July 18, 2023

Lady Liberté enters the world of burlesque

My 2023 challenge - Learn and perform a burlesque show live on stage

My Body Acceptance Journey

Even I'm surprised I've just performed my first burlesque routine!

You'll often hear me say ‘I would never have done this when i was younger” when it comes to modelling in my lingerie, showing up on social media talking about body confidence, body acceptance and being so publicly visible.

It’s true, I have been on such a confidence building journey over the last 13 years, with lots of wobbles along the way. Mentally, I’m in the best place that I’ve ever been with my body, even though physically there are still a lot of menopausal changes going on. But it will always be work in progress and finding body confidence is never a done deal.

 Stepping out of my comfort zone

Every year I like to challenge myself to push myself out of my comfort zone. Last year's challenge was to model nude for a life drawing class which I was obviously nervous about but found liberating. Taking steps out of my comfort zone helps me practice what I preach when it comes to body acceptance. 

2023 Challenge

I've been a big fan of Dita Von Teese for years and was over the moon when she shared an image of me wearing her lingerie for a Playful Promises Ageless Fashion campaign on her instagram feed, to millions of her followers back in 2020. After watching Dita perform live on her Glamonatrix tour last year, I was in awe of all the performers proudly celebrating their bodies.

I'm also constantly inspired by the brilliant Judith Vandepeer Delgado @pupindevert who started burlesque later in life and is now a regular in the UK burlesque scene aged 60, proving to any doubters that our age doesn't define us. If you don't already follow her on instagram go and give her a follow as she's just fabulous.

I knew I had to give it a go. This year’s challenge to learn and perform a burlesque routine had been set!

Tigz Rice x Miss Victory Violet Shoot Day at Berwick Lodge, Bristol © Tigz Rice Ltd 2019. http://www.tigzrice.com

Why Burlesque?

Hands up if you watched the movie "Burlesque" starring Cher and Christina Aguilera with curiosity? The art of burlesque has been around for years with seedy connotations but thankfully films like this and women like Dita Von Teese have made it a much more acceptable and popular art form.

What I loved and started to realise whilst watching Dita’s Glamanatronix show was the pure celebration and self-expression of the performer’s bodies, the mood and purpose was not around sexual gratification for men as I had previously thought.  Yes, the performers may decide to strip down to nipple tassels and G-strings, but it felt like it was ‘a fuck it, this is my body’ act of acceptance which I and the audience applauded.

Empowering women

Burlesque is an empowering art form for women, it provides a platform for self-expression, body positivity, and confidence. I’m drawn to burlesque performances because it creates a space for women to reclaim their sexuality and challenge societal norms, promoting the idea that beauty and sensuality come in diverse forms. It allows performers of all ages, shapes, and sizes to embrace their individuality and break free from traditional expectations, fostering a supportive community where empowerment and self-assurance flourish.

That’s what led me down this year’s path, would I be brave enough to stand on stage and do this?

Where do you start?

I had no idea how I was going to even start this challenge as there weren’t any local burlesque classes near me and I was beginning to think this one just wouldn’t happen. That is until a friend I'd met through social media, Jane Wood, who runs a dance school and Fem-Chi classes put a shout out on Instagram. Jane is passionate about helping women that are feeling disconnected from their femininity and sensuality. Helping women tap into their inner confidence and fierceness,  to help you regain that lost fire. Jane was a guest on my podcast recently so you can find out all about her here

She was running a 10 week on line burlesque course with the opportunity to perform as a group at the Womanifest in Cheshire this July. Talk about perfect timing! I was already booked as a speaker at this year’s festival, so I just knew I had to sign up. Not only did I sign up but I immediately put my name forward to perform a solo act.

Commitment. Classes, Can I really do it?

Apart from the occasional wedding disco, I haven't properly danced since my drama A Level in 1988, so it’s fair to say it didn’t come naturally. I was actively discouraged by my ballet teacher when I was younger because I did not have the right build for the ballet world (I'm sure I'm not the only person who heard this back in the 1970's).

