With the Junior Design Awards for 2018 well under way... we've now shortlisted all the brands - and are gearing up for the next stage. Which is the judging days!
Over three days in our London office we will have the important job of narrowing down all the shortlisted brands in the 55+ categories which is no mean feat believe us - and, actually too big a job for one person alone!
Enter our exciting panel of esteemed judges who are not only experts in their field, highly respected social influencers and industry insiders, they are all of course, stylish parents themselves. Each one has been hand selected to ensure that Junior continues to showcase the best-of-the-best.
With awards categories for fashion, travel, books, toys, interiors & lifestyle and food & dining enlisting impartial, unbiased and outsider opinion is the best possible way to ensure that the integrity of the Junior Design Awards remains - as they always have been - a luxury signed seal of style approval.
Judging will take place in late June and early July overseen by the Junior editorial team with this amazing line-up... and for the first time ever we have introduced a mini-influencer panel that you can read all about here.
Zoë de Pass, founder of Dress like a Mum
"I am so excited to be returning as a judge for the prestigious and well respected Junior Design Awards again this year. Having 3 kids, a background in product design and being passionate about supporting small businesses and innovative companies these Awards and the recognition they give to the entrants is something I absolutely love being part of and feel passionately about. Whether i'm booking a holiday or investing in something for the kids the Junior Magazine Award stamp of approval is something I always look out for." Zoë de Pass
We're so pleased to welcome back Zoë on the Junior judging panel again this year (and during her maternity time too). If you've not discovered Zoë yet her mission to change the bad image of dressing like a mum is shared through her blog and her massively influential (110k+) Instagram account - where Zoë shares her daily outfits often with her 3 children in tow.
Launched in 2015 after frequently receiving comments such as 'you don't look or dress like a mum' or 'I can't believe you have 2 kids' she aims to dispel the bad rep and perception that mums can't dress, automatically lose their sense of style or their passion for fashion just because they've had a baby.
With over 8 years experience working as an Insights and Trend Researcher and Brand Consultant Zoë specialises in fashion, luxury and beauty and has been responsible for inspiring and informing major global brands understand Millennial parents.
She lives in London with her husband and 3 children.
Chloe Thurston, founder of chloeuberkid
"I am so excited to be included in this year’s judging panel, I have followed Junior Magazine and their awards for over a decade, so to take part and get to try out all my favourite types of products is going to be amazing!" Chloe Thurston
Chloe Thurston lives by the beach in Dorset with her husband and 5 children. They have a tech company but Chloe mainly runs her blog and styles photos for her massive (90K+) Instagram following – in-between looking after the kids that is! Chloe worked with her husband in their technology company (producing apps etc.) before blogging.
Ruby Hammer MBE, is a world famous Make-Up Artist, presenter and beauty industry expert
"I am thrilled to be a judge at the JDA... childhood memories are ever lasting and something we draw on throughout our lives, anything that can make or enrich those experiences while helping parents to make effective choices is to be admired. Hopefully I can contribute to this” Ruby Hammer
Having worked in the beauty industry for over 25 years Ruby Hammer is one of the best-known and most respected makeup artists in the world. Throughout her career, Ruby has had a pioneering influence on the fashion and beauty industries.
From haute couture on the catwalks of Paris, New York and Milan working with John Galliano, Jasper Conran and Ghost, to exotic Beauty shoots with world renowned photographers, she has inspired looks and contributed editorial expertise for all the leading magazines including Vogue, Elle, Harpers Bazaar and Marie Claire. Ruby’s unrivalled expertise and experience has led her to being asked to launch products, advise on new looks and train personnel for Estee Lauder, Clarins, Clinique, Aveda and Revlon.
More like this
Ruby’s TV credits include The Clothes Show, BBC Style Challenge, Britain’s Next Top Model, GMTV, This Morning and Channel 4’s ’10 Years Younger’ where she was the resident make-up artist for 3 series. Her vast experience incorporates numerous advertising campaigns for international brands such as Oil of Olay, Pantene and Head and Shoulders. Ruby is currently appearing on Lorraine as the resident make up artist and beauty expert for the ‘Youthful You’ campaign.
As a pioneer in the beauty industry Ruby was instrumental in the UK launches of some of the most influential brands in health and beauty including Aveda, L’Occitane, Tweezerman and Mister Mascara. Building on her successes within the beauty industry Ruby joined forces with Millie Kendall in 1998 to establish the award winning Ruby & Millie make-up brand pioneering affordable luxury cosmetics, followed by the teenage focused range Scarlett & Crimson.
