Coming up for air.

Tonight has been all about replenishing my stores.

Boxing after work, home to a hot shower, a giant bowl of warm oatmeal & honey for dinner and succumbing to an early nights’ rest before getting up at the crack of dawn tomorrow to film a television commercial (before you get too excited, I’m thankfully behind the camera). 

I’ve been feeling so out of sorts lately. I’m fast losing the motivation to keep up with my workouts, my diet has been less than disciplined, the late sunrises and early sunsets are making me miserable, and work has been all-consuming. I do love my job (sometimes I think that’s the root cause) but I’m beginning to run low on fuel in this tank o’ mine.

I promise I will come up for air soon!

x

Antigona.

Lover cable knit angora jumper, Zara skirt, Chanel ballet flats, Givenchy Antigona tote, my sister’s Ray Bans.

Not your usual Sunday yesterday.

Whilst the rest of the nation was still snuggled up in bed, I crossed ‘run through the Graham Farmer tunnel from beginning to end’ off my bucket list. So much fun. I clocked up a time of 1 hour, 30-ish minutes, running about 60% of the 12km I signed up to. I would have honestly run more but there was only so much ground I could cover with 30,000 other people competing. It was absolutely chaotic and so much fun and I’m already thinking about signing up for next year – with the view to compete in the 12km run this time (because I really do love torturing myself).

The obligatory post-event pig out was conducted at No.4 Blake Street in North Perth (worth checking out if you haven’t done so already), where we gorged proper on lamb & oat burgers, fries, and decidedly decadent desserts in terracotta pots. Despite the entree-sized mains here, I’d most definitely return for the sweets with a girlfriend in tow.

As for my outfit, I haven’t yet featured my new Lover jumper (which was a little birthday present to myself) so here it is. The Antigona kind of upstaged the outfit, though. Oops.

Winter notes & loves.

1. Disheveled-don’t-care-hair.

2. New in: Isabel Marant skirt & Phillip Lim sweat from The New Guard.

3. Thinking about sensible Europe trip footwear. To NikeID or not to NikeID a pair of Roshe Run sneakers?

4. Adding a winter glow to the complexion c/o Becca Shimmering Skin Perfector in Moonstone.

5. Givenchy croc-stamped anything.

6. Curling up on the couch with my lemon & ginger tea.

7. Filling up my trusty CR duffle again for a much-needed mini-break in a couple of weeks’ time.

Batter up.

3.1 Phillip Lim sweatshirt with leopard sleeves, Zara black skort, Celine navy Trio purse, Chanel ballet flats, ASOS leather baseball cap.

Kept it relatively low-key with both my Saturday and my outfit today, in preparation for a crazy Sunday ahead.

I’ve signed up for the HBF Run for a Reason (thankfully just the 12km walk division) with my brother and sister this year, and it just so happens that the race is tomorrow. I’m not a fun-runner in the slightest nor was I ever a runner since a couple of months ago, but I’m always drawn to a good physical and mental challenge whilst getting the opportunity to poke fun at ourselves in the process. The goal I’ve set for myself is to run at least 6-8km out of the 12. With a lingering cold and a 6am wake up call tomorrow, I’m going to need all your luck.

To my Perth readers who are also participating in tomorrow’s run, all the best and I’ll see you at the finish line! Hopefully still vertical and breathing, that is 🙂

Leopard Love.

A little snippet of today’s outfit (love this Phillip Lim sweatshirt so much!).

I woke up to the most happiest news this morning (dear friends are newly engaged!), and then it was off to mum and dad’s for breakfast, before a lovely lunch with the lovely K & J. The rest of the afternoon was spent in town shopping and basking in the afternoon glow.

Full outfit post up shortly!

How to curl a bob.

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I thought my hair today deserved its own post, simply because it’s only the second (or first?) time that I’ve curled it like this since I had it cut super short last month. If we want to get technical here, it’s only the second time I’ve devoted more than five minutes to it (no exaggeration either). My work colleagues probably wouldn’t recognise me if they saw these photos!

