The Fancy Sessions: 1

The Fancy Sessions: 1

Lucy McMaster

Experience designer

Pronouns: she/her

Lucy wears the Ngahuia Dress by Tuesday, and the Cathy Pope rose quartz pendant with the rose gold chain

Kia ora Lucy! What has been your proudest moment of the last year?

I think my proudest moment in the last year has been honouring my mental health and where it was at. I had a pretty rough patch last year, and along with lots of people around the globe, was finding it really difficult. I took a bit of time off for burnout and that was probably the best thing I could’ve ever done. I’m very proud of myself for making that decision. Also a project I’ve been working for a very long time went live. It’s called Alcohol Journeys and you can check that out here.

You’re an Experience Designer - tell us about that.

 It’s an interesting job title and it’s a bit of a catch all but mostly what I love to do is at the very beginning stage of a project. The client comes to us and tells us that what they would like to build, and I go out and speak to the core people that will be using the future product to help determine what they should be creating to help improve a product or service or an experience for a person. Sometimes it’s the best part of the job, but the hardest at the same time. It's always difficult to come back to a client and tell them that an assumption that they have made about their core users is incorrect. But that is often the opportunity to do some really cool things. I really enjoy design research as a practice and I’d love to continue to do more of it and to grow my expertise. You have to learn to embrace ambiguity with my role!

Do you have any daily rituals?

In the morning I have a hot cup of tea in bed and put on some upbeat tunes; especially if I’m finding getting out of bed a bit challenging. And in the evening I like to do some some spinal twist stretches and have a bath. I find that really relaxing.

What do you find inspiring about living in Wellington?

I’ve lived in Wellington now for eight years and I love this windy little city. You don’t stay for the weather that’s for sure! I’m constantly inspired by the artists and the creatives, they make the city what it is. Especially after last year and lockdown, as soon as we came out, the whole community had been saving up all their collective energy and all these amazing shows happened. The queer scene is phenomenal in Wellington, and the incredible drag performers here make it so vibrant. There is a drag show on almost every night of the week and I urge you to go out and experience the multitudes of very talented performers - making it happen often on a shoestring budget.

How would you describe your personal style, and who are your influences?

This is such a hard one! I feel as though how I dress depends on what I want for my day. If I have something important happening at work I'll dress formally and feminine. But in my own space I prefer dressing less femme presenting. I’m a sucker for bold warm colours and blues as well as a good pattern. A couple of years ago, after working retail, I looked down at my wardrobe and it was just entirely black. I decided at that point I was banned from buying any black items of clothing!

My influences are largely my mates or people from Instagram. I love finding people who look like me, and be inspired by how they’ve styled something. Ashley Graham, Barbie Ferreira, Lillian Ahenkan (Flex Mami), Paige Mary Grace - an Aussie stylist are all in high rotation for styling and fashion for me. 

What has been your biggest revelation/lesson of the last year?

Life is short. Try to make decisions about what you want from life from a fearless place, not a fearful one.

What are you most looking forward to in 2021?

Getting outdoors, going tramping, and spending a lot of time out in nature. And having a bit of a reset in general.

What are you currently reading/watching/listening to?

I'm reading The Starless Sea by Erin Morgenstern. Why we sleep by Matthew Walker The F*ck It diet by Caroline Dooner. I’ve been so excited for the extra episodes of Euphoria to come out and I absolutely loved them along with the original series. The Mandalorian. And embarrassingly - Bridgerton. I can’t stop listening to Paiges’ debut album; she is an amazing young Kiwi musician go to check her out. SZA, The Beth’s, Little Simz, Kali Uchis, Thundercat, Mahalia, BLKCITY (another Aotearoa original).

Photography by Sarah McEvoy 

Ice cream from Duck Island, Cuba Street 


Lucy sits on the tuatara in the children's playground by the bucket fountain. She is smiley, and has an ice cream in her hand.
Feb 18, 2021

Lucy dear. You are a star! You are right too – life is short. “Aim high and at least you soar” Love you XX


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