Love And Sequins: Visiting The Printer, And A Sneak Peek!


Last week, Mike and Dolly and I got into our little 1969 Volkswagen Beetle (toot toot! Beep beep!) and went for a jaunt to New Jersey. We were a family on a mission: we were heading to visit the printer that will be churning out beautiful copies of Love And Sequins. I had questions… And I wanted to have them answered in person!

As we sped along the highway, we got an eyeful of trees turning yellow and red… It was gorgeous. Even Dolly sat up in the back seat to look out the window!


After several twists and turns, we arrived at our destination: an enormous brick building full of paper, ink, and lots and lots of books. I was excited to go in and speak to them, since we had only been in touch via email previously.

I shook hands with a man named Paul, before flipping open my rainbow Filofax and turning to a page full of scribbled questions. They were as follows.

Did they have any pink paper or cloth we could use for a (ooh la la!) very beautiful hardcover? (I mean, how disappointed would you be if my book was not PINK?) What would the approximate weight of the finished product be? (Essential information for calculating shipping.) And finally, how long would it take from the time of submitting our finished book to being able to ship ‘em out?

I wish I could say that he reached into the back of a cupboard and pulled out some incredible pink paper, woven from feathers and unicorn hair, before performing a wonderful tap-dance, and then throwing a handful of sequins into the air with delight.

Unfortunately, he did not.

You see, before he met me, I was just some weirdo sending emails, asking about pink covers and attaching numerous images. But once I was in front of him — wearing hot pink lipstick and clutching my Filofax — I think he realised the magnitude of the job at hand.


Blue cloth binding (and my rainbow Filofax). It’s beautiful, but — and I’m sure you can understand this — I have my heart set on pink. And what baby wants, baby gets.

Here were his answers.

1. No, they didn’t have anything pink. He showed me a selection of cloth options that could be used for a hardcover book, but everything I saw was, well… navy. Or fire engine red. Or orange. Or cream. (IMAGINE if my book came out and it was ORANGE! No offense to orange, but it’s just never gonna happen.) But once I pointed at the Radical Self Love Salon tote on my shoulder, and said, “THAT pink”, he seemed to understand. Now he is on a mission to source me something pink and lovely, and while that is awesome, we’re not really sure how long that will take.

2. The weight of the book will probably be around 1.5lbs, but, it’s hard to say until we have the final product in our hands. (It will also depend on the weight of the paper we choose.)

3. As far as timing? This was the hardest pill to swallow. Firstly, we have to find something wondrous for the cover, and like I said, my dude is not sure how long that will take. (Apparently, unicorn hair is hard to source?!) Once we’ve done that, it takes about two weeks to get a bound proof (and it costs $239, making it the most expensive book I’ve ever purchased). And THEN, it takes around 25 business days to print books.

25! Business! Days!

I must admit that I was stunned when he told me this. I’m so accustomed to working in the online space that the idea of anything taking a month blew my mind! I love to move quickly, and I’m used to a super-fast turnaround. But, when it comes to printing, it takes time.


Mike and I discussed the situation on the drive back to NYC.

“Sure, I could rush it,” I said. “I’d love, love, love for the book to be in everyone’s hands by Christmas. But I really want to do this properly. If I’m going to put the energy into a hardcover book, then it needs to be amazing.”

“Absolutely,” Mike replied. “Better to make it great and release it a little later.”

He’s absolutely right, of course. I want this book to be gorgeous: so beautiful you’ll want to keep it on your coffee table or beside your bed. A divine little slice of radical self love that you’ll be proud to own. And so, being patient is the only way it’s going to work.

AND. Not to hold out on you: I have some sneak peeks of what the book will look like inside, courtesy of We Are Branch!


Mmmmmmmm, type. And don’t be FOOLED by the simplicity of this spread, either. There are so many surprises and delights within the pages of this book!


