This is the most common mistake when styling a kitten heel

This is the most common mistake when styling a kitten heel

So after years and years of hearing whispers and rumors about this almost mythical Jimmy Choo sample sale. I yesterday finally had the privilege of finding my own name on this elusive guestlist of all guest lists.

And oh boy, it did not disappoint.

We are talking rows and rows of the most beautiful Jimmy Choo bags and shoes. All with a price tag I could actually afford.

I wanted to go completely bananas and could easily have walked out with 15 pairs of shoes. I seriously contemplated buying everyone I know a very lavish gift each. I think I must have tried on at least 20 pairs myself… I felt so spoilt. A bit like Pretty Woman in THAT scene.

But then I remembered that I have made you and more importantly myself a big promise this year. ONE item a month. And sure, I could get 9 pairs and call it for the rest of the year. But that would be neither smart nor practical.

So after all of that, I walked out with only 4 items in my bag. 2 for me and 2 gifts.

This is the most common mistake when styling a kitten heel

So my April buy will now be this amazing pair of sparkling shoes with a kitten heel. I did however also get myself an amazing pair of trainers that I just couldn’t leave behind.

To justify this splurge, Garth and I decided that Ace will give me the trainers as a gift for Mother’s day on Sunday. It’s a bit cheeky, but it will make me feel a little less guilty. I’m looking at it as a grey zone purchase that I will get away with this time only.

So why did I got for a pair of kitten heels over something a bit more, well, high?

I already have loads of party shoes. I would say 75% of my shoe wardrobe. And only now after years and years I can truly say that their PPW (Price Per Wear) is pretty good. I just don’t use them often enough to justify having more.

Instead, I went for something slightly more practical but just as fabulous. I know some find kitten heels to be boring and a bit old lady-ish. And I also think they could be perceived as hard to style.

The mistake most people are doing when putting together an outfit including a kitten heel is to assume that a heel is a heel. It is not.

A kitten heel is not a downgraded high heel, it’s an upgraded flat. 

You can’t think that you will match them in an outfit that requires a heel and just pick a kitten heel because it’s more comfortable. Then it will look a bit off and like you chickened out last second.

Instead, you have to wear them when you would normally wear a flat shoe. With wide trousers, suits, midi skirt, maxi dresses, and mom-jeans. Then they will elevate your style and not downgrade it.

Basically, see a kitten heel as flats with something extra.

The mistake most people are doing when putting together an outfit including a kitten heel is to assume that a heel is a heel. It is not.

I had been looking for the perfect pair for quite some time. And I soon as I put these on I knew they were the ones. Not only are they super sparkly, but they are also incredibly comfy.

To be honest all my Jimmy Choos are. I even got married in a pair of platform Jimmy Choosa that I still wear to this day. I can dance all night in them without my feet hurting even a little bit. It’s just so obvious when a shoe brand actually cares about anatomy. I will never wear uncomfortable shoes ever again.

Come on, dig up your old kitten heels and try styling them like a flat. I bet you will like them more now!

I’m still dreaming of these amazing pieces of art. (adlink) I didn’t expect them to be at the sale, so I wasn’t disappointed. But they are on my “before I die” list. 

Can you spot my other beautiful purchase this week? We are finally with our very own Magnolia tree! I know they only flower for like 5 minutes, but it’s totally worth it. She is now hanging out in a large pot in the front of the house looking all kinds of dazzling. I think I will name her “Maggie”. 

 

Mindful Monday 26th March – My goal, dream, mantra, and vision this week

Mindful Monday 26th March - My goal, dream, mantra, and vision this week

Anyone else had a hard time waking up this morning? I felt like I emerged from the bottom of the deepest ocean. ( I probably looked like it too).

I don’t know what it is, but something is going on with my sleep at the moment.

The last 3 nights I have slept like a log. To the point of not hearing Ace at all. So poor Garth has been 100% on baby duty. The first morning I happily woke up and exclaimed: “Ace slept through the night, whooo!.” And got a very tired slow headshake back. Apparently, I slept through the night, Ace was up 3 times.

