Friday, September 30, 2011

Final Day in a Chic September

Well, my chic friends, may I share with you what I learned during the 30 days of a chic September? At the beginning of the month I planned to:

‘Document daily steps I have taken towards a chic, elegant and healthy life. My goal is to keep uppermost in my mind the kind of life I want to live. I will be focusing on all the small things I do each day that lead me towards my goal, rather than away from it.’

The first thing I learnt is that I take my beret off to those of you who blog daily. Keeping it up for a week or a month is one thing, but all the time is quite another. Thanks to those of you who asked, but I just couldn’t carry on through October, or until the end of the year. I'm almost wrecked now!

I learned that there are opportunities to live a chic life at every turn, even in the mundane. I found that by planning ahead, I was more successful and improved my odds in being chic. Getting up earlier, doing my jobs quickly, organising meals ahead of time, these all gave me time to do something extra with my appearance or tidy up around the house, or do a few more chores at work.

And I learnt many, many new ways to incorporate little things into my life to make it more chic, from you. Thank you for ideas you left in the comments section, I’ve really enjoyed and been inspired by them.

Kate at Une Vie Chic posted on her blog ‘a chic life is not a lazy life’. I couldn’t agree more. On days when I thought ‘I’m tired, I’m going to have a rest, I’m not doing anything’, well, those were the days when I felt the least positive and consequently less chic. I’ve always believed ‘x begets x’ as in being busier makes you more productive, over-eating more makes you want to eat more, consuming less makes you want to consume less, action begets action and laziness begets laziness.

I went for a walk today and had lunch out, just me. It seems to be my thing lately, I go for an exercise walk to a nearby area, have lunch by myself and a browse and walk back to work. I was in a bookstore and it was so relaxing. Do you find bookstores calm you? If there’s classical music playing in the background so much the better.

Flicking through a magazine I came across an article on turning off technology. It noted we are more tied to our gadgets than ever, at the same time as ‘retro’ domestic arts are enjoying a resurgence – knitting, baking, sewing, etc. Like they ever went away! The article had examples of people who shut their technology off for a period of time and saw how they coped.

I don’t twitter or facebook, but I blog, email and browse. Many’s the time when I’ve felt so drained from incessant browsing, yet I can’t seem to tear myself away. That’s where the oven timer comes in handy, but I only have one at home. I have to be a bit disciplined at work.

In October I will be packing and organising for our move, and then moving, and then unpacking and organising. So there won’t be much time at all for internetting. So in a way I will be having my own technology detox and perhaps it is quite timely.

There are things I have to do, such as internet banking – I check and balance our accounts both work and home every day, and email but I will limit myself to certain, reasonable times. Then there are blogs and newspapers. My inspiration and entertainment. I’m thinking I might not click on, for the whole month, just to see if I can.

I’m actually quite excited about the prospect. More time for things such as cooking, reading, putting my feet up, making our new house a stylish nest, planning, planting herbs, finding a summer knitting project – the scarf on the cover of Debbie Bliss’s book The Knitter’s Year looks pretty and I already have some knitting cotton, watching movies, pottering and writing.

So, I will see you in November. I look forward to catching up with your blogs then.

Image from


  1. I'm horrified to admit that there are almost NO bookstores in downtown Chicago; there's not one on North Michigan Avenue (the Magnificent Mile). I know that electronic readers are hastening the demise of bookstores, but to the point that there are NONE on a major shopping street? Horrors...

  2. I thoroughly enjoyed your month Fiona. I learned a lot and it has changed my behavior in that I constantly look for ways to be more chic and like you say, action leads to more action and I get that now. I think taking a step back from the internet is the ultimate chic thing. By far, it is my biggest time drain. Good luck with your move!

  3. It was a great month! Thank you for your diligence is posting every single day. That is quite a challenge, isn't it? I struggle to post 2-3x a week. I always have thoughts or ideas in my head but sitting down and typing them all up takes time. It has been hard for me to find the right balance of online time and offline. We will be taking a trip for 2 weeks next month and I am not taking my laptop with me--a forced detox. However, my Nook Color is going and it does have capabilities....

    I hope your move goes smoothly and that you enjoy the process and your new home. I can't wait to hear more about it.

    Bookstore or spa? Bookstore wins every time. ; ) xxBliss

  4. Thank you Fiona for your month of posts.
    I have looked for them everyday and they have started my morning with inspiring words and chic thoughts.

    I hope that your move goes smoothly and will wait for some posts from your new home.

    Take care and enjoy that detox!

  5. Thank you so much for your blog! It's always a pleasure and is the first thing I read each morning! The September entries were a delight (and I marvel at the ability to keep a daily blog - such a lot of time spent at your computer) I applaud your upcoming break - but am counting down the days until you returnin November. We will miss you!!

