Thursday, December 15, 2022

Reader Q&A - Cultivating Your Secret Garden

Hello dear chic friends!
After my busy time, I have been easing into the Christmas season with little decor touches around :) I'm not putting up my proper Christmas tree this year but I have small things displayed, such as these pillows.

Are you going all out? Or doing 'Simple Christmas' like me? Both are perfect :) I love the all-out look, but this year I am keeping it simple.
The view on our dog walk this week

Reader Judy asked: ‘Can you do a post on your Secret Garden idea. please. Love it and would like a bit more detail if possible. Loved your book on Summer and will be using many of your ideas. Thanks.’

In my book ‘Thirty Chic Days’ there is a whole chapter dedicated to this topic and it’s in ‘Day 5. Create and guard your secret garden’. In this chapter I write: ‘A secret garden is that sacred, private place where you are free to dream about your greatest desires safe from the judgement of others.’

Have you ever had a delicious idea – perhaps it was a new outfit style that is quite different to what you’ve worn before, or even something major such as a change in career. And you are so pumped with the thought of it that you can’t stop talking about it to whoever is closest to you. By the time you’ve explained it, all the energy has gone from it because you’ve let it out. And the person you were talking to isn’t so enthusiastic either, because they can’t see the vision that you do.

Plus, if you’re just blah blah blahing all your ideas to everyone all the time, you’ll be that flakey girl who is all talk and no action.

This scenario has happened to me more times than I can count, and that’s why I recommend letting new ideas incubate in a safe space – your own mind – before you let them out into the world. They are like a tiny seedling that needs coddling and protection to start with.

So next time you have a lightening bolt idea, write it in your journal, expand upon it with more detail, and move in silence. Become known as the person who is always trying new things without necessarily having to get the buy-in of those around her. People will be intrigued, and you will enjoy yourself more as well as finding it easier to do your little mini self-improvements here and there.

There is more in Day 5 of Thirty Chic Days, so if you haven’t read that yet, check it out at Amazon here.

Thanks so much for your question, Judy!
And, I look forward to seeing you next week - Christmas week! Eek! Are we ready? Of course we are :)

xx Fiona

(My Amazon links are affiliate, and via Amazon Smile which donates money to the ASPCA. The price you pay isn't any different, so thank you if you choose to use my links


  1. This habit has helped me immensely, Fiona. Thank you for pointing out that our little secret plans make us feel magical and cultivate a kind of mystique in the circles we move in. I love that feeling of moving through the world with my energy pulsing under my skin. xo karen

  2. Another short addendum: I'm reading your "Thirty Slim Days" and just now laughed where you said you'd decided that you are not a person who eats potato chips. I had decided that I was not a person who "buys" potato chips so several times I have astonished friends by saying, "Oh yay! Potato chips! I'm not allowed to have them unless they're served to me! Thank you!" (with all the exclamation points) Not the most chic behavior, right? From now on I will be the person who enjoys them quietly at parties and keeps her mystique. xo karen

  3. I, too, learned that lesson the hard way, one of telling people your dreams, visions and goals. And like you, I also realized that they don’t have my vision so it really doesn’t mean anything to them. We truly have to believe in ourselves without needing a cheerleader. I have learned the value of writing everything down, no matter how silly. It may not go anywhere but then again, it may fly off the page and become reality. As to Christmas, it still isn’t much fun decorating without Leland, my Alpha Hubby. Last year I had one lit pencil tree. This year I have that but I also found a few decorations to put around the living room. It’s enough! As always I am grateful and focused on the real Reason for the Season!

  4. And p.s. I want a real Sectet Gatden! I have the plans drawn up with pictures on my Vision Board. Because of this article, I am creating an area in my home that will be my indoor Secret Garden where I can dream and write in the winter!

  5. You pillows look very festive ! Glad you are doing the holidays YOUR way. I am going all out...but donating things I don't love as I go along. Happy Holidays!


Merci for your comment. Wishing you a chic day!

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