Three Minute Squiz With… Deborah Hutton

National living treasure, Deborah Hutton is one of the most recognisable faces in the country and the founder of ‘Balance by Deborah Hutton’. A recent convert to The Squiz, she’s also currently up to her elbows in a home renovation, covering the entire process through her site. Here she kindly takes time out to tackle the Three Minute Squiz.

How and where do you Squiz?
I’m up at 6.15am, head to the gym for a workout, grab a coffee and while the caffeine kicks in, I take a quick Squiz!

Most people are exasperated by the renovation process, but a birdie tells us you’ve been energised by it what’s your secret?
Four things: Employing the best builders; being organized well in advance; relying on trusted experts; making decisions quickly.

Where were you born?
A small town in England no one has ever heard of – Frimley on Egham in Surrey. In the late 50’s my father was a Qantas flight engineer and moved over to the UK as part of establishing a base for the Kangaroo Route. My brother Rod and I were both born there.

What was the first album you ever owned?
ELTON JOHN Yellow Brick Road, a double album that was groundbreaking at the time. I also remember it was a significant spend on my hard earned pocket money!

What was the first concert you ever went to?
I remember clear as a bell Mum taking me to see Neil Diamond’s Hot August Night Tour at the Hordern Pavillion. I can still picture him in top-to-toe denim, swinging his hips, playing the guitar singing Crunchy Granola Suite…the crowd was going nuts!

Your website, Balance by Deborah Hutton is chock-full of handy life hacks. What’s the one thing you need every day to maintain balance?
I believe you need to prioritise what’s important in your life and give it the time and respect it deserves. So for me, it’s TWO things which happen to top and tail a perfect day: Exercise and Wine!

What’s your guilty TV-watching secret?
The show everybody was secretly watching – #MAFS! It captivated a nation and I have no idea why we are so invested in these people. Perhaps we all like the idea of people finding their perfect match or maybe deep down, we are all a bunch of romantics!

What would you say is the most overrated virtue?
Patience. To quote a very dear friend of mine who I agree with “Patience is not a virtue, it’s a character fault!”

You celebrated your 50th birthday by posing naked for the cover of The Australian Women’s Weekly. Two questions: 1. How many major meals did you forego beforehand

Ha! Quite a few. I definitely carved off a few kilos and upped my gym routine. Wouldn’t you if you were baring your best to the world??

…and; 2. what did the experience teach you?
It taught me that in a world of naysayers and critics there is an abundance of people who are kind, generous and supportive and they have the ability to lift your spirits and restore your faith in humankind.

Name five people – living or dead you’d bring together for the perfect dinner party.

Sammy Davis Jnr, the incredibly talented artist, a member of the RatPac, and after starting the night with very dry vodka martinis I’d ask him to sing us a few tunes.

George and Amal Clooney, the dynamic duo, smart, proactive and inspiring.

Graham Norton, I adore him very quick, funny and you can just imagine the behind-the-scenes stories!

Robin Williams, because I miss having him in this world.

Who is your favourite writer? And which book of theirs is your favourite?
I have so little time to read books these days, so I save them for holidays. The last book I read was A Little Life by Hanya Yanagihara.* A page-turner of epic proportions. It’s one of the most deeply disturbing books I’ve ever read and profoundly affected me. I love immersing myself in well-written novels.

What skill or talent do you not have but wish you did?
A strong voice that could belt out a tune and win all the karaoke comps!

Which historical figure do you most identify with?
Probably Aunty Mame! I’m desperately waiting for my two nephews to grow up enough so I can travel with them and show them a different side of life.

What quality do you most admire in a friend?
First and foremost, loyalty. Honesty comes a very close secondI want my friends to tell it the way it is.

You’ve been a cover girl of Cleo, appeared in more magazines and more TV shows that we have space here to name: how has the media changed in the course of your career and do you see social media as an opportunity or a threat?
The media landscape today is completely different to the past. When I started in the business in the 80’s, the big networks and publishing houses ruled the roost. They controlled what we watched when we watched, what we read and how we consumed news and current affairs. Today, that information is delivered with unlimited options across multiple platforms and the control is placed directly into consumer’s hands. We have the power to choose and also the power to create change. The rise of social media has created opportunities never seen before where people can generate their own media, build a community, and communicate directly to an audience anywhere around the globe. It’s incredibly exciting but at the same time perilous. If you choose to put yourself on a platform for personal or professional reasons, that exposure can wield a double knife edge. There is no hiding from errors, personal faults, unfortunate incidents, destructive comments, there is no longer a thing called privacy. Social media offers both tremendous opportunities and great risk.

Which female role models have most shaped your life and career?
I’m fortunate to have some very astute, intelligent, witty women I call friends. Their impact on me can never be underestimated. Some are well known, others are not. Through my interviews on ‘Balance’, I’ve been lucky to have some of them share stories, and it’s through their words, that we can all learn to live a better life.

What would you say is the most currently overlooked news story we should know about?
It’s not a new story but it needs more exposure BAN THE PLASTIC BAG. This is one of the greatest atrocities of our time. We not only harm the environment but kill our treasured sea life. It’s easy to fix, the government should #BanTheBag and we all should say ‘NO” to plastic bags.

*If you purchase this book using this link The Squiz will get a little commission from Booktopia.

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