My work experience with Jasmine and Melissa Hemsley took place mainly over the summer, and I can’t believe I haven’t shared my blog post on it with you all yet!
For those of you who don’t know, I am a huge fan of the Hemsley sisters. Not only are they as lovely and beautiful as they appear, they also have an incredibly inspiring approach to wellbeing, particularly when it comes to healthy eating! I first saw the Hemsley sisters at the Barnes Food Fair in 2014, and came away feeling greatly inspired and motivated. I had already started my blog but hadn’t spent any time on it, so their demonstration gave me the boost I needed to get it going!
I went to see the Hemsleys give demonstrations at various health festivals before deciding to ask about work experience with them. After getting in touch, I was thrilled when they agreed to have me. Initially it was just going to be for a week, but I enjoyed it so much that they kindly extended my time with them, so I was able to do more.
I was lucky enough to help out with their shoot for their upcoming book, Good + Simple. It was amazing to see the shoot taking place, and seeing talented photographer Nick Hopper taking gorgeous photos of beautifully prepared food. The hardest part was waiting for the food to be finished with so we could all tuck in! During the time in the studio, I helped track their social media, take a few foody pics for social media and helped to keep everything clean and tidy. I also managed the teapot- everyone is so busy on a shoot that it’s easy to forget to keep hydrated! I got to befriend the loveliest pair of dogs too, Julie (@julieloveschickenwings) and Nelly (@nellytheblue).
In between helping out on the book shoot, I also helped set up their dinner parties, which took place at The Paradise, Kensal Green. This meant working in the ‘Goody bag factory’- filling tons of ‘Boil Your Bones’ bags with healthy goodies, including Coyo, coconut oil, ground turmeric and teapigs tea. Setting the tables involved placing a pretty flower on each napkin, from @graceandthorn. Before I finished, they kindly invited me to stay for dinner on one of the nights, where I enjoyed a non-alcoholic strawberry and cucumber cocktail, a bowl of their trademark Moroccan-spiced bone broth, the most hashtagged dish #Pabloschicken with probiotic ketchup, a selection of salads (of course there was courgetti and pesto- it wouldn’t be a Hemsley-created meal without a spiralized vegetable!) and finally pineapple carpaccio and creamy Paradise bars for dessert. This was all washed down with a chilled glass of Pep-up tea. All of these recipes can be found in their first book, The Art of Eating Well, if you fancy creating your own Hemsley-inspired meal!
Jasmine and Melissa generously invited me to go and see them film ITV This Morning twice, where they appeared to cook up some of their delicious recipes, including Anytime Eggs and Banana Bread. I was even lucky enough to go to a Vogue meeting with them, as they regularly write columns and share recipes on Vogue, and it was very exciting to see a Vogue boardroom and have a chance to pose badly there!
Recently, I helped out at Fare Healthy (a festival celebrating food, fitness and wellbeing: @farehealthy) where I spent the day wearing a beautiful avocado apron (by Reflect and Repeat) and ladling out bone broth, as well as exploring the surrounding stalls and meeting new people. It was an incredible day and you can read my full blog post on Fare Healthy 2015 here.
I’m so grateful to Jasmine and Melissa for such an amazing opportunity. Not only did it give me experience in the world of healthy eating, but it also confirmed my decision to forge a similar pathway myself. I also met a group of lovely and friendly like-minded people helping out on the Hemsley team, including Ellie Dunbar (Ellie’s an absolutely amazing photographer and artist, and if you haven’t seen her blog fashion-food.co.uk or her Instagram @ellievdunbar, go and have a look!) and the talented Jo of Reflect and Repeat, who designed the beautiful avocado apron I’m wearing here! Sorry to sound cheesy, but I really did have the time of my life with the Hemsley sisters, and I can’t thank them enough for being so kind.
If you haven’t already got their book, The Art of Eating well, I don’t know what you’re waiting for! Book 2, Good + Simple, will be coming out in Spring 2016, but you can pre-order it here if you’re too excited to wait.
Thanks for reading!