While most mothers don’t consider themselves icons, those who hold them dear beg to differ. As David Jones celebrates its 185th anniversary, we chat with icons of the store – both past and present – about gratitude, lessons learned and the joy of motherhood.
“Being a first-time mother has been a real rollercoaster,” says Ava Chandler-Matthews, co-founder of skincare brand Ultra Violette and mum to Art. “Nothing prepares you – it’s such a shock to the system because you mourn your old life. Everyone is like, ‘Oh my God! You have a child. How beautiful!’ And of course, I love my son dearly, but it’s such an adjustment to give yourself completely over to this small child who is solely dependent on you.”
“Being a mother makes me a better human being and a better woman,” shares Magnolia Maymuru, Yolngu woman, model and Friend of David Jones.
“The strength my daughter Tili gives me is different to any strength I had before. I now see the world from a different point of view,” shares Magnolia.
“Every mother’s relationship with their child is deliciously unique,” reflects fashion designer Camilla Franks on life as a mum to Luna. “It works for them and their bubbas. There are mothers that love routine, others that live free-range, some that need to do do do, and others that love quiet and stillness. We don’t need a manual to learn this daunting new vocation that is motherhood, where every decision has a spectrum of options and opinions, because it’s all written within us. As we learn our babies, we learn ourselves as mothers: what that cry means, when they’re ready to hit that milestone, and what delights them, and we shift as the magic reveals itself.
On Growing Up
“When your children settle into adulthood, your relationship changes,” says Ava’s mum, stylist Nicole Bonython-Hines, who first appeared in a David Jones Mother’s Day campaign with her children some 20 years ago.
“You can still see the children they were, but now, we’re more like friends; I’m just a friend with a bit more experience. It’s so hard to know what you’re going to be like as a mum, so it’s very fulfilling for me to be her mentor. A new chapter of our lives has begun.”
“The most rewarding thing is when you see your child be kind, or confident, or magically eccentric,” says Camilla.
“You get this rush from seeing that they’re going to be just fine, they’re going to do good in the world, they’re going to be comfortable growing into their own skin.”- Camilla Franks
On Lessons Learned
“My mum taught me patience and the importance of knowing how to communicate in different parts of Arnhem Land,” says Magnolia of her mother Rosita, a social worker on the Gove Peninsula in the Northern Territory.
“She taught me and my siblings how to hunt and survive in the bush. Now it’s my turn to teach my baby.”
“After I had Artie, Mum came for six weeks and I just couldn’t have done without her,” remembers Ava. “Honestly, I cried every day so having her there was a lifesaver.”
“Mum makes the house feel like a home.” – Ava Chandler-Matthews, co-founder of skincare brand Ultra Violette.
On The Time Spent Together
“I love going out bush with Tili and teaching her how to listen for the bees; how to spot a mud crab in the mangroves,” says Magnolia. “I also love watching CoComelon – singing and dancing with her.”
“Luna travels everywhere with me,” says Camilla. “We do a lot together, but my favourite is cuddle time. Breathing in her smell releases all my endorphins.” As for time spent with her own mother Narelle, a former stylist who worked with David Jones, she adds: “We’re two mermaids who love to indulge in food. Our favourite is cooking up a feast fresh from the sea: oysters, mud crab, [and] mussels. And we chat. A great bottle of wine, fruits of the earth and great conversation: that’s perfection.”
Whoever you’re celebrating this Mother’s Day, show them how much you appreciate them with our Mother’s Day Gifting Guide.