Turning Over A New Leaf

We reveal the best intentions of the Laura Ashley head office teams for 2012 read more

Since getting back after the Christmas break and chatting to the head office clan about their new year’s plans, we felt inspired to write a blog post on how we are beating the January blues and turning over a new leaf. Doing the inter-department rounds, we just had to share our good intentions for a very positive 2012!


PAUL, SENIOR PRESS OFFICER: Learn how to read music

“Rather than vowing to give something up (and depriving myself of life’s little joys) I’ve decided to take up a new activity. I used to play a musical instrument when I was younger but gave up in my teens, so I’m going to perfect my music reading skills and learn to play a new instrument – I’ve got my heart set on the Cello.”



“I have been doing all my January sale bargain hunting on eBay this year and have managed to get some great things including a vintage floral Laura Ashley skirt which I am wearing today…”.

Psst.. you can also get some really great furniture bargains on the Official Laura Ashley eBay store


SONIA, WOVEN’S BUYER: A closet overhaul

“I had a mass wardrobe clear out before I started my job here and gave lots of clothes to charity.  I have vowed to wear a different outfit to work everyday for as long as I possibly can (January at least!!) rather than having so much shoved to the back of the cupboard and forgetting what I even own!”



“I have recently taken up Zumba classes and I am completely won over. Zumba is a Latin dance inspired workout (created by Beto Perez – a Columbian dancer) and is all about having fun! If like me you prefer classes to the gym give it a go. I do my class up in North London with Zumba teacher Andrea Dann”.

We were intrigued to hear more so looked Andrea up:

Laura Ashley: What are the benefits of Zumba?

Andrea: Zumba is good for the health (as is any exercise) for the obvious- burning calories. It is also great for overall fitness i.e. if there are squats and lunges hidden in the dance routine. Health benefits vary in Zumba sessions depending on the teacher’s style and background. You can lose body fat and a feeling of well being is achieved during and after the class. Muscle tone also improves and the brain gets a work out from learning new moves!

Laura Ashley: What are your top Zumba tips?


-Find a teacher that suits your needs, we vary a lot. Some come from a dance background and some from a fitness background. This will greatly affect the type of class you will experience.

-Try to attend at least 3 sessions a week to really see results. But remember Zumba is not magic so a sensible diet will also help. Zumba is based on interval training: this means there is a break between each track, this means the heart rate gets high and then has a chance to come down only to be brought back up again, this means you will burn body fat for up to 24 hours after class, so give it your all during the track!

-Don’t take it too seriously – the dance steps are just a way of getting you to move. If you find it hard to follow just move to the music and enjoy it. It’s important to feel comfortable in the group so chat to the teacher and the group- it’s a great way of making new friends with the same goal as you.



“I have wanted to learn a practical restoration skill for ages and having bought a chair in the staff sale (which was an old chair bought as a design idea and is crying out for some tlc) I thought it would be the perfect opportunity to learn…But still has been sitting at home for around 6 months. When the Creative team mentioned doing a course one lunch time I was all over the idea. We are thinking about doing this class at ‘Barnett Upholsteries‘…

Students at work- Barnett Upholsteries

Students at work- Barnett Upholsteries

I love our spring fabric ‘Wallace’ so expect to see my newly renovated chair covered in this fun and wildly colourful pattern”.

Shop the Wallace fabric here 



“Spending time with my little niece (Anna- 15 months old) over Christmas and seeing how much she had grown motivated me to put in some more ‘aunty time’ so I don’t miss out on all the fun bits (she’ll be walking before I know it). I can’t wait until she hits 2 years old and I can buy her lots of adorable outfits from the Laura Ashley Girls range. This season’s Stripe Trim Floral Tankini and Swimsuit has got her name all over it.”


“I am going to be more creative outside of work this year and attend a drawing class, they are running classes on Friday evening at the National Portrait Gallery for free that I will definitely be attending. It’s part of their ‘Late Shift’ programme – an artist-led drop in class with all materials provided! Can’t wait!”

Drawing classes at the National Portrait Gallery Late Shift © National Portrait Gallery.

Drawing classes at the National Portrait Gallery Late Shift © National Portrait Gallery.




“This year I’ll be challenging the misconceptions of the graphic designer ‘casual/laid back’ look by upping my smart attire for the office. This will be smart with a design twist of course. I’ll be teaming up my signature whimsical print blouses with an easy-throw-on blazer. I already have my eyes on our new Black Jersey Blazer (with polka dot lining- I adore the detail) and the Stripe Jersey Belted Dress for days when I’m off to meet friends in the evening.”

How will you be turning over a new leaf for 2012? Comment below or tweet us at @LauraAshley__


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