Get to Know Stylist, Author, and Editor Petra Barkhof

petra barkhof chit chat tuesday interview

Interview by guest contributor Jennifer Irizarry

Petra Barkhof—the polyvalent stylist, author, and Deputy Editor of kid’s wear magazine—is no stranger the to the Junior Style London blog; her inspiring work for magazines like Style Piccoli and Collezioni Bambini as well as high-end campaigns for the likes of Fendi and Marcelo Burlon have all been featured in these pages. If you’re unfamiliar with Barkhof’s work, you’re really in for a treat. Her creative energy speaks for itself—look no further than her uncanny tributes to Anna Piaggi, Jimi Hendrix, or Iris Apfel to see proof of a nearly preternatural ability to channel the style mojo of her muses. So without further ado, we invite you to get to know Petra Barkhof.

Jimi Hendrix Inspo from Style Piccoli

JI: I’m always very interested in the self-care rituals of busy working women. How do you stay balanced, healthy and fresh to conquer the day?

PB: Hmm… to be honest, I think my life could be much healthier and more balanced. I would like to do yoga. I love meditation, swimming and dry brushing. I started all that enthusiastically—but after a week I gave up.

But after an inspiring Ayurvedic holiday in Sri Lanka, I started to drink a huge glass of warm water for breakfast. To add extra excitement, I add freshly squeezed lemon juice and after the shower, I use a special body oil, Bush Essentials, made out of a mix of different oils. It’s all natural and an alternative to perfume. I order it from Australia. Before I go to bed, I use Lavender crème and 31 Herbal Oil. That’s it. I’m a night owl, sitting at the computer and working and reading till late, so my night routine must be simple.

Style Piccoli's Sotto la Foglia on the Junior Style London blog

JI: I’m going to let my stereotypes of Italian matriarchs ask this next question—feel free to defy it—but as an Italian mother and grandmother, is there a dish or two that you are famous for making well in your family?

PB: Jennifer, I’m German! But the truth is, I don’t even know exactly what I am. My German girlfriends says that I’m looking Italian, behaving Italian, and speaking with my hands and in Germany I feel a little bit like a stranger. Once a friend said that I’m a “crucca Siciliana” (crucca means germans in a not nice way), a German from Sicily, because I’m late to everything. I feel very much at home in Italy.

I love eating, but I hate cooking and one can tell by the outcome. However, my Italian husband is an excellent cook, he’s originally from Apulio. Franco does magic in the kitchen! If I think the fridge is empty and have no clue what to cook – Franco will mill around in the kitchen and about half an hour later, there is the most incredible dish on the table… I think Italians do marvellous things with few vegetables and a bit of Olive oil. My big success is my German cheesecake and Kartoffelsalat—German potato salad.

Channeling the brilliance of Iris Apfel for Style Piccoli

JI:  What are the last three books you read? Or films? How about both?

PB: My husband is a musician and my son also sings, so there is always loads of music. At the moment I love Ed Sheeran. I only have time and peace to read books during the summer holidays but I read and read and read and read on my computer. I love to discover new things and I love research…click click click… it’s fabulous! I’m a fan of TV series, my favourites are Stranger Things, The Crown and Breaking Bad and I love all films of Wes Anderson. I take a lot of inspirations from his films for my fashion shootings.

Collezioni Bambini Anna Piaggi By Petra Barkhof

JI: How would you describe the interior style of your own home? Is there a favourite piece of furniture or another item that brings you the most joy?

PB: Eclectic… My apartment is a typical Sagittarius home, full of travel souvenirs and some sacred or religious items. It is not too stylish but very personal, colourful and extremely cosy.

JI: In a scene from of one of my favourite movies, Amélie, a friend of Amélie uses proverbs to test the character of a potential suitor. Do you have a favourite proverb of your own to live by?

PB: Don’t be afraid to be different (Paolo Coelho). And if you are a sheep – at least be a blue or a green or a purple one.

JI: They say you can tell a lot about a person by the shoes they wear. I think you can tell a lot about a woman by what’s in her purse. So—what shoes are you wearing and what’s in your purse?

PB: Very comfortable leather ankle boots and Birkenstocks. In my purse, there is an i-phone and charger, lipstick, wallet, keys, tissues, a Montblanc pen, sunglasses and a little notebook.


Keep up with Petra Barkhof on her blog and on Instagram @scimparello


View Petra’s latest work for Style Piccoli on the Junior Style Blog, Fedez vs Pharrell, highlighting their very eccentric dress styles.


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All posts copyright Junior Style Sales Ltd.

Please do not reproduce without permission.

Images courtesy of Petra Barkhof

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