I began to look forward to the 90-minute sessions each week and even though I struggled with my left and right and some of the moves didn’t come naturally I enjoyed the process. It was fun to learn something completely new, to switch off from the day and focus on something just for me.

Disconnecting from our bodies during the menopause

Like lots of women going through the menopause I have days when I feel disconnected from my body, and this really helped me appreciate my body and all it does for me. The other 6 women in the group were of various ages, mostly a lot younger but there was a common thread of anxiety and fear of expressing our sensuality that bonded us together.

Performance Day

I’ve just had one of the busiest weeks of the year so far which probably didn't help with the nerves leading up to Saturday. It also meant I hadn’t rehearsed as much as I’d hoped to. It even got to the point where I messaged Jane on my way to Cheshire to say I might have to miss out the group routine because I just hadn’t got it in my head. Jane reminded me that this was for fun, an experience to be shared and enjoyed and if a few mistakes were made, then so what? A great reminder not to take ourselves too seriously.

Show Time

The time had come and there was no going back. I did make some mistakes in the group routine but nothing major and I think I got away with it. Funnily enough I was more worried about the group performance because no one would know if things didn’t go to plan in my solo.

It was one of those moments that you have to fully commit and go all in, so I did and once the music started and I was on that stage it felt so liberating and I loved it! Slight hiccup half way through when I was dancing back towards the chair, and I realised my feather boa wasn’t there so I had to completely blag the second part of the routine but that’s show business!!

Freedom to express our sensuality

How often as women, at any age, do we get the chance to freely express our sensuality without fear of judgement? Performing at Womanifest, a women only festival was exactly what I needed. We all have different parts to our personalities, and they all deserve equal spaces to be let free!

I did this for me, and it felt bloody good!

I now have that video as a reminder. If I’m having a bad day and need to boost my confidence I’ll go back and watch it.

Rachel Peru performs her first live burlesque routine on stage


Have you ever been to a burlesque class?

Are you curious?

Just try it, it’s a great way to celebrate and embrace your body ❤️

Will Lady Liberté ever be seen again? Never say never!

Keep being fabulous.

Rachel x

July 1, 2023

Best swimwear for 2023

Head to the beach with confidence this summer with some of the best swimwear for 2023

I've been trying and testing out some new swimwear on my recent trip to the Maldives so I thought it would be good to share some of my favourites with you.It's a tough job but someone's got to do it!

Rachel Peru is sitting but the sea wearing a black bikini and black straw hat swimwear

I used to dread planning my swimwear for summer holidays, worrying about losing weight and looking for swimsuits that held me in and covered me up in all the right places. I get it, for some Summer is a time you may feel more uncomfortable in our bodies. Feeling the pressure to diet and lose weight for those two weeks away at the beach. I’ve been there and wasted far too many summers worrying about what i looked like instead of really enjoying being in the moment.

Let’s face it, it doesn’t help that most of the swimwear images you see are so unrelatable; full of younger women in their twenties so at 50 you feel like you don't stand a chance!

If you’ve been following me for a while, you’ll already know I share a lot of images of me wearing swimwear, I love the freedom good supportive swimwear brings you so here’s some of my favourite swimwear  for 2023.

Bridie & Bert Swimwear

I’ve recently discovered an independent brand called Bridie and Bert and I’m already a big fan. The brand was founded in 2021 and remains predominantly a towelling brand, their soft hipster towelling shorts and cosy robes are fabulous quality too. The brand describes its self as being “simple and uncomplicated but one that I hope you will enjoy for many years to come” and after wearing their swimwear I can imagine it will remain a firm favourite in my beach wardrobe.

I felt like a 1950’s beach babe in the Melissa strappy swimsuit. The cut is super flattering with the added versatility of adjustable straps from straight to cross over, whichever you prefer.

