We all have a story that is inscribed on our hearts, written as the result of every aspect of our lives.
The things we collect along the way are apart of that story.
I was lucky enough to have a chat with the lovely people from Hello Darling a store in New Zealand that stocks brands like Kowtow (which y’all know I love)
I had a chat with one of the darlings (Clare) from Hello Darling, it was an honour to ask some questions, in speaking I realised that Hello Darling is a lot more than a shop, clothes and shoes it is a place where love flourishes and self expression is valued – the shop, tells a story and allows people to express their own story through clothing.
I have attached a kind of transcript of my conversation with the lovely Clare, I thought instead of putting Q’s and A’s a transcript structure would give you more insight into Clare’s character, because she is just a wonderful human being – One who’s story is worth telling – to you.
I have always loved fashion and design. Starting from a very early age I used to design dresses in scrapbooks and draw floor plans for homes! I started doing this as far back as I can remember! I have always wanted a brick and mortar retail store which makes people feel welcome as soon as they enter and create a space people feel comfortable in. It’s taken me a long time to realise this dream and it’s quite stressful at times! I totally believe that if you want something bad enough eventually it will happen for you, I’ve never been afraid of taking risks and I kind of felt like it was my time to do something I’ve always wanted to do. I’ve raised four gorgeous children and I’m still married to my husband after 32 years so I figured it was my turn. A lot of people are purely price driven in their buying and that’s fine but I am quite the opposite. I’ve always believed less is more and that buying quality timeless things will last you a very long time if not forever, and to wear everything you have and use everything you have so there’s no need for lots of things. I’ve always liked stories behind what I purchase and this now comes through in my store. I like to know where it’s come from, the conditions that it is made in, the reasons behind why it’s made, I know this isn’t possible in everything I stock but I hope it will be one day. I find I don’t even look at anything in mainstream mass produced ‘fast fashion’ now when I’m out and about. I know I am at a stage in my life where I can choose that and I know a lot of people can’t so I’m not hung up on it for others. I choose to be that way. I love the stories behind some of my products, I love knowing the suppliers and I love being able to choose. I love Kowtow. I have been wearing it for years. Not only because it’s timeless and classic and well made but I LOVE the story behind it and the history of the brand. I love how they care for their staff and I love how they make sure their children got to school It’s like FRANK. I love how this young couple have chosen to fight hold poverty in NZ and how last year they donated over 10,000 items to NZ schools from their sales. It’s so cool when people are so selfless. I honestly believe that more and more products are going to be ethically produced going forward, I believe people are going to care more about those things and think before they pick up something or buy five things from a chain store, that they might stop and think, this equates to one ethically well made piece of clothing I can wear for years! I created this business firstly because I’ve always wanted a retail store but I also did it for my daughters who are now raising families of their own, thinking they may want to work with me and take it over when I’m no longer around. So that they have an income as well as the choice to be at home with their children if they want to be, like I was. I choose to be that kind of parent and I was lucky enough that my interior design work allowed me to do short term contracts and always in school hours. I have also always helped run my husbands electrical business. The other thing I love about this new adventure is the people I am meeting, I hadn’t taken that into account when I thought about opening a store but I am making the most amazing friends along the way and that I think is going to be the best thing about Hello Darling!
Isn’t she a stunner, I mean man her story is so amazing on so many levels, I absolutely loved having a conversation with her. You can see her caring and kind nature alive within each of her words and her understanding, that every individual is unique. That is amazing. Because you’re unique and amazing.
Clare and Hello Darling were running a competition called things that tell a story and this is so appropriate, because if anything storytells it is Hello Darling. What we can learn from Clare and the story of Hello Darling is the fact that we should all have the courage to tell our stories in everything we do. Because we all have worth and unique character – we must show and tell the world. Hello Darling teaches us to have courage! Story tell, express your character everywhere you can in E V E R Y W A Y
The competition they had asked Instagram users to photograph things that tell a story, so here are mine. My story, like Clare, I hope to one day be a mark of courage, I am working toward that and Clare is a role model of such action, such beautiful expression and courage.
My things that tell a story
That black book with all the paper in, is my blog book with every, goal, appointment, dream, break down, plan within it
Those three books, have/are shaping my character and have taught me life lessons.
That black dress was the first thing I wore that made me feel pretty even in casts. The first time after my operation, I felt like me again in that dress.
The words in the corner of the photo were written for me, they’ve been constant encouragement
The rings are the stack I wear everyday and they each have meaning to me.
My laptop, my blog, my essence.
That is my story or apart of it. Have courage like Clare and tell yours.
Hello Darling, Goodbye Darling.