This month we had the absolute pleasure of going to meet with Kris Hallenga. Kris is the founder of the charity CoppaFeel! and author of the book Glittering a Turd and an all-round gem of a person. The sun shone (at long last), we drank tea, took some stunning photographs, and talked about cancer, the importance of checking your breasts, the significance of sisters, what it’s like to write a book, how it feels to run a charity alongside your twin... and so much more.
Kris was diagnosed with incurable breast cancer at the age of 23. Since her diagnosis she has been on a mission to get breast cancer on people (of all ages and genders) radar. She has had quite the journey along the way and has one thousand percent done what she has set out to achieve. You can check out Kris website CoppaFeel! here. Read all about the amazing work Kris and Maren have done and how it can benefit every single one of us.
Kris lives in Cornwall on the opposite side of the coastline to us. It was such a pleasure to be invited into her home where we also had the joy of meeting Lady Marmalade, the cat.
Find Kris on Instagram here.
Find CoppaFeel! website here.
Buy Kris's book Glittering a Turd here
Photography by Imogen Rosemary.
Kris wears The Olive Jacket, The Harriet Blouse in Cumin and one of The Kantha Gillets 


Tell us a little about yourself

I’m the founder of young persons breast cancer charity CoppaFeel!, I am living with breast cancer in Cornwall with my cat Lady Marmalade and when I am not in the sea I am probably staring at it.

Any daily rituals that you enjoy and that are so important to you?

I am not one for routine because I just can’t seem to stick to anything, ever, but I am lucky enough to know how important it is to just get outside every single day. I live so close to the sea and it pulls me to it on the daily. It reminds me to breathe and check in with my mind and my body, which is helpful when I am dealing with all kinds of cancer treatments or just your typical life stuff. Since the beginning of the year I’ve also taken to doing yoga every day with friends on Zoom! Which feels very lock down 2020 but I love that I can easily connect with friends and move my body. There’s something to be said for accountability too!
It is also very likely that at some point during every single day my cat will pin me down for a cuddle too and ya know, you can’t argue with Lady Marmalade.  

How did writing your incredible book come about?

I had been thinking about writing my story of being diagnosed with cancer at 23 for a long time. So much about my story was pretty wild and needed to be told but it wasn’t until the pandemic that I really REALLY found the time and the head space to do it. It’s been the hardest thing I’ve done but because of that I am forever proud of myself too. It’s a book I wish I had been able to read when I was first diagnosed and learned that I would likely not live until a ripe old age. I needed hope, I needed to know it was at least possible to live well and happily however long I might have. I think my book gives others that feeling of hope and endless possibilities. It’s defo not a “how to do cancer” book but a reassuring “you do this YOUR way” and you will be fine. I won’t be the first or last rung person to face a late stage breast cancer diagnosis that is for sure.
What’s the best thing about being a twin?

It’s a bond like no other and I feel lucky every day that I have that in my life. I think I took it for granted as a kid, knowing I always had a pal, but I don’t now.

Talk us through your perfect day

I would love to say that a perfect day doesn’t necessarily involve good weather but I would be lying, I LOVE THE SUN. So, it’s sunny, and we are probably heading for a stroll near a body of water - I love the ocean but am a sucker for a calm lake too - and at some point we will reach a delightful brunch spot. There is no urgency, good chat, many laughs, lots of silliness with people I love. From there on I am all about impromptu unplanned fun that might involve swimming in the sea or going dancing or an early night in freshly cleaned pyjamas! Heaven. And if someone wants to give me a head massage before I go to sleep that’d be nice too, thanks.