Crossmodalist, Futurist, Consultant, Coach and Artist.
This weekend I went to yet another costume party with an under the sea theme. So, loving an opportunity to express myself conceptually I made a headdress featuring an octopus squirting it’s black ink. (I was having so much fun on the night that forgot to take any photos of me in costume. Oops). #lifeisart#millinerforlife#conceptualart#headdress#costumeparty
I love the randomness of my life. Tonight I went to the Creative Industries Federation’s third birthday party hosted at the Natural History Museum. I also... a) got a bunch of ex-MPs and government ministers who have formed a band to sing to me, b) had a great chat about creativity and nepotism with a friend of Alexander McQueen’s, c) was inspired by some people changing the lives of women who society makes assumptions about and d) represented an organisation working with parents, teachers and artists to bring an understanding of what creativity is into schools and local communities. I also fell in love with a whale called Hope, spilt my drink on several people and negotiated joining the circus. #youwinsomeyoulosesome
Day thirty-one of my “in to me see” intimacy challenge.
It’s that time when people reflect on the the year coming to an end and planning for the one ahead.
It’s been a bloody brilliant year for me. Yes there were highs and lows but generally I feel f*cking amazing.
I started this challenge after being part of a women’s circle taking about intimacy. We shared articles and podcasts but I wanted to take action.
At times it’s been difficult sharing as I was worried about over-sharing but I’ve had such beautiful and heartfelt conversations with people that it can only be a good thing.
I’ve noticed changes in myself, more confident, knowing that thinking of myself and putting me first isn’t selfish but nurturing.
Others have noticed changes in me too. Less self deprecating, confident, more openness and honesty.
Today is the last day of this public challenge but I’m definitely going to keep this up as my daily practice.
Only time will tell but I know I’ve had a good look at myself and often given myself a good talking too. I know what it means for me to be intimate with myself.
Day thirty of my “in to me see” intimacy challenge. “Radical self-expression”. As part of my “big declutter” of 2017 I’ve decided to let go of some of the original pieces I made when I started making headdresses a few years ago.
My inspiration came from my desire to wear flowers to Burning Man in the Nevada Desert. A place of radical self-expression.
I couldn’t find what I was looking for so I bought a glue gun, some artificial flowers, some other bits and started crafting.
A few years later and I’ve made some headdresses as gifts for friends, for bridal clients, for a client to wear to Ascot.
I made one for an art exhibition that played birdsong when touched and one was even featured as part of an immersive art performance at Tate Britain.
When working with my clients I use floriography (the language of flowers) to help visually express their personal identities.
This week I decided to let go of the original pieces that were part, me nurturing my new passion and part expression of my identity at the time.
I’ve definitely grown in my craft and would now call myself an Artist and Milliner (rather than just someone who dabbles in headdress making). And that confidence came with time, experimentation and seeing the joy of when a client sees themselves in the mirror for the first time.
So, in the spirit of letting go and decluttering I’ll be selling these 4 original pieces at the end of January (heavily discounted of course). More details (and better photos) to follow once I’ve finished working on them.
Day twenty-nine of my “in to me see” intimacy challenge.
I’m slightly obsessed with smells.
I’ve been burning white sage, palo santo, aromatherapy oils, resins, barks and herbs for years.
A friend even made me my own perfume based on my personality.
Today I received some perfume base oils I’d ordered so I made my first home blend.
I tried to make something earthy using Petrichor (the earthy scent that is produced when rain falls on dry soil) as a starting point.
I used to love experimenting in chemistry lessons and am now delightfully intoxicated by my first blend.
It’s definitely much better than producing the stench of sulphur in the lab.
Day twenty-eight of my “in to me see” intimacy challenge.
This morning I woke up like a woman possessed. My head was full and I needed to declutter.
8 hours later and I’d cleaned, emptied and sorted my kitchen cupboards, including those takeaway containers that had long lost their lids.
I’m letting go of some clothes (especially those “maybe I’ll slim into it” and “what was I thinking?” items) and shoes. Some for the local charity shop and others for eBay and clothes swaps with friends.
I even started clearing my bursting email inboxes.
I still can’t bring myself to get rid of any books but I have decided to let go of some of my old headdresses (I’ll be selling them, more on this later). It feels great and like I have breathing and thinking space.
Day twenty-six of my “in to me see” intimacy challenge.
