You might want to make a cup of tea right now as I’m veering totally off track but bear with me if you can, there’s a story here. Two weeks ago, my landlord thought it would be a fantastic money-making idea to double my rent indefinitely (“or leave”) because the Olympics are coming and he can make a temporary Euro Millions style profit by renting my very average place to unsuspecting Americans who think Stansted is actually in London.

That Saturday night, my eyes were red from Googling places to live. Nothing, nothing, nothing.  On Sunday morning I stuffed my life into three bags (one of them exploding with my old copies of RED magazine and an embarrassing volume of beauty products) and wondered where I’d go. Three choices: a friend’s sofa, a possible house share with a woman who sounded like a cross between the world’s most bitter and the world’s most boring person, or the instant independent option, a tent somewhere in a soggy Essex field. To add to the anxiety, a taxi was arriving in 72 hours to pick me up.

How does Kutuu fit in here?  I’d emailed Hannah to ask if she could send me a Kutuu key ring to see, for The Beauty Shortlist. When I opened the box, out came the key ring but something else was rattling inside. It was a little charm with a house engraved on it, and a tag attached that said: “HOME SWEET HOME. The sweetest place to be”.  I’d briefly mentioned to Hannah that I was moving very suddenly and could she send me the sample quickly, or it might not reach me?  Hannah, who I’ve never met or spoken to in my life, had popped it in as a “talisman” to bring me luck.

So I tied the little house charm to my bracelet. Within two days, I found a house sit for two weeks (through a friend), then out of the blue got asked to dog-sit for five days. Then, still wondering where I’d be in August, I emailed a lovely couple I’ve dog-sat for before in case they were going away. Back came the reply: “Oh come and stay as long as you like, we’ll be away for the whole month!”

Hannah’s charms are charming. I love the messages, their look and feel, they’re such significant and lovely gifts. She makes “Touch Wood” bracelets, “Fresh Start” bracelets, initials jewellery and a whole treasure trove of message/symbol key rings, jewellery and pretty dishes. The “Follow Your Heart” and “Live Love Laugh” key rings and my precious “Home Sweet Home” charm are my favourites.

Which is yours?

Thank you Hannah! xx


PS: Just as the taxi driver arrived to pick me up in a deluge of heavy rainfall, the landlord came to the door to ask if I’d like to come back after the Olympics because I was such a good tenant and they’d really love to have me back.  Too late, adios, goodbye, because in what felt like half a second, the cheery taxi driver had whisked me off.

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