Luxe people >>
Aside from my awesome husband and vast and brilliant extended family, I’m lucky enough to work with some amazing humans at Traidcraft Exchange – who combine doing wonderful and important things with being excellent to share an office with!
Luxe places >>
For a weekend > Beadnell Beach, Northumberland. So much sand and sea and sky. Plus you can’t beat a bracing dunk in the North Sea.
A long holiday > I’ve been really lucky and mostly had jobs where I’ve been able to travel a bit. I met my husband whilst we were both working in Sierra Leone, West Africa, and it’s one of my favourite places. We try to go back every year to see friends and old colleagues. People think of civil war and ebola, but the beaches and wildlife are amazing, and the country is beautiful and incredibly welcoming – it makes for a fantastic holiday.
A treat > I’ve always wanted to go to St Kilda in the Outer Hebrides.
Luxe relax >>
Best food > Eat your hat cardamom chocolate (I can get through the whole bar in minutes).
Best wine > Honestly? I wish I had a sophisticated grape based answer for this… but I’m not that fussed!
Favourite restaurant > Harrissa Kitchen in Sandyford. The food is delicious, and their business model is super cool – they run as a social enterprise and invest their profits back into the community.
Perfect weekend > A good book, a proper walk, and lots of people round for dinner.
Downtime means > Finally getting to unpack some boxes! We just moved house and are still living in total chaos – at some point I’d like to find where my socks are…
Best telly > Handmaids Tale – absolutely gripping. And Time Team. Can’t beat some digging for bones!
Best book > The Poisonwood Bible by Barbara Kingsolver is my very favourite, but I’m currently reading a book on the Salem Witch Trials by historian Stacy Schiff, which is fascinating.
Best sounds > Nick Drake, Fleetwood Mac, Willy Mason, and the Little Comets. I suspect my Spotify history might also show a lot more Taylor Swift than I’d care to admit to…
Luxe shop >>
Best shopping city > Corbridge isn’t even close to a city, but it’s got RE homewear, a cookshop, an independent bookshop and approximately 17,000 tea rooms – what more do you need?
Favourite shop > It’s got to be traidcraftshop.co.uk. Every item is fairly traded, has an interesting story, and helps artisans in the developing world. And they stock my favourite Eat your hat cardamom chocolate…
Luxe retail treat > Second hand furniture from Anderson and Garland auction house in Westerhope for my new house!
Best buy > STUDY 34 Alpaca jumpers. Ethically made, super soft and ridiculously beautiful, I wear them more than anything else I own, and have them in grey and camel. Ellie O’Neill, who designs them, lives in Newcastle and has built a really brilliant brand.
Luxe party >>
Perfect party > Anything with a ceilidh.
Best dress > A fifties style one made by Madam Wokie in Freetown. It has pockets for useful things, which is a win by me.
Dinner date > A summer evening at The Ship inn at Low Newton. It’s such a nice pub, but I always forget to book and end up sitting outside, so it would be pretty glamorous to eat dinner not wearing an anorak…
Your luxe thing in life >>
Sounds ridiculous, but a library card – access to free books for everyone in the UK is a massively brilliant thing, and we are in such danger of taking it for granted. Everyone should have and use a library card!