The Tale Of Laura Fantacci & Greta Zita Pagani
PHOTOGRAPHY BY JULIE ADAMS
“My day job is Fashion and Shopping Editor at RED magazine. I edit the front of book section and compile all those shopping pages you read at the front of book section of most magazines. My job is to scout trends and bring you the edit of the best things to buy right now.” It’s no surprise that since giving birth to her daughter, Greta Zita, her focus has shifted. She needed to find outfits that combined style with practicality. “I love searching the Internet for new fashion buys and great investments – it’s part of my DNA. Im a very visual person. The blog has taken a turn recently in terms of it being a bit more mum savvy. Mums used to leave comments on my blog asking for advice on stylish uniforms for mums. Now I really understand what comfort and style means,” says Fantacci, who recently returned to work, after taking a year of maternity leave.
Fantacci recently spent a month in Italy with family and friends, which is where fashion photographer Julie Adams, who co-edits a beautiful website called An Affair With Italy, captured these gorgeous images. Her daughter also inspired a new jewellery collection. “I started designing a capsule collection of fine jewellery inspired by my daughter’s birth called The Greta Collection. When Greta was born, I really wanted a special, wearable, everyday piece of jewellery that bared her name, something that I would be able to give her when she is older and to which I could add more if I had other children,” she says. “So together with the Florentine Ponte Vecchio jeweller that made my engagement ring and my mothers many years ago, we came up with the charm rings that I’ve been wearing ever since.”
Laura’s little list of loves:
My pram system, Uppa Baby. Not the lightest nor the most compact but I loved it because it’s virtually indestructible. I also love my Ergo Baby sling.
Reading a magazine in the bath.
Working on my blog. It’s my creative outlet and I love it.
Manicures and pedicures. At times, the only thing that made me feel put together. My favourite is from Bliss Spa on Sloane Avenue in London.
My new haircut and colour by the best sister-brother duo in town Sally and George Northwood at Josh Wood in Liberty’s. If they work with the likes of Rosie, Alexa and Gwyneth, there is a reason! After having Greta my big chop was the best investment I made.
My Anya Hindmarch nappy bag. Perfectly stylish at all times.
J. Crew vintage cotton T-shirts, Elle MacPherson nursing bras, J Brand maternity leggings.
Hot chocolates with new mummy-friends at my local Ottolenghi in London. They serve the best hot chocolate in the world.
Instagram. I LOVE it and it really kept me on top of what was happening in the fashion world while breastfeeding.
Brow waxes with Adriana at Benefits.
Fresh flowers. I fill my home with them on a weekly basis.
Walking with Greta. London has so many beautiful parks.
Photography: Julie Adams Words: Georgie Abay
She always looks so peaceful. It just melts my heart.
I bought the other sandals at a Tunisian market.
Now she’s a bit older, I don’t put her in so many dresses. She crawls everywhere, so I’ve had to put her in rompers; or skinny jeans with liberty tops and a muted cardi. She needs to be quite comfortable. When she was smaller, I would put her in things that were prettier. When she’s walking, I’ll get back into dresses. I don’t spend a fortune on her clothes – I think you can create cute outfits without spending a lot. I pick up a lot of gorgeous brands such as Bonpoint from a site called www.zulily.com. They have daily deals. I also love Baby Gap.
It follows her sleeping needs. They say a one-year-old needs to sleep for around three hours a day, so I break that up throughout the day. She wakes up, she has her milk, and then she’ll have breakfast with us. I then leave for work and she’ll go back to sleep for around 45 minutes. Next, it’s a morning activity, lunch, and then a nice, long nap before an afternoon activity. Dinner, playtime, bath then bed. I keep this consistent which I think makes for a contented baby.
I needed a look that was practical. I bought a pair of Zara leather boots on my first shopping trip after having Greta and have worn them almost every day since and I also invested in an Anya Hindmarch nappy bag.
I adore going for long walks with Greta.
I really wanted to give her my full attention. When Greta started solids and I wasn’t breastfeeding anymore, I felt like I could do something for myself so I started the blog again. It really helps me unwind. I love searching the Internet for new fashion buys and great investments – it’s part of my DNA. I’m a very visual person. The blog has taken a turn recently in terms of it being a bit more Mum savvy. Mums used to leave comments on my blog asking for advice on stylish uniforms for mums. Now I really understand what comfort and style means. I try to think of other mums like me who want to look stylish but also want to be realistic about fashion and I think my blog is very realistic – it’s not fashion forward, it’s very wearable and affordable. I never put anything on WIT that I wouldn’t buy.
There is only so much you can do. I always make lists. I thought that having a baby was going to be very easy for me because of my organisation, but that wasn’t the case. I learnt to let the Greta decide things. It was very hard for me in the beginning, but it has made me a better person. I was borderline uptight about things, so I think Greta has taught me to relax a little.
When Greta was born, I started using the entire range. I love the nappy cream.
It’s an Isabel Marant Etoile one.
I was a very independent, working wife, but now I understand what women mean when they say it’s the most rewarding – and tough – experience of their lives. I am so happy that I did it and I am also very thankful that I could be a mum. Before having Greta, I never knew I could feel this way. I feel like the whole experience of being pregnant, of giving birth and of becoming a mum, has completed me as a woman.
I promised myself that after having Greta and finding it very hard for the first six months, I would be very honest with my friends and people who asked. I think nothing prepares you for the shock of having a baby. I had no idea of the magnitude. I wish I’d know a little bit more – in practical terms – about how hard it is to have a baby and get on with life. How massive the life change is and how it really takes time. You need to be very patient with yourself, give yourself time to adjust and not feel like you’re doing something wrong. There’s nothing wrong with you. It’s just a big change.
I need quite a lot of time to unwind and not knowing when she would next wake up made it very hard for me to just sleep. Unless there was someone else in the house who could take over if she woke up, it was very hard for me to sleep during the day. I wish I could have done it.
Getting out and about helped me to get my mind off the sleep deprivation. My job was never a desk job, I would be at press days, shows, trips, on shoots. Going from that busy life to being at home all the time was quite tough for me. Going out, whether it would be browsing at shop windows, meeting a friend for a coffee, seeing other mums, kept my mind off the sleep deprivation.
When Greta was born, I really wanted a special, wearable, everyday piece of jewellery that bared her name, something that I would be able to give her when she is older and to which I could add more if I had other children. So together with the Florentine Ponte Vecchio jeweller that made my engagement ring, and my mothers many years ago, we came up with the charm rings that I’ve been wearing ever since.
The more we are able to engage as two individuals, the more I find it fascinating, incredible and really rewarding. Her first birthday was last week. It was very, very emotional and special for me. I had a really hard time in the beginning and I never thought I’d get to this point, where I am so happy and loving motherhood so much. Getting to that day with all our friends around us was so special. It was a circus-themed party. She loves animals and her Gymboree mascot is a clown so I put the two together. It was her first birthday but it was also a bit of a milestone for my husband and I.
She always wants lots of kisses, which melts my heart. I love that she’s starting to speak.
I knew if I did, I might get a bit obsessed because she’s quite strict with her routines. It scared me a little bit that she was saying things like when to open your curtains and when to have breakfast. I was lucky enough to have two friends who had babies around the same time as me. They were following Gina Ford, so I’d find out what kind of timetable they were on in terms of naps and food. I loosely followed this routine. I had a maternity nurse for the first three weeks after Greta was born. She put Greta on a timetable which really made sense and worked for us.