SUNDAY RITUAL

© Jasmine Dowling

© Jasmine Dowling

Now I should probably preface this saying that I actually am one of the lucky few who doesn't hate Mondays. Mondays are actually one of my favourite days of the week. But nevertheless as someone who grew up moving between parents on a Sunday Night, I get the Sunday hump. So there are a few things I like to do on a Sunday to get over this and get ready for the week ahead so Monday doesn't feel so bad.


DO SOMETHING FOR YOU

For me, my favourite thing that I have been doing on Sunday (or sometimes Saturday) is fitting in a few hours to sit in the sunroom and go through old magazines while listening to music and drinking coffees. Doing it on the weekend means I don't have the pressure to "find inspiration" that I would feel sometimes if I did it on a week day. Your thing could be taking a bath, or going to a park or a drive. 


QUICK FINANCES

Just quickly check the damage you did over the weekend and make sure you're on budget for the next week. No need to dwell on it but it is easier to check it now before it keeps you up at night.

CLEAN YOUR SPACE

For me this means cleaning up the chaos which was the week prior. Looking to my right at the moment I have little torn pieces of paper, paper piles with dirty paint brushes on top and scattered memory cards. I am not a minimalist. Nothing will feel better than when I come in tomorrow and it is all clean ready for me to make a mess again. This might be you with your laundry or your work clothes that are still on your 'clothes chair' (we all have them). 


PAMPER

You guys know I am a face mask junkie so that is my pampering of choice. Without fail, this is something I will do every Sunday Night.

Currently using: This one, This one & This one


INDULDGE

Last but not least, you can't forget a little indulgence. Mine at the moment is binge watching Terrace House. What's yours?

Let me know your rituals in the comments, what gets you ready for a manic Monday?

jasmine x 

WINTER UNIFORM

WEARING Uniqlo Crew Neck Knit / Madewell Trench Dress (currently on sale) / Elizabeth & James Eyewear / Cult Gaia Bag / Converse

Finally took the new camera out & shot my outfit over the weekend. It was a combination I have been wearing most days so I thought I should document on the inter-webs. 

I should preface this with the fact that Brisbane really doesn't see a true winter so making your summer dresses work in the winter isn't too much of a task. Saying that, I wear this combo most days of the week. Take a love sleeve tee or sweater and pop it over or under your favourite dresses from the warmer seasons. Easy. 

With saying that, I bought this dress last week and firstly it wasn't something that I thought I must have. But after looking at it over a couple of weeks online I realised how easily it fits into my wardrobe. It ticked the 'not-a-trend-item' box and I knew the shape, fabric and colour meant that I would get the wear out of it. And it was on sale for less than $100 AUD. 

Happy Sunday Internet Lovers x 

jasmine x 


YOU WANT TO START A BUSINESS, NOW WHAT?

 
© JASMINE DOWLING

© JASMINE DOWLING

 

A ramble post around the things no one told me before starting a business. 

WHAT YOU THINK ARE YOUR ESSENTIALS VS. WHAT ACTUALLY ARE

Often when starting your own personal business, you can get caught up in thinking of all the things you think you need. Things like 'I need the best packaging', 'I need a new printer/computer set up' when really those expectations when you are just starting out might be unrealistic and stop you from starting at all. 

A lot of people starting out think they need thank you cards, stickers, letterheads, expensive designed websites but you really should be thinking about the basic essentials. You should spend your time/money on your logo to start with as that will stay with you. But invest in your business rather than the extra stuff that of course is nice to look at but essentially doesn't 'make' your business. 

If you need a website, use an easy to build-yourself system like Squarespace. It has modern templates that are quite easy to customise yourself, especially if you are willing to put the time in to google it. 

Instead of designing custom packaging, think of a way that you can create the same feel with inexpensive alternatives like just ordering custom stickers and pair it back with simple white packaging and nice tissue paper. 

What actually is essential to starting a business is the foundations. Things like the financial set up, the business registration, tax, how you will make money, what are your business values.

Focus on the essentials and along the way as your business grows it will become clear what you need to invest in and what you don't. 


TAXES

I am only going to discuss this in regards to Australia because that is the extent of my experience. 

As much as you may get excited at the end of the month by seeing you have earned X amount, unfortunately that isn't all yours. It is good to start with a good relationship with tax. Don't get fooled into thinking all of that money is yours and spend it accordingly because it will haunt you, and then come knocking. 

Once you start paying yourself it is good to work out how much of that is income tax, and put it out of reach. You can find out how much income tax you should be putting away here or here.

In Australia if you earn over $75,000 a year you must register and pay GST. GST is a 10% on goods and services. Find out more.

So that X amount MINUS Income tax MINUS gst is your final income.. Less exciting now right?

Please note I am not a financial advisor or accountant so if you are having trouble, seek advice one of those professions. 


HOW TO BE FINANCIALLY STABLE WHEN YOUR INCOME ISN'T?

First thing is to know your money. Ignorance is never bliss, especially when it comes to finances. 

Once you have 3-6 months under your belt you will really start to get to know your income. If your income is unstable (like most freelancers) you can't think about it weekly. Some weeks you may make nothing, so you can't live week to week. Looking at things monthly you can get a better understanding of your income. 

I personally try work my finances a month in advance. For example at the start of a new month, I will look at the previous months paid invoices then minus expenses (receipts) then minus GST (10%) then minus income tax. After you feel deflated after all those minuses then you are left with what money is actually yours. I put all government money into a separate account ready for tax time, then the rest I divide into how many Sundays are in a month. Then I know each week on Sunday I will pay myself. Now each month is different but it gives me stability knowing that this month's bills have already been accounted for and I am not living pay check to pay check. 