It’s so strange. I mean I feel amazing. But still, does this make me a bad Mom? What happens when Garth travels? Will I put Ace trough unintentional sleep training?

Sleep is when we repair our bodies, so maybe I’m just shutting down for maintenance. After having a baby and having been up every night for a year and a half, I bet I need it.

Sleep aside, this is my goal, dream, mantra, and vision this week;

My mantra this week  – “One thing at the time”. Contrary to popular belief, multitasking is not efficient. It’s a lot better to just close circles and do one thing at the time.

Garth is traveling a lot for work at the moment. So I’m alone with Ace the bigger part of this month. I don’t mind at all, Ace is an easy child. But the downside is that I have no one to share the housework with. Washing, tidying, cooking, pick and drop off at nursery, Olive’s vet visits and then my work on top. But then I think about the single parents out there and understand that I’m really lucky. These people have been doing it all on their own and they are bloody heroes for it. The trick is to focus one thing at the time (and have lots of nice dark chocolate at home as a reward at the end of the night.)

My affirmation this week  – “I have a growth-mindset”. I grow and I want to continue growing all the time. My most important job in life (Apart from raising a happy and healthy son) is to work on myself. Some people are stuck in a fixed mindset where they feel “done.” Like this is them and that is it. So they don’t need to learn or evolve anymore. It stops personal growth and these people will stop challenging themselves to do better. What do you think, do you have a growth or a set mindset?

My goal this week – This spring weather is amazing. So the goal this week is to play more outdoors. I grew up in Sweden where you spend more time outside than inside unless it’s like -10°C. Fine, the air might not be as clean here in London, but still, it’s really healthy for us to not be cooped up inside.

My dream of the week – I’m dreaming of walking around London in pretty dresses, with tanned legs, and having picnics in the park. The summer is so close I can almost touch it.

Mindful Monday 26th March - My goal, dream, mantra, and vision this week

My vision this week – I don’t think Garth will agree with me on this vision. But I see us going sailing as a family. Every summer when I was a child, we used to hire a boat and go sailing for a couple of weeks. I used to love it. The feeling of drifting off to sleep whilst slowly being rocked by the water is just bliss. My poor husband suffers from terrible seasickness, so I’m not sure how blissful he would find it though…

My focus this week – This week I’m focusing on keeping all the balls I’m juggling in the air. As long as I got flow they will all be dealt with. I have a lot of fun stuff in the pipeline, so I need to keep my energy high. I rather take 20 minutes to do some meditation to relax, than watch tv at night. The difference in relaxation and my energy levels after are tangible.

The event of the week – I’m going to a Jimmy Choo sample sale… I’m so excited. I loooove Jimmy Choo! If I find anything then that will most likely have to be my April buy. I’m going to do my best not to get caught up in shopping hysteria and get something I will actually use.

The other fun thing happening is that we will be heading to Amsterdam this weekend. Garth is working there at the moment and it ts mothers day on Sunday. It would be a bit sad to celebrate on my own at home.

My lesson from last week –Do not drink too much coffee! I feel all jittery if I have more than one cup of coffee in a day. I had two strong ones the other day and it was a big mistake. It made my heart beat really fast and I felt anxious for no reason at all. I do love coffee, so it’s hard to stay away. But decaf is kind of nice too.

My everyday-luxury this week– Getting to spend the weekend with my two boys in Amsterdam is pure luxury.

My inspiration this week– Maybe not inspiration per se. But this blog post on hormones “Hello Glow” is such an interesting read. The blogger is taking something quite complicated and simplifying it in a nice way for us regular non-doctor people to understand. I wonder how many people have hormone imbalances and don’t even know about it?

Ok, your turn. Write down your goal, dream, mantra, and vision every week. It’s really nice to get to reflect now and then. 

