Coffee with Fiona From Nor-Folk
Last month I met up with Fiona Burrage one of the Nor-Folk, a graphic design-led lifestyle brand based in Norfolk. Together with her husband Bobby, they design and curate timeless and minimalist products for the whole family. I have always admired their work ethic and sentiments of ‘less is more’ and ‘quality over quantity’ so it was exciting to finally meet one of the faces behind this well know brand I admire. We chatted over coffee about pretty much everything, from motherhood and our children to multitasking and running our own businesses. Fi, was everything I expected and more, super friendly yet honest and I came away feeling really energised and inspired.
Q. What do you love most about living in Norfolk Fiona? I live in the heart of a buzzing city and yet within 15 minutes I’m into the beautiful countryside, 45 minutes I’m at the coast and in 2 hours I’m in the capital. It’s a really safe place to bring up a family and the cost of living is the cherry on the cake.
Q. What has surprised you most about becoming a mother? Obviously the love for this little person is incredible and indescribable but I think a trait I had no idea I possessed was patience, which is needed in big supplies.
Q. If you ever get a spare five minutes what do you enjoy doing? I’ve just started up pilates once a week, this is actually a whole hour, just me and my tutor but it is amazing on so many levels. I work through lunch everyday and work most evenings so whilst I do get the guilty feeling about having some me time (which I know all mums do), I do go back to work feeling so much better for it!
Q. What inspires you as a mother and a designer? Stanley is at the forefront of everything I do. I literally design my work, clothes and life around his needs. But more literally I am inspired by minimalism and a ‘less is more’ approach to life and design.
Q. I love how Nor-Folk is not driven by seasons, how do you keep your pieces so current? It is definitely a challenge. We try not to design according to trends. I do regular photoshoots in the UK with children and their families to show customers and stockists how the pieces can be styled in different ways, this definitely makes it more current. I am really keen to take this model on the road and hope to be shooting in Sweden next year!
Q. What other designers do you love? For fashion I love Alexander Wang, I am all about sports luxe and comfortable clothing, architecture Carl Turner is a favourite.
Q. When have you felt most empowered as a women? Most empowered, I don’t think there is a single defining moment but I am incredibly proud of Nor-Folk and all we have achieved. There are obviously stereotypes surrounding being a mother and being a woman but I just see myself as a person and the people I deal with people (irrespective of gender). If people say running a business is a ‘man’s world’ then so be it. I’m just running my business in the world. And enjoying the ride!