Reads: Moon Lists by Leigh Patterson

At Glasshouse we love discovering innovative, likeminded brands and projects from across the globe. US based Moon Lists is one such brand that instantly caught our attention with its unique concept. Originally a newsletter series, the Moon Lists brings together strangers from across the globe each sharing a response to a series of personal questions and prompts. Having been subscribed to the newsletters for a while, we were delighted when we heard that founder Leigh Patterson was taking the concept one step further and turning it into a physical workbook.

Full time, Leigh Patterson runs Lucca Studio, a creative branding studio focusing on words, images and ideas for clients such as Cereal, COS and J. Hannah Jewellery. The Moon Lists are a side project for Leigh, a true passion project for which she exerts the same care and dedication that she puts into her clients’ work. The new book combines seamless design by Natasha Mead and meaningful content designed to guide readers through the practice of making a ‘moon list’ and experiencing life in a new way.

We asked Leigh some questions about the project and the book to find out a little more about the purpose of a moon list and how it can be a tool for self-care.

Images: Cydney Cosette
Images: Cydney Cosette

Can you tell us the story of how Moon Lists came to be?

It initially started from reading an interview with photographer Sam Abell, a former National Geographic photographer with a 35-year career who now lives in Virginia’s Blue Ridge Mountains. In the interview, he mentioned a personal project called The Moon List. In his words: “Every full moon, my wife and I construct something we call the Moon List — about 25 questions that have evolved over 10 years or so to reconstruct the past 30 days since the last full moon.” I wrote to Abell, requesting to see the other questions on his list…and for permission to recreate his idea through the perspectives of different contributors. Originally this existed solely as an interview series, where I would ask different women to respond to prompts based on their last month. More recently this has evolved into a workbook that more broadly explores rituals that can allow for a life experienced more deeply, using deceivingly simple prompts, list-making exercises, and sensorial inventories to invoke conversations, connection, and personal awareness.

Each Moon List question is designed to prompt reflection. Why do you think it is important to consider the past rather than always looking to the future?

I don’t encourage dwelling too long in either of those places! All of life is the present; I consider The Moon Lists to be a useful tool for gaining perspective and allowing you to see what’s in front of you with clearer eyes (along with many other practices; this just happens to be the one that works for me).

In an increasingly digital world, do you feel that there is something significant about physically writing things down on paper?

Maybe. One of my first jobs was working for an archivist where I’d spend hours buried in literary works where you felt the power of the what it means for something to be “made by hand”; the presence of the creator was palpable. This cosiness is less palpable via screen! That said, I’m no Luddite. Do what works for you!

Image: Cydney Cosette
Image: Cydney Cosette

Moon Lists has a continuing theme of ‘circle’ imagery. What is the reason for this?

Circles are symbols of wholeness, no start and no finish, the unknowable origin of time. The eternal. Source of life, destination of uncertainty. They signal repetition, movement within constancy, gateway, the centre of focus. A signifier of equality, equidistance. Oneness.

As the Moon Lists is not your full-time role, how do you balance regular life with this project?

This project is very much a side gig that — like anyone’s passion project — often gets slotted into late night weekend work sessions or bookended into whenever I have random pockets of spare time. I find I work on Moon Lists a lot on planes?!

I think its ethos (cultivating a regular practice of noticing the present) is intrinsically in opposition to working on it for the sake of busyness or “progress” or status. I am not great at balance in many ways but I think I am good at maintaining a healthy enough distance from this specific project… I do not feel any pressure to make it something it is not.

Images: Cydney Cosette
Images: Cydney Cosette

What does self-care mean to you?

Self-care is the ability to detach from my autopilot mode and production-driven monkey mind: maybe that comes through in a walk or a bath or a nice tea moment. Maybe it comes through in spending time with my friends or supporting my community in other ways. The deepest care I give myself is something that ultimately does not end in selfish progress but supports growth in levels that go beyond my life and narrow experience.

Do you believe that “The unexamined life is not worth living.”?

It’s certainly easier to not examine. But I think if we have a responsibility to do anything it’s to not keep our heads in the sand.