Photo – Ida Zander. Location – aux merveilleux de Fred Northcote road. Scarf from Lindex,  you can get my top here – adlink

 

Sustainable Sustainability – Why not a keepcup?

Sustainable sustainability - Fancy a keepcup?

If you read my blog somewhat regularly, then you probably know by now that I’m on a bit of quest to become a better habitant of this planet.

I’m trying to become more sustainable.

But as with any change in our lives. If we go all in straight away, we probably burn out pretty quickly. We go from 0 days in the week at the gym to 5, we become vegans from one day to another or we throw out the tv and promise to never look at a screen again. …until we can’t keep it up,  cancel the gym, order a burger and load up Netflix on the laptop.

The trick to actually stick with things is to make sure they are not extreme and to do small changes over a large amount of time.

The changes need to be sustainable.

It’s a lot more doable to have a big goal that’s divided up into smaller part-goals. If we want to become vegans, then maybe start by only having meat one day a week as a first step. Next goal can be to only eat fish, switch cows milk to a substitute..etc. This way we will get used to every little step before we go onto the next one.

It’s all about creating new habits and to make the change feel natural.

So to become more sustainable in a way that’s sustainable to me and my lifestyle. I will have to start with small things. The stuff that I won’t really notice, but will make a difference if we all do it. I can always aim higher later. My plan is to become and stay more sustainable for life, not just for as long as I can keep it up.

So my third little change, after buying a water bottle and using a fabric bag, is to buy a keepcup for my coffee. 

I drink a lot of coffee on-the-go. Who doesn’t in London? We don’t always have the time to sit down, but we do need our caffeine fix. So off we dash with our plastic/paper/polystyrene cup. …that most likely will end up as landfill…

It would be interesting to see in a visual how big a mountain of used coffee cups we would each go through during our lifetimes. I have a feeling it would be quite the scary picture.

So that’s why I got myself a really nice looking keepcup. I picked one in glass with a nice cork handle and I always keep it in my bag or the buggy. I thought I would forget it at home or leave it to grow fur, but so far so good.

And it has a few other benefits too. It’s a lot more stylish to carry around, tastier to drink from, it keeps my coffee warm for longer and most coffee shops will give you a discount if you bring your own cup. So chicer, tastier, warmer and cheaper coffee? It’s a no brainer!

If you like me are up for a small change that only comes with loads of benefits. Get your own reusable coffee cup. You don’t have to get a fancy one, but if you do like the look of mine then you can find my keepcup in glass and cork here – adlink

It’s also a great gift to give. I gave one to Garth for Valentines and Ace got a small one for babyccinos from his friend Axel on his first birthday. Super cute!

Sustainable sustainability - why not a keepcup?

Photo – Ida Zander. Location – Minnow. Dress – Whistles (adlink), necklace– Van Cleef & Arpels & heels – Saint Laurent. 

 

One-item-a-month in April – How about pre-loved?

I would estimate that about 50% of my wardrobe consists of pieces I have bought “pre-loved”.

The phrase “second-hand” probably makes people think about dusty old charity shops. (Don’t knock them though, they can be a veritable treasure chest at times). But I guess pre-loved does have a better ring to it.

I much rather buy a beautiful designer item that has had a previous owner than a new one by Zara. They will probably end up costing about the same and one is timeless and the other trend-led.

Sure I do love a spot of bargain hunting in a charity shop, but I tend to find 90% of my pre-loved clothes on pages like Vestiaire Collective. Ebay is great too. But I like the sense of security that comes with having the item authenticated and checked to make sure it’s in the condition stated in the ad before I receive it. I have had emails från Vestiaire telling me an item wasn’t up to scratch and they have either canceled the sale or offered me a discount.

The one thing I do tend to tell people to look out for is where the item is from. If it happens to be the states, then you might get stung by customs fees, so be aware.

I have to admit I’m a bit addicted…or a lot addicted to Vestiaire Collective. I go in every day after Ace goes to bed and browse through all the new items. I have a pretty decent wish list and a very long like list. I can mull over an item for months before I go for it. Or sometimes I have to be quick in case it’s something I know will go fast.

