Written by Victoria Sanford
Have you ever seen a picture of something or even someone and thought to yourself, I recognize that place or that person, somehow, or perhaps even wondered, have I been there before? Do I know them? Well, maybe you’ve seen my picture before, but don’t know me, or maybe you haven’t, and I’m a new face. Either way, let me introduce myself, just in case.
My name is Victoria. Teller of stories, feeler of feelings, maker of beds, but mother & partner above all else. I am the proud mama of two beautiful boys, Price and Trip, who I like to refer to as my sapphire sons, as they were both born in September, 2 years apart, and wife to a handsome navigation officer named Cole. 8 years ago, he stole my heart despite being on opposite sides of the country, and while some days he was as far reaching as the shore in a storm, we found our way to each other, through love letters & meaningful connection; for us, it has been a deep, boundless, powerful, & limitless love - much like the sea itself - ever since.
I am also the owner of a shih-tzu named Moose who is more of a house gremlin than a dog, and the daughter/sister of an incredible family. Although comprised of 4 individual families now, we spend a great deal of time together, as we always have, and often joke that we should probably all just live together. Being home, in the geographical sense of the term, has been a wonderful fit in my adult life. In the spiritual sense, home as in the people and not necessarily just the place, has been even more.
I grew up on Cape Breton Island where I currently reside, but spent nearly a decade in Halifax studying at Dalhousie University. 3 degrees later, I took my masters of social work home to Sydney where I began working in healthcare, helping individuals and families during difficult times. It was hard to leave Halifax, a place I had come to know and love so much. It was when I lived there that I met a beautiful soul named Özlem who sparked a fire in me, a fire that called upon a need to honour my passion for fashion, style, and design, and reminded me to forever be an authentic version of myself. Because “[so many things]are temporary, while love is forever.”
I’ll never forget “friends first,” as she would say when I started working for her, and all the lessons she taught me while sitting on white sofas in the original house that hosted our hearts, our souls, her jewelry, and so much more. Call me a House of Moda retiree, if you will, but I’ve never lost my connection to Özlem or to the brand she has so beautifully created despite moving away.
So why am I “coming out of retirement,” you may wonder? Well, I’ve always felt this pull toward fashion, style, design.. be it in what I wear, how I decorate, what I cook, how I spend my time, and where my mind ends up. My lifestyle has always been a genuine balance of caring deeply for others and caring greatly for myself; doing both as best as I can with kindness, compassion, and conscientiousness. I am often sharing these parts of me with the people in my life, in person and online - La Vita Victoria, or the life Victoria, because that’s truly what it is.
If you follow along with my Instagram, you’ll see a myriad of posts, which I refer to as my life in little squares, where I am simply being me. Eísai poios eísai or You are who you are, my dear Yiayia (grandmother) used to say, and it’s true; I am never more myself, “more me,” than when I am in my own element, getting dressed up, cleaning my floors, cooking #inmybluekitchen, kissing my kids, tidying my closet, picking out Price’s clothes, organizing my beauty & bath products, styling my knick knacks, reading about social justice and caring about social causes, and so on.
Growing up, I always took great pride in my person, my position, and even possessions; the pieces of the puzzle that fit. I have a knack for keeping things tidy and organized, an affinity for self-care, personal wellness, fashion, and anything that sparkles, a love for home decor (or trinkets as my husband calls them), and an affection for holding space with others as we share stories, memories, interests, differences, friendships, and connections. My husband always says I wear my heart of my sleeve, and that’s true. He also calls me the museum curator, referencing our home / seasonal decor as “exhibits,” meanwhile accepting that part of me so lovingly. Now if only I could love the part of him that leaves his socks on the floor... hmmm
But I digress. Why share all of this online? I guess it’s because I enjoy connecting through this medium. Özlem and I once shared a blog, Fries Boys Blazers, and I’ve always felt sad that I let it go. This past year, I found that sharing was something I enjoyed even more so than ever before when a lot of in-person connection came to a halt.
What you see online, though, it’s only ever a part of the larger picture; I mean, one can’t be online all of the time, right? But know that when I do share, I intend to do so with a purpose: to breathe life into the mundane, to breed discussion about anything & everything, to share ideas, to provide insight, to spark inspiration, and to learn from each other. I recognize the enormous amount of privilege I possess in this ever-changing, oh so complex world in doing so, but I am here, to share, to connect, to feel. Free from judgement, filled with kindness.
I think that’s what’s beautiful about life, that we can feel connected to so many areas around us, our personal style & sense of self, and that there are many creative outlets to work within, to channel that energy. Sometimes I do feel as though I exist in two worlds, that there are so many facets of who I am, like a Jackie of all trades, and over time I’ve learned to accept those parts of myself, to know that it’s okay to live in both, to be more. But I’ll get to that soon... so stay tuned.
For now, I hope you’ll join me in my every day, for insight, inspiration, or just for fun, and that you’ll connect with me about the content I share. The stories, the feelings, the reviews, the things that simply make me me. Because I enjoy it, bottom line, and I hope you will too.
From my heart to yours,