I used my 32mm Babyliss Pro because curling my hair with a clampless device was proving near impossible without giving myself second degree burns.

I love how the curls turned out yet for some unexplainable reason I still don’t feel short hair is ‘me’. But as they say, hair grows back, right?

This Sandra Lee-simple method takes me about 15 minutes and even quicker if I just want perfectly imperfect, barely-there waves. These curls will also take me through the next day or two – so I usually wash and curl my hair on a Friday and won’t have to do a thing to it all weekend.

You’ll need: a curling iron (I’m using a clampless Cloud Nine Wand above), heat protectant, good hairspray, and a paddle brush.

There are two key things involved with this method:

  • Use your left arm to curl the right side of your head; and your right arm to curl the left side of your head. Doing this not only ensures a lesser chance of getting scalded by the curling iron, but you can also get closer to the root which helps to achieve more volume near the crown.
  • Point the curling wand downwards, until it’s at a 45 degree angle or almost vertical. The shape of my curls turn out nicer (i.e. tapers towards the ends) when I point the curler down, instead of up.

Follow the steps above and repeat until you’ve curled all of your hair. Then run a paddle brush through your hair to create that ‘brushed-out’ effect, before giving it a final spritz of hairspray.

Helmut.

Helmut Lang silk dress, Lover tux jacket, Witchery Carine pumps, YSL Arty cocktail ring & Chyc black clutch.

In between overdosing on caffeine this week, answering work emails at 5am and midnight, belatedly celebrating my birthday proper tonight, waking up for my 6am boxing classes (death) and making a huge splurge on a Givenchy bag yesterday… I’ve also found some time to come down with a virus.

I hope to post a bit more over the weekend once I’ve managed to come up for some air but for now I’m snuggling up in a soft woolly throw with copious mugs of tea and wishing this cold away before I descend on my brother’s house tomorrow morning to help him paint his new walls.

Happy weekend, everyone!

My guide to shopping sales smarter.

My husband and I waited an hour in line on Saturday morning for the annual Dilettante ‘Archive’ sale. To the uninitiated, think Dion Lee, Helmut Lang, Preen and Josh Goot at (up to) 90% off. It’s common to find a $1500 pair of pants in the $60 clothing bin, at this once-a-year sale, as my avant garde-obsessed husband gloriously discovered at last year’s sale. He’s so happy and precious about them that he lets me wear his underwear (another story in itself) but not his Marant-inspired track pants by The Viridi-anne.

Anyway. The thing is, my husband doesn’t queue for anything. Not even for coffee. The sale was ‘his’ idea though (I know, what?) so because he made his bed, he felt obliged to lay in it for a little while longer. So for an hour we stood on the sidewalk befriending an Irish couple in front of us and scrutinising every person who walked out of the sale. The plan was this: if the number of people who walked out empty-handed exceeded the number who didn’t, we’d leave.

As more and more sale-goers staggered out, flexing their muscles with their multiple brown bags, we began to discuss our sale shopping strategy (yep, we were that bored):

No wildly printed items.

Nothing coloured.

No shiny pants.

Nothing neoprene (here’s looking at you, Goot)

Nothing that we need to alter/lose weight/gain weight to fit into.

But our discussion was punctuated with:

Why do we keep buying things we really don’t need?

Do we really want to spend money that would otherwise go towards our Europe trip?

What happened to maintaining a pared-down wardrobe?

But we stayed in line. And as the above pictures suggest, I did, in fact, comply. I zeroed in on Helmut kinetic jersey basics, tailored Dion Lee items, a gorgeous drapey, wispy Helmut Lang burnout silk black dress, and a fucking amazing (excuse the language) leather and shearling jacket by Gareth Pugh, which, at 80% off, was also my husband’s birthday gift to me. I don’t think I’ve ever had anything so extravagant and impossibly beautiful (or ridiculously warm) hanging in my wardrobe.