I thought it made sense for my first book to start at the very beginning. And that’s why I’ve written Love And Sequins as a primer on radical self love. It’s the very best place to start if you’re not sure what it means to love yourself, or how that can totally CHANGE your life. Plus, every section has homework, so that you can start putting the concepts into action straight away.

It looks sublime, the cover is blowing my mind, and… JUST YOU WAIT!

The pre-sale will happen soon (!!!), the books will be printed in December, and they’ll be in your hot little hands by January/February. Talk about a stellar way to start 2015!

Your delighted friend,

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Clothes, Schmothes: 10 Things To Do In Your Underwear!


My current obsession is spending 95% of my time in my underwear with a cardigan thrown over the top. Let’s be honest: most people who work from home do so because they’re motivated by this concept! Clothes, schmothes. Who needs ‘em?

Right now, I’m all about Hanes underwear, partially because they sent me a whole lot, but mostly because it’s so damn cute! I’m a fan of their ComfortFlex bras, brightly-patterned hipsters and colourful boy shorts. I’m also a big believer in underwear that fits you (very important) and is comfortable.

As I thought about this concept more and more, I decided that it’s high time that we spend more time in our underwear: just our underwear. So I present to you a list of 10 things to do in your underwear. Make a date with yourself in your favourite underthings.

Have a one-person dance party
It’s not an accident that everyone in a music video looks like what they’re wearing could be underwear… Or is shamelessly hanging out in their bra and knickers. Music and underwear were made to go together!

Have a multi-person dance party!
Invite your friends over. Have a “clothing basket” by the front door. Crank the tunes. Provide beverages. DANCE like your life DEPENDS on it!

Give your dog a bath
I mean, really, who wants to wear clothes when they give their dog a bath? That’s just ridiculous. You’ll be saturated in no time. At least when you do it in your underwear, there’s no muss, no fuss.

There’s something lovely about writing in your underwear. It feels very Anais Nin. I particularly enjoy wearing lipstick at the same time. It’s very luxurious, and who couldn’t use a little more of that in their life?

You don’t need clothes on to clear your mind! I meditate as soon as I wake up, and yes, I sleep in my underwear, so I crawl out of bed and onto my couch, nestle in amongst rainbow sequin cushions, close my eyes, and smile. (Smiling while you meditate = awesomeness forever!)

Clean the house
Cleaning the house in a full outfit is fool’s gold! You’ll only get filthy. Cut out the middle-man (the middle-man being, of course, clothing) and keep it simple!

Watch your favourite TV shows
Your TV doesn’t care if you’re wearing clothes or not. It’s not judging you, it’s just happy to be blaring. Get comfortable on the couch, put your feet up, and enjoy.

Drink tea and swan about
Throw a kimono on over your lingerie, pretend you’re an eccentric heiress, drink tea, and be generally fabulous. Can you give me a good reason not to?!

Do yoga
Unroll that yoga mat and get your stretch on. I don’t always enjoy yoga, but I always feel better afterwards, which is as good a reason as any.

More clothing while you sleep just complicates things. Keep it simple, baby!

Of course, if thinking about all of this has made you realise that your underwear is simply not cute or comfortable enough for any of these activities, check out the Hanes lookbook. (It also has some really good one-person dance party inspiration… You have been warned!)

Rockin’ out in my undies,

This post was brought to you by Hanes and Style Coalition.

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#lovetober: Week Two Winners!


One of the best things about doing a challenge like this it that it proves that everyone participating is learning to see the good in life. Your life may not be perfect, and mine isn’t either, but despite the hardships you may be facing, you’re still choosing to see the positive. That is so powerful, so magical. My definition of magic is learning to see with new eyes, and that’s exactly what you are all doing. I am so proud of you!

Man, I love #lovetober. How about you guys?! It looks like you are!

October 11: Jump!


Look at you! So spry! I loved all of these images… Thank you to Magnolia Rose, Ary, Kayla, Chan Marie, Nikki, Schenden, Erika, Fran, Jen, Poh, Jacque’s husband, and Nicolette!

