“They keep me active. They keep me silly. They keep me creative,” says Bari Shore of her two sons: Brandon, 4, and Dean, 2. For White + Warren’s Director of Product, being a working mom is all about balance—and while her boys also keep her busy, having fun is routine. During quarantine, the Shore family has been cooking their way through the alphabet with recipes inspired by the letter of the day. “We’ve had sliced apples, brownies, cake…,” Shore says, joking, “and unhealthier as the days go on!”
At White + Warren, a big part of Shore’s role involves time-management and ensuring the production process runs according to schedule—something that also comes in handy as head of household during this all-too hectic moment in time. “I’ve had to do that for my life now,” she says. “If I don’t schedule it, it won’t get done.” To-do lists and color-coded calendars have been “helping to keep me sane,” she adds, down to penciling in morning jogs with her son, Brandon. “The run is probably about 10 blocks,” Shore says. “But we talk about running our sillies out, getting ready for the day and getting centered.”
Still, there’s always room for good old-fashioned family fun. Every Sunday, Shore and her husband let the kids set the agenda, a new tradition their little ones have aptly dubbed: Family Day. “Usually it involves a lot of fort-building, arts and crafts and movies,” Shore says. “Sunday is the day for the boys.”Shore has also figured out how to make rare moments of Zen a part of their morning ritual; she and son Brandon do Nickelodeon’s kid-approved yoga, which take cartoon characters and puts them into position. “He’s always correcting my position—my warrior or my triangle pose,” she says with a laugh.
Being flexible, so to speak, has been key for Shore, but like anything it takes practice. “It’s a definite struggle just to tell yourself that you’re doing the best you can as a parent during this time,” Shore admits. “It’s constantly being like, ‘Whatever is going to get us through this day.’ For example, my son wanted a cupcake for breakfast the other day, so I folded, and he had a cupcake for breakfast that day.”
Sometimes it’s the small things that count. Shore and Brandon recently made care packages with his class, albeit remotely, that were delivered to frontline healthcare workers in the neighborhood. They came with a card that said, “Thank you” and was decorated with her son’s artwork. “We’re doing whatever we can to remind ourselves how fortunate we are—and that’s been a great way to stay positive.
But it’s not all cupcakes and rainbows, as any parent can attest. “There’s a lot of low moments during quarantine, but home-schooling can be one of the most emotionally taxing things as a parent, especially when you’re a working mom and can’t be as present with them as they’re navigating that,” Shore says. “Every win you feel it and every failure you feel it.” True to form, Shore is a positive beam of light and takes tough stuff in stride. “There’s more days that end with wine than others,” she jokes.
Doing the most with what you have is something Shore’s mother instilled in her from a young age.“ My mother only wears the color black, but she is extremely fashionable she influences my style every day,” Shore says. “When I was a little girl, we used to play a game called ‘Look for Less.’ We’d go to the mall, and she was single working mom, so we’d have $20 and we’d replicate a look from a magazine.”
When it comes to fashion advice, Shore’s mother was all-knowing. “My mom taught me to match your bra and underwear, because you feel best if the first layer of what you’re wearing is put together. That’s a real thing,” Shore says. “My mother also worked in fashion, so I definitely got the bug from her. She was in retail, while I’m more on the manufacturing side, but she set an example for me of what a strong, working mother looked like. I was always so proud of her career, and it was something I also strived for. She’s my role model,” Shore says. “My mother has always worn six-inch stilettos to work. I don’t think she’s ever owned a pair of sneakers, and I couldn’t walk a straight line in heels.”
Another fun fact: Shore was just a kid when she was first introduced to the brand by her mother, who some two decades ago, opened her own store and stocked it with White + Warren’s first collection. “I remember unpacking all this beautiful cashmere,” Shore recalls. “It’s crazy how it’s come full circle.”
Shore is quick to admit, she’s still following her mother’s lead. “I FaceTime her multiple times a day asking for parenting advice,” she says. “She taught me not to white-knuckle it. She was stern and definitely made rules but knew how to have fun with parenting and celebrate the small wins. She was always, and still is, my biggest fan—and I think my kids would say the same thing about me for them.”
1. The Tie-Dye Travel Wrap: “It’s so much fun, it makes me happy just to look at it.”
2. The Linen Knotted Crewneck: “It’s infinitely more polished than a basic tee and it hits at the most flattering spot. Your wardrobe (and waistline) will thank you.”
3. The Linen Patchwork Crewneck: “This patchwork design was done by our designers, and I love how fun the style is. It’s the ultimate outfit-maker: You can throw it on with jeans and then you’re good to go.”
4. The Linen Long Open Cardigan: “This is the perfect indoor-outdoor sweater. You can wear it while you’re stuck at home during the quarantine, and when you step outside to walk the dog or go get your mail, you look completely put-together. It’s also a great transitional, second layer into summertime.”