But you should always make an offer. All sellers expect you to do a bit of bargaining before you buy. So start low-ish and negotiate a figure you are both happy with. I shaved a good £45 off my latest buy.

I also sell off anything I feel I’m done with or won’t use. You can find my items for sale here.

In April I think my one-item-a-month should be something pre-loved from my giant wishlist. I have put a few of them in the collage above. The prices are pretty amazing, right? Imagine a tad of negotiating and Bob’s your uncle.

So what should it be? A splurge on a pair of Balenciaga party heels? Or a bit more of a conservative Chanel scarf or a Céline belt maybe?

I do know it’s a bit of a risk to put my favorites up on the blog since one of you might buy it. There is only one of each item. But I have decided that if it’s meant to be, it will.

Do you have a favorite and what do you think I should pick as my April purchase?

You can read all about my one-item-a-month challenge here. 

My pre-loved favorites

Ganni coat
Earrings
Chanel scarf
Balenciaga heels
Blonde no 8 coat
Self Portrait dress
Casadei heels
Céline belt
Stella McCartney bag
-Adlinks

 

Mindful Monday 18th March – My vision, event, mantra, and affirmation this week

Mindful Monday - This is my vision, event, mantra, and affirmation this week;

Mindful Monday is by far my favorite post to write. It’s just such a lovely positive thing in my life.

I would have written all of this down in a diary if I didn’t have this blog. Because it’s so good for us to evaluate, reflect, collect our thoughts and set up an action plan at a regular basis. It makes me both happier and a lot more productive.

Today I’m feeling great and energized. This is going to be a great week. I will focus on being creative and immerse myself in any task I have at hand. Some weeks are just that little bit more golden than others.

Ok, are you ready? Let’s go!

This is my vision, event, mantra, and affirmation this week;

My mantra this week – “Stop thinking and start doing”. I’m an overthinker. Often when I have a great idea I end up thinking myself out of actually executing it. So this week my task is to think less and do more. I have loads of great ideas and goals I would like to reach that are just waiting for me to give it some attention.

My affirmation this week – “I’m awesome”. I need a really positive week where I back myself up completely. It’s really easy to spiral into negative self-talk. So this week I’m getting my inner cheerleader to put on her sparkliest pompoms and go all in. “Go, Tess, I believe in me!”

My goal this week  – So boring, but I really need to clear my inbox. I have too many flagged emails waiting. Some weeks I fail to keep up and then I can easily get behind quickly. And once that mountain of emails grows, I’m more and more reluctant to start. But if I sit down one evening this week and just get it done, then I will be up to speed again. I might need to get some nice dark chocolate to sweeten the deal a bit.

My dream of the week– It’s such a material dream, but I have always wanted an Aston Martin. Or at least since I did a modeling job for them maybe 10 years ago in Mallorca. I just find the cars perfectly understated.

My whole thing is great quality, but not what everyone else has. That’s why I bought a Jaeger LeCoultre watch instead of a Rolex, have a smaller but perfect diamond in my engagement ring and prefer my jewelry from Van Cleef & Arpels than Cartier. I just rather have something that’s a bit more unusual than “right in your face” items.

This is my vision, event, mantra, and affirmation this week;

My vision this week – I’m finding myself planning for the future, the far future. Like 5, 10, 30 years ahead. And I see myself in my 60s with long flowing silver hair, wearing large shirts, perfect jeans and great sneakers. With a small but perfectly curated wardrobe. I want to have those amazing kind of dresses I could pull out for a charity ball or a gallery opening and feel great in. I vision myself on a beach in the sunset with a whole bunch of grandkids playing around me. Happiness and harmony, that’s what life is about.

My focus this week –This is a focus and motivational week for me. I feel like I have the energy to go full steam ahead. I feel good, I’m in a great place in my cycle and I don’t have too much of a hectic schedule. This is when my creativity flourish.