October 12: Perfect weekend


Everyone has a different idea about what constitutes the perfect weekend. (I spent a lot of mine in bed reading Lena’s book!) Patty spent hers on a beach, Mrs Bravos enjoyed a bloody mary… in a very big hat, Hildetje got some beach time, too, and Lola and her sister got a bit Priscilla: Queen Of The Desert on it!

October 13: I’m obsessed!


We all have weird obsessions, and it’s great to see what’s occupying other people’s brains! Jen is travelling the USA and is smitten with Portland, OR! Eleanor can’t get enough of painting over the photos in In Vogue: Six Decades Of Fashion. Schenden loves to fill her tub with Dead Sea salts and rose petals, and Miranda can’t stop doing handstands!

October 14: A beautiful place


This prompt was amazing. The #lovetober tag was lit up with blue skies and azure seas. Gorgeous. Here are a few of my favourites…

Thank you for sharing these. I loved the shots of KC at Annapurna base camp, Amy enjoying the private island of Half Moon Cay in the Bahamas, Eebie sharing the landscape in Herefordshire, and the way Kamilla thought Norway in winter was adorable. Lauren took a hike in the Columbia Gorge, Bethan loves the view from an airplane window, Loubijou said Lake Bled in Slovenia was “like standing in a holiday brochure”, and Michaela got her bridge on in the Perhentian Islands. jugglingspinster peeped through some greenery in Scarborough, Carmen loves Cozumel, and Teressa shared a shot of Waiheke Island. Leonie adored the Whitsunday Islands, Nicki picked Nice, and Miranda couldn’t resist the turquoise waters of Zakinthos, while Kimiko and Kate both adored Hawaii.

October 15: Pay it forward


Teressa hid an envelope, and Charlotte told a stranger to “treat yourself to a slice of cake on me!” Agnes shared a photo of Mark Bustos, a Filipino-American hairdresser who spends every Sunday (his only day off) cutting hair for the homeless. So inspiring! And I thought this sign, shared by Angela was perfect for the pay it forward prompt.

I really loved what Filiz said on this day…

To make someone happy is the best feeling ever. I will never forget the day when an elderly woman was struggling with her shopping. I walked her home. She held my hand so tight and couldn’t stop thanking me. I will never forget that look in her eyes. I do a lot of voluntary work and it is the most rewarding feeling ever. If everyone did something small to make a difference in someones life… the world will be a better place.

October 16: Big dream


Mlle K‘s big dream is to write a book. Deserie wants to go to Paris. Jo wants to escape in a bright yellow VW bus. Fran wants to make a living from performing… And she certainly looks the part!

October 17: Favourite artist


Francilla is swooning over Ray Caesar, Caro‘s brother did a wicked portrait of Johnny Depp as Hunter S. Thompson, Jenny loves Dalí, and Mumpty is totally impressed by Joanne Gair’s bodypainting skills (and who wouldn’t be?)!

October 18: In the morning


A black and white assortment. How are Kate‘s eyes so dreamy first thing in the morning?! Haha!  The Happy Hotline likes to cuddle with her rescued bulldog, Jarrod enjoys a snuggle with his “munchkin”, and Miranda enjoys a coffee.

October 19: Your bucket list


What’s on your list? The Hipster Housewife‘s bucket list is simply, “Love God, love people”. The Happy Hotline was able to cross “marry this guy” off her list last year. Eleanor wants to visit as many theme parks as possible, and Anna is keeping it simple.

Every week, there will be four winners chosen from the images posted here. This week, each winner will be the recipient of a gorgeous Heartbump necklace from my jewellery collection with NZ Mint! Swoon!


Were you a winner? Email me your address, and I will send you your necklace!

By the way, to celebrate #lovetober, all of my jewellery is 15% off with the code #LOVETOBER (all uppercase). The deal ends on the 31st of October, and P.S., jewels make glorious gifts for your besties! (I wear Sassy Stacker rings every day and I have no intention of changing them out any time soon!)

