Styling & Slow living: Tips From a Bookworm

A Colsie Moment with Anika of Chapters of May 

colsie (kol-zee) / origin: Old Scots for ‘cosy’

1. The habit of embracing winter darkness and finding comfort and warmth in life’s simple pleasures. 
2. The feeling that comes with being present, inviting closeness, and appreciating the things that last. 
3. The act of slow living and making time for the people and things that soothe our souls.
 Welcome to A Colsie Moment, our blog series that features questions and answers with inspiring people about what slow living can look like in all aspects of life. From career to family to cooking to designing to mental health, we're dedicated to exploring what it means to live an intentional, happy life using the simple magic that already surrounds us.
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Today we're catching up with book blogger and cosy-vibe photographer, Anika, best known as Chapter of May, about what colsie looks like for her. Think books, blankets and hot brews! Read on for some slow living inspiration.
TELL US A LITTLE ABOUT YOURSELF!

My name is Anika, and I’m the blogger and photographer behind Chapters of May. It’s my little space on the internet to talk about my love of books, pretty photos, and all things cosy. I work part-time for a small charity, and freelance part time as a content creator. 

I’m Yorkshire born and bred. I have woken up to the view of sheep pretty much every morning for the past 24 years! I live in a small village not too far from the Dales, and it’s my favourite place to be.

I started Chapters of May as part of a university application project and kind of fell into the world of blogging. I never really knew what I wanted to do back then, but now I have a job that I absolutely adore.

WHAT ARE SOME WAYS IN WHICH YOU PRACTICE COLSIE (SLOW LIVING)? 

IN LIFE: I like to mix self-care into my routine when I can. But I’m forever reminding myself to just breathe. I’m a perfectionist and my own worst critic, so when something isn’t going my way, it’s really easy for me to become flustered. So reminding myself that I’m only human, and remembering to breathe always helps slow the pace. Plus, sometimes it’s the only thing I can control.

AT HOME: I like to carve out time at home to be selfish. My home is my happy place, it’s where I feel most comfortable. So if I need to slow down, especially over the weekend, I turn my favourite corners of the house into cosy reading corners and just enjoy a good book. It’s the best way for me to shake off the weekend, but also brings genuine contentment.

WHILE TRAVELLING: I like to be as observant as possible when I’m travelling. There’s just so much to take in! It means finding a balance between my urge to photograph everything, and just absorbing my surroundings. Sometimes a memory is better than a photo.

HOW DID YOU DISCOVER YOUR LOVE FOR READING?

I remember my mum buying me this enormous box set of Disney classics. And because I was such a shy child, I would just sit and read them for hours. It had everything, from The Rescuers and Robin Hood to Bambi and The Lion King. Funnily enough, books pulled me out of my shell, because they gave me something to talk about. I was also obsessed with Matilda and I wanted to be just like her - powers and all. In primary school, I started reading Jacqueline Wilson’s books and the obsession with reading just continued. Nowadays, it’s a struggle not to end the day with a book.

SO MANY OF US WANT TO READ MORE, BUT JUST DON'T SEEM TO ACTUALLY DO IT. ANY ADVICE?

I have a blog post on this very thing! In my experience, once you find something you really love, it’s hard to give up. It just takes a little experimenting. Don’t let books or their popularity intimidate you, and don’t be afraid to pick up something new. One thing I’ll always recommend to people is audiobooks. No, they’re nothing like holding a physical book in your hands, but listening to a good story can inspire you to reach for another.

YOU ARE AN INSANELY TALENTED AND CREATIVE BOOK BLOGGER - WHERE DO YOU FIND INSPIRATION?

Thank you very much! That’s very kind. I’m inspired by other bloggers and social media, but I’m also very driven by my surroundings and passions. I have a genuine appreciation for photography and creativity, and that motivates me to share more online. The content I post is very much a culmination of things I love. I get a lot of inspiration from the books I read, they often stir up an ambitious spirit. There are a lot of characters or authors that I relate to, and when I see them achieve a success or experience a happy ending, I’m inspired to reach for my own goals.

DO YOU HAVE ANY TIPS FOR STYLING YOUR HOME AND YOUR PHOTOS? (ESPECIALLY WHEN IT COMES TO BLANKET STYLING!)

Play around with textures and layers. I absolutely love mixing up textures in my flat lays, and blankets are perfect for this. It doesn’t have to be a bold contrast, even something as simple as thin cotton against chunky wool adds a new layer to photos. Each fabric picks up light differently, so mixing it up makes the editing process a lot more fun. The same goes for decorating the home too, which is one of the reasons the blankets are amazing for decor! They look cosy against every background. I keep a folded pile by my favourite sofa and it’s the cosiest spine in my house.

WHAT DOES YOUR PERFECT DAY LOOK LIKE? 

Waking up with the sun (no alarm clocks allowed) and a cup of Yorkshire Tea already brewing in the kitchen. Then it’s a cosy breakfast and a lazy stroll to walk it off. I’m happy when I’m creating content, so some photography and editing has to be involved in the perfect day. And it would all end with a hearty takeaway, a glass of red wine, and a good book.

WHAT IS YOUR FAVOURITE TBCO. PRODUCT?

The Olive Heritage Check is just the perfect combination of colours and suits my taste to a tee. It reminds me of my favourite season, Autumn, and is the blanket I’ll reach for when it comes to long distance drives too.

MOST RECENT THING IN YOUR SEARCH HISTORY?

“The best cocktails to make at home” - haha! My sister and I are always trying something new on the weekends. If we’re not trying to knit a scarf, write a screenplay or build a bookshelf, we’re experimenting in the kitchen.

ANY CURRENT RECOMMENDATIONS? 

Book - The Vanishing Half by Brit Bennett (but this changes daily)

Song - Grows Old - Thirdstory

Podcast - The Gurls Talk Podcast by Adwoa Aboah

Quote - “Every day may not be good, but there’s good in every day.”

Website - The Tartan Blanket Co. - obviously!

Recipe - Glazed Apple Crumb Muffins by Sallys Baking Addiction

App - *hides face*...TikTok

Keep up with Anika on her blog and instagram!

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TBCo. is more than a brand, it’s a community. That’s why when things started getting weird, we came to you for your help on how to move forward together! And in true TBCo. family fashion, you all showed up for us with great tips, ideas and encouragement on how to make the best out of all the time we’re all spending at home. Amidst all of the uncertainty, we want to be a place of rest and inspiration, a resource for responding to panic with peace and a way to be together, even while apart. Because now is the time for getting close, no matter the distance.

Discover more from Stay Home.

A safe space for community thinking and tips for turning isolation into hibernation, because now is the time to get close, no matter the distance. 
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