The event of the week  – I’m off to a lovely afternoon tea event tomorrow with L’Occitane. And then on Thursday, I have planned drinks with my friend Gia. Finally, I feel like I have a life aside from being a Mom again.

My lesson from last week– I have to get a bit more strict with Olive (my Frenchie). We stayed at Josefina, Matthew, and little Leo’s house this weekend. They have two massive dogs and Olive has known them forever. However, she bitched off to the Italian Spinone who is 5 times her size and ended up with a ripped ear and an emergency visit to the vet. She now has 6 staples in her ear and looks like a very cool little chick. But it showed me that I need to be on her case a bit. She is too small to have all that attitude and this time it was a big dog who said enough in a very soft way compared to what could have been. Next time she might not be as lucky.

My everyday-luxury this week – I’m really in need of a massage, I have always loved spas, but since I became a Mom any treatment and me-time are just so much more valuable.

My inspiration this week – Greta! I can’t believe she is nominated for the Nobel peace price. We really need to listen to young voices. Maybe not in every instance, but at least when we are talking about things that will affect their lives more than ours, like the environment.

Time for you to set your own vision, event, mantra, and affirmation for this week!

Photo – Ida Zander. Skirt – Asos, jumper – Oasis & boots – Marzio.  – adlinks

 

Skincare in your 30s – To Retinol or not to retinol?

Skincare in your 30s - To Retinol or not to retinol?

So I have been on a bit of a beauty quest recently and one of the things I decided I wanted to try was retinol.

It is one of the few products that most dermatologists agree makes a big difference to fine line and elasticity in our skin. However, it is quite the active little bugger, so you do have to be careful of exactly what retinol product to use.

They come in a variety of different strengths, mixed with different things and called different names. To be honest it’s a bit of a jungle to try to figure out the difference between a retinoid, Retin-A, and retinol.

Trial and error work well in most cases when it comes to makeup and skincare. Retinol is, however, the one product you don’t want to get wrong. It can be a massive irritant to skin and could leave your face burning up and peeling off if you are not careful.

I used to have skin that could take almost everything. But since I had Ace it has gotten a lot more sensitive. To be honest I think I might have a slight case of rosacea on my cheeks these days. They tend to flare up red every so often, especially when I exfoliate or use active skincare. I’m going to see a dermatologist to get a proper diagnosis, but all the signs are there.

So to be on the safe side, I chose to begin with a really low % retinol product. I picked the retinol 0.2% in Squalane (oil) by The Ordinary. (adlink) Why make it more complicated than it needs to be? I can’t believe how inexpensive their products are. It’s crazy that this bottle only cost me a few quid.

I have used it two nights a week for the last few weeks and even though it’s too early to see any real difference yet, I thought I would share my first impressions.

Skincare in your 30s - To Retinol or not to retinol?

When I applied the oil the first night I was convinced I was going to wake up bright red and flaky. To my big surprise, I did not. My face was actually less red than the day before. I did read that people with rosacea can go either way on retinol. It can help or make it worse. For me, it seems to be the former rather than the latter.

So far I’m over the moon with this product. My skin feels glowy and my redness is not as bad as before. My plan is to stick to this routine for 6 weeks when I start using the product every other night for a few more weeks. Then I’m planning to give what is left to my hubby and move on to a stronger version.

Because The Ordinary’s products are so inexpensive it’s totally doable to keep switching up whenever my skin has gotten used to the strength of the retinol.

…and why shouldn’t guys use retinol anyway? They have skin that ages too. (And I don’t have to throw away perfectly good retinol). Win-win.

So now I want to hear all about your retinol experiences! What % are you on and has it worked for you?

You can find The Ordinary 0.2% retinol in squalane hereadlink

 

Mindful Monday 11th March – My mantra, vision, event, and affirmation

Mindful Monday 11th March - My mantra, vision, event, and affirmation

Monday, are you excited or do you need another coffee?

I might need another cup myself and then I’m almost there. I’m feeling a bit slow today actually. I hope spring will come with fewer nursery bugs. These days our little family are constantly sniffling.

