I’m Kate, owner of Shoeq, and mum to our two beautiful children Imogen (6) and Ethan (5). I grew up in Australia, spent a large part of my 20’s travelling, and then moved to the UAE in 2008 to further my then career in Property Development. What was originally supposed to be a two year stint turned into a much longer adventure when I met my British husband here and we got married and started our family. 13 years later……here we still are!
WHERE IS HOME?
Originally I’m from Melbourne, Australia, though we’ve been here so long that the UAE really is home for us right now.
WHAT DID YOU WANT TO BE WHEN YOU WERE YOUNGER?
Originally I wanted to be a vet but it turned out science was not my strong skill at school! I was always into houses and real estate so I did a Business Degree specialising in Property at university. Then worked in Property Development and construction for about 15 years in both Australia and Dubai until I took what was intended to be a short break to have my children. I never intended Shoeq to become my full time job but it turned out that my passions lay there and so that’s my focus now.
WHAT DO YOU DO?
I’m the owner of a small business called Shoeq which I started 5 years ago when I was on maternity leave with my babies. Shoeq specialises in handcrafted artisan shoes that are affordable, beautiful, and most of all, comfortable! Shoeq (not ShoeQ as a lot of people call us!) started out as an online business but we now have three retail outlets open with another three opening in November, so it’s a super busy but happy time for us, after what has been a crazy year so far.
WHAT IS YOUR FAVOURITE ACTIVITY TO DO WITH YOUR CHILDREN?
We are a family of beach bums so we spend as much time as possible at the beach. I grew up on the beach in Australia and it’s my favourite place to be. We also love to travel and explore new places together, my kids have both been to over 20 countries and they have plenty more on their lists to explore. We can’t wait to get back to family adventures when it’s safe to do so.
HOW DO YOU SPEND YOUR WEEKENDS?
With my family at the beach! Though now that the weather is cooling down we have a long list of places to explore across the UAE, there are always new and exciting things to be found here.
WHAT’S YOUR FAVOURITE MOVIE?
It’s really corny but I was OBSESSED with the Sound of Music as a kid and watched it on repeat for years. So it’s got a special place in my heart.
IF YOU COULD EAT ONE MEAL FOR THE REST OF YOUR LIFE, WHAT WOULD IT BE?
Hot cross buns!
WHO’S YOUR CELEBRITY CRUSH?
Barack Obama. I’m in total awe of him. And Michelle Obama. Both of them, equally.
WHICH DESTINATION IS ON YOUR BUCKET LIST TO VISIT?
Right now….home. We’ve been locked out of Australia since March and with no end in sight to the travel bans, I can’t think of any place I’d rather go than home and breath in some fresh Aussie air.
WHAT’S YOUR GUILTY PLEASURE?
Sleeping in on a weekend.
IF YOU COULD HAVE A SUPER POWER, WHAT WOULD IT BE?
The ability to cure and end a global pandemic would be nice.
WHAT’S YOUR FAVOURITE THING ABOUT LIVING IN DUBAI?
As someone who grew up in a country that felt like it was at the end of the earth, I love the fact that Dubai is in such a central location and we can hop on a plane and literally be most places in the world within a few hours. I also love the diversity of life and cultures here and the fact that my children are growing up with such a broad acceptance of different nationalities and people.