As I am bigger busted (34G) I rarely wear anything with extra padding, but I liked the shape it gave me so kept the removable padding in.

Available up to a size 18

If you prefer a two piece, then you’ll love the high waisted ditsy floral Mary Bikini. I used to shy away from wearing low bikini tops, but I’ve got over that now and I felt confident wearing this set. Like the swimsuit is has adjustable straps from straight to cross over and the cut of the leg is just right, not too high, or low.

Available up to a size 20. I’m wearing a size and in future I’d probably size up as I just about stayed in the top all day!

Both the swimsuit and bikini are available in Apple & White and Rose & White.

Whilst they might both seem a little pricey at £79.95, I really do feel like you’re buying a quality swimsuit that would last you for plenty of summers to come.




Rachel Peru is wearing a red ditsy print bikini on the beach swimwearRachel Peru is lying down in a hammock wearing a blue ditsy floral print Bridie and Bert swimwear


Curvy Kate Wrapsody

https://bridieandbert.com/products/melissa-swimsuit-ditsy-floral-strappy-swimsuitIf you’re looking for something that’s versatile this summer, then I can’t recommend the Curvy Kate wrapsody collection. I think this is the most versatile swimwear I’ve tried and there’s so many ways you can wear it, including creating looks that take you from the beach to the bar. The Luxe strapless bra leaves you feeling well supported too. I have the wrapsody red swimsuit and the black bikini and love them.





River Island #wishlist

Lady lying down on the beach laughing, wearing a River Island Black and Gold bikini

I keep seeing images of this River Island Black Plunge bikini set and I absolutely love it. I haven’t managed to try it yet as its currently out of stock in a size 16 but it’s giving me serious Ursula Andress vibes and the gold band and buckle detail is a winner. Available in Green and Gold and goes up to a size 18. The material is scuba so that’s a good indication that it will hold things in place too.

Reasonably priced. The top is £32 and bottoms £22.

River Island Womens Black Plunge Buckle Bikini Top


Supermarket Swimwear with F&F

Don't dismiss the supermarket clothing brands this summer. F&F have some great pieces at reasonable prices. I particularly like the Tummy control swimsuit with an overall black and white print. It has adjustable straps with a flattering deep v shape. This swimsuit also comes in lime green, blue striped and red.

Available at Next https://www.next.co.uk/g764000s1/955891#955891

Bravissimo Bikini

Last but not least if you’re looking to add a bit of bold colour to your beach wear how about this fabulous bright orange Cancun bikini from Bravissimo. I’m obsessed by this fun set, the colour and cut is super flattering and it’s underwireed too, so extra supportive for those larger busts like me.
I teamed the crop bikini top with wide legged trousers for an easy beach to bar look too.

Available up to a J cup too.

Bikini top £42.00

I’m wearing the Cancun swim bottoms £24 but there’s also a high waisted bottom available £26.


We Are We Wear

There's lots of reasons why I love this swimwear brand. We Are We Wear is an independent, black-owned business, created in 2019.

The founders, Natalie and Chelsea, quit their jobs to and set out on a mission to challenge the culture of unrealistic body standards we face today. Using their combined experience working for one of Britain’s biggest online retailers, they turned their vision into a reality with their inclusive, eco-friendly brand. Representation matters and they are passionate about showing up for all women and it's they carry this though, it's not just tokenism!

Another big tick is their use of regenerated industrial plastics, marine waste and fabric scraps to create the fabrics across our swimwear collections

I wore this Paper print Tilly crop top bikini set and sarong on our recent trip along the North Yorkshire coast and it was the perfect colour combination to brighten up some typical British summer weather!

Paper print Tilly crop top £28.00 - https://wearewewear.com/products/paper-print-tilly-crop-bikini-top

Mid rise Paper print Sonia bikini bottoms £22.00 - https://wearewewear.com/products/paper-print-sonia-mid-rise-bikini-bottoms

Maria sarong £22.00- https://wearewewear.com/collections/all-swimwear-01/products/paper-print-tilly-crop-bikini-top

Ditch the rules!