Garth is going away for a couple of weekends for work this month and I will be on my own with the little one. I know we will be completely fine, I just have to go to bed a bit earlier, to make sure I get enough sleep. But it still makes me feel a little bit uneasy.

And to be honest, I tend to get a lot more done when I’m on my own at night. I never watch tv, only work or read books. So I will try to think of it as a positive.

This is my mantra, vision, event, and affirmation this week;

My mantra this week–  “If I’m comfortable, it’s time to move on. If I’m terrified to take the next step, then I’m on the right path”. Don’t get me wrong. It’s really nice to get to chill out for a bit, but then it’s time to challenge myself again. I have a few things in the pipeline that only needs a little push to start rolling. It’s both scary and fun.

My affirmation this week – “I attract what I think”. I’m always trying really hard not to allow myself to get stuck in negativity. I do allow myself to feel it for a moment and then I send it off again. There is no need to dig too deep into negative emotions. I really need to stay positive to be able to be creative and inspired.

This week is a bit of a pondering week for me. I have a few things I need to figure out before I can move forward with them. The problem is if I start over-thinking. Then I might instead try to talk myself out of it… So it’s important to keep the inspiration going until everything has fallen into place.

My goal this week – I need to figure out how a concept will work in moving media. It has been marinating in my brain for a while and I think I know what I want to do with it now. Next week I will make sure to get it all down onto paper and make a plan out of it.

My dream of the week – I dream of being able to work from anywhere. With blogging, I can, but with modeling, I’m best off staying put in London. Also, I will always be tied to wherever Garth works and later to Ace’s school. But I still really like the idea of being completely free to move wherever I like. Or at least feel like I have the option.

Mindful Monday 11th March - My mantra, vision, event, and affirmation

My vision this week  – Not every vision need to be a great big one. Right now I’m thinking a garden big enough to house both a magnolia and a cherry tree. They only blossom for a little while, but it looks so beautiful when they do.

My focus this week  – I lost a bit of valuable momentum last week. Too much else was going on. But now I need to find my focus again and zone in on things that re-charges my motivational and inspirational batteries. I have two new books to read, that should boost both those things.

The event of the week  – Garth is away this weekend, so I’m going to take Ace and Olive and go to Josefina over the weekend. 3 dogs, 2 kids, and a best friend. It will be chaotic awesomeness.

My lesson from last week – I have to stop taking on everyone else’s energies. A certain amount of empathy is incredibly important, but not to the point that it’s detrimental to myself. I’m learning how to observe and not step into other people’s shoes all the time. Because it drains me if I’m not careful.

My everyday-luxury this week– Tomorrow I’m booked into a lovely facial with Elemis. I can’t wait!

My inspiration this week – I love when successful women generously share their experiences, like this article about Amber Venz Box at Sheerluxe.

Have you had a look at your mantra, vision, event, and affirmation this week?

Photo – Ida Zander. Find my lovely blazer by Forever New here. (adlink)

 

Sustainable Sustainability #2 – Who needs an ugly plastic bag anyway?

Sustainable Sustainability #2 - Who needs an ugly plastic bag anyway?

When I went to the Facebook event at Soho farmhouse the other week, they kindly gifted us this fabric bag saying –  “Make your thing – a thing”.

It’s a double hit.

Every time I use it I get reminded to do my own thing. I rather make my own thing a thing than try to do something someone else thinks is a thing. I just have to believe that my thing is a good thing.

The other great plus with this bag is that it’s the perfect size for me to fit almost anything into it. I can fold it up and it will barely take any space at all. I can get all my shopping home without having to buy a plastic bag.

I actually always carry a fabric bag these days. Either this one or an even skinnier one that actually fits into my Chanel bag. How glam is that?

