The Big Move - Northern California to Northern England

It's been a crazy last few months and I have had zero time to write posts. Between prepping for this move and tending to projects, this little blog has taken a back seat. 

Some big news that you might know if you follow me on instagram: we have moved. Again. TO ENGLAND. Yup, that's right - traded in our sunglasses for wellies and our tomatoes for tomAHtoes. My husband, Nick, is from the north of England and we have been thinking about making a move over the pond for a while. Lot's of questions as to WHY as are made this move so a little insight for those interested:

It all started two summers ago when we spent three dreamy weeks in Spain while I was pregnant with Willa. Something about the Mediterranean sea and the pace of life that made us think, why don't we live here? And of course, the answer was: REALITY! That's why! The logistics of moving to a country where we didn't know anyone and can't really speak the language and has a 20% unemployment rate were pretty overwhelming. So we continued with our lovely life in California... but the dream of living in Europe had already sunk in and I felt it deep in my bones that we needed to find a way to make it work. 

Fast forward two years: Nick and I both have our own businesses and with that comes flexibility. It also comes with a boatload of stress and an incessant need to hustle. Living in California is expensive and unless you were employee #8 at Facebook (and it does seem as if everyone was), you are probably riding the struggle bus with the rest of us. Of course, we are paying to live in one of the most beautiful places in the world with easy access to the beach, the mountains, national parks, wine country (hello, 30 minutes away), etc. So in some ways, it's justified but it’s also exhausting.

But we kept asking ourselves: What do we really want? Do we want to stay here and hustle to make more and more money to be able to live the way we really want - nice cars, nice houses, European vacations, private school? Is that the goal? Do we move somewhere more affordable in the U.S. and grow our existing businesses? What's the end game?

But also, what’s the dream?

I kept going back to a quote a read that said something to the affect of:

One life.
Just one.
Why are we not running like we are on fire towards our wildest dreams.

My wild Willa soaking up the beauty of the English countryside.

My wild Willa soaking up the beauty of the English countryside.

We definitely don't have all the answers but we found ourselves both wanting something less tangible: freedom. Not 100% what that means but I don't think it includes a giant mortgage or 70 hour work weeks. And the dream is definitely not to live in England forever but you don’t have to see the top of the staircase to take the first step amiright? (are you over my inspirational quotes yet?)

For me, I want to travel. I want my babies to see whats out there. I want to experience different cultures. I want to design beautiful spaces all over the world (any takers?). We want to build something for ourselves that could maybe facilitate this idea of freedom... someday. I know, we have kids. Kids need stability and to go to school, etc. So while up and moving to Spain seemed a little crazy - making a move to England, near an amazing network of family and friends, a mere two-ish hour flight from Spain (and France and Italy and Morocco and Amsterdam) seemed like a step in the right direction. 

We have some big ideas and dreams of what kind of life we can create living with the accessibility to Europe, but for now, I am going to focus on getting my interior design business up and running in the beautiful Victorian spa town of Harrogate and continuing to work with my amazing clients in California. I am still taking on US projects and am already planning trips back to check on progress. A transatlantic life sounds pretty good to me ;-)

A first look at my newest project: our Victorian Flat. It’s a rental so only small changes but follow the design on  Instagram .

A first look at my newest project: our Victorian Flat. It’s a rental so only small changes but follow the design on Instagram.

If you are interested in design services and not located in California or the U.K. - I am working on launching an e-design service and hoping to grow a worldwide client base. Drop me an email and we can see if it’s a good fit.

 xx Katie