In this special Mi Casa, we speak with writer and mother Elisha Kennedy.
Elisha’s aesthetic is one that we love; she is drawn to warm tones with charming books and fine art pieces.
Today, we dive into her experience of motherhood, love of the arts, and appreciation for her garden and good neighbours. We discuss her work through EVK EDITORIAL and her enduring gratitude for her Sydney-based home.
SHOP THE LOOK
What does your home mean to you?
Well, I live in Sydney, so the first thing to acknowledge is that this house cost a lot. My partner and I had both wanted to buy a house, it was something that was important to each of us, we worked too much and saved for a long time to afford it. Beyond that, every day I appreciate the fact that we have a garden and good neighbours and that we live so near to the Royal National Park. Our home is old, small and comfortable. It’s a bit messy, with stacks of dusty books and an overstocked pantry. It means a lot to us.
Which Pampa pieces have you chosen to include?
We’ve got a Selva rug in the living room – which we’ve had for years – a Monte Runner in the hallway, a Monte cushion and a Puna throw on the bed. I love the deep greens and warm Pampa colours with their natural variations and the subtle, waxy smell of the wool.
What can you share with us about your experience of motherhood?
Parts of it have been very joyful and other parts of it I have found distressing. There are things that I love, such as watching my son grow and discover his world, reading to him, snuggling, observing nature together and seeing the world through his eyes. However, I’m still reckoning with the isolation, hypervigilance and the effects of pregnancy and birth on my health.
What is life like with your dog, Ranger? Tell us a bit about his personality.
Ranger is an honest-to-god angel. He is the most sincere, loving dog – too good for this world. We got him when he was a puppy, I was pregnant and living down on the Far South Coast. He’s a kelpie with infinite energy and he needs a lot of stimulation. We take him almost everywhere with us and have an active life, so it’s a good match.
Six months apart in age, Ossie and Ranger are growing up together. Our house is small, and Ranger’s bed is at the foot of Ossie’s. Ossie tells people that Ranger is his “brother” and is very protective of him, which always breaks my heart a bit.
He’s my companion, truly. He has expanded our worlds and hearts.
Tell us about your career. Have you always known you’d be a writer?
I’d always kept notebooks and written as a child, and I’ve always loved reading, of course, but I never considered being able to make a living out of writing. I went to an academic high school where you were marched towards a career in either law or medicine. That was the spectrum of opportunities for us, as far as they were concerned. As a teenager, I was overly emotional and full of rage, so naturally, I loved the arts, and that’s what I pursued. Most of my work at the moment is copywriting for clients through my business EVK EDITORIAL. I am grateful for the projects I’ve been a part of and the people I’ve met through my work. I’m also thankful for the flexibility it affords me while raising my son.
What are you reading at the moment?
I’m reading The Song Of Achilles by Madeleine Miller. Reading her work feels like drinking a jar of warm honey. It’s exquisite. I’m also reading short stories by Alice Munro and Robin Wall Kimmerer’s Braiding Sweetgrass.
What have been some memorable projects you have worked on?
A story about my Grandmother for WAIST magazine, a collection of profiles on Oyster farmers, an essay on awe for One&Only Wolgan Valley, and of course, I’ve loved working with Pampa on campaigns and collection stories over the years.
What have you learned about writing?
I think sometimes people underestimate how long it takes for good writing to happen. In order to write well about something, you have to cultivate a deep understanding of the topic, so there’s usually a decent amount of research involved in the work too. I’ve learned that there are days where writing feels all toil and days where you find flow. I think that the best writing is born out of the tug-of-war between those two states. Then, of course, it’s hard to know when a piece of writing is ready; you have to learn when to make the call.
What are you looking forward to?
Getting back to dance class and taking Ossie up to the Daintree to see the crocs!
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Photos: Victoria Aguirre