When it comes to choosing swimwear, all I can tell you is to ditch the rules and wear what makes YOU feel good and to hell with what anyone else thinks. If you're a swimsuit woman that's great, if you prefer to wear a two piece that's fabulous too, there is no right way, whatever makes you have the most body confidence. I've heard so many women share opinions on both and it's time we stopped judging one another. I love wearing bikinis because they make me feel free, but I totally understand other women feel better in a one piece.

There are so many different styles out there that accommodate all shapes and sizes. Think of your swimwear like your lingerie, it’s all about the fit so take the time to try them on properly; shopping from home has never been easier, which takes away the pressure of shop changing rooms

Whatever you wear, enjoy your Summer, and hold your head up high.

Repeat after me...


Keep being fabulous.

Rachel x


June 28, 2023

Where do I go from here, where do I start?

A Blog by Zoe Davis

How do I retake control?

I’ve honestly no idea.  Life has been like a constant rollercoaster ever since I can remember and the one thing I always assumed I could control was my own mind, body & soul.  How wrong was I?

You see life has this way of testing you and it happens in the least expected places at the least expected times. It can knock you for six, throw you to your knees or it can fester deep within you until it rockets out of you in this huge explosion of emotions that you can no longer control.

Sweep it under the carpet

As a child growing up, I learnt the ultimate trick of the trade; how to sweep things under the carpet.  I thought it was brillant.  Don’t want to deal with it? Sweep it under the carpet.  Can I pretend it never happened? Sweep it under that carpet.  Can’t control that, sweep it under the carpet.  Eventually I realised I didn’t have a big enough carpet. No amount of sweeping was going to get all of what happened to me under that little rug, because that’s in fact what it was, a rug.  A rug I so swiftly pulled out from under myself when I decided to do that work on myself.

You see, when you start to work on yourself you start to pull those things out from under that carpet or rug in my case.  You start to unpick all those long hidden things that you pretended weren’t happening, didn’t know how to control, didn’t want to deal with……every ounce of you comes falling out from that carpet till eventually it unravels.  Sometimes unravelling at such a pace your feet don’t touch the ground and overwhelm and darkness is so great you wonder which part to look at next.  Other times it takes a while and then you feel the pieces drop into place.  A journey of healing and finally exploring who you are is a Never Ending Story, cliche I know but true.

You start to realise it is quite easy to lose control of many parts of you to fit into society, work, family, friends and social circles.  It takes courage to step out and breathe.  To admit and to feel the love of who you are.

Who is Zoe?

I am Zoe I am in my early 40’s and it is only now, with many other beautiful humans that I have started to really unpick my life and work on those secret sweeping activities that I had learnt to do from a young age.  A glimpse of my life…

I grew up in what was referred to as a “broken” home.  Parents separated & remarried.  My shoulders carried the secrets and arguments of the past between generations.  My childhood was not all smiles & laughter.  I quickly understood how to be hyper vigilant in many situations, suppress my anxiety, show my anger in all the wrong ways, pretend things hadn’t happen, cover things up….I also understood that the one thing I could control was my body.

 Bullying as a teen in school with severe acne, one of the first to start periods (horrendous ones at that) & braces, all this had pushed me to some dark places, I realised the one thing I could control was my body.  I smoked to suppress the need to eat, I ate barely anything in the day and would only eat my evening meal at the family table to avoid anyone knowing.  I would often pretend I had made a packed lunch for school taking nothing but a packet of crisps at a push.  If I did eat it would be comfort style chocolate, crisps etc.

Burying my head in the sand

As I hit my 20’s I was told by a doctor if I wanted a baby I would need to pile on the weight as at 5ft 6 and 7 and half stone my body was struggling.  I had to change, yet my partner at the time didn’t like it, what if I lost my pert boobs & arse.  Not a look he was in favour of.  I put some weight on and did become pregnant.  Yet pregnancies for me weren’t great.

