Founder and Creative Director Celia Muñoz met with British Vogue to discuss establishing a balance between work and homelife during the lockdown. From lessons learnt during the early days of motherhood to teachings influenced by her parents, Celia reveals how she manages to keep herself open to new opportunities and keeps her curiosity alive, especially given the current climate.
Having just launched a new partnership with Plant-for-the-Planet that will see La Coqueta plant a trillion trees worldwide over the next four years, Celia tells British Vogue about the best advice she’s received as a working mother-of-five, and how there is no perfect formula when it comes to parenthood.
The Business Idea Born Out Of Necessity
“La Coqueta started when my first daughter, Flavia, was born. I had just left my previous role as a headhunter and as a young mum, my love for fashion evolved and naturally focused on my children. It was when looking for clothes for them that I noticed a gap in the market, as it was hard to find well-made, affordable and good quality hand-me-downs for daily wear. I started to buy clothes for my children every time I would visit my hometown [in Spain], and following that I started receiving personal orders from people in my neighbourhood back in London who were appreciative of the way I dressed them. At some point, the orders became quite sizeable, and I started exploring the opportunity of making a business out of selling Spanish clothes. This is how La Coqueta was born. It is fair to say that having children ignited that focus on fashion for children, as I got to know it intimately through its everyday use.”
Planning Is Key
“I manage my time through carefully planned monthly, weekly and daily to-do lists. I am quite old fashioned when it comes to planning my work, I need to write it all down in terms of priorities and workload, and I find that my Smythson notebook really helps. Without it, it is fair to say, I would be lost! I use a black pen to write it all down, and a red pen to cross it all off when done. I find it is a very visual way to organise myself, and a satisfying feeling when all is crossed at the end of the day. I’d rather not do my to-do list digitally, as otherwise I would be on my phone all day which is a big no-no for me!”
The Working From Home Mindset
“My first experience of working from home was when I started working on the La Coqueta business plan, so lockdown and motivating myself to work surrounded by children was not a novelty for me, as I did it in the early days of motherhood. I am lucky to have a nanny who supports me greatly whilst I am at work, but what I find useful is to be very disciplined, and prepare for work or school just as if I was going there physically – it is no different. I am definitely one to dress up for it, and ask my children to do the same in order to get into the school/work mindset. I find it really helps to focus!”
Divide And Conquer To Make It Work
“Every person is different, but what worked for me was to have a well-organised daily routine with my family in order to allow me to fit in my work schedule. On the one hand, there is little left to the imagination… but on the other hand it has allowed me to have great freedom to do what I want to do as well as getting a lot done work-wise and spending quality time with my children. I have learned not to mix both, in order to be able to dedicate myself to both in full. I feel I go for quality rather than quantity, doing things sequentially rather than all at the same time. For me I find I never get to do anything properly if I don’t fully set my mind to it.”
Learn From Your Children
“I have learned from my children how to be more open and to keep my curiosity. I find you can get quite stuck in your own ways as you grow older, and my children are a reminder of the fact that the sky is the limit. I also love children’s self-esteem. The fact that they feel able to do anything and everything when they are very young. It’s wonderfully refreshing!”
Trust Your Instincts
“My parents taught me quite early on that a happy mum equals a happy baby. Do what makes you happy, regardless of what people around you think or advise. You know what’s right for you, and you should embrace it in full. There is no perfect formula when it comes to parenthood.”
For more information on La Coqueta’s commitment to the Plant-for-the-Planet “Stop Talking Start Planting” initiative, click here.