A MUM has told how she changed her name to UNICORN SPARKLES after watching Marie Kondo's hit Netflix show.
Marie Unicorn Sparkles changed her name by deed poll three years ago from Marie Naisbitt – after discovering her real name “didn't spark joy”.
Realising she disliked her straight black hair and "sensible" mum outfits as they didn't reflect her authentic self, in 2019 Marie Unicorn cleared out her dull wardrobe and hit the hair dye bottle.
As the medical secretary started to feel “more her”, people started commenting that she even looked like a unicorn, convincing her to take the plunge and fill in deed poll forms to change her name.
The 36-year-old said plumber hubby Patrick Naisbitt, 38, jokingly asked if she was having a midlife crisis, but fully supported her and told her to “do whatever makes you happy”.
Three years on Marie Unicorn hasn't looked back, and now daughters Elouise, 14, and 10-year-old Esme have even taken on the Sparkles moniker too.
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The name has left others baffled and even forced Marie to provide identification to convince a confused car insurance sales assistant that it was indeed her real name.
Marie Unicorn, from Stockton-on-Tees, County Durham, said: "I changed my name as I just wanted to be myself.
"I had a business called the Unicorn Beauty Club and people used to call me 'the unicorn lady' because I'm obsessed with them.
"I've always loved unicorns. It always annoys me the thought that giraffes and owls exist but a unicorn couldn't.
"I used to collect unicorn things when I was younger, it just sort of got out of control when I got older.
"I love that they can be themselves and they're so magical."
Beauty fan Marie Unicorn said watching Marie Kondo while going through a bout of depression spurred her on to make changes in her life.
Marie Unicorn said: "I went through quite a bad depression in 2018 and I just didn't feel like me. I wasn't happy so I decided to start making changes.
"I saw Marie Kondo and she says if something doesn't spark joy, throw it out.
"That's what really inspired me and I started looking at my clothes and hair and thinking 'I don't like any of it'.
"Marie Kondo hasn't just changed my wardrobe but my entire life, that one quote changed everything and has molded the way I am now.
"My style before I changed was very mumsy. I've just bought a big pink shiny coat, I wouldn't have dreamed of wearing anything like this before.
"When I started dyeing my hair I started to think 'I'm starting to feel more me'.
"Then people said 'you really do look like a unicorn now' and that's when I thought 'I'm going to do it' [the name change].
"I chose Sparkles as I thought 'what would sound nice with 'Unicorn'?.
"It's been a few years now and it just felt right. I couldn't imagine ever changing it back, I'll keep it for the rest of my life.
"My husband was really cool about it, he was so supportive. At first my daughters were a bit shocked, they said the same as everyone else 'why?'.
"They'd seen a change in me and we're an easy-going family so they were like 'ok'. Then they saw me so happy that that's when they were like 'we really want to be Sparkles too'.
"A couple of years ago my husband ordered the deed polls as a surprise for Christmas and gave them to them.
"They love the name change, they're really happy being Sparkles. Patrick doesn't want to be a Sparkles – the bore."
After splashing out £25 to get her name changed by deed poll, she contacted all companies and utility providers to update her details from Marie Naisbitt to Marie Unicorn Sparkles.
The majority have been plain sailing, with her driving licence, bank cards, finance information and work ID proving an easy transition.
But poor Patrick spent 20 minutes on the phone trying to convince a bemused car insurance provider that the name change wasn't a wind-up.
Marie Unicorn said: "My driving licence has been super easy to change, everything else has been really easy too.
"We had a couple of issues with the car insurance, my husband changed it over because I was already listed as a named driver.
"He was on the phone for 20 minutes and he was arguing with the bloke because he was going 'no, behave, tell me really' and this went on for a while.
"It got really awkward, my husband was saying 'no seriously, check the driving licence'. We got it sorted at the finish.
"Everything's been changed now, I'm just waiting for my passport to arrive but the name change has been done."
The reaction from strangers has been positive who Marie Unicorn says smile when they hear her name.
Marie Unicorn said: "My name makes people smile and it makes me smile too. It's lovely when I go into the bank and they go 'oh wow', that's nice.
"I'm definitely keeping the name now, I'll be a Granny Unicorn Sparkles.
"We've talked about it with the kids as well and they've said 'we'd like to carry on the name'.
"I've had the name for years, it's settled in quite nicely.
"It's meshed into my life and my husband's family are supportive of it as well. Everyone's really happy with it.
"Patrick did offer to become Sparkles to make me happy, bless him, but I turned round and said 'it wouldn't make you happy so no'.
"But he did offer, which I thought was really lovely."
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