My first pregnancy saw me pile on the weight.  I hid and swept all my feelings under that already stuffed rug.  I struggled with my weight after and my health as a woman with my periods. 10 years later when I had my second baby I realised I had piled on more weight but couldn’t shift it and during my 2nd pregnancy I had busted my leg so mobility was limited.  I used all these as excuses & buried my head in that ostrich hole in the ground called shame.  I continued to sweep everything under the carpet including me problematic periods and post natal depression and my overwhelming past.  It was a chance encounter with a therapist when my baby was 6 weeks old that ignited that moment when I knew but still fought it for a while, I need to start to unpick and unravel that rug…..that was 7 years ago.

Acceptance of me, just as I am

Since then I’ve learnt a lot about myself, my relationships, boundaries too. I’ve also discovered how to thank and accept my body for what it is, what it can do for me, how it looks & how it feels.  My body no longer has pert boobs or rear end.  I am no longer a size 8 in clothing more like a size 20/22 give or take.  I have a man that appreciates me & my body too.

I am different because I can see how my body has changed & worked with me through teen life, two pregnancies, miscarriages, endometriosis, post natal depression, hysterectomy, car accident, stair accident and much more.  I am 41 and now I appreciate my body and accept it more.  I’m not going to say I love it entirely as we all have moments we wish things were better.  Yet I will say I have a great deal of gratitude for my body, my mind & my soul.  I feel more worthy to walk this earth than I have done for many years.

My rug, the new one is slowly being weaved.  This however hides nothing under it.

This is now my magic rug that will take me where I want to be. Dream the biggest dreams & live life no longer in secret or darkness.

Dream the biggest dreams &

no longer live your life in secret or darkness

Zoe Davis


You can find Zoe on Instagram @madcowlife





May 31, 2023

Let’s Get Naked! #bodyconfidence

Let's get naked and learn to embrace our bodies. #bodyconfidence

For many of us, the idea of getting naked can be a bit daunting.

We have been conditioned by society to be ashamed of our bodies, to keep covered up and to feel like we are not good enough.

But what if we could shift our perspective and see getting naked as something that is positive and empowering?

Those that have followed me for a while will already know how passionate I am about women of all ages feeling comfortable in their own skin. I spent so many years worrying about my body which held me back and really knocked my self-esteem and body confidence. Since turning 40 I’ve been on a mission to change my mindset which has been liberating.

The Midlife Body Confidence Report

In 2022 I carried out a midlife body confidence survey where I asked 200 women how often they looked at themselves in the mirror naked?

10% Never - that makes me sad!

47% Occasionally - lots of room for improvement

24% Often - Great news

18% Everyday - YES!!

As part of my own body confidence journey, I have pushed myself to become comfortable with seeing my body naked without wanting to crawl under a cover and cry. What I’ve learnt to realise is all our bodies are so different, that none of us are perfect, and nobody really cares about the negative parts you get so focussed on.

Stepping out of your comfort zone

I’ve now done several nude shoots, the latest one with Helen Booth at Masque photography was one of the most authentic and raw shoots I’ve ever done. There’s nowhere to hide, but it's my body and that’s fine with me. Being interviewed naked for the Naked Podcast was one of the most honest and heartfelt interviews I’ve ever given. All these experiences have been empowering and liberating, there’s no need for any pretence anymore which is freeing.

'Let's Get Naked' shoot with Rachel Peru and Masque Photography

How I challenge my body confidence

I like to challenge myself every year and in 2022, I agreed to be a nude model for a life drawing class. I really had no idea what to expect. When I walked in and saw a room full of 34 people all poised ready to draw, part of me wanted to run out of the door, but I’m so glad I didn’t. The class was 2 hours long and I was asked to create lots of different poses with different angles. I soon became so fixed on making sure they saw interesting shapes that I completely forgot I was sitting there naked.