HOW ARE YOU GOING TO MAKE MONEY

I am always fascinated by how people make money. As a small business I know how difficult it can be to actually make it financially viable. 

This is something you should be thinking about from day one. If you are a freelancer who predominately creates branding or logos, how many of those projects do you need a month to make X amount to start. Is that viable? Do you think you could have enough clients to be working full-time for yourself? 

Is there a way to make passive income through a product while your main focus is your service? This has been essential for me working full time for myself. My type of client usually has 30-90 day pay cycles which means I am often left months without payment for completed work. Without the support of my online store customers my income would lack stability. 

What are your costs vs. what can you charge? Is it the case that you should try sell large volumes at smaller margins or vice versa? Does that in turn suit your customer?

All things to think about. 


IT TAKES TIME

Don't expect anything to happen over night, or over months for that matter. Things take time, things don't work out the way you thought they would in your head. Remember that all you can control is the work that you put in, you can't control the quantity of fruits of your labour. 

Remember that anyone that's business you look up to has been in it a lot longer and has gone through the same shit that you are now. 


WELCOME TO BEING YOUR OWN ACCOUNTANT, MARKETING TEAM AND HR.


LEARN AS YOU GO

You really have to put the time and energy into making your business what you want it to be. No one is going to hold your hand in this (unless you have a business partner, they might hold it). If you want to figure out how to improve your website, research it. If you want to know how to improve your financial set up, google it. 

You don't need a mentor or contacts to start. You need the motivation to learn without someone telling you to. For the first few years of my business, I did all my own taxes and finances. I did not do a finance or business degree, none of my family were accountants. I just researched through terrible government websites what I needed to pay and how BAS statements work and taught myself. 


BEFORE YOU START, DO THIS

Register for an ABN (Australian Business Number)

Open a new bank account for your business expenses and invoices

Either:
Set up a spreadsheet for your Invoices and Expenses
Open a Xero Account if your finances are more complicated

 

 

 


I know this all might seem overwhelming and a lot to think about but it is so important to get certain practices like your finances right from the start. You learn as you go and you can always google something if you don't know. I started my own business without thinking a lot through and learnt as I went, always willing to ask google for help and grow as I made mistakes. I hate to sound corny but if I can do it without any contacts or financial help then you can too. 

Hope this helps and as always, I would really love to hear some of your thoughts below.

jasmine x 

MY FAVOURITES FROM CLINIQUE

It has been a year that I started working with Clinique so I thought it would be a fun idea after all of the things I have tried and tested, tell you what my 10 favourite are. The products that I have tried then gone and re-purchased. 

 

Let's start with skin..

Moisture Surge 

For those who follow not only my Instagram, but also watch my stories you won't be surprised by this first one. Moisture surge is probably my number 1 Clinique product if I had to pick favourites. If you are only going to pick one product from the range, go the Extended Thirst Relief. It gives you a hit of moisture without leaving your skin feeling tacky or greasy. I am onto my fourth jar that's how much I love it. 

Pep Start

My main lover from this range is the 2-in-1 Exfoliating Cleanser. Once again, I think I am onto my 4th or 5th tube of this. I use it day and night and feel like it really cleanses and wakes up the skin. Also a great tip for the Eye Cream in this range is to pop it in the fringe and use it cold to decrease puffiness. 

 

Now to the make up.. 

Superbalanced Silk

I know I spoke about this in my recent 'Finding The Perfect Base' post but this truly is my favourite product to use as my base. It is not too matte but not too dewy either, it has the perfect silky finish with moderate coverage. 


Cheek Pop

If you are on the search for the perfect soft peachy/pink blush - the shade 08 Melon Pop is for you. If I am not wearing the Chubby Blush in Amp'd Up Apple then I am wearing this on my cheeks. 


Just Browsing

I am all about just enhancing your natural brows and this product helps me do that. It is like a mini mascara for your brows that adds definition to each of your brow hairs and keeps them in place. I use the colour Deep Brown 

Chubby Contour

This is the product that made me fall in love with Clinique before our partnership even began. The easiest product to quickly bronze or contour your face. I personally also love to use it on my eye lids for an easy shadow. 


Sweet Pots

I feel like these are the most underrated Clinique Product but they are absolutely one of my favourites. They come in the sweetest shades and on one side of the jar it is your lip balm and on the other side there is a sugar lip scrub. They are genius and I can not get enough. 


Lash Power Flutter to Full Mascara

To be honest, Clinique has hands down some of my favourite mascaras I have ever used. Even writing this I had to toss up between the High Impact Mascara and The Lash Power Flutter to Full, but because I have been using the Lash Power the most over the last few months, it had to win. I feel it does a great job at lengthening with volume without causing clumps in my lashes. 10 out of 10. 

 

A huge thank you to my Clinique family for making this year happen. I had so much fun trying and testing out all the new releases and you have definitely taken over my holy grails for multiple categories. 

jasmine x

This post was supported by my partnership with Clinique Australia.

HER GARDEN

 

When the most recent collaboration from Max & Co and Swarovski landed on my doorstep I was instantly inspired. Not only to wear these crystal critters with all my basics but to also have some fun & create imagery. 

There are the obvious beetles and butterfly inspired pieces but also the not-so-obvious like the crystal droplet pieces. They remind me of the condensation on a crisp morning in the garden, reflecting the light. 

 

Pictured.
Bracelet with Butterfly Charm

 

 
 
 

Instantly I was drawn to blooms for creating
these images, because when am I not needing another excuse to buy flowers?

I was also inspired by the moment when the light hits each of the Swarovski crystals in these pieces. I knew it was time to put away the diffuser and play with the light & shadows when shooting the orchids wearing each piece. 

Pictured.
Butterfly Earrings

 

 

jasmine x

 

This post was created in collaboration with Max & Co.