Do you know how much I love that I get to share my obsession with Offspring here on the blog every week – with you. Thank goodness you also share my obsession with all things Nina Proudman. Thank goodness.
I’ll get to the de-brief about Nina’s main outfit and the storyline soon but first I want to introduce you to a special mum.
Jodie Sindle is mum to twins Mia and Willow – the two girls who play baby Zoe in season 5 of Offspring. I’ve said it before and I’ll say at again. That baby/those babies they do shake up the old ovaries.
Here’s a little insight into how they came to be on the show. Thanks Jodie for sharing with Styling You.
Tell us about your babies.
To say we were surprised to be expecting identical twins is quite the understatement. Mia and Willow were born in March 2013 and were five weeks premature. Mia weighed 2.2 kgs and Willow 1.8kgs. They spent three weeks in special care at the Royal Women’s Hospital, Melbourne. It’s hard to believe they were once so tiny and fragile when you see the girls’ very squeezable and loveable, chubby cheeks today. I don’t think anyone would ever suspect the rough start they had to life just by looking at them now.
How did the role in Offspring come about?
We responded to a casting call for six-month old, identical twin girls, brunette, for filming in Melbourne that was posted on the Australian Multiple Birth Association Facebook page. At this stage we had no idea it was for Offspring. As my husband, Olly, is a video editor/director, we decided to apply as we had an interest considering his line of work. We were very surprised to hear it was for the role of Nina and Patrick’s baby. I am an avid Offspring fan, so we decided to go for it. We were soon offered the part after meeting with the casting coordinator and producer. We were very torn whether we should then proceed and wondered if it was the “right” thing to do. We eventually decided, seeing it was such a unique opportunity, that we would accept. It would give our girls some memorable experiences to look back on later in life and, essentially, all they had to do was do what they do best – that is be babies!
What did a typical day on set look like?
The laws are very strict concerning children in the film and television industry. You can only ever be on set for a maximum of four hours at a time, and only ever three days in a week. Olly and I had to be super organised on filming days and a lot went on behind the scenes, from our perspective, to ensure that the girls had had enough sleep, were well fed, etc so they were happy and contented. It is a hard enough task juggling this for two babies when you’re just at home, let alone when fronting up to a film set!
The typical day involved firstly meeting the on-set nurse who remained with us for the duration of the call time. We would then see the ladies in wardrobe who had the clothes ready for that day’s scenes. I would dress Mia and Willow and together with their doppelganger doll, they would all be wearing identical outfits. We would either wait around to be called or very quickly, be whisked in front of the camera, depending on what the schedule was like for that particular day.
Sometimes it involved just a quick shot and we could go home. Other days, we would go to a couple of locations in Fitzroy or Collingwood, within the one call time. As the girls’ parents, we were very involved as we could best get them to smile, laugh, fall sleep or have their eyes follow us across the room for the camera. Everyone was extremely warm and friendly, and seemed to have a genuine love and affection for Mia and Willow, particularly those in wardrobe and the hair/make up departments, and Kat (Stewart) and Asher (Keddie). It was really nice arriving to such a warm reception and having people so excited to see our girls. We made some good friends and we even met Mia and Willow’s now nanny whom has since become a much loved member of our little family.
“Zoe” comes across has having an easy-going temperament … is that the case?
Yes both girls do have a very easy going temperament. I think it was a great age to do filming as separation anxiety hadn’t kicked in yet and it was a very stimulating environment for them to be in; to have lots of people to interact with and things to look at. We had some beautiful moments, particularly with director Emma Freeman, who at times got the cast and crew to sing to the girls which was just lovely.
Had we filmed, say now, with the girls being 14 months old, I really don’t think it would be that easy. Mia and Willow were, and still are, generally placid and happy babies … most of the time! It can be pretty intense some days being parents of twins (not that we know any different) but we count ourselves so lucky. They are a lot of fun and it is incredible to witness their twin bond and how similar, yet so different, their individual personalities are.
Did you have some favourite outfits from what they wore on the show?
The girls’ wear mainly Oishi-M and Cotton On Baby as Zoe. There were quite a lot of simple Target and Kmart essentials added in too which I think gave a very realistic, down-to-earth tone to her wardrobe. With Melbourne weather being rather unpredictable (to say the least), there were times when a jacket would very quickly be added, or on some near 40 degree days, just a simple singlet and nappy would be the only option. I really liked that the clothes were not over-the-top or too girlie. They were mostly gender neutral which is refreshing, considering a lot of kids labels really stereotype boys in blue, and girls in pink. A lot of the Cotton On clothes were similar to the ones we have at home and we already dress Mia and Willow in. They are bright, fun and affordable.
Do you think the girls will do some more acting?
No, the girls won’t be doing anymore acting – we’ve retired! It was a wonderful experience and one we are very grateful for. Mia and Willow now have a little bank account each and they can decide what to do with it in the future. But we are not looking at signing up with a agency or building their careers or anything like that! The “stage mum” persona, which we caught a bit of a glimpse of in this experience, sits very uncomfortably with us. I think we would only ever do something like this again if the girls were at a age where they could actually verbally tell us this is something they want to do. Then of course we would support them all the way.
Nina Proudman style
The main outfit worn by Nina in this episode featured a green top, scarf, skinny jeans, chocolate suede boots (yes, it looks like she’s swapped out the blue ones!) and Nina’s trademark layered necklaces and slung shoulder bag.
The top was American Vintage (a French label that offers classic basics). It’s not currently available but to buy American Vintage online for delivery in Australia, try ASOS, Revolve Clothing, Classic Spirit, Cecilie, Another Love, and Frockoholics.
Nina’s jeans are by Acne. I’m guessing this style.
The below outfit is pure inspiration. A kind of get-Nina’s-style-now-but-at-a-fraction-of-the-cost outfit idea (well except for the boots – they’re an investment!).
1. Country Road top $34.95 | 2. Blue Bungalow scarf $39 | 3. Bohemian traders bag $119 | 4. Maria Rossi boots $379.95 | 5. Colette Hayman necklace $3.97 | 6. Adorne earrings $12.95 | 7. Target jeans $24 (on sale)
Billie Proudman style
Billie’s pants sure caught my eye in this scene. Worn back with black top, trench and heels, they really do get to do the talking in this outfit. Can anyone help out with where they’re from?
The de-brief (spoiler alert)
Oh my … “Hotel me!” may just be the line of the series. Classic Nina.
I did love that Nina did meet her male equivalent in Leo (Patrick Brammall – if you haven’t seen him and the classic Upper Middle Bogan then do yourself a favour!). It was like she was going to have a casual fling with her mirror male image.
With him the astronaut, her the florist. HAH!
My heart broke (again) for Nina when she saw Patrick while trying to get into the “sex holiday” business and announced that she didn’t think this “whole one-off casual sex thing is me”.
Even more heartbreaking was Billie and Mick’s skype and phone call break-up. Do you think it’s all over red rover? The romantic in me hopes not.
Just a few episodes ago, Billie was back. She was pulling all the lines and being the strong one for Nina. I hope she makes it through. I really do.
Over to you. Best bits/worst bits of last night’s episode? Want to re-create Nina’s green top look? Love the babies?
Photo credit: all images from the show are courtesy of Channel Ten. The photo of the twins was supplied by their mum Jodie.