The reasons why I choose a fabric bag over a plastic bag are;

– I hate having to pay for bags at the shop.
– I don’t like running after my oranges when the silly plastic bags break in the middle of the street.
– It’s a lot more stylish. I mean those orange Sainsbury’s bags. Yuck! They are a no-go with any of my outfits. (I’m kidding a little bit, but I’m also a little bit serious).

But mainly I do it because it’s better for the environment.

If enough people decided to do the same, then it could make a difference. Of course, we have to make sure that PPW (price per wear) is good for our fabric bags, just like any item of clothing. We can also use paper bags, or a plastic bag made out of other old bags. Whatever floats your boat. It’s just about being aware that our choices are important.

If you don’t have a fabric bag and fancy one, why not go for this one from Help Refugees? (adlink)

Find my sustainable sustainability choice #1 here.

Sustainable Sustainability #2 - Who needs an ugly plastic bag anyway?

Photo – Ida Zander, location – No32 Old Town, t-shirt, kjol, sneakers. (adlinks)

 

This is my “One-item-a-month” purchase for March

Golden Goose sneakers - my "One-item-a-month" purchase for March

I almost got those awesome sneakers by Givenchy. But decided last minute that I need something a bit more versatile, so instead I went for a pair of  “Superstars” by Golden Goose Deluxe Brand. (adlink)

Actually, I have been wanting these bad boys since I first came across the brand more than 10 years ago in LA. I found them out shopping with my exboyfriend Jordan who lived there. It feels like a lifetime ago! I actually almost got them then, but there was one thing stopping me. They already looked “used” out of the box.

I know it’s kind of the point with Golden Goose, but it doesn’t sit right with me. I want to have an actual new pair when I buy a new pair of sneakers and I want to scuff them myself. I don’t want them to have a “fake story”, but a real one created by me and my life.

And I want to have the option to keep them pristine and white if I fancy.

And then 10 years later they go and release a pair of Superstars that actually looks new. Woohoo! If there was ever a reason to indulge, this is it. It’s a sign!

I might not be cool enough to go for the pre-scuffed version, but I am now finally proud owners of a fabulous (and very white) pair of Golden Goose sneakers.

Golden Goose sneakers - my "One-item-a-month" purchase for March

…now it’s my job to keep these lovelies looking good. Or scuff them and pretend I bought them that way. Ha!

No matter what, it was the perfect item to buy for March. We already have magnolia and cherry blossom all over London, so spring is officially here. It won’t be long until I can wear my new sneakers on a daily basis.

It’s kind of funny. I don’t actually want to buy anything at the moment. My wardrobe is really airy and spacious after my Marie Kondo clearout. I can actually see all my clothes and shoes now and I don’t want it to get cluttered again. Funny what a big clean can change… I used to be such a shopaholic in the past!

I have completely allowed myself to disregard trends and only get items I know I will use for years to come. It’s totally liberating.

As digital creators/bloggers/influencers or whatever you want to call us, the pressure is on to show all the newest, most interesting and trendiest clothes all the time. It’s really easy to get caught up in the consumer carousel and not even realize what we are actually doing.

That’s when it’s nice for our minds (+ the environment and our bank balances) to get off the ride and say “thanks, but no thank you” and head off in our own direction instead.

Golden Goose sneakers - my "One-item-a-month" purchase for March

That is what the one-item-a-month challenge paired with my Marie Kondo clear-out has done for me.

Sometimes we just have to realize ourselves that what we are doing doesn’t actually reflect who we are and what we stand for. I don’t think anyone can honestly say they haven’t been swept away into things because other people were doing it. No matter if it is simple things like clothes or more complex things like ideals and philosophy of life.

I wonder what else I could do a Marie Kondo on….?

I have gone through my clothes/books/blogs and Instagram already. We are about to do a big clear out the rest of the house. I’m thinking we should be able to use this principle on more things in life. Maybe friends? Hobbies? Work? What do you think?

I know a few of you are also doing the one-item-a-month challenge. What are you getting in March? …and if you haven’t gotten on board yet. Isn’t it a little bit tempting? How about it?

This is what I got in January and in February.

