Supermom Ashley Gerry balances fashion, family, and philanthropy in her most unapologetically stylish way.
Outdoor Series: Directed & Edited by: Tamara Boxx for LUXYMOM® | Photography: Tamara Boxx for LUXYMOM® | Makeup: Meigan Hovland for Philip Douglas & Co. | Location: A Hidden Gem in the Estates | Featurette: Ashley Gerry
Home Series: Directed & Edited by: Tamara Boxx for LUXYMOM® | Photography: Michael Owen | Makeup: Carly Colliss for Duality Artistry | Featurette: Ashley Gerry
Ashley Gerry is quite literally the fanciest tomboy I’ve ever met. As comfortable riding horses as she is walking in a stunning pair of Fendis, she’s a renaissance woman. A lover of fashion, the St. Louis Cardinals, and all things Italian. It’s a beautiful juxtaposition.
I’ve known Ashley for a while now, and she’s always had that “rebel yell” quality, if you will. A funk to her style that says, “I’m a lady, but I will handle my business if pressed.”
I think it is marvelous, really, when a woman stands firm on what she likes, dislikes, or feels comfortable pursuing, without fear of what others think. What you see is what you get, with a little frosting on top, of course.
Hailing from the Show-Me State, Ashley grew up in a small town where everyone knew everyone, and where creating new friendships was as natural as the sun shining.
“I always said that I never met a stranger,” Ashley says. “My parents would say that I would make friends at the grocery store checkout line. My husband will say the same. For me, the more the merrier.”
This outgoing attitude also made her a natural at sports. Growing up, she played volleyball, softball, basketball, and even tried her hand at cheer – it wasn’t her thing.
Her true love was with her horses.
“I grew up riding horses. It was my therapy. There is something about them. Once you get to know them, it is freedom,” Ashley said. She would swim with her companions, and even a trot through the Burger King drive-through wasn’t uncommon for her.
She is an SEC girl who attended the University of Missouri, where she graduated with a degree in Fashion Marketing. “Being from a small town, you didn’t have a lot of access to the fashion world. When I went to college, I was able to explore who I was and throw a little more class on an ensemble,” she said with a giggle.
I mean, let’s face it – we’ve all looked back at pictures from when we were 19 or 20 and either did an eye-roll or face-palmed in spirit.
After graduating college, Ashley began working in St. Louis, when a family friend encouraged her to visit Naples. Her great grandparents owned a home there, so she was familiar – but not yet sold on moving.
“I loved that this town has a lot of the midwest feels. I liked that it has a sort of small-time feel and everyone knows everyone. And this was really important, because I made a promise to myself that I would never forget my roots.”
She was in the right place in life to shift gears, and she wasn’t tied to her home state. She made the jump and ended up moving to our little oasis almost 14 years ago.
She began working with some friends who were realtors, and volunteered at The Children’s Hospital as a Pediatric Hugger. “It was the most amazing volunteer job you could have. There are so many babies that are born into the NICU that just need that extra love.”
A gentleman noticed her in the NICU and suggested that she become a secondary teacher at Seacrest Country Day School. She began working as a first grade teacher’s assistant, started coaching volleyball, and then met the love of her life, Adam, whose daughter was also attending the school.
With Adam and Ashley, it was love at first sight. They had their first date at the Naples Beach Club, where Ashley had her friend in town and made the prediction that, “you’re going to marry him” after seeing them together.
On their second date, they got lost in conversation for two hours before they even ordered. Adam met his friends the next day and also declared, “I could marry this girl.”
They dated for a little over a year, followed by a year-long engagement, where she was able to form a bond with his children from a previous marriage.
Her dream was always to be a mother, and with her new love, she not only gained a soulmate, but also three wonderful girls.
“I have seen them in every stage growing up,” said Ashley. “I have experienced amazing milestones, from first proms, boyfriends, and so many firsts for us all. I am very blessed. They taught me how to be a mom before I had my own children, and that is something irreplaceable.”
In 2010, Ashley and Adam were married, and her honeymoon took her to her favorite place – Italy – a country that holds her heart, as she has a self-professed love affair with all things Italian.
“From the language, food, and culture – I could just live there,” she sighs. Italy is also home to her favorite fashion house, Dolce & Gabbana.
In 2012, Adam and Ashley welcomed their first child together – a beautiful little girl – followed by a son a few years later.
This is when Ashley really began to find her knack for balance. She’s always been a multi-tasker, but now she was running a much bigger show, with not a lot of bandwidth.
So, what does a Supermom do? She develops a love for schedules. “I feel like I have the type of personality, that I can multi-task – and I like to take on a lot while executing on those tasks proficiently.
“If I can help someone, I will do my best to engage. But keeping a schedule has really helped me with that. I try to get most things done while the kids are at school, so when they get home, my time is solely theirs. I also have wellness days for my mental health, to help me re-center and find my balance.”
Her Superwoman uniform by day is athleisure wear and a laptop, while for an event she is dressed head to toe in the most beautiful and seamlessly styled designs.
“I love to dress up. Don’t get me wrong, I love my workout clothes, too. They are efficient. But I love an excuse to put on a fabulous gown and meet new people,” she smiles.
She is a bridge between people, and she loves to entertain. She is always planning a dinner or celebration with a great theme, because it’s all about getting everyone together, and bringing people together.
“There is something about entertaining. I love the art of entertaining. I like to help people.”
And help she has. Ashley has been part of countless foundations that have made it their mission to improve the medical sector and the lives of children, both locally and nationally.
Her love of people has allowed her to engage with folks who help bring awareness to her causes and expand her network to create even more of an impact.
She is the same woman in athleisure as she is wearing a one-of-a-kind gown – outgoing and wonderfully comfortable to express herself her way, with zero apology.
“People can count on me being me. I wear my heart on my sleeve, and I feel like there should be more of that in the world. I never want to miss something or an interesting story because I didn’t start a conversation. I am here. I am me.”