I’m a little behind on my #lovetober posts, so I’m going to make the effort to catch up today and tomorrow! Don’t worry if you’re running a little behind — all that matters is that you keep trying!

I love you!

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A Little Custom Art For Darling HQ…


Tiffany and I had only been at the Brooklyn Flea Market for half an hour when I spotted a tin sign of a heart with wings. It was unbelievably cute, but in its current state, it looked a bit too rustic for my tastes.

“Don’t worry!” Tiffany exclaimed. “I can Gala-ise that for you in no time.”

She’s a wonder, that one.

It didn’t take much: we made a quick trip to Michael’s for a can of pink tint spraypaint, some glitter, a couple of bags of multi-coloured gems, and some sparkly hot glue (this really exists!), and then Tiffany grabbed the sign and absconded. That night, an Instagram appeared which gave me heart palpitations… And the next day, she showed up at my apartment with her creation.


DEAR GOD. If there was ever a thing that summed up radical self love, this is it. A heart covered in jewels, with pink glitter wings to propel itself through the universe… Yes, yes, yes. YES.

I mean, how could I not be inspired with this hanging on the wall beside me?


I love it. It’s fantastic. It’s pink and sparkly and a little bit too much (just like me).

Amazing what a little glittery hot glue can do! Stay tuned for more of the quirky, weird and wonderful DIYs we’ll be whipping up to put the cherry on top of Darling HQ!


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House-Witchery: 13 Easy Ways To Infuse Your Home With Magic (And Attract More Of What You Want)


As summer ebbs away, and fall flows towards us, we release the things we were holding onto, and make room for new opportunities. October is a special month. The Equinox marks the beginning of the rest of the year: three months to hunker down, focus on what you want to create, make and do, and start to see the results.

Maybe it’s the Virgo in me, but I like to do a so-called “spring” cleaning at the start of every season. Your home, after all, is the place where you spend the majority of your time: it’s where you create and dream. It makes sense to spend a day getting your home ready for the next few months.

Start by cleaning your home in the conventional sense: vacuum, dust, clean your mirrors, and do a couple of loads of laundry. Once you’ve cleared all the muck, emptied your garbage bins, and cleaned out your fridge, it’s time to move onto cleaning in a more metaphysical way. Here are some of my favourite ways to do that!

“I release the past with ease and trust in the process of life.” — Louise Hay


This is the perfect time to give your altar a super-clean, as well as a bit of a makeover. When you do this, it allows you to refocus on your dreams. Take everything off your altar, clean it up, and then be selective about what you put back. Choose candles which reflect your hopes and desires, burn some fresh incense, and place your favourite crystals just so. As we get closer to Dia De Los Muertos (November 1st to 2nd), it’s also a beautiful time to put out photos or mementos of those who have passed.

It may be getting colder, but keeping the windows open — as well as turning on a fan or two — is a great way to keep the energy in your house nice and buoyant. Fresh air is refreshing and cleansing, and it gets the energy moving. If the air in your home is stagnant, that will affect how you feel.

When Tiffany was in town, she introduced me to my new favourite store: HomeGoods. In the lighting aisle, she glanced at me and asked, “Do you have a salt lamp?” As soon as I said no, she thrust one into my arms. I’ve been using it every day since, and I absolutely love it. You can buy salt lamps on Amazon for under $20, and they’re wonderful. They purify the air, emit negative ions, and naturally clear the air of allergens, so they’re great for people with asthma or allergies. I’m obsessed with mine, plus, the glow is so soft and relaxing!


Few things will make you feel as good as walking into a house full of fresh flowers! They really brighten up a space, and if your budget can swing it, a fresh bunch of blooms every week is a fantastic gift to yourself. If arranging flowers isn’t your strongest area, Real Simple has got your back. Alternatively, you could buy some plants and station them all around your home. They increase the vibration of a space, and look beautiful, too.

You can easily make your own (all you need is a selection of essential oils and a bottle of vodka!), or if you’d prefer, you can buy one. The Australian Bush Flower Essences Space Clearing Mist is super-potent, and it contains angelsword, boab, fringed violet, lichen, red lily, calendula, echinacea, chamomile, aloe, arnica, sandalwood, cedarwood, eucalyptus and lavender. Meow! Bad vibes begone!

As soon as I wake up in the morning, I light the candles on my altar, meditate, and then start working. The simple act of lighting a match and sparking a candle reminds me of my intentions for the day, and sets an atmosphere of happiness and calm. You can use any kind of candle you like, from devotional to Diptyque, but I recommend choosing a candle in a colour (or scent) that reminds you of your intentions. If you want to stick with the cleansing theme, this clearing candle made by Magic Hour is beautiful as well as effective, and poured around a citrine crystal.

Men are notorious for leaving the toilet seat up, but in Feng Shui it’s believed that if you don’t close the lid of the loo as well, you’re flushing away all the good energy. The same concept applies to dripping or leaky taps: always make sure they’re fixed or turned off, because a dripping faucet signifies financial drain, or that your money is literally running out!


Ideally, we would all live in light, bright, beautiful spaces with huge windows, but this is unfortunately not reality. While you may not have sunshine streaming into your home, you can easily fill your home with divine white light by simply visualising it. It’s easy: see your home filling up with a bright white light, expanding and filling every corner, every dark space. When your home is saturated with this divine light, it will provide energetic healing for everything and everyone who enters. Another beautiful option is to literally bring more light into your home by hanging rainbow makers or prisms in your windows. They cast beautiful rainbows on the wall, floor, ceiling… Such a treat.

When you look at the photos, paintings and objects hung on your wall, ask yourself: does this make me feel good or bad? Is it enhancing my energy or draining it? Surround yourself with positive artwork, and be ruthless!

If your front door is looking grubby or missing its number, do something about it! For easy house-witchery, make sure your entrance-way is clean and clear. Wipe down your door, including the number, the bell, and the door-handle. This isn’t just about being hygienic (although, of course, it’s a nice bonus!): when your door is clean and clear, love, money, and other good things will be able to find their way to you.


In ritual, sound — whether it be chanting, the ringing of bells, or the beating of drums — is used to clear and change the energy of a space. You can do this in your home, too, by clapping your hands. All you need to do is walk around the house, clap, and listen to how it sounds. If a clap sounds heavy or flat, the energy in that area is stagnant and stuck, but if it sounds crisp and clear, this indicates that the energy is flowing well. In the area where a clap sounds heavy, stay in that spot a little longer, and keep clapping until the sound becomes clear. You can do the same thing with bells, singing bowls, drums, or even a tambourine, if the mood strikes!

Burning sage in your home is a fantastic way to clear out stale energy. You can buy sage sticks all over the place, but I recommend using Etsy and supporting an independent business owner! Another great option is to burn Palo Santo, which smells amazing. (I’m a little in love with this Palo Santo burner, too.)


Your house might be clean, but that doesn’t mean much if you’re frazzled on the inside! One of my favourite ways to relax and change my energy is to have an Epsom salt bath. You absorb the salt through your skin, increasing your levels of magnesium (which calms you down, increases your energy, reduces irritability, and even aids concentration and sleep). It’s marvellous stuff. I buy huge bags of lavender Epsom salts and pour ample amounts into the tub every week, and it really helps make me feel happy again. P.S. If you don’t have a tub, I love these tips for turning your shower into a sanctuary.

I hope these tips help you to transform your home into an enchanting and wonderful place.

Magical blessings,

Title image by Tommaso Nervegna. Altar photo from the studio space of Ax + Apple. Crystals and roses photo from Erin Fetherston’s Tribeca loft. Window photo by Theo Gosselin. Bell image from Ironaworks. Bathtub photo by Ciara Richardson.

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