Ruby’s most recent venture 'Ruby Hammer Recommends' launched exclusively in Debenhams in 2011, delighting customers with a mix of education and quality whilst still maintaining a sense of value. A culmination of her careers work came in 2007 when she was awarded an MBE for her long standing contribution to the cosmetics industry.
Ruby loves spending quality time at home in Maida Vale where she tries to meditate at least twice a day to help relax and de-stress.
For additional information and full portfolio please see www.rubyhammer.com
Gemma Metcalfe-Beckers, founder of The Mutha.Hood
“I'm a big fan of what we call the 'Dot of Wisdom' in our house. To me it has, and always will be a marker for quality and innovation and I can't wait to see first-hand all of the wonderful submissions to this year’s awards.” Gemma Metcalfe-Beckers
Gemma runs the Mutha.hood an online community, store and Instagram account with the aim of empowering women and girls, with a few Insta Story giggles thrown in for good measure. She is mother to The Reds; Big and Little, who are well on their way to being fully fledged members of the Strong Girls Club.
She set up her business after the first birthday of her second daughter, utilising her experience pre-kids of Fashion Buying and Factual TV Production. All clothing is printed in the UK using eco-friendly inks, designed by Gemma, and manufactured to Fair Wear standards with 98% of the tshirts made using 100% cotton.
Sergei Urban, founder of TheDadLab
"The last few years have been an amazing journey that has given me opportunities I never thought I would have, including becoming a judge at JDA18 - I am very excited!" Sergei Urban
Sergei Urban is an incredible father who inspires parents around the world with his creative ideas through TheDadLab his blog and instagram account (with a whopping 700k+ followers) to share his fatherhood journey with his two sons Alex (6) and Max (4).
He began sharing these kids science experiments and educational activities that he did with his children online about 3 years ago and he pretty soon became an online sensation with over 3 million fans across all his social media platforms. Neither a teacher or a scientist, his 'dad lab' is full of educational and fun actives, experiments and art projects to engage with your children, expand their minds and spend quality time together.
Sergei also has a book TheDadLab published on 12th July.
Geraldine Tan, editor and founder of Little Big Bell
"Junior magazine was my style resource when my kids were young. I’m so honoured to be asked to be one of the judges this year." Geraldine Tan
Geraldine Tan is the editor of Little Big Bell, an award winning interiors and lifestyle blog. Little Big Bell is all about spotting trends, curating new design finds and translating these into the everyday home.
Little Big Bell has been voted as the top 5 UK Instagram accounts to follow by the Evening Standard and more recently by Hello! Fashion monthly as one of the most original feeds in blogosphere.
With her signature style of all things bright and colourful, Geraldine has worked extensively with high profile companies on styling, photography and content creation projects. She has collaborated with a wide portfolio of brands , ranging from Farrow and Ball, Pantone, Marks and Spencers, Alessi, L'Oreal, MINI, American Express, Samsung, Kate Spade New York and more.
She lives in London with her husband and 2 children.
Donna Wilson, founder and designer at Donna Wilson
"I’m really excited and privileged to be asked to judge this year’s Junior Design Awards, and now having children myself I’m looking forward to encouraging the best brands, the way that an prestigious award does." Donna Wilson
Donna Wilson is celebrating fifteen years of designing, manufacturing and distributing her curious creatures, luxurious lambswool cushions, knitwear and home accessories from her East London studio.
Her work has been featured in numerous publications, and has been exhibited at Somerset House, Yorkshire Sculpture Park and The British Embassy. Collaborating with the likes of John Lewis and Mamas and Papa’s, in 2010 Donna was awarded the coveted accolade of Designer of the Year at Elle Decoration's British Design Awards.
Donna lives in East London with her partner, two boys and four cats, although she draws much of her inspiration from her childhood growing up on a farm in Aberdeenshire. Her love of the countryside has influenced her to use texture and organic forms in her work. As a forerunner of the contemporary craft movement, Donna has always remained true to her principles, using traditional techniques and UK-based suppliers wherever possible, helping to support Britain’s dwindling manufacturing trades.
Bonita Turner, Editor of Junior and founder of mamasvib
"The continued support, encouragement and general love for Junior is what pushes me to ensure each awards year is better than the last. In my second year as editor I am again excited to be judging them again with an esteemed panel of like-minded people who take their roles as seriously as I do!" Bonita Turner
After studying at The Surrey Insitute (then the Epsom School of Art) Fashion Promotion & Journalism Bonita started her fashion career at Woman magazine and then as Fashion Editor at Now. With over 20 years experience in editorial Bonita went freelance in 2012 after the arrival of her daughter.
