What to do during self-isolation!
If you’re self-employed like me and mainly work from home, you’re probably quite familiar with the need for self-discipline. Following a routine is essential, as it’s far too easy to find distractions. A walk with your beloved pooch or a lengthy perusal of your favourite seller’s page on Etsy. Do these things and just watch those hours slip by, leaving you wondering where the day went and why didn’t you get any of those things done that you promised yourself you would.
My solution is to make to-do lists, which I follow rigorously. It’s the only way that I can get things done. Following is my militarily-precise regime which I’m sharing, as it may come in handy when you are completely new to the concept of working from home.
My regime –
- Get up at 6.30 am If I don’t force myself to get up very early in the morning, there’s a strong possibility that I’ll stay in bed till noon).
- Respond to e-mails (8 am – 9.30 am)
I receive a lot of e-mails, some from clients, others, from companies that want me to promote their client’s product on my blog (usually, these are a complete waste of my time as they have nothing to do with vintage fashion). Perhaps I should write a post with examples of some of the ridiculous e-mails I receive from companies that have a whole list of demands and offer nothing in return. What do you think? 🙂
- Research 9.30 am – 11.30 am (sometimes it’s a day, week or a month.)
- Lunch at 12 pm
- Write! 1 pm – 3 pm
- Meeting at the museum ( 4 pm – 6 pm)
*Skype is the only alternative to a face-to-face meeting.
- Ballet class at 7.25 pm
*Obviously, all ballet classes have been cancelled until further notice, so I have to work out from home or at least watch a ballet workout. 🙂
Do you see where I’m going with this? You need a routine when you are working from home. You also need a routine even if you are not working at all but going outside is no longer an option!
What to do during self-isolation!
Part Deux! (The “free day” option)
When I designate a day to be a “free day”, I dress up, put my red lipstick on, style my hair, as if I was going to a meeting. Sometimes I spend the entire day in my silk pyjamas or 1930s kimono and velvet slippers à la Hugh Hefner. And if you are going to ask me “Why bother dressing up when you are not going out?“, that means that your standards have already slipped and I see no need for us to be friends 🙂 With all seriousness, I’m much more productive when I’m “done up”.
Now that going out is no longer an option, you should let your creative juices flow. Dress up in your prettiest dress, experiment with new make-up ideas. Do anything that makes you happy and that doesn’t involve you going outside your home!
What to do during self-isolation! My Top 9 Ideas to quell the boredom!
1) Read a book that you’ve always wanted to read but never had the time for it.
If you don’t have your favourite book to hand, make a list of those that you’ve always wanted to read and order them online. For inspiration, here’s a list of my favourite books in no particular order.
- “The Fountainhead” Ayn Rand
- “Atlas Shrugged” Ayn Rand
- “We the Living” Ayn Rand
*As you can see, I’m a HUGE Ayn Rand fan!
- “The Picture of Dorian Gray” Oscar Wilde
- The Works of Oscar Wilde
*Anything and everything by Oscar Wilde.
- “The Master and Margarita” by Mikhail Bulgakov
- “Les Liaisons Dangereuses” by Pierre Choderlos de Laclos
- “Steppenwolf” by Hermann Hesse
- “The Double” by Fyodor Dostoyevsky
- “Tonio Kröger” by Thomas Mann
If my list of recommended books is a tad too heavy for your liking, here’s some lighter but very interesting reading-material.
- “Queen of Fashion” by Caroline Weber
- “Forties Fashion: From Siren Suits to the New Look” by Jonathan Walford
- “Memnoch the Devil” by Anne Rice
- “Anne of Green Gables” by Lucy Maud Montgomery
There’s also a fantastic selection of free downloads from the METROPOLITAN MUSEUM OF ART!
2) Clean house, clear mind!
- Can you imagine working from home when your apartment is a complete mess? Well, I can’t!
- It’s so much more pleasant and relaxing to spend a substantial amount of time in clean surrounding!
- I’m obsessed with keeping my windows spotless, furniture and carpets dust and fur-free, which isn’t always easy. The apartment is filled with antiques, and my Cavalier King Charles Spaniel Isia shows her great appreciation for French furniture by leaving fur absolutely everywhere. 🙂 Thankfully, a good vacuum cleaner solves the problem in a blink of an eye.
- If you don’t have an air purifier, open all your windows for at least a couple of hours a day to kill germs trapped in your home.
- What I advocate you do during self-isolation to keep a clear mind is you Spring-clean your wardrobe. Take everything from your closets and drawers, clean the surface, see if there is anything you’ve been hoarding for years with no intention to wear it and toss it aside.
I wrote an article on ” How to store vintage clothing like a pro” which might come very handy right now.
Take this opportunity to go through each piece in your wardrobe and see what you have too much of and what is missing. Make a WISH-LIST regardless of how extravagant it is!!!
3) Help smaller independent businesses through those difficult times by purchasing their products!
Go through your WISH-LIST and buy whatever you can afford.
Please note, that I don’t live off a trust fund or a millionaire husband and I don’t have an unlimited budget for shopping. I’m self-employed, as are many of you, but I believe that we all deserve a little bit of luxury every now and again.
So without further ado, I present my WISH-LIST extravaganza.
Lucile -vintage-inspired luxury lingerie that left me breathless!
