We had the pleasure of speaking with Gillian Stevens, an editorial and lifestyle photographer, wife and mom of two young boys. If you love neutral, natural color palettes, slow living and interior design content, you’ll absolutely want to follow along on her Instagram. Gillian’s feed reminds us of how an intentionally designed space can affect the way we feel in our home and impact the way we take care of ourselves, our health and our families.
Keep reading as we ask Gillian a few questions about her work, finding inspiration, and her favorite way to incorporate Tejari blends as a family.
How has working as a photographer and stylist impacted the way you view home life and approach your own interior design?
I see life through a photographic lens. I am not sure if this happened before or because of being a photographer professionally, but it's something that I have realized about myself. When it comes to interiors, I think about how it would photograph. The balance of textures and colours, where the light travels, and how much negative space there is. I am drawn to clean lines, soft colours and lots of room for light and empty space, which is translated through my work as well as the interiors I gravitate towards as well.
Have you always been gifted as a stylist or is this something you’ve learned over time?
I've always been creative. My parents will tell you that even from a very young age my teachers at school would praise my artwork and creativity. I am a visual person, and often I find that styling comes quite naturally to me - although there are certainly many things I have learned just from doing it for my own photography for so long.
What are the most important elements to keep in mind when styling a home that promotes a feeling of peace and calm?
I feel the most calm in a space that has ample natural light, neutral colours, and soft textures. I also love a space that reflects the people who live in it. For us that means baskets of toys in the corner, high chairs tucked under the table, artwork taped to the fridge, the books we're reading sitting on the coffee table.
When you are feeling uninspired, where do you look/what do you to spark creativity?
Time on my own is essential to my creativity. It doesn't take much - a walk, an evening bath, a drive into the city.. but I can feel a noticeable shift in my mind when I leave the busyness and noise of my "motherhood" role and return to who I am on my own. Traveling does this for me immensely. Or even a conversation with a friend.
Are there any wellness routines you practice daily to keep yourself feeling energized and motivated?
I love a morning routine and try to stick to it when I can. I get up before my boys, make a cup of coffee, spend time reading the bible and praying, and since the pandemic I have added in a 15-30 minute pilates workout that has been a big gamechanger in how I feel. Then by this point one or both kids are awake and we make breakfast together.
What are important aspects of an intentionally designed kitchen and dining space? Does this type of design influence the way you think about and prepare food?
We're right in the process of a major kitchen renovation right now! It's the first time we have ever designed a kitchen that we live in - and every aspect has been meticulously thought through with how we will interact in it. I love cooking and preparing healthy meals for myself and our family, and having a space that reflects us and how we eat and live will feel like a dream come true I am sure!
Can you give us a go-to lunch idea that you use for your family on busy days?
I love doing mini-charcuterie style boards - they're quick and easy and utilize whatever we have in the fridge. Crackers, dairy-free cheese, pickles, cherry tomatoes, cucumber slices, berries etc.
What is your favorite Tejari blend?
I love the Organic Vanilla blend!
What is your favorite way to use Tejari as a family?
We make the power balls weekly, and enjoy it in smoothies.
What advice would you give to someone who is looking to declutter their space and live more simply and intentionally?
I like surrounding myself with things we actually use - if something isn't being used then I am very keen to pass it on so someone else could enjoy it.
For more design inspiration and a deeper look into Gillian’s life and photography, check out her Instagram page @gillianstevens.