Signs and interpretations.
In the early hours of Boxing Day morning I had another lucid dream. This time I was in a lush green forest that somehow seconded as a type of shop for musical instruments. I was there to choose the instrument that made MY specific sound (in my dream everyone has one). Everything was handmade or naturally occurring. I tried conchs, ocarinas, pan pipes, hide drums, rattles, harps, instruments you played with bows made from reeds. As I played I listened and tried to feel where in my body I could feel the vibrations.
I woke up before I found my sound and instrument but felt as disoriented, confused and as though something was unfinished.
We had a slow day and lounged on the sofas watching Dunkirk. Stunning cinematography but wow, the soundtrack.
Christopher Nolan (Director) and Hans Zimmer (Musical Composer) are geniuses in creating an audio illusion called the Shepard tone, in the score.
Not only was the movie shot through the eyes of the soldiers but the music is created and interwoven to help you to feel what the characters are feeling. The pounding of their heartbeats, their heavy breathing, their rising fear, the cold. At times I felt my own heart beating in tune to the music.
What I also noticed was that I was trying to isolate the sounds to see if one resonated with me more, if one belonged to me (subconsciously I was trying to interpret/ recreate my dream). I enjoyed the film but the musical score really got to me.
Later that evening we went to see the London Africa Choir sing [Paul Simon’s] Graceland. A live band (bongo drums, bass guitars, trumpet) and beautiful voices.
As they broke into an a capella version of Diamonds on the Soles of her Shoes (originally sang by Paul Simon and Ladysmith Black Mambazo) I got goosebumps and once again started to isolate the sounds trying to find my own.
I don’t think I succeeded but what’s important to me is that I recognised that I wasn’t afraid try look for similar signs and try to interpret them.
Day twenty-five of my “in to me see” intimacy challenge.
The further I get into this challenge the more I’m realising that doing at least one thing for myself is becoming part of my natural way of being. I’m switching from planning during the day to a reflection at the end.
Yesterday was a mix of sights, sounds, smells, tastes and feelings. Filled with unconditional love, belly laughter, repartee and lots of foodgasms.
I threw myself into the experiences and reconnected with my inner child, nothing to do with it actually being Christmas more feeling safe in the company I was with.
I was silly and brought out my inner child. Running around with different headdresses, playing games and laughing until my stomach hurt and tears rolled down my eyes.
It was infectious and I loved it.
Fully immersing yourself in experiences means you let go and open yourself up to mixed emotions and personal insights.
Day twenty-four of my “in to me see” intimacy challenge.
I used to meditate at least once a day but recently have been “too busy” what I was actually saying to myself is that it wasn’t a priority.
I’ve met people who think meditation is about emptying your mind but have you ever actually tried to think of nothing? Some random thought always pops in there, what to eat, drink, what’s that noise? To me it’s about being present, observing yourself in that moment.
Today I dug out my Golden Ratio Colouring Book (yes, I know, it’s SO me 🤣)and my coloured pencils. I was going to start but once again, the thought of colouring outside the lines freaked me out so I printed out some more PDFs and used them as practice pieces. (Perfectionist training 101 anyone?) I sat in silence and just focused on being in that moment, a meditative state, and while I did, colouring outside the lines didn’t matter (or at least I didn’t notice). Maybe next time I’ll actually use the book.
Don’t judge me, we all have our foibles!
I’m off to spend the next few days with friends so it’ll be interesting to see if and what I can do for this challenge when constantly surrounded by other people.
Day twenty-three of my “in to me see” intimacy challenge.
Treats versus guilty pleasures.
Over the next week or so, lots of people will be eating foods, portion sizes and snacks they don’t normally eat because “it’s Christmas”. To me a treat is for life not just for Christmas.
I don’t normally eat sugary foods (I’m more a savoury lover) but sometimes when I’m having a “me” day or nurturing myself I’ll say “f*ck it” and eat what I fancy (and damn the consequences). Today I let go of the fear of a particular outcome, spoke my truth, cancelled all social engagements and stayed home to recharge. I’m still feeling socially exhausted (the curse of being an ambivert) but want to be sociable over the next few days.
Trash TV, episodes of Salem and Glitch, Darren Aronofsky’s Mother! and comfort food.
I’ll be damned if I’m going to feel guilty about today’s activities and snacks.
They have most definitely been treats.