In this edition of our In Conversation with NATALIJA Women we speak to Lia Townsend, the woman behind those awe-inspiring grazing tables of thoughtful delicacies and powdery pastel flowers.
Lia’s grazing business Stories To Gather is deeply rooted by her Australian-Italian childhood experiences, gathered around the family table, grazing on delicious foods that the season had to offer, and sharing stories and memories with loved ones well into the evening.
We felt an instant connection, bonding over our toddler tales and immense love for beautiful things. It was so lovely to speak to Lia about her sense of style and self love rituals, and find out a little more about this beautiful woman.
Three words that best describe your personal style?
Thoughtful, timeless and occasional maximalist.
What is the oldest, most treasured piece in your wardrobe? Where did you get it from and what special meaning does it have for you?
When my Grandmother migrated to Australia from Italy in her early twenties her mother who was a seamstress made her a cocktail dress. It is impeccably made and a beautiful classic fifties style with a fitted bodice and a full skirt of black flocked lace with blush lining. My grandmother has since past it down to me. Whenever I wear it or see it in my wardrobe I admire the beauty of this crafted garment and it makes me feel connected to the women in my family.
What is the item in your wardrobe worn on the highest rotation?
Jeans are on high rotation as I am often preparing orders in the kitchen, running errands and chasing an 18 month old. They are so versatile working back with a t-shirt or a NATALIJA silk shirt for an effortlessly stylish look.
Where or who did you get your sense of style from?
I watched a lot of classic movies growing up spending hours watching Audrey Hepburn, Grace Kelly and Lauren Bacall on the screen. The refined fashion sense that these iconic women displayed has influenced me to gravitate towards pieces that are timeless and classic.
I feel the most confident when…
I’m doing something I am passionate about.
What are your daily practises to connect to self? Do you have any special rituals or moments that you make time for?
Each night I read a few books to my son before bed. He sits on my lap in his dimly lit room and we talk about all the different scenes that unfold in the books we are reading. It is during these moments that my mind stops racing from the hustle of the day and I am present, enjoying seeing the delight of the world through the eyes of an 18 month old.
What book do you think every woman needs to read and why?
I am not a huge reader as I tend to use my downtime to explore recipes or different crafts. I only discovered the art (and science) of baking in my early twenties so for anyone that is looking to learn more about baking I would suggest the Flour and Stone cookbook. I also recently added to my cookbook collection Just Desserts by Charlotte Ree which is an absolute delight to bake from. It has 30 classic crowd pleasing recipes, with ingredients you can readily find and a few baking puns along the way.
What is your favourite beauty ritual to indulge in when you need some self care?
With frizzy hair that would rival Tina Turner, I love getting my hair blow dried. The team at Paloma know exactly how to do effortless undone hair and it is such a treat to not have to deal with it myself.
What does having a conscious wardrobe mean to you?
Curating a thoughtful collection of garments where every item is treasured and makes me feel like me. I like to support local designers and makers, they have a unique perspective and you can feel the care and thought that goes into each piece. Also as a small business owner I can appreciate how they value each and every order.
Lia wears our Silk Cotton Shirt in White tucked into her favourite denim for a refined look that's as classic as it is comfortable.
Some great insights from someone who’s obviously passionate about what she does and it shows in her gorgeous grazing tables – what beautiful pictures.
Lia is the absolute most amazing woman!! She makes everything seem so effortless…and i’m in constant awe of what she can create!