Walking around the room seeing all the different artwork and speaking with the artists was so refreshing. The class was of mixed ages and sexes, and all were there to get lost in their artwork for a couple of hours. I got so much positive feedback telling me how much they enjoyed drawing me. It was another reminder that our bodies are ok, flaws and all, and we must stop fearing our ageing bodies. I’d recommend life modelling if you’re curious about it and I’d certainly do it again.

Yorkshire Life Drawing

This year's challenge is to perform a live solo burlesque routine so “Lady Liberté” will be on stage at this years Womanifest on Saturday 15th July, eek!!! Lots more to come on this subject soon. #watchthisspace

Whilst I appreciate the things I’ve done may seem too extreme for some, here are some things to consider if you are thinking about getting naked and embracing your body.

The Sexualisation of Women's Bodies

One of the main reasons why many women are afraid to get naked is because they worry about being sexualised. We live in a world where women's bodies are constantly being sexualised and objectified, so it is no wonder that we are afraid to show our own bodies. But we should not let the sexualisation of women's bodies keep us from embracing our own bodies. Every one of us is beautiful, no matter what our size or shape. We should feel confident and proud to show our bodies, regardless of whether someone else finds them attractive. Remember that as you head to the beach in your swimwear this Summer.

Lifting the Fear of Being Naked

Another reason why many of us are afraid to get naked is because we fear judgement. We worry that people will see our flaws and judge us for them. But the truth is that everyone has flaws, and no one is perfect. Why should we let the fear of being judged keep us from being comfortable in our own skin? If we can accept ourselves for who we are, flaws and all, we can start to feel more confident about getting naked. And when we feel more comfortable about getting naked, we can start to enjoy all the benefits that come along with it.

The Benefits of Getting Naked

There are many benefits to getting naked, including feeling more comfortable in your own skin. Feeling more connected to your body. Tapping into your natural sexiness and confidence, and appreciating your body for all it is worth, flaws included!   Remember that you are beautiful just as you are!

It's also a great way to keep an eye on any changes happening with our bodies. Noticing any changes quickly can make a big difference to spotting any potential underlying medical issues.

Now, don't get me wrong—I'm not saying that we should all walk around naked all the time!

How can you challenge yourself?

How about seeing yourself naked when you’re getting dressed in the morning. Stop avoiding looking in the mirror. Learning to love and appreciate our bodies is an important step in learning to love and appreciate ourselves as whole human beings.

One of my favourite actresses is Emma Thomson and if you haven't seen Good Luck to You, Leo Grande then I recommend you do. There's a powerful scene which sees Emma strip off in front of the mirror and she described it as one of the hardest things she's had to do.

"If I stand in front of a mirror, I’m always sort of pulling something, or I’ll turn to the side, I’ll do something. I can’t just stand there. Why would I do that, it’s horrifying. “But that’s the problem, isn’t it, that women have been brainwashed all lives to hate our bodies. That’s just the fact. And everything that surrounds us reminds us how imperfect we are, and everything is wrong with us.” •

Whilst Emma still continues to have her own body insecurities she did report feeling more accepting of her body.  I think that's a much more realistic goal.

“It’s easier for people to feel neutral about their body than it is for them to go, "I love my body." That, I think, is really helpful. And it’s something that you can sort of practise on your own."

So, if you're struggling with body image issues, try this little experiment: next time you're in front of a mirror in the morning take off your clothes and say these three things to yourself:

"I love you,"

"You are beautiful," 

"Thank you."

It sounds simple, but it just might change your life!

For more body confidence inspiration check out the rest of my body confidence blogs

Keep being fabulous

Rachel x


September 3, 2019

The Real Catwalk 2019

How quickly a year goes by! Last year was my first time walking in The Real Catwalk flash mob fashion show in Trafalgar Square created by American model Khrystyana. and the feel good factor stayed with me for weeks after. KhrystyAna started the Real Catwalk event after her own experience as a curve model during Americas Next Top Model series walking in Times Square, the response and support she gained from this really encouraged her to create this positive event.

