This month it will be six years since my first book Modern Rustic was published. I was planning to write a post about the book – how it was made, share a few photos of that time – but as I was thinking back on that period, I had a bit of an aha moment. I realised that I was looking back fondly on a time that was actually quite difficult. This got me thinking about memory and perception and the past and the present. Deep, I know 😉 And here you were thinking this was a blog about interiors!
Part Two: London
In the past few weeks I’ve sat down many times to write the second part of this story, but each time I’ve struggled to begin. Mainly because the details of my story aren’t easy to pick apart. My journey to the career I have today has been a constant uphill battle, with brief moments of feeling like I’ve reached the summit, only to realise there’s another mountain to climb. (If you haven’t read the first part of how I became a stylist, click here).
Part One: Los Angeles
Not a week goes by without me receiving emails from aspiring stylists asking for advice. I’ve always done my best to reply to each one because I remember writing the same emails to stylists when I was starting out and they very rarely replied. But after years of writing the same message and occasionally not having time to reply at all, I thought I’d share some insight here as well. Every stylist will have a different story about how they made interior styling their career. There isn’t one fail-safe route and everyone’s circumstances will be different, so the only story I can offer is my own in the hope that you might glean some valuable information if you’re hoping to follow a similar path.
Like a lot of people, I long for my so-called dream home and all the money in the world with which to decorate it. But right now that’s not my reality and I suspect it isn’t the reality for many of you. If I’m honest I’m not sure I’d even know what to do with unlimited funds, I’m so used to making do and working with what I’ve got! It’s how I was raised and it has now become one of the key tenets upon which I’ve built my styling and writing careers.
Everyone is talking about it so of course I had to watch Marie Kondo‘s new Netflix show, Tidying Up. To stay in the loop. To see what the buzz was about. So I could formulate my own opinion. Because there’s nothing more ignorant than having an opinion about something without actually knowing anything about it. In the reality series Kondo, the queen of organisation and author of several best selling books on the subject, teaches people how to deal with varying levels of clutter and disorganisation in their homes. Even though I’m not a huge fan of this reality show format, I took the time to watch a couple of episodes. While my opinion on living a minimalist life is probably pretty obvious from the unstyled photo of my apartment above, I did in fact take something away from the show. Because it turns out Kondo isn’t actually trying to promote a minimalist lifestyle. She is just encouraging viewers to take control of their stuff, rather than letting it control them.
So I wrote another book. In between getting one child off to university, styling shoots to pay the bills, and getting the other child through a stressful exam period, I thought I’d add some more madness to my life. But you know I’d go mad without the madness 😉 It’s called Be Bold and it’s filled with, you guessed it, bold interiors.
Be Bold is for colour lovers, pattern clashers, and textile mix masters. Whether you are already bold with your interiors or you aspire to be more so, I hope it will be a welcome blast of inspiration in what can sometimes be a sea of muted neutrals. Featuring inspiring homes in London, Paris, Margate, The Netherlands and Madrid, this was a fun one to pull off in a rather short amount of time.