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In the

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HEMSLEY
& HEMSLEY:
A FASHIONABLE FEAST

Their bespoke food service and fresh approach to
healthy living have won them a blog with Vogue and
a bestselling recipe book. Meet Melissa and Jasmine
Hemsley, the sisters who are cooking up a storm

In the Moment: with Hemsley & Hemsley

Jasmine: “Food is very emotional; if you grow up eating something that you love, it always makes you feel good. We make ‘better-than’ healthy recipes so that the food you love works harder for you. [Our interest in healthy living] started when Melissa and I went on an amazing holiday to Australia. That’s when we thought, ‘How can we feel this good back home?’”

Melissa: “We love living in the city and wouldn’t want to leave, but we still wanted that ‘jump out of bed and get up and go’ holiday feeling back in London. When you’re rushing around living a non-stop city life, you can be completely out of whack with your body. So we thought, once we’re back, let’s try to make an effort to look after ourselves: to eat better, sleep more and help our family do the same.”

Jasmine: “That was such a turning point for Melissa – she was completely burned out and took six months off work. Meanwhile, I went back to modelling and that’s really how [our food business] started. I would bring my own food to shoots and people would say, ‘Why do you eat like this?’ and ‘Can you bring me in some lunch, too?’ Basically, it just snowballed. I was like, ‘Melissa, you’ve got to help me!’ I knew I could trust her and wouldn’t have to train her up because she was the one person that could cook like me and knew where I was coming from.”

Melissa: “Our dad is British Army, so I think that’s helped us run a business because we always had to be super-organised. We had to pack our school bag and have it by the front door before bed; everything had to be labelled. When we started working together, we didn’t even have a name. People would call us ‘The Food Fairies’ because we would go into people’s houses and take all the bad things away and put the right things in. Our business is so inherently family-like; we cook for people like a mum or a sister would. This isn’t gourmet cooking. We’re not trained chefs with fancy knife skills. If you’ve made food with love and care, then you really appreciate it when you sit down to eat it.”

Jasmine: “What we do is not a strict regime with rules and guidelines, which is why it’s not labelled a diet. It’s a way of cutting out some misinformation about food and improving the way you eat to give you more life and vitality.”

Melissa: “As a family, growing up, we loved watching cooking programmes like Ready Steady Cook, Jamie Oliver and Delia Smith, but we watched them just for pure greedy pleasure – we wouldn’t cook like that. Now we love showing people how to cook, especially those who might have been scared at first. People are surprised how into this they get, because the second you start talking about healthy eating, they start to glaze over. When they message you a week later and tell you that cooking is their life now, that’s an amazing feeling. Probably the best.”

“Our recipe book is our baby; we always
knew we wanted to do one. It was incredible
to write, and for it to go to number one on
the bestseller lists is amazing”

DOING IT FOR THEMSELVES

The stylish sisters discuss childhood, their love of food and the inspiration behind their healthy-eating business

DOUBLE ACT

Jasmine: “Our mum
is always worrying
about what we’re
doing, so because we
see each other every
day, it’s great for her
peace of mind. Your
work team is your
family, which is
really nice”

WHEN FOOD
MEETS FASHION

SISTERHOOD Melissa: “There’s five-and-a-half years’ difference between Jasmine and me. When she was 16, I was 10, so I think I was really annoying and always borrowing her clothes – which, actually, I still do now!”

Jasmine: “I think I was shocked when Melissa came along. I was quite happy being an only child and always wished for a brother. But it was really nice. Being in a Filipino family, it was always close-knit”

FASHION Jasmine: “We both love heels – they’re the kind of thing that will go into our handbags so that if we’re going out we can just slip them on. I love how they can completely transform an outfit”

Melissa: “I’m not shy. I’m the kind of girl on the Tube platform that will say, ‘Excuse me, I love your shoes. Where did you get them from?’”

FAVOURITE RECIPES Jasmine: “The day I came up with the black-bean brownie recipe, I almost cried. It was the first time I’d eaten a brownie that felt so delicious, but I also knew when I was full after a little bit. It’s not playing with refined foods so you’re not tricking your brain – your body knows when it’s had enough”

Melissa: “I love Italian food, so if you look at our recipes, you’ll see that we’re always ripping it off and changing it. Jasmine’s second family are Italian and they approve of everything we’ve done”

THE DETAILS

STEAL THEIR STYLE

“We just dress how we feel best, but easy-to-wash
clothes are key – there’s no time in the world
for ironing!” – Melissa

THE GREAT COVER-UP

Whether you love print or prefer this season’s favourite
faux-fur, finding a coat to take you stylishly through
autumn is a must

Photography: Ian Harrison / Interview: Charlene Barton

DRESS TO IMPRESS

Being in the spotlight, the girls
have to make an impression. Their
day-to-night essentials? Chic
dresses, sharp heels and a flash
of bright lipstick

TAKE HEART

M&S Collection blouseShop now

A STEP AHEAD

Autograph cut-out leather bootsShop now


CITY CHIC
Master the art of city dressing with a
standout piece that you can dress up or
down for any occasion, be it a statement
coat or a stylish one-piece

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