The message is simple, one of "self love and acceptance for everyone to celebrate together" and we certainly did!

Krispy Kreme donuts the night before a lingerie and swimwear catwalk, surely not!!!!

Last year I wore a bikini and I saw it is an opportunity to see how far my body confidence had grown so this year I chose the lingerie option as another step forward. Body confidence is something I really don't take for granted as it has only come once hitting my forties. So many people that take part in this event feel incredibly anxious and struggle with self confidence so to be part of it and to be able to offer support and reassurance is a pleasure. This event is for everyone to feel represented, men and women, people with scars, disabilities, all sexualities and sizes, people that have overcome real challenges just to get to this point and to be around everyone is very moving.

Daryl Hembrough photographed by Mariam Gomez.

Clara, aka Rollin Funky looking amazing, photographed by Mariam Gomez.

This woman energy was amazing all day and she pulled off doing the splits on the catwalk too! Naala Lartey photographed by Mariam Gomez

Khrystyana has created a safe space for all that want to join in who may struggle with their own insecurities. It's an event to build others up, celebrate all our differences and without any judgement. It has really heightened my awareness of how judgemental we are in society and how we spend so much of our time being forced to compare ourselves to others, whether it's through mainstream advertising, the fashion industry, the media and in politics. Perhaps the world would be a better place if events like this were seen across the world on a regular basis.

A question I've been asked several times is why do I feel the need to take part in this event if I am already body confident. I think it's important to be active in things that you are passionate about. Women over 40 are rarely seen in the media in lingerie and swimwear, we're constantly fed unobtainable 'perfect' body images which then make us all feel negative about our own bodies. I don't want to be seen as invisible now I've reached midlife.

The more we get the message out there by showing up has to be a positive thing. There is also a feeling of liberation that comes from taking part in this event, after years of lacking in self confidence I am proud of where I am at right now and I along with all the people involved are celebrating ourselves and each other.

This event saw well over 120 models take part this year and could so easily become out of control but the team behind this have really worked hard and rehearsal time means everyone has an opportunity to practice, ask questions and generally help put their nerves aside. You could just tell this event was going to be amazing as even during the rehearsals the atmosphere was full of energy and joy.


So many people touched me during the day with their courage to overcome nerves, their stories and that's what makes it special. Older women are often cast aside once over 40 when it comes to having the freedom to celebrate our bodies so to take part with Rebecca Weef Smith and Ava Thompson was the icing on the cake, a big shout out to all the other older women for showing up and owning the runway. I have a feeling the over 40 gang will grow even bigger next year. One of the highlights of the event for me was when a lady stopped to talk with us and told Rebecca she wanted to be just like her. That's why we did it, in the hope that we might inspire others to feel more confident and press the fxxk it button!

Inspiration comes from all age groups, watching and learning from the younger generations makes me even more determined to keep doing what I'm doing, so I was delighted when I finally got to meet up with Jess Megan who is a constant source of inspiration. I also gained two new girl crushes on Kaisa Henriikka and Plussizevintagemadame, can we take a moment to honour that orange swimsuit! There confidence oozes out of them and it's highly infectious so it's another reminder to surround yourself with people that make you feel more positive about yourself and leave you feeling good.

Strutting down the runway, photographed by Mariam Gomez, Bridge models.

"Dance like no on his watching you"

If you'd have asked me a few years ago if I would share this video of myself and Ava dancing in the streets like this the answer would have been NO! Despite knowing that my three teenage children are slightly mortified to see their mum in this moment I absolutely love it. It captures our feeling of pure joy and freedom in our bodies. I don't have the perfect body, but it works for me and we have become friends, that in it's self is liberating and something to dance for. Saturday was not about competition, judgements or comparisons but about empowerment, acceptance and a celebration of each other. Very 1960's I know..... but it works!

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