Needing something to fill the work void Bonita launched her blog mamasvib in 2013 as an outlet for her constant shopping ideas and went on to carve a freelance career working on various parenting titles, customer titles and project managing in-store seasonal catalogues. In February 2017, Bonita joined Immediate Media as Editor of Junior - the much-loved luxury children's title.
In her first year she oversaw last year's Junior Design Awards to brilliant success, helped to raise the Junior social profile and also, scooped a Best Newcomer gong at the Immediate Media Awards in December 2017. Again, overseeing and leading the Junior Design Awards 2018 and marking Junior's 20th anniversary celebrations.
Bonita lives in Surrey with her husband Joe, her 5 year old daughter Marnie and her 2 cats: Pepper and Pinto.
Lisa Mehydene, founder of edit58
"I'm so excited to have been asked back to judge the 2018 Junior Design Awards. Last year the standards were really high and I loved seeing a mix of established brands and newer brands represented in the categories. This year, as before, I’ll be casting both my parenting and design eye over the entries and look forward to being wowed once again!" Lisa Mehydene
Owner and Founder of online homewares brand edit58, a brand that was conceived by self-confessed interiors junkie and rug addict Lisa Mehydene. An avid traveller with an enviable eye for must-have pieces, Lisa launched edit58 as a platform to share the irresistible finds she’s collected, combined with her own unique design spin. By building relationships with craftspeople in Portugal, France, the US and one of her favourite places: Morocco, edit58 has flourished into a cult success story that’s no longer such a well-kept secret.
A former advertising director, Lisa is mother to 6 year old boy/girl twins. Their home in Wandsworth, south-west London is an inspiring canvas for the unusual discoveries that Lisa has handpicked and which she styles together in the most imaginative of ways.
Michelle Kennedy, founder of Peanut
"It's so exciting to be part of these amazing awards. With innovations in the family space happening daily, we want to know about the best of the best! Being part of that is a huge honour" Michelle Kennedy
Michelle Kennedy is the CEO and co-founder of Peanut - an app to connect like-minded women who happen to be mothers, facilitating conversations women want and need to have.
Launched in 2017, it has become a prominent voice for modern motherhood, garnered a community of over 300,000 women, has received a host of plaudits from being celebrated by Apple at the WWDC conference, to the Today show naming it the "app to change your life".
Michelle started her career as an M&A lawyer at leading international law firm Mishcon de Reya. She later joined dating app, Badoo, where she rose to the role of Deputy CEO at the $100m+ revenue generative market leader. During her tenure at Badoo, Michelle was integral to the the launch of seminal millennial dating app Bumble.
Michelle is also a mama to her 4-year-old Peanut, Finlay.
Diana Bardega, founder of The Mamahood
"I am so delighted to be joining the Judging panel for these prestigious trend setting awards - a chance to recognise and celebrate the very best brands out there for babies and children!" Diana Bardega
Diana is the Founder of The Mamahood - a place to celebrate and support creative mothers and their small businesses. They hand pick the small independent brands they work with and shine a light on the amazing entrepreneurial spirit amongst mothers who are making beautiful products and building businesses around their families. The Mamahood is a place for colourful inspiration for mother shoppers and a supportive community for mother business owners.
Having spent a career in the charity sector and being very passionate about small business and social enterprise, Diana set up The Mamahood after having her two children,with the aim of championing the incredible talent amongst mother makers and mumpreneurs.
Diana lives in London with her family.
Gabrielle Spang, founder and owner of independent boutique Scandi Mini
Having moved from Sweden to the UK over 16 years ago, former marketing consultant Gabrielle entered the world of fashion retail by launching her hugely successful online boutique, Scandi Mini in 2011.
Born out of her desire to dress her own son in understated, cool clothing without fuss and gender stereotyping she went on a mission to prove there was a different way to dress children. With her savvy eye and impeccable Scandi sense-of-style she enlisted independent - and unknown - brands with a more minimalist approach to dressing.
Expanding into selling toys, homewares, gifts and accessories saw Gabrielle open her eagerly awaited first shop in West London in 2016.
Gabrielle lives with her family and 2 children Wilhelm, 9 and Cornelia, 5 in London.
