Hello and welcome!
‘Hairshirt’* is a tongue-in-cheek challenge to myself and anyone else out there aspiring to live simply, slowly and joyfully while keeping the inner party-pooper in check. My aim is to delight myself (and perhaps you too) with little surprises of fun, beauty, or indulgence, which might otherwise have been framed as spartan, labour intensive or undesirably compromised.
I was a city dweller until 2009 when we moved to the least populated county of Wales (Britain’s happiest place, according to research – and I can’t dispute that). I share our home with my husband and our two little girls… and another family with two little girls… and our cat, Mr. Darcy. We have about an acre of ‘garden’ around the house which is pretty wild – some of it edible, either by chance or on purpose… We’re on the edge of an ancient wood, on the edge of a small town, so if I open the window I can hear mostly birds, some distant sheep, and the odd tractor. (If I close it I can hear small children…) We do most of our daily errands by bike – all year round. It is rainy, yes, and it can be very cold in Winter, but I have longjohns and some really good waterproof trousers, and besides, it is so green and so very beautiful outside, and the air is a tonic for the lungs.
My husband and I are both architects by training – we like designing and making things of all kinds and at any scale. I have a passion for textiles and sewing in particular, which features heavily here. I can be an earthy purist when it comes to cloth and dye and I generally like simple clothes with clean lines. BUT but I’m a sucker for neon, gold, glitter, sequins and some serious theatre on party nights. That’s where I get busy with thrifting and upcycling.
If ‘Hairshirt’ is a blazing contradiction in terms, well evidently so am I – aren’t we all? My posts are often thoughts on those contradictions as I encounter them in the course of my work and everyday life. It’s all contested territory so please do join in the discussion…
1 a shirt made of haircloth worn next to the skin as a penance
2 a secret trouble or affliction
Collins English Dictionary