 

Digital Detox & The future of social media

Digital Detox & The future of social media - #Mindfluencing

I treated myself to a proper digital detox this weekend when we headed to Exter to see friends and family.

The fact is, we are addicted to our mobile phones. If it’s close we constantly have to fight the urge to pick it up. It’s always there in the back of our minds using up valuable brain energy. It’s kind of scary when you think about it.

I realized how addicted I was myself a few months ago and I decided to see if I could beat my addiction with a set of strict rules. I only allowed myself to have my phone on me during my “work hours” in the mornings and at night. So whenever I spent time with Ace, I would just leave it in my bag. This way I could focus on him and only him.

As with any addiction, it’s really easy to make excuses to why we have to “quickly do this small thing…” on our phones. So I made sure to carry my little camera with me. In case Ace did something cute that I really had to take a photo or make a clip of. Because I noticed that the excuse of taking photos became a gateway to scroll my Instagram feed…

Only yesterday I picked up my phone to quickly google a recipe and found myself liking photos on Instagram. Say what? I didn’t even notice my fingers hitting the Instagram icon! It just happened so quickly and it actually scared me a bit.

So this weekend I kept my phone in my suitcase the whole time. I kept the volume on during the day, just in case someone needed me for an emergency. But I also relied on people calling Garth in case they really had to get hold of me.

I do feel like I have got digital addiction under control these days. I can stay off my phone for long periods of time without missing it and I only bring it out when I actually need it for work or to contact someone. I have noticed that it has freed up my time massively. I didn’t even realize how much time I spent scrolling away. Now I use that time to read books instead and I feel nourished in a completely different way.

My beloved hubby is still stuck in the scrolling-swamp though. I’m trying to get him to put down his phone now and then, but it takes a lot of effort and clever tricks from my side. As soon as I see him pick his phone up and start scrolling, I make sure to ask him to help me with something that will take up all of his attention. So far he hasn’t cottoned on.. but we will see how long it lasts. My ideal would be for us both to be able to leave our phones in the living room at night. This will be my goal for the next few months.

I often think about how we are going to relate to these things in the future. How we will think “OMG, did we really do that?!” about things that we see as completely normal now. Like smoking inside in the 80s. My Mom sat amongst us kids on the sofa, going through her packs of yellow “Blend”, not having a clue that it could affect anyone else than herself. Obviously now, we know better.

I predict that sugar, alcohol and screens will be 3 of the things that we will have realized is really bad for us in the future.

However, I don’t think it’s actually social media that is dangerous, only the way we are using it at the moment. A big part of the addiction to scrolling is all the information we can access really quickly. Our brains don’t even get the chance to focus before we move on to the next thing. This is one of the reasons I prefer to read blogs and posts that will actually pique my interest. I want something more than a pretty picture.

I have actually completely changed the way I use Instagram and these days I follow mainly people who are using their captions well. There are sooo many great photos out there, but great texts are a lot harder to find. I want to experience things to relate to, something thought provoking that makes me feel stuff. Something more than “nice picture, like, next“.

I do feel that Instagram is focusing more and more on captions and moving media now. So I do hope the days of scrolling is numbered. I myself really like to watch IGTV and I’m quite keen to produce more moving material to publish there and on Facebook watch. To be able to actually say something real and make an impact. The tricky thing with clips on-the-go is the sound. It’s not always it’s appropriate to blast sound out of your phone…

If I’m going to put my valuable time into social media then I really want it to feed me in some way. I want an interesting caption, an informative video or something that exercises my mental muscles a bit. That’s when social media is amazing. The rest just feels like a massive waste of our time.

This is pretty much what  #MINDFLUENCING is about. How we can choose to use social media in a healthy and inspirational way. 

What do you prefer? Scroll photos, read captions? Se little clips on stories, longer videos on IGTV, YouTube or Facebook watch? Sound on/off?

Photo – Ida Zander for #MINDFLUENCING. Location – Megan’s Clapham Commo