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Welcome to my online hangout space! I'm Chi - mother, childrenswear designer, founder of 106, blogger ..... Phew! I think I need to lie down. Read more.



Inside|Out: Collective Wisdom

I am extremely passionate about living as holistically and organically as possible so it was only a matter of time beore I added a lifestyle element to the blog.

Each month, I will approach experts in various fields (or highlight their work) for insights on how best to achieve total wellbeing - inside and out.

This month's Inside|Out is a collection of tips for slow and wholesome living gleaned from a column in one of my favourite Sunday newspaper supplements, Stella. Each month The Complete Woman features women from various spheres of life sharing the things that make them feel like - and function as - the best versions of themselves.

I certainly find it inspiring and I hope my selected excerpts will be just as helpful to you.



"I go through phases of 'oil-pulling'. You swish sesame oil through your mouth for 20 minutes then brush your teeth. It helps to draw out toxins."

Jasmine Hemsley, model and co-founder of Hemsley & Hemsley


"My life mantra comes from Dory in Finding Nemo - 'Just keep swimming'."

Paula Reed, Harvey Nichols fashion director


"I think it's important to have perspective and remember that we're only a small part of a much bigger, interconnected picture. The philosopher and mathematician Bertrand Russell is a hero of mine, and his comment that 'one must care about a world one will not see' resonates deeply with me and guides me through certain life challenges."

Anna Murray, Patternity co-founder


"I love the fact that my children understand the value of meditation and sometimes find the time to join me in having a still moment."

Leanne Galvin, hair colourist


"Women often see the quest for health and fitness as a battle against their bodies. If you start to think of it as an exercise in self-respect, it becomes a lot easier ."

Jenna Zoe, founder of Foods To Love


"I try to eat vegetarian food during the week and keep organic meat for the weekends as a special treat."

Noor Fares, jewellery designer


"Keeping one's brain active and learning new skills is a good way to stay sharp - knowledge is cool. I surround myself with kind people, too, as the communities that we build around ourselves are crucial to our wellbeing."

Nahid de Belgeonne, founder of Good Vibes yoga and fitness studios


"Meditation and prayer provide me with focus for the day, allow me time to reflect and visualise. I think it's important just to stop each day and offer gratitude for the life I have and the people in my life who continue to make it special."

Antonia Burrell, skincare expert


"Spending quality time with my daughter is almost a spiritual practice; you can't help but be 'present' around children."

Jo Berryman, interior designer


"At the moment I'm cooking a lot of recipes from the Green Kitchen cookbook and I find Hemsley & Hemsley dishes delicious."

Eve Kalinik, nutritional therapist and beauty PR


Which of these has resonated with you the most? I'd love to hear your very own foolproof suggestions for wellbeing, if you have any!



/hy·per·re·al·ism n. An artistic style characterized by highly realistic graphic representation./


I had heard of hyperrealistic painting and spotted a few here and there online but had never seen one in the flesh, so to speak.

I saw the work of Andrew Newton at Gallery Squared this past weekend and, try as I might, I could not imagine how he managed to achieve such accuracy of depiction using a series of brush strokes.

Newton describes his work as an "exploration of the loss of identity within the 21st Century and the conceived perception of the modern image of humanity, social media and ideal perfection."

He prefers his work to speak for itself so I shall follow his lead.



The Emerging Artists exhibition will run until the 9th of February at The Lounge, 47 Bedford Street, Royal Leamington Spa, Warwickshire. CV32 5DT.


Duck Watching



A perfectly acceptable pause in a day crammed with must-dos.


Meaningful Work

We each have unique talents and it is therefore up to us to use them mindfully and in ways that benefit others.

James Victore is a graphic designer who runs an independent studio "hell bent on world domination". I tune in to his Youtube channel every Tuesday to listen to his insightful-yet-amusingly-delivered anwers to the Burning Questions he receives from people the world over. I recently signed up for his new movement - for want of a better word - Cubicle Activism and I think you should too.


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Put simply, Cubicle Activism seeks to remind us all that work doesn't have to be synonymous with drudgery. It can and should be a gift.

The rules are simple.

  • The first is to share it on Twitter using #CubicleActivism.
  • Subscribe to the mailing list.
  • Each month you will receive a motivational poster to print out and put on your wall.

If you haven't figured out what your special purpose is, the next best thing you can do is to support others on their journey to fulfil theirs. Thanks to innovative publishers, Unbound, you can do so very easily. This short video explains it perfectly.


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Do you have any bandwagons you feel I ought to hop on? Please share!


The Library Of Birmingham 

I went to one of the most talked about libraries in recent times the other day. It took me over an hour to get there but boy was it worth it when I did! The Library Of Birmingham is slick, ultra modern and probably best described as architectural Marmite.



It is also the largest public library in Europe and houses an impressive one million books.



A lot has been written and said about its aesthetic merit or lack of it and the amount of money spent on it - about £189 million in case you were wondering. Personally, I'm just thrilled that in a supposed digital world, there is still room and a healthy anticipation for libraries filled with books.

The clever use of colour, roof gardens and spectacular views aren't half bad either.



I adore books and so does my little girl. A visit to any library to make her weekly selection brings her such joy. Seeing a new one being built gives me hope that the time-honoured tradition of reading and treasuring hard copy will probably never be lost.

Now that makes me very, very happy indeed.