You can visit the Moon Lists website and subscribe to the monthly newsletter here or purchase the Moon Lists book for yourself here.

All images photographed by Cydney Cosette Holm for Moon Lists.

Words: Phoebe Grace Ede

Share this:

More From The Journal

  1. Eco-Conscious Fragrance

    We unbottle the perfume industry and speak to some of our favourite sustainable scent-makers.

    More +
  2. Astrology with Daliah Roth: Pisces

    ​It’s that time of the month again, where we rejoin our resident astrologer, Daliah Roth. This time we’re exploring Pisces season, and finding out more about this compassionate, sensitive and imaginative sign.

    More +
  3. Q&A: Basho Skincare

    ​We sit down with Mimi + Tor, founders of Basho Skincare, to dive deep into their inspiration behind their organic, plant based skincare that is both ethically sourced and responsibly made, placing everyone’s unique, natural rhythms and cycles centre stage.

    More +
  4. Astrology with Daliah Roth: Aquarius

    We rejoin our resident astrologer Daliah Roth, who is guiding us through one of the zodiac’s most opinionated, knowledgable and bohemian signs - Aquarius.

    More +
  5. Reduced Waste Hair Care

    Get the lowdown on Glasshouse Salon’s new reduced waste service and follow these five simple steps to make your hair care routine more eco friendly.

    More +
  6. Astrology with Daliah: Capricorn

    As we ease into a new decade, we turn to Daliah Roth, The Highgate Astrologer, for a closer look at the ambitious, organised and practical Capricorn.

    More +
  7. The Glasshouse Guide to a Conscious Christmas

    From zero waste wrapping to dropping the turkey from your Christmas dinner, here’s the Glasshouse guide to making your festive season more eco-friendly.

    More +
  8. A Sustainable Department Store, Edition No. 2

    Everything you need to know about Edition No. 2 of A Sustainable Department Store, plus some top tips on how you can shop more sustainably this Christmas from our independent makers.

    More +
  9. Astrology with Daliah Roth: Sagittarius

    As we being to approach the final month of the year, we turn to Daliah Roth, The Highgate Astrologer, to tell us more about the free-spirited nature that defines Sagittarius.

    More +
  10. Sustainable Sleep Rituals

    ​From ethically sourced loungewear to low waste makeup removal, we speak to some eco-conscious bloggers about all the ways you can practice good sleep hygiene without harming the planet.

    More +
  11. Masterclass: Air-drying Curls

    Winter has definitely arrived and with it brings a shift in the way we care for our hair. On balmier days we welcome air drying our curly hair, but in the depths of winter this is less appealing. With the help of Glasshouse Salon stylist Tori’s expert advise, we’ve got some tips for achieving a frizz-free curly style throughout the colder months.

    More +
  12. Astrology with Daliah Roth: Scorpio

    As our mornings and evenings get darker and the clocks turn back this weekend, we are entering the beginning of Scorpio season and have once again enlisted the help of Daliah Roth, The Highgate Astrologer, to tell us all about this illusive and intriguing sign.

    More +
  13. Gender Neutral Prices

    As we launch a new gender neutral price list that makes hair cuts and colour the same for both men and women, we’re take a look at some of the other industries affected by the so called ‘pink tax’ and why many women end up paying more than men for the same products.

    More +
  14. Astrology with Daliah Roth: Libra

    ​Autumn is officially here and with it comes the beginning of Libra season. Balanced, social and often romantic, Daliah Roth of The Highgate Astrologer helps us delve deeper into the qualities of this sign.

    More +
  15. Hair Trend: Slicked Back

    From Molly Goddard to Roland Mouret, we spotted the slicked back look all over the SS20 catwalks. Though the style may seem more high fashion than everyday, hair that’s swept of the face is surprisingly flattering and easy to achieve. With help from our Senior Stylist Mel, we’ve put together some tips on the bold yet sophisticated trend.

    More +
  16. Plastic-Free Periods

    ​As more and more alternative period products become available, we chat to four real women to hear their experiences transitioning from conventional feminine care to more sustainable and healthy options.

    More +
Load more posts