One of the best parts about editing The Grace Tales is profiling so many phenomenal women. Its incredible what we can achieve while raising children and fascinating finding out how each mother makes it work. Georgie Kay, the motivated woman behind Melbourne-based styling and events company Georgeous is as creative and inspiring as they come and were so excited to have her on the site today.
Kay grew up in Tasmania and remembers travelling extensively with her family. It fuelled a passion for the hospitality industry and by the age of 20 she was a restaurant manager at fine dining restaurant Sullivans Cove in Hobart. Having since worked everywhere from the UK to Zambia and also receiving a nomination for Young Tasmanian of the Year, she moved to Melbourne back in 2000 and in 2006, Georgeous was born.
The impressive Kay is now a mother to three-year-old Isabelle and is expecting twins. While she might have her hands full, she seems to do it all effortlessly. I am extremely fortunate in having an amazing husband who does all the shopping and cooking for our household. I can honestly say what is for dinner tonight rarely crosses my mind, she says. She also credits her talented team at Georgeous. I achieve balance by surrounding myself with amazing people. They are driven and passionate in what ever it is they do. Empowering and providing the Georgeous Team with the autonomy to make their own decisions is a must. Getting the team just right is one of small businesses greatest challenges but gee when you do, it can literally change your world, she says. We loved getting a glimpse inside her beautiful new office space (they moved from her home office to this spectacular space 10 months ago) and finding out more about the founder of Georgeous
“Motherhood has taught me to be
Even more time efficient than before. To plan for time with Isabelle as the days really do fly by.? To be more patient than before as so much of what motherhood brings is out of my control. To just accept things for what they are and to not get caught up in the small stuff. This is in complete contrast to my profession so this has been a significant (and good!) change in my world. Also to slow down (Im still working on this one) and enjoy all the little moments of happiness that surround me. Enjoy Issys laughter, character, personality traits, story telling, improving actions to Frozen, her making new friends in the park. Finally, how important it is to always lead by example as they really are little sponges of everything we do and say. You know this when they start saying things such as wow wee which is something I say often and lets roll when Daddy is taking her to swimming on a Saturday morning (as that is what he says when we leave the house).
When it comes to career, trust and follow your heart
Work hard. Be passionate about what you do. Respect everyone. Stay in touch with as many people as possible. Save everyones contact details, as you never know when your paths may cross again. Always help others. Be a team player. Learn from as many people and experiences as possible. Take time out to do things on your own. It is important to feel comfortable in your own skin rather than depending on others.
I take things a day at a time
Dont aim for perfection as it doesnt exist.? Dont have unrealistic expectations on yourself.?The household duties can wait.? Although challenging to leave the house in the early days, try to get as much fresh air as possible. It is good for body and mind!? Share your stories as there are many others going through exactly what you are experiencing. Also treat yourself when you can. A manicure, a latte on your own for half an hour, an afternoon siesta. The most important person here is you. Your children will be absolutely fine, but you need to try to be as relaxed as possible. Oh, and accept help when offered… they wouldnt offer if they didnt want to. A night out with your partner while a friend babysits is always a great idea too!
To be honest, Im inspired by everything
Issy, the outdoors, architecture, travelling, restaurants and cafes, people watching, social media, magazines, flowers in the street, listening to peoples stories and experiences, retail VM, textures, colours, fabrics, walking up and down the aisles at Bunnings, my family and friends, fashion, culture, businesses small or large, small business stories and leaders, anyone who is passionate about what they do. This is why I am truly fortunate as I find inspiration in everything, everywhere. My eyes and ears are always on (all senses for that matter). I send the team some of the most random photos of things I have seen or hear about as so often we refer to it at a later stage in response to a client brief. It doesnt need to be something gracing the pages of an international magazine, as it can be the morning mist on the trees in our very own street.
A great event is made up of
Elements of surprise, the careful consideration of all guest touch points of their event experience (pre-during and post), the service provided, the memories created. The procurement of the right suppliers for the particular occasion. This is imperative and something I feel we at Georgeous excel in. We take all our relationships very seriously as without them, we simply would not be in a position to create any event or occasion. ?Repeat business and word of mouth recommendations are the ultimate compliment and sign we are doing things well.
My go-to event suppliers are
Cecilia Fox for everything floral and green. Melanie and her team are just incredible. As we have been working together for so long now we are able to almost read each others minds. It has always been, and always will be, an absolute pleasure working with them. Our events are not complete until the Cecilia Fox team arrives! Also: Blakes Feast Catering, Peter Rowland Catering, Select AV, Lemontree Calligraphy, Table Art, Studio Lipp, TGC.
I am in the office four days a week
On these days, Issy is at childcare and I spend Wednesdays at home with her. In the earlier years we had a live-in Au Pair, which worked really well for us. We are extremely fortunate our spare room has an en-suite so we never felt like we were living on top of each other. At this stage, we will look at a similar arrangement when we have settled in a little with the twins.
I do feel guilt
I absolutely do, especially in the summer months when we are in the peak wedding season or October/November when our corporate work is at its busiest during the infamous Spring Racing Carnival. I tell myself I am teaching and showing Issy a good work ethic and that to succeed you need to work hard. I learnt this from my parents and am forever grateful for this so hope I can do the same. The phone calls and emails do not stop and I guess I manage this as well as I possibly can. I made a big decision earlier this year to employ a part-time assistant, which has been one of my better business decisions. It has changed my life! And once again, the juggle would be impossible without my incredibly supportive husband Stu. He is a very hands-on Dad. We support each other in our respective passions, which I believe is imperative to managing the infamous balance.
It is fair to say no two days are ever the same
Until the recent addition of my amazing assistant Kirsten, I found myself in a frustrating rut of playing constant catch up… predominantly on my inbox. My inbox literally ran my life. As I have always been adamant in responding to all of my emails personally, this has taken much of my precious day-to-day time. Now I am in a position to delegate, I am able to re-allocate time to focusing on BDM/growth strategies for the business. I can now work more closely with team members on making things happen. Many of these things have been discussed for some time, but now I have time to drive them, they are actually happening, which is VERY exciting indeed. Examples include moving to our larger office last year, starting the hire arm of the business The Georgeous Store, publishing our very own newspapers, holding workshops, strategising our social media more, restructuring the team, and launching a new look website. We have been busy bees!
I procrastinate by scrolling through Instagram…
Before I know it, Ive been scrolling for an hour! Oh and then there is pinning to The Nursery board at the moment… there are just too many beautiful things out there! Oh, and I do like to clear or clean a cluttered space. I find I am not able to concentrate effectively in what I deem a disorganised space. This is relevant at both work and home I am afraid!
People often asked me how I was able to work from home
As I was, and still am, very passionate about what I do, I genuinely enjoy working. As I am constantly surrounded by exciting opportunities, challenges and amazing people, focusing is simple.
We have been in this office space? 10 months…
There were six of us in my small (albeit gorgeous!) apartment in St Kilda so it was time to grow up and create our own custom workplace. We started a Pinterest board and went from there. It was a mechanics for 50 years so it needed a professional clean, paint and all over facelift. We built an elevated floor, moved a wall to create a larger meeting space for our clients, painted both bathrooms, laid floor boards and had our logo painted on the façade. These physical changes, combined with our styling touches, have created a space we love coming to each morning. Yes, it can be a little chilly in winter and hot in summer, but that is part of working in a character filled warehouse.”
Photography: Nikole Ramsay Words: Georgie Abay