Hello ~ 15 Things About Me (and a discount code)

Helen Cloke

In the 'About' tab I've written all about how I started off making my own lingerie, what inspired me to take over the running of what was Elle-Joans, why I rebranded it 'NellieJoans' and what my future plans are.  But what about behind all that?  I thought it would be fun to explore what makes me as individual as the lingerie I make.

1 ~ I was born in England and raised a Kiwi.  That gives me a little bit of casual, kiwi 'can-do' attitude mixed with a british desire tobe etiquettely appropriate at all times.

2 ~ These traits work well for my (other) job as a professional face painter.  Although, I feel loathe to call getting to chat to children and paint their faces a 'job.'  It's not just children either but adults too.  For parties, events, markets or for no reason at all.  My husband will often come home to me with a inexcusably painted face.


3 ~ I have qualifications in Horticulture and Landscape Design.  That's how I met my husband, a fellow landscaper.  Six months ago, after a 15 year long career, I decided I had achieved everything that I wanted to in this field and that it was time to move on.

 4 ~ Something else my husband and I have in common is that we both love DIY and renovating.  We are currently turning our tiny 1950's house into a retro and antique lovers haven.  We are great enablers for one another.  One of us just has to exclaim 'Hey, I've an idea!  Let's completely remove this wall,' and the other one is already running for the sledge hammer.

5 ~ I have the biggest phobia of birds.  If they get close then I find it difficult to breathe and my body freezes.  My husband owns two pet chickens who are cunningly adept at escaping their enclosure and therefore there are times when I am trapped in my own home with two roaming guard chickens outside.

6 ~ Another, lesser phobia I have is for injections.  This created one of my more embarrassing moments of my life when, as a teenager trying to explain this phobia, I loudly exclaimed, 'I don't mind the prick, I just hate the feel of it inside me!'  Then wondered why my best friend was in hysterics.  She still reminds me of it now.

7 ~ My best friend has been my best friend for 25 years.  It's one of those friendships that has endured long distances and life setbacks and we can still have each other in hysterics.  She now lives just around the corner from me and our children are growing up together, just how it should be.

8 ~ We probably became best friends because we both favour the colour green.  I love green.  Always have, always will.  It just makes everything better.

9 ~ Something else I have always loved is 'The Little Mermaid.'  A sassy red-head who is completely true to herself and knows what she wants out of life.  How could this not be my favourite movie?  It's a philosophy true to my heart and one of the reasons I was interested in the project in number 10.

10 ~ I've illustrated a soon to be published children's book.  It's a book about having the courage to believe in yourself and the author, Siubhan Green aspires to 'change the world one picture book at a time.'  Written for 5 - 8 year olds, the book aims to instil in children a strong sense of self belief so that they will grow up to be successful, happy adults. 

 11 ~ I'm most definitely an introvert, but one who pushes comfort zones and does a few extroverted things.  I adore acting and being on stage.  Getting to explore and express different personalities is the best.

12 ~ The other thing is a wee, weekly spot on our local radio station.  I'm their entertainment contributor and report on what activities are fun and affordable in our region.

13 ~ Fun and affordable is how I want my fitness to be as well.  I've only entered a gym once in my life and lasted five boring minutes on a treadmill before scarpering off to the cafe.  It's not my thing at all!  I much prefer yoga.  So relaxing and you get to sleep at the end (see number 14.)  I also do pole dancing - (think more strength, less stripper.)  I go with my sister and we have friendly competition to see who can master the moves the quickest.  It's usually her but don't tell her I said that.

14 ~ Sleep.  I love sleep.  I could easily sleep 10 solid hours a night if I could.  The only time I can't sleep is birthdays and Christmas.  I really haven't moved on from my 5 year old self who was just WAY TOO EXCITED to sleep! 

15 ~ Except for last night when I ended up still wide awake at 1am thinking up this list.  I think that proves that the thought of running Nellie-Joan's is just as exciting to me as Christmas.  And thats a good omen.

I'd love for you all to introduce yourselves in the comments below.  Let me know if you connected with any of the points above.  Do you have any phobias?  Are they sewing related?  What's your favourite colour? How did you get into sewing lingerie (or anything else!)

As a welcome to you and a celebration of Nellie Joans, I'm offering a 15% discount on all first orders.  Sign up to the newsletter to receive the discount code.

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