It's not every day an email lands in your inbox asking if you'd be interested in interviewing Melania Trump, the Sloevnian-born wife to business mogul Donald Trump and mama to 6-year-old Barron. Of course, I jumped at the chance. Melania, a former model who has graced the covers of magazines like Vogue, Harper's Bazaar and Vanity Fair, has incredible style, and honestly, who wouldn’t want to chat with a woman living such a luxe life to learn what life as a working mom is like for someone who seemingly has it all?
Although I was prepared to meet a woman with incredible class and worldliness (she did not disappoint!), I was stunned by her strength, confidence and overall understanding of who she is. She offered a peek into her marriage and life as a mother that was insightful and thought-provoking. I learned that she is a woman who not only knows herself, but also makes it a focus to know and accept the people in her life for who they are. Now if that isn’t a secret to good relationships, I don’t know what is!
Meet a woman who juggles motherhood, marriage, and career with the kind of style and grace that money can’t buy.
Tell us about your new jewelry line with QVC?
This collection [Melania Timepieces and Jewelry] is for modern women on the go who are balancing family, work, and home and want to look beautiful doing it all. The whole collection can be mixed and matched. No matter what your job or style, you can find a piece for you.
How involved are you in the designs?
I am the art director and designer. I sketch––I love to put the pen to paper and start a piece from scratch. I design the things I love. I studied design and architecture and that’s what I really like to do. It’s a passion of mine. That passion is what brought me to create the jewelry and timepieces.
What is your favorite piece from the collection?
There is one special piece in the collection that is based off of a piece that I own. I designed the same bracelet that my parents gave me for Christmas when I was younger. My father gave it to my mother many years prior and my parents had replicas made for my sister and me to symbolize our love for each other. It’s a constant reminder to us; it’s beautiful. It’s available from my collection in gold, silver, and rose.
Sounds like you had a very close family. And now, married to Donald Trump, some people say you are living a modern-day fairy tale. Would you agree?
When you have love and respect and the best time together it feels fantastic. It’s really something special. Sometimes they say love is hard to find. When you meet the right person everything seems fantastic. We work very hard, both of us. It’s a lot of responsibility for a woman to be married to a man like my husband. I need to be quick, smart and intelligent. My life is very normal––for me. Maybe for some people they would not think that. But for me it is. I know my husband. We have a great relationship. We are both very independent. We know what our roles are and we are happy with them. I think the mistake some people make is they try to change the man they love after they get married. You cannot change a person. You accept the person. He loves business––he breathes business. I love that about him, I love that. Doesn’t bother me. I am very independent. It is important to understand each other. If you need to change someone it will never work. You will try your whole life and never succeed.
You guys are both such busy people, how do you find time to be together?
I think it is more about quality time instead of quantity. I don’t think you need to be with your husband every minute of every day. Both people should do what their passion is and then get together in the mornings and evenings and share and experience life and have a great time. You know that saying, “Work hard and play harder?” That’s what we do.
Tell me about your days with Barron.
I am a full time mom; that is my first job. The most important job ever. I started my business when he started school. When he is in school I do my meetings, my sketches, and everything else. I cook him breakfast. Bring him to school. Pick him up. Prepare his lunch. I spend the afternoon with him. Sometimes I have obligations, but I also think children need to see a parent do what her passion is. It is a good example for a child. So the child can find passion as well and follow that passion in the future.
Does Donald help with bedtime and other childcare duties?
He is very busy. He spends quality time with Barron. They have a beautiful relationship full of respect and love. New York is our home base, but we spend a lot of time in Mar-a-Lago [in Palm Beach, Florida]. There they play golf, spend time together, eat dinner together, and we enjoy family time. It is always a really special time. He didn’t change diapers and I am completely fine with that. It is not important to me. It’s all about what works for you. It’s very important to know the person you’re with. And we know our roles. I didn’t want him to change the diapers or put Barron to bed. I love every minute of it.
What is your parenting philosophy?
I think the #1 parenting secret is that it is so important to have a good listening skills. I listen to what he says, what troubles him and what he is excited about. Then I can guide and support. I don’t push my thoughts or likes or dislikes. I want him to grow to be his own person. I think is important to give a child room to make mistakes in order to learn. Mistakes build wings so later in life they can fly and go on their own. Let them fall once in awhile. When they do they will learn how to pick themselves up on their own when you aren’t around. If he says no, we listen to him. It’s no and we don’t try to change it. It’s important to let them be who they are. Be their friend and parent as well. When they’re in trouble they will come to you first. Don’t try to change their opinion.
Tell me about Barron, what is his personality like?
He is a very strong-minded, very special, smart boy. He is independent and opinionated and knows exactly what he wants. Sometimes I call him little Donald. He is a mixture of us in looks, but his personality is why I call him little Donald.
Is he opinionated about the things he wears and how his room looks?
In his space the décor style of the rest of our home is mixed with what he is into: planes and helicopters. We let him be creative; let his imagination fly and do whatever he wants. Whatever he wants to do with his own room later on, he can do it. But it’s amazing, he does not like covers with airplanes or cars on them. He likes clean and white. He also has his playroom and he has his pictures and art and all of his stuff. And since he has his own floor, he can also put those things on his living room and on his own walls. When he was smaller he started drawing on the walls. His imagination is growing and important. He draws on the walls in his playroom, we can paint it over. One day he was playing bakery and he wrote Barron’s Bakery on the wall with crayons. He is very creative, if you say to a child no, no, no, where does the creativity go?
I think that’s amazing; in what way do you see him as being creative?
The way he tells stories and plays. He loves to play alone sometimes. He can play by himself for hours. But of course he has a lot of play dates and friends that he plays with. And sometimes we play together and build cities or airports using Magna Tiles and Legos. He builds big projects. It is very special what he does. He has a big imagination and it’s very impressive.
I can’t help but say that reminds me of his daddy.
When he was 5 years old, he wanted to be like daddy: a businessman and golfer. He loves to build something and tear it down and build something else. He is very detailed at drawing. We travel often and he remembers everything he sees. Sometimes later the same day or the next he would build something like he saw or imagine something himself.
Describe yourself as a child.
I always liked to take care of myself. I always liked beauty and fashion. My mom was in the fashion business. I was 5 years old when I did my first catwalk and did commercials at 16. I went professional after my studies. My mom loved fashion, we loved to travel and go to Italy and Paris. It was something in me always. I was always very tall and skinny. Sometimes I was teased, but I was never embarrassed. I always liked myself. Even when other kids teased me, I didn’t care. I knew what I wanted to do. I found my passion at such an early age. It helped with my confidence.
Did your mom set a good example for you when it came to style?
She always did. She took care of herself and she still does. But I think you are born with style or you are not. Even with a stylish parent, I always knew what I liked or didn’t like.
What’s your personal mantra?
Believe in yourself. Be proud of who you are, no matter who you are married to, are dating, or who your parents are, Be your own person. And take care of yourself, because when you take care of yourself first, you will do a much better job taking care of others.
What are your secrets to a successful marriage and raising a happy, confident child? Do they differ from Melania's? Leave a comment below and let's discuss!
Photos courtesy of Melania Trump. See more on her facebook page !