Portia, can you describe yourself in a few words?
Hi I’m Portia. I work as a model. I’m also wifey to Pete and mommy to a beautiful little boy named Dylan James. We live in Crouch End North London with our dog, Lola.
How old is Dylan?
Dylan turned three in March. I feel like he’s three going on 15 sometimes. It’s crazy how fast time flies when you watch the most precious thing to you grow.
I remember, I was on a job with Emily who now represents you, and she said you were just made to be a mom, that you were the perfect mom!
I love being a mom. I definitely feel like I was put on this planet to be a mom. I feel it’s the most rewarding job and I’m very lucky to be able to do it. For as long as I can remember I wanted to get married and have babies.
And yet when we look at your great style, there’s nothing typically “mumsy” about it at all.
Well, I guess I did have my pregnancy style. I was pregnant through winter so I was constantly cozy in my boyfriend’s oversized jumpers. I didn’t start showing until about 6 months in, so I was lucky with being able to wear my usual clothing. I didn’t wear heels much throughout my pregnancy but I certainly made up for it when Dylan was born!
Did you give into maternity clothes, maybe some maternity lingerie?
I didn’t buy any maternity clothing except for the most amazing Elle Macpherson maternity bras. They were a dream to wear (and who says you can’t feel sexy when pregnant?). I couldn’t find maternity clothing that didn’t scream ‘Maternity Wear’ so I invested in some super comfy Calvin Klein Jeans and raided my boyfriend’s wardrobe.
What was your day to day look?
My daily style is girly but also quite tomboyish. I love a good pair of jeans with cute flats or my Acne Pistol boots. When I’ve got Dylan I need to be able to run around after him as he’s constantly on the move. When my bump wasn’t massive I really loved wearing my jeans teamed with a cute floaty blouse or the complete opposite – a tight vest top with a leather jacket.
I like having my hair colored, so that’s one thing I refused to give up during pregnancy even if most people were against it. What about you? How did you manage to keep your great peroxide blonde look?
I colored my hair throughout my pregnancy. I went to go and see my colorist of 8 years, Bruno, at the Aveda Institute in High Holborn who advised me not to color my hair as often as I usually would (which is every 3 weeks).
What was your beauty routine while pregnant? Any favorite products?
My pregnancy beauty routine involved a lot of Bio Oil. Any spare 10 minutes I could steal I would use that time to cover my body with it to help keep my stretch marks under control. I also took lots of baths with Almond oil too.
As a Mom we usually end up having less time for ourselves. How do you like to spend your “me-time”? Has motherhood affected your beauty routine in any way?
I’ve never really been a girl who has a strict beauty routine. I have found something as simple as putting Dylan to bed at 7pm then running a hot bath with loads of bubbles, almond oil and bath salts along with an ice cold glass of water (sometimes white wine), and a good book, a luxury. I also find working out, good quality ‘me’ time. Boxing, Pilates or Conditioning Class are all great ways of letting loose for me.
Speaking of which, how did you get right back in shape after your pregnancy?
I didn’t work out before my pregnancy or throughout it. I gained a lot of weight when I was pregnant, double the average. So when I had got back into shape after giving birth I developed a relationship with working out and loved it. It took me a good year and a half to get back to the size I was before but I made sure I did it slowly and carefully. I didn’t want to diet, I learnt ‘Portion Control’. I had a personal trainer twice a week who was an angel and taught me a lot about health and fitness.
How do you organize your days between work and being a mom? Do you have help at all?
Now Dylan’s getting that little bit older, childcare is a lot easier. He goes to a great nursery nearby where we live for two days a week. When my partner, Pete, is at home we share the childcare. When Pete’s away touring for a month or so at a time, it does get tricky sometimes. I always need a good week in advance to make sure his care are available to have him. I’m very lucky to be surrounded by amazing family members who also help.
Do you travel pretty frequently with Dylan?
Dylan is great at traveling. He takes everything in his stride, as long as I have packed him a bag of supplies ready. Usually full of snacks, magazines where he can learn to read and write, coloring in books, toy cars, and his Buzz Lightyear. When I was pregnant a lot of people asked if I’d let Dylan play with an iPad. My answer was no! I wanted him to be able to entertain himself without technology, but this has changed. The iPad is a bit of lifesaver at times when he’s bored of coloring, or writing, and just wants to watch a film like Toy Story or Finding Nemo.
What’s a perfect day like with Dylan? What are your favorite things to do together?
My perfect day is always spending it with my boys Pete and Dylan. Whether it’s going for long walks in the woodland nearby our home with our dog and having a yummers picnic or going bowling. We also love to have movie days. If the weather is being rubbish we like to bake. Dylan loves ‘helping’ me out in the kitchen perched up on his stool so he’s able to reach up onto the work top. His favorite thing to bake is probably cupcakes (my fave too).
What is your favorite kids’ clothes company?
I love Caramel Baby and Child, Stella McCartney, Ralph Lauren, Finger in the Nose, Tommy Hilfiger, and can’t go wrong with cute jeans from H&M. My online favorite is AlexandAlexa.com as it has absolutely everything a mother could possibly want from cute lumberjack shirts to amazing dress up clothes.
Photography by Billal Taright