I’ve also never purchased so much black, white and shades of grey in my life, but I was comforted by being able to fill a few gaps in my wardrobe – a basic black jersey dress to layer underneath jackets and knits; a pair of black silk trousers, a sheer ribbed grey tank and a relaxed white t-shirt made of the softest jersey. Thank you, Helmut.

These are the things I tried on but restrained myself from buying:

Josh Goot neoprene dress and printed bomber jacket – ridiculously flattering on and such special pieces but unfortunately there’s no longevity in it for me. I can foresee selling off these items within a year.

Dion Lee fuchsia silk cut-out long sleeved shirt – loved the colour and the cut but it’s not black, to cut a long story short. For $45 down from $480, it took an enormous amount of willpower to put it back on the rack.

Vivienne Westwood black rose quilted cropped leather bomber – I’ve always loved the concept of quilted leather anything but I’ve always had a hard time matching cropped jackets with the rest of my wardrobe. 

Helmut Lang leather pants in olive/khaki – in my size but I can’t help but think that I’ll never wear these simply because they’re not black.

A year ago, I would have taken all of the above items home with me. I’d like to think that since then I’ve been shopping smarter despite the lure of heavy discounting and misguided, impulsive purchases associated with these kind of sales.

To summarise, I generally ask myself the following questions when I’m finding myself standing in the centre of a dizzying designer ‘warehouse’-type sale:

– Can I see myself wearing this in at least a year or two from now? How about five years (assuming my weight won’t fluctuate)?

– Can I think of at least five things in my wardrobe that I could wear this with?

– Is this item true to my style? Or are you only buying this to impress people or validate yourself to others?

– Would I be able to sell this item should I ever decide to, for whatever reason? (I usually gravitate towards well-known labels and designers to stay on the safe side)

– Why stick to just the womens’ section? I shop from the mens’ racks quite often as I often find that menswear is a lot less frivolous and more about wardrobe staples. It’s also often cheaper! Think oversized tees, striped shirts, slouchy trousers and classic tank tops.

– And the dealbreaker that everyone should ask themselves at a sale: would I buy this (or even look at it twice) if it wasn’t heavily discounted?

We’re all guilty of falling under the spell of a sale but for those of you who are currently cleansing your wardrobes to make way for smarter purchases, I have found it is possible to come away relatively unscathed.

And on that note, if you’re in Perth and are interested in checking out the once-a-year Dilettante sale, here are the details. 

A week in instax.

1. The winter sun and my leather baseball cap

2. My husband and our ritual Saturday morning coffee run

3. Birthday cupcakes from Sherbet Bakeshop

4. New in. Shopping stripes from Trenery on my birthday

5. My two year old niece hijacking my iphone camera

6. Max and mid-week dinner at my in-laws

7. Little Mackenzie in a sling after some ill-fated play-time

8. Blowing out the candles with my older brother

9. Mother’s Day breakfast with my niece & nephew Sophie & Tristan

10. Holiday planning over a tea for one at my favourite cafe

11. Coat weather! Finally! This one’s by Zara

12. Love my Friday post-work workouts. Enjoying the lake view after an 8km run

13. A coffee pitstop at Uncle Joe’s Mess Hall before tackling the Dilettante sale

14. Sticky Date goodness

15. Homebaked gifts for the two superwomen in my life

Easy Peasy.

Bassike striped shirt, Zara printed shorts and velvet skull loafers, Asos leather baseball cap, Celine Trio navy purse.

An easy peasy outfit to accompany the first half of May that is invariably a chaotic albeit exciting one. 12 days into the month and I’ve already marked three birthdays in my family as well as Mother’s Day on Saturday.

We celebrated with our mums yesterday – breakfast with my husband’s mother and then dinner with mine last night. This year I decided to try my hand at baking! I got up at 6am on Saturday morn’ and baked my mother in-law my signature oatmeