motherhood with style, Project Runway, and more!)

NOTE: See below for a link to the giveaway!

Did you see my review of Laura Bennett’s book, Didn’t I Feed You Yesterday?…um, yesterday? Well here is the follow up interview I promised.

If you want to know more about the book and Laura’s life, please read the review. Better yet – read the book. It’s hilarious, insightful and even a little controversial for those of you hoping to hate her – and it doesn’t disappoint.

For the interview, Laura was gracious enough to agree to answer some questions via e-mail. In honor of her jealousy that my name translates well into “vanity plate” – I am “K8.” And because I can’t come up with anything better (sorry Laura), she’s “LB.” Actually – I was going to use initals for my blog, but “TBPOC” is a bit awkward.

Now that we have all of that cleared up…on to the Q&A:

K8: You’ve described your NYC home as “a two bedroom loft.” But the real question Laura, is how many bathrooms? With potty training twins and a five year old who tends to leave his personal business until the eleventh hour, we need all three of ours to avoid complete potty chaos. How many bathrooms do you need for five boys, two parents and all of the other people who are in and out of your home all day?
LB: I’m not sure how many bathrooms I need for this crew; I only know what I have. Our apartment has one full bath, and one half bath. It’s funny because as many times as I’ve thought this apartment needs more closet space, or more shoe shelves, it never occurred to me that I needed more bathrooms. Thanks for pointing that out.

K8: As a stylish mother of six, you must have the hospital go bag down to a science. Many of my readers are either pregnant now or will be soon, Even after baby number one or two, many of us still make rookie mistakes when packing the bag that will be our lifeline for the two or three post-labor days at the hospital. Any suggestions for some “musts” that will make moms feel and look their best while they recover and pose for those endless pictures?
LB: Here I am, obviously having just finished labor and I am wearing lipstick and false eyelashes.

If I wasn’t me, I would so make fun of me. I think we should start a facebook fan page for women who wear lashes in labor. So It looks like my answer would be bring lashes (Andrea Brown #33) and long-wear lipstick (Maybelline superstay).

K8: You briefly explained that with reality TV, the footage is obviously selected for entertainment value. But that in the end – true personalities do shine through. Did you feel like this was true of yourself on Project Runway? Feel free to be candid about anyone else as well (I’m fairly certain that Jeffrey doesn’t read my blog).
LB: I think what you are really asking me here is if I still think Jeffrey cheated. I think he cheated. Even if he sewed every stitch of every garment, he still cheated. He was over budget, he didn’t have receipts, and he didn’t follow the production rules. He cheated, and then he won. It happens a lot in life. Maybe it doesn’t bother me because I wouldn’t have won anyway, Uli should have been the winner. For me it was enough that I called him out.
[Actually – that wasn’t what I was asking. But this was far more interesting than what I had in mind.]

K8: Living in Manhattan, do you ever run into the Project Runway judges socially? And if so – is it weird, having once been on the receiving end of their critical eye for an intense few weeks? If the answer is no – were there any that you particularly liked and could imagine having as a friend if the opportunity presented? (again you can probably say anything here – I’m skeptical that Nina will ever happen upon this interview…)
LB: You mean like I’m at Rite Aid buying a jumbo box of super absorbent tampons and I look up and see Michael Kors? Never happened. I have guest judged an episode, and I don’t feel awkward around them at all. My husband thinks Nina was hard on me, but I think most of the comments the judges made were right.

K8: Okay – so the accessories wall. Did you always find everything you could possibly need there? I don’t see how that’s possible…
LB: I don’t even remember the accessory wall. I was so tired, I have no idea how I did any of that. We go to sleep at 3 am and they wake us to start the next day at 6 am. After five weeks, I didn’t even know my own name. The only thing I remember about the accessory wall is the pair of sunglasses that I stole. I still wear them.

K8: I really love your philosophy on personal style. Not everyone has it in them (or has the legs) to wear an LBD and stilettos to Target. BUT they can still look chic with some strategic closet planning. And it’s genius to choose a cinematic style icon and plan your wardrobe using them for inspiration. I’m guessing that many of my readers would say that they have avoided the spiral into crocs and sweats, but do find that they fall back on jeans with boots or flats. Do you have any style icons to suggest? And what basic pieces should be the foundation of that look?
LB: A simple dress and heels work for me, but I certainly don’t expect that to be everyone’s uniform. Jeans and flats still run a gamut of styles. You can be rocker chic, ingénue, or cowgirl. Here are some cinema examples of comfortable done fabulous. (I can not recommend leaving the house wearing a holster with or without a pistol, please replace with a belt.)

Audrey Hepburn

Diane Keaton

Jane Fonda

Jean Seberg

Katharine Hepburn

Lauren Hutton

Marilyn Monroe

Who do you think will make it to Fashion Week this season of Project Runway?
LB: My picks for the current season are Emilio, Seth Aaron, and Jay as finalists, and Jay to take the win.
[Although Laura did see the collections at Fashion Week this Fall, 10 are shown so that no one knows who the final three actually are. But this does tell us that Jay’s collection must have been amazing – wonder if stopped making the model’s butts look big…]

Don’t forget! I’m giving away copies of Laura’s book, Didn’t I Feed You Yesterday? HERE.

And for those of you in the NYC area, she’s making a book signing appearance at Borders Columbus Circle in New York City today at 7:00 p.m. AND she’ll also be signing books at BlogHer this summer in NYC. Can’t wait to meet this lady in person.

Thanks again for everything Laura. It’s been a pleasure.



On Wishing True

Fifi Flowersblue shutters

Vinyl boxes via Draw Flowers

On As Good As Cake

Didn’t I Feed You Yesterday? giveaway!

8 thoughts on “Interview with Laura Bennett (motherhood with style, Project Runway, and more!)

  1. Christy

    What a fantastic interview Kate. I can not wait to read her book! Of course, I'm entering the contest all five ways so I up my chances to win it. hehe. I must say that though my hospital bag is currently packed – I don't even have mascara in it, much less false eyelashes or lipstick. Maybe I should rethink that! Fun post and how awesome that you now have an in with such a cool designer!!!

  2. BookGirl

    Great interview. I love Laura's style, and rooted for her to win on Project Runway. I'm delighted with her success; it's well deserved.


  3. TwoWishes Tara

    I loved Laura on Project Runway! Was impressed with her at the time, but I became *really* impressed with her later, once I became pregnant and found out just how exhausting those first months can be. Her book is already on my wishlist, so fingers crossed for your giveaway!


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