We got some alone time with Veronica Webb and her daughters — from left, Molly (9), Aly (11) and Leila (10) — to dish all things mom-related. Wearing Tory's Marygrace sweater and Aileen sandals, the supermodel opened up about their summer getaways, her own mother's life lessons and... "Papadine" Alaïa.
My Mother's Day traditions…The kids always make me something, whether it's a drawing or a painting or breakfast or whatever. I tell them that I want something they've made for me.
Best Mother's Day gift I received...Molly painted a portrait of me once. Leila made me a card that read, "It's your special day, but every day I have is special because it's with you, Mom." When she was really little, like five, she made me one that read, "You're special because you help me."
And best Mother's Day gift I gave…A car — I gave my mom a blue four-door Chrysler. And then I paid the rest of their mortgage. This was a long time ago. I must have been, I don't know, 25?
My favorite childhood memory of mom…There are so many — us knitting together, cooking together, gardening together. Going to the grocery store and to the farmers' market with my mother was probably my favorite. We did it once or twice a week. She would teach me how to take care of myself and the family — our family and then my family that I would eventually have. The thousands of little lessons that come through spending time that way — those are my best childhood memories.
Best style advice I got from her…Choose your fabrics well and make sure that things fit beautifully. My mother made all our clothes, so everything was about fit and quality.
One thing I loved to borrow from her closet…Well, we were totally different sizes. By the time I was 11, I was bigger than her.
And one thing my kids love to borrow from me…They've got my Azzedine [Alaïa] on all the time. They wear it around the house all the time — everything of his! They love it because he's like their grandpa. They call him Papadine. Anytime Leila smells leather she's, like, it smells like Papadine's house!
Family heirloom I'm passing on to my daughters...My mom knitted me a sweater — actually, a red hoodie — for the first day of first grade. Both Molly and Leila wore it on the first day of first grade.
Favorite thing to do with them…I love it when everybody is at home cooking together and we sit down and have a meal. This year my daughters mastered French toast and eggs.
One life lesson I learned from my mom…That beauty is passed on and it's passed on through love. The more you love someone and the better you treat them, the more beautiful they become from the inside out.
And lesson I hope to pass on to my children…The same. That love is beauty and beauty is health.
My beauty mantra…Never let your hair stop you from doing what you want to do.
And morning beauty routine…It's quick and simple. I cleanse my face and use RxGenesys, which targets the causes of aging by mimicking all the things your body would naturally do (but does slower as time goes by).
A typical weekend with the family involves…Usually, on Friday night, we all go out to dinner. Then Saturday and Sunday, we cook, take walks, go to the museums or Central Park. It's not uncommon for us to go from the southern end of the park to the northern end, just running and climbing and looking and exploring. Anything that can be climbed, the kids love — so you know, the rocks in Central Park….
Our summer getaways…We go to Paris every summer to see Azzedine and Christophe [von Weyhe]. That's usually how the summer starts. As soon as school gets out, we're on the plane to Paris. And we go to the Hamptons, but this year we're thinking about doing something different — maybe the North Fork or Barcelona.
My tip for traveling with kids…The most marvelous invention is the Kindle for iPad. The books are great and really interactive. The "Dork Diaries" are really big around the house right now.
The secret to keeping the work-family-life balance…Make your health, both physical and mental, a top priority every day because you need to be strong, you need to be healthy. That's what makes a strong household. Otherwise, the family falls apart because you're the emotional core of it. And if family comes first, then that puts everything in the right perspective. It puts, for example, work in the right perspective because what are you going to work for other than to make a healthy and comfortable life for you and your family?
Veronica and daughters, photographed by Mimi Ritzen Crawford, in Central Park