Guest Interview 1 : Inspirational Women

The first interview in this short series 
of women/bloggers that inspire me, is
with the lovely Sandy. Sandy was one
of my first supporters when I started 
my blog, and has always been a 
wonderful cheerleader. She is super-talented
as you will see from her images below.

Here's our chat:

Did you always want to have your own business?

I always thought that one day I might, but wasn’t sure when. 
What I’ve discovered in the art field over the years, however, 
is that I thoroughly enjoy the creative freedom that 
owning my own illustration business affords.

Coco Chanel-Sandy M

What or who was the inspiration for the illustrated girls 
of Ooh La Frou Frou? 

I started my company two years ago by creating 
a collection of fashion illustrations of 
eight city girls and placed these illustrations 
on a variety of cards. 
That was, obviously, just the beginning 
because exciting changes are in store soon! 
With an ever-growing list of custom illustration clients 
(I so love to see what my clients are 
dreaming up for me to create) and plans for making my fashion
illustrations, and my illustrations of lots of 
other beautiful things I love, available for purchase 
on a variety of items. 

Your Fabulous Thank You Cards
Sandy M

A new website reflecting this growth 
is coming and it will be called: SANDY M ILLUSTRATION. 
The website will contain a link to my illustrated blog, 
“Ooh La Frou Frou” on the new site, 
as well, and this fall, the blog will reflect the 
exciting changes too with a brand new look

What was one of the biggest obstacles you faced 
when you started your biz?

Deciding which direction I wanted to go. 
When you love to create like I do, 
it’s hard to pin down what you want to create most … 
because you want to create everything! 
But it becomes necessary to focus on what it is you love best. 
Sometimes that takes a while to figure that out. 
For me, I love painting and illustrating beautiful things 
and fashion illustration … in fact “ooh la frou frou” 
is my word for the chic things I love to draw.

If you get to play “hookie” for the day, what is always on your list to do? 

I keep a list of “Favorite Things” … a handwritten list. 
I’m constantly adding to of things that make me happy … 
to choose what to fill a day with. 
I could easily close my eyes and run my finger down it’s pages … 
selecting a handful of the handwritten entries to fill up my day! 
A favourite day might include morning coffee and shopping in the city,
 roaming through a gallery for inspiration (and lunch al fresco, of course!) 
with a friend. 

Ending with a lazy afternoon at the beach 
with a favourite novel … hmmmm, just talking about it, 
I’m getting excited for that day!

Who’s your favourite style icon? 
Don’t have just one. Like many. 
I love and am inspired by the uniqueness and sophistication 
that was the style of both Audrey Hepburn and Grace Kelly. 
As for modern-day icons: Olivia Palermo. 
Sometimes it’s also fun to wear a long skirt, sunglasses and a big hat 
and be Rachel Zoe for a day.

Which celebrity do you think has the best look/style at the moment? 
Again … I’d have to say Olivia Palermo’s style.

Your favourite perfume at the moment? 
I’m drawn to woodsy, citrusy or spicy and 
peppery perfumes rather than flowery or be achy. 
I’ve loved the sexy sophistication of Opium for ages 
and have to say it’s my favorite.

 Your fav app? 
Since I’m thinking about decorating my new place, 
I’m having fun with the new HB app from House Beautiful … 
each House Beautiful magazine issue has a little HB icon 
throughout its pages. You just click on the app 
and hold your phone up to the HB icon in the magazine 
and the app allows you to read much more design info 
on a specific article or photo .. like peeking behind-the-scenes.

Book or Kindle? 
Book so far, but I’m not against Kindles, 
I just haven’t felt ready to make the change yet because 
I love books so much … the whole visual and tactile thing, 
the illustrated cover, the smell of the pages, 
easily going back and rereading the last few pages and, 
of course, slipping in the bookmark!

What are you reading at the moment? 
I’m simply pouring over a variety of design books, 
like Mary McDonald’s “The Allure of Style,” at the moment, 
as it’s difficult to concentrate on anything 
but the vast amount of interior design choices I have ahead of me!

The one beauty item or brand you can’t live without? 

I like Laura Mercier foundation primers .. 
they have a variety of primers for different needs 
and they provide a great base (the website suggest placing 
them in the refrigerator so they feel refreshing in this hot weather). 
This is the link: 

The place that is first on your travel “wish-list” ?
Paris. Then Italy. Then London. Then Greece.

Paris Party-Sandy M

Who do you consider one of the most inspirational women?
My mother.

What is your ultimate goal for your company/brand? 
To be picked up by brands that will carry my 
illustrations on products worldwide.

Thank you to the lovely Sandy.
How inspiring is her art?
I urge you to visit her blog.
It's my perfect time for 
Monday morning girlie

Is there an artist/creative angel
in you bursting for expression?

If you could have your own creative
biz, what would you love to have?

Share your thoughts, you
know how much I love them.


  1. I've been looking at Sandy's blog and her illustrations are wonderful, really beautiful. I have always wanted to be able to sketch and draw, alas I'm useless and can barely draw a circle without breaking into a sweat, but I can dream. To actually have a career that utilises your creativity must be wonderful. Hope your move has gone well, Vanessa - Welcome Back! xx

    1. TYSM SK. Still lots to organize and sort out, but all in good time ;-)
      Yes, Sandy's artwork is stunning. Like you I can'y draw to save my soul. I always imagined myself painting; it was always a totally romantic vision that was never likely to happen .

  2. I love Sandy she is soooo talented and her blog is one of my favorites! I'm so excited about this series! Wishing you the best, Vanessa!

    1. TYSM Sharon. Your interview will be up soon too ;-)
      Hope your summer is going well Sweets xx

  3. Hi Vanessa! Thanks so much for featuring me on your lovely blog! Such an honor and I have included a link to the interview on the Ooh La Frou Frou post tomorrow. Have a safe and happy moving experience, sweets! ~xo Sandy

    SANDY M Illustration

  4. What lovely photos, and nice to get to know Sandy.

  5. Great post/interview Vanessa...Sandy is such a talented lady...loved finding out a little more about her, thank you ;-)

  6. Vanessa, wonderful interview! It was great getting to know Sandy a little more. Her work is fabulous!

    I definitely wish for a biz that would inspire others ... something with tea.

    Wishing you a fabulous week .. and journey home. xo C. (HHL)

  7. Love Sandy and you too Vanessa! :) Great interview!!

  8. Hi Vanessa, I've been following Sandy on twitter for awhile now, and always look forward to her blog. I remember when I first found her and those fab "City Girls"....I was hooked on them. Sandy is so talented! She continues to amaze me with every new illustration. This was a great interview!
    Dee xx

  9. Vanessa!

    So much to comment on! I'm looking for a book to take on my vacation coming up.. your drink and a book sounds perfect. I'd agree about Olivia Palermo .. great sense of style.

    I thought I followed you via google.. and bloglovin or email but I've missed a couple of your posts. I added myself.. so hopefully I will receive your new posts.



  10. Another informative blog… Thank you for sharing it… Best of luck for further endeavor too.


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