The first question in nearly every interview on this blog is, ‘How would you describe yourself, both personally and professionally?’ It often flummoxes the interviewee as defining ourselves by educational attainment, professional standing, relationships or superfluous adjectives can be quite intimidating. I have subjected a litany of people to this torture and it only seems fair that within this section, I make an attempt to answer it myself.

My name is Sinéad Burke. I am a PhD candidate, a primary school teacher, a broadcaster, the Alternative Miss Ireland emeritus, a blogger, a public speaker, a friend, a niece, a cousin, a sister and a daughter. I pride myself on being a good listener, innately inquisitive, a professional perfectionist, understanding of difference and funny. The jury is still out on whether that is funny – humorous, or funny – strange.

ABoutI have been interested in fashion for as long as I can remember. Perhaps my obsession stemmed from feeling that it was a domain I could only admire from afar. I stand at the height of 3’5” tall and am extremely proud to be a little person but sartorially, it is a challenge. This blog began whilst I was training to be a teacher. Creating a blog was an assessment within our ICT lectures but it was not topic-specific. Thus, I found an outlet to document my journey within the fashion sphere.

As I began documenting my experiences, I quickly realised that many of the questions I laboured over, had yet to be answered. Beginning two interview series’ ‘Minnie Meets’ and ‘Extraordinary Women’ was an incredibly daunting experience. Sending emails and making phone calls to the people I admired could have been traumatic but the personalities featured on Minnie Mélange trusted me with their dreams, ambitions, failures and history. It has been the most humbling and rewarding part of my blogging journey, thus far.

‘Minnie Meets’ and ‘Extraordinary Women’ are two streams of conversation which I aspire to develop and continue this year. Please bear with me, though. Within my PhD I am questioning the role of the voice of the child on pupil engagement within disadvantaged primary school classrooms. Having both attended and taught in disadvantaged schools, the subject area is close to my heart and feels positively all-consuming. Thus, for the next few months, blog posts may be more sparse, but their quality and depth of questioning will not wain.

‘Minnie Mélange’ has evolved from solely documenting my journey in fashion to now becoming a platform for interesting people and interesting ‘things’. Thank you so much for your unwavering support and if you would like to know more, feel free to contact me here.