  6. How exciting to be packing to move to your new home! I look forward to hearing about how you make it chic.

  7. Fiona,

    I am going to miss these frequent posts. Thank you so much for this, I learned a great deal from you. I looked forward to these posts so much, and may just need to come back and peruse again at my leisure while you are packing away.

    ~Take Care

  8. Dear Fiona,
    Thank you for the Chic September.
    Happy moving to you!
    You will be missed.

  9. Gosh, I can't believe Sept is over already! We've been away for two weeks - in the motorhome in Belgium - and I have squillons of pictures to share and endless posts to write...but you won't be reading them, I guess. That's OK, though, sort of. I really write for my own satisfaction. I know just what you mean about being too connected. I wrote about my Aunt Rita's birthday and what a 'DO-er' she was and how I'm terribly lazy (so not very chic, then). Anyhow, I didn't take my computer on vacation and though I missed it a bit, I did loads of sewing - made pillows, put ribbons on pillows, loops on tea towels, and did a huge crochet project. I'm glad to be back and catching up, but it was good to have a break, too. Will look forward to reading up on your posts that I missed and also to your return in November!

  10. Congratulations on getting to the end of Sept! I've loved reading your posts. I think what I've learned from them is that the principle thing to living a chic life is being organised; time management with military precision. I think I can work with that ;-)
    Good luck with the move Fiona. It will be wonderful nesting in your own place.

  11. I have truly loved reading these posts, though often I was catching up a week at a time! I think I've noticed that the most important thing is that a chic life is an intentional life, one where you choose to live this way rather than hoping wonderful will just occur naturally. I look forward to hearing all about the new place in November!

  12. Dear Fiona,
    Thank you for a wonderful chic month of September :) Now it's time for me to apply those to October!
    You will be missed for the month of October but good luck on your gadget-less endeavor! I love my time on the internet as much as I love my time away from it.
    Happy moving and settling in to your new home. See you back in November. Cheers! xoxo
    ~ Lenna

  13. Merci everyone, for your kind words.

  14. Well said Fiona. I do find that if I get lazy about exercising, I get lazy about eating right, and this spirals into being lazy about being productive and everything else. It's like they say...the more things you have to do, the more things you get done. ;)

  15. Also, sad that September is was fabulous! Thanks so much for the little tips and inspiration! ;)

  16. Thanks Fee. it was wonderful month.. I treasured every blogpost.. thanks for the inspiration.. good luck with your move.. packing, unpacking.. aag! One thing for certain,.. a move is good for the soul as well, you get rid of the clutter! thanks again,
    Jean - Brisbane Au

  17. A fun month that went too quickly. I've enjoyed your posts. Good luck with the move; I look forward to November, the new house, and Jessica!

    xoxo --

  18. Fiona, may I join your established readers in wishing you well for your upcoming move. I have come across your blog just this week and I'm so glad I did.

  19. Thank you for your September postings! I really enjoyed them. We lost two Borders bookstores in our town recently and the remaining big box bookstore has more games and trinkets and fewer books every visit. We have a couple of independents that I support, but they are struggling. The demise of bookstores is tragic.

  20. Fiona,
    Thanks so much for your month of chic ideas. You've been so inspiring! I'll miss reading your blog in October but having moved many times in my life, I certainly understand that you may not have time to blog. I hope your move will go smoothly and look forward to hearing about the new house in November.

  21. Well that was fun! thank you for the inspiring posts. I absolutely agree about the relaxing mode of a bookstore, its my favourite place to gift shop. Good luck with your move!
    Rita from Victoria

  22. My morning coffee will not be the same without your daily stories.It was like a nice visit with a friend.Can't wait until you return.Hope your move goes well. Enjoy your new home.See you soon I hope.

  23. Fiona - thank you for your inspiring month of chic - I'm going to miss you this month but quite understand the reason for the break; perhaps I'll reread your past blogs.

    Best of luck with your move and Happy Birthday (not sure of the date but I know you're a Libran - what a big month for you and your husband too!).

    Until next time.


  24. Hello Fiona,
    Good luck with all the packing , moving and un-packing that October will bring....and good luck with the 'internet' detox....I will be interested to hear how that goes.....Giving up the internet is a little like starting a much easier to put it off for another day.....Have a great month.....xv

  25. I love this chic series so much. I will really miss you if you are gone for a month, if you must I understand. I will just be happy when you return. Thanks for your lovely blog.

  26. adorei !!
    um bj doce e apareca nas abobrinhas do BRAZIL!!

  27. Fiona,
    Thanks for a wonderful blog and for being so committed during September to journal your chic efforts every day.

    Congratulations on New Zealand's win in the Rugby. I'm sure it lifted everyone's spirits. After the disasters your countrymen have dealt with over the last year I hope you all enjoyed the celebrations.

    I thought you might enjoy my new blog.
    It gives inspiration for core pieces of a capsule wardrobe.

    Looking forward to your return to the keyboard in November.

    (from across the ditch, in Queensland)


Merci for your comment. Wishing you a chic day!

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