Utterly obsessed with Lucile and the incredible history behind the brand that was established in 1890 by Lady Duff Gordon, and is now in the hands of the very talented Camilla Blois, Lady Duff’s great, great, granddaughter.
On top of my WISH-LIST is the DUCHESS OF WARWICK long gown in black, followed by THE ‘IT’ GIRLS bra in pink with matching panties. And last but not least, the MAISON DE GRAND LUXE bed jacket in red.
French Sole flats.
It’s not a secret how much in love I am with French Sole flats, especially the velvet slippers, and how often I pare the magnificent beauties with my vintage outfits, as they go so well together.
The French Sole addiction started some years ago, so how fitting that my brilliant husband, Gregory Michael King shot their latest image campaign!!! Yes, I am bragging. It’s beyond my control.
Here are some of my favourite French Sole flats from their new collection.
- I’m drawn to pink, so Lola flats in pale pink suede are on top of the list. They remind me very much of the ballet flats I wear during ballet class!
- Lola flats in metallic leather, now in my proud possession are of very interesting but difficult colour to describe. I call them “chocolate dipped in gold”. I know that the name means absolutely nothing, but they pick-up so many colours and I keep seeing bits of gold in them. They look wonderful paired with pink, black and, of course, gold.
- Penelope Ankle Tie flats are simple yet elegant and would go so well with 1950s pedal pushers or a pencil skirt in black paired with a nice cardigan. Perhaps the one from Wheels and Dollbaby? I’m salivating over one of the Dita von Teese cardigans!
You can never have enough vintage gloves.
It’s fair to say that I have gloves in abundance but there is always a room for one more pair.
You might be interested in “A lady needs her gloves” article I wrote a while back.
I think that gloves will make a comeback this year! 🙂
There are many vintage sellers on Etsy with a large selection of gloves from the 1930s- 1960s so browse and shop away!
I’ve recently purchased a pair of beautiful 1950s gloves, in the photograph below, from Dandelionvintage who has some real gems in her shop.
4) Exercise your body!
I haven’t taken a ballet class in five months because of a torn tendon in the foot. I’m ready to go back to the studio now but sadly this is not presently an option. My body doesn’t cope well with a long break in exercise and frankly, my mind doesn’t either.
Thankfully, this is where Ballet Beautiful YouTube videos come to the rescue! Great sets of exercise for all levels.
5) Exercise your mind!
Study at an Ivy League College for free!
Lots of online courses to choose from! I opted for something very practical, of course, “Greek and Roman Mythology” at Penn State University.
I’m very curious about what you would choose. Care to share?
6) Fall in Love with classic movies from the 1930s-1950s!
My recommendations for you:
- All About Eve (1950)
- The Women (1939)
- The Philadelphia Story (1940)
- Desk Set (1957)
- How to Marry a Millionaire (1957)
- Mildred Pierce (1945)
- Queen Bee (1955)
- Shanghai Express (1932)
- Cat on a Hot Tin Roof (1958)
- Father of the Bride (1950)
- Rebecca (1940)
- You Were Never Lovelier (1942)
- Gilda (1946)
- Cover Girl (1944)
- Stage Door (1937
- I Married a Witch (1942)
- The Lady Eve (1941)
- A Letter to Three Wives (1949)
7) Stay in touch with friends!
Since meeting people in person is not possible at the present time, and most of my friends live in the USA anyway, the world of social media is the easiest way to stay in touch with them.
Frankly, Instagram is the only social media I enjoy and use actively. I only follow accounts of people that I personally know and like, or admire. There are also the obligatory vintage sellers I buy from and don’t want to miss a thing. And there are also fellow vintage girls. I met many wonderful kindred spirits in the vintage community, some became good friends, and I can always talk to them when I feel blue, even when the ocean is between us. That’s the beauty of the internet.
Some people complain about the fact that Instagram makes them feel bad about themselves, because of others, who appear to be more accomplished, wealthier, happier. Let me explain some things if you find yourself feeling this way.
Firstly, don’t believe everything you see! There is a lot of what I call “smoke and mirrors” going on with Instagram. Not everything is real. Yes, I’m writing this to you right now from my palazzo nestled on the Cote d’Azur, the warm waters of my infinity pool tickling my feet, while the sun beats down and warms winter skin. Believe me? 🙂
Secondly, oh, boo-hoo! Focus on what you want to accomplish in your life and stop comparing yourself to others!
“I don’t make comparisons. I never think of myself in relation to anyone else. I just refuse to measure myself as part of anything. I’m an utter egotist.” – Ayn Rand
8) Do a random act of kindness!
If you are able to go out to do grocery shopping, or perhaps you can order online and have it delivered to your home, ask your elderly neighbour if they need anything.
If you see an abandoned and scared dog, please don’t leave it to die! HELP!
There is an increase in owners abandoning or even euthanising their beautiful, healthy dogs. It’s the result of malicious, irresponsible people spreading FAKE NEWS about dogs catching and spreading coronavirus, which is simply NOT TRUE!!!!
9) “Don’t dream it. Be it!”
Make a list, yes, yet another list, of all the things you want to do once those troubled times are over, and make sure you do them! I don’t know about you but I’ve never regretted the things I’ve done, even if they were mistakes, but I’ve always regretted the things I haven’t done.
STAY WELL AND SAFE!!!