Jo Tutchener-Sharp, founder of Scamp & Dude
Having previously worked in the fashion and beauty industry for 20 years managing PR campaigns for the likes of Tom Ford, Matthew Williamson, Dolce & Gabbana, Estee Lauder and The BRIT Awards. Jo set up her own PR agency aged 31 which represented brands such as Decleor, Topshop Make Up, NARS, Eve Lom and Christian Louboutin Beaute which she then sold in June 2015.
In October the same year, Jo suffered a life changing brain haemorrhage. It was then when she was in hospital recovering from her brain surgery at the beginning of 2016, desperately missing her kids, that she came up with the idea behind Scamp & Dude.
Jo lives in North London with her husband Rob and their two boys, Sonny, 6 and Jude, 3.
Eleonore Crompton, Contributing Editor at Junior and founder of The Mumday Times
"I'm absolutely thrilled to be part of the prestigious JDA’s and can’t wait to discover exciting new brands, support small businesses and celebrate the movers and shakers in kids design." Eleonore Crompton
Eleonore (or Ellie) is the former the Style Director of Heat magazine (The Beckhamese era), a freelance stylist writer and brand consultant.
As the contributing editor here at Junior magazine and the founder of her own blog The Mumday Times, you will either find her in a soft play pit or wrestling with her crippling ASOS habit while pretending to work from her kitchen table.
Ellie lives in London with her husband and 3 children.
Karen Beddow, founder of Mini Travellers and travel contributor at Junior Magazine
"When I was asked to be a judge for the JDA I was genuinely thrilled. I can't wait to see all the entries and have a part in choosing the winners." Karen Beddow
Karen Beddow is not only a travel contributor at Junior Magazine but also a multi-award winning family travel blogger at Mini Travellers where her family cover family travel that’s realistic for others to emulate.
Recently ranked in the top 10 UK Family Travel Blogs, Karen blogs about everything from adventure travel in Rwanda and Malawi, to camping with the kids in the UK and everything in between.
Previously a Lawyer, Karen gave up her fast-paced career to spend more time with her family. She lives in West kirby with her husband and their three daughters: aged 7 and 6-year old twins.
Holly Anna Scarsella, founder of Pampelone Clothing
“I was absolutely thrilled to be asked to be on the judging panel for this year's Junior Design Awards. When I was pregnant, I used the awards as a bible guide as to what to buy for when by baby daughter was born and cannot wait to test the new products on the market to hopefully help new parents and parents to be.” Holly Anna Scarsella
Holly Anna Scarsella is the founder of Pampelone Clothing – a brand that embodies the effortless look of the French Riviera. As an ex. Fashion Publicist she launched Pampelone in 2016 and its become one of the fastest-growing resort wear brands globally, available in 27 countries in over 90 retailers including SHOPBOP and Harvey Nichols and a celebrity fanbase including Gwyneth Paltrow.
Holly has recently been recognised for her entrepreneurship by being listed on Forbes' 30 under 30 list for 2017 and has been named one of the Girl Bosses of the year by VOGUE Australia.
Holly is also a mother to Sienna, 7 Months.
Yvadney Davis, Childrens fashion stylist and founder of Mums that Slay
"It is such an honour to be a Judge in this year's Junior Awards. As an avid trend hunter, I can't wait to to see all of the entrees." Yvadney Davis
Yvadney Davis is a kids fashion stylist having worked in the fashion industry for over 15 years, graduating from a Fashion Design Degree at Central Saint Martins. However, becoming a mum 6 years ago, introduced her to the world of kids' fashion and she hasn't looked back.
She has worked with brands and magazines including Aden & Anais, Le Mu Saltwater Sandals, Hooligans and Little London Magazine creating campaigns, look books and editorials. She lives and breathes fashion and has an eclectic colourful aesthetic, and is particularly interested in innovation and sustainability.
Yvadney lives in South London with her husband and 2 children aged 6 and 3.
Sarah Clark, is a Fashion Editor and Stylist & founder of Little Spree
After studying fashion journalism at the London College of Fashion, Sarah started her fashion career at various luxury magazines including Marie Claire, British Glamour and Red. Sarah now works as a freelance stylist and art director for a number of established commercial brands.
In 2011, Sarah launched her hugely successful blog Little Spree as an essential resource for busy, fashion conscious mums as an insider’s guide to dressing your children in a stylish way without maxing your credit card. In 2013, born from constant requests and her revered eye, Mama Spree was added for mothers who also wanted to dress in a cool, but practical way avoiding anything 'mumsy’
Sarah lives in London with her boyfriend and their 8-year old twins, Tabitha and Marlowe.