Ooh January! January is always a weird month, I feel. Every year, I have these mixed feelings of on the one hand; wanting to start the year off on the right foot… you know, healthy resolutions and all that, and on the other hand; allowing myself all of the indulgences in order to see myself through the post-Christmas blues, the unbelievably short days and the grey, grey weather.

So far, I have done more of the latter… waking up late, finding excuses to eat packet after packet of M&S Yum Yums and just generally being well and truly self-indulgent. Aside from a serious lack of motivation to do any exercise or eat anything other than commercial sticks of fried dough, this year has got off to a wonderful start (not that those things aren’t all wonderful in themselves).

I have started – and almost completely finished – my 2018 tax return. I have finally created that much-needed Excel file to track all of my online passwords using some cryptic messages that I probably won’t remember either. I have signed a huge interior décor project for the next few months. And, most importantly, I have hired help. Martina, who helped with the décor of the Loxton, is sticking around for the next few projects and it is absolutely incredible to be working with someone so talented, so positive and someone who understands my vision. It’s all very exciting!

Kicking off my first monthly scrapbook of 2019, I thought I’d jump in with a few favourites:

  • At the end of last year, I went to the Give & Receive Christmas pop-up shop in Seven Dials in London, which has unfortunately now closed, but I bought a beautiful Aerende hot water bottle cover. Their products are all handmade in the UK by people facing social challenges and are beautifully designed. It is well worth checking out their website.
  • I have completely and utterly fallen in love with anything and everything in Milk Decoration, a quarterly French design, décor and lifestyle magazine. It is stunning. They actually did an edit on Lausanne in their latest issue and mentioned Le Pointu and the Loxton and little old me (albeit not by name) but that was an exciting moment!
  • Hannah gave me the One Line A Day Memory Book for Christmas last year and I have been really enjoying writing in it. It is a 5-year journal with a few lines for every day. I love the idea of being able to look back on what happened on a specific day in a few years’ time. I don’t remember to write in it every single day but when I do remember, I go back and write a few notes for the days I missed. So far, I have a little note every day since 4th December 2018 which is the day Hannah gave me the book. It’s a lot of fun.
  • I’m also in the midst of decorating a playroom for a client which is a particularly lovely project. As I was looking for furniture and toys for the room, I stumbled across My Little Room, a Swiss online shop for kids toys and furniture. I love it all and honestly spent ages browsing the website.

I feel like I’ve got my home décor almost sorted in my apartment but the more I decorate spaces, the more I realise that what really makes a difference in a space is all the little bits with memories and stories. This year, I want to collect smaller gems from independent makers and I’ve found two that I love.

  • I bought this tiny little ceramic dish from Lisa Novel, a Geneva-based ceramist. I have been using it to pop my every-day jewellery in when I take it off at the end of a day
  • In December last year, I had the pleasure of meeting Georgina Trestler who is a London based illustrator and designer and I love her work. She made the most beautiful Christmas cards this year and gave me this lovely shoe illustration. I am excited to see what’s she’ll be up to this year!

Although this month has been for the most part full of overwhelming highs, I have of course had a few little slumps.

I have been really struggling to work effectively from home because my Lausanne apartment has very little natural light. I wake up in the morning and even if it’s a beautiful sunny day, the apartment only really gets much light when the sun is at its highest. I find that I get really down when I don’t get out and some days I just can’t afford to work from a café because I need my desktop computer instead of my laptop. I don’t know if it might be time to move or if I should consider working from home less but I do need to find a solution.

As I mentioned, I have also hired Martina part-time and been working more regularly with Nicole, a Geneva based photographer. I am ridiculously excited about working with them both as they are both very talented but it has meant that I have two additional sets of fixed costs at the end of the month. It’s that very necessary growth stage of my little business where I know I can’t do it all but was just getting comfortable with my own fixed costs. It’s an exciting step but also bloody scary!

Onto the good stuff – the highs of the month!

Spending more time in London over the last few months has meant that I have been geographically closer to a lot of my family members than ever before. I’ve almost always lived outside of England so never really had the luxury of just driving up for a weekend or popping in to say hello. It is one of the nicest feelings to have them all close by. I want to make sure to really make the most of that this year.

While I mentioned the slightly stressful fixed cost element of outsourcing some work to other freelancers, that is totally outweighed by how wonderful it is to be working with such talented professionals. Working with Martina this month has been life changing. We’re having great discussions, are optimizing work processes and I am just generally having more fun on the projects we’re working on. She is such a ray of sunshine and we are totally on the same wavelength.

And so that is it – another month has just flown by.

I’m looking forward to getting stuck into the next big décor project in February which I’ll be able to tell you about very shortly, and most excited about the days getting longer. These short days are killing me!

I hope you have all had a wonderful month. Thank you for stopping by for a read.

Big bisous. xS

Mix of photos taken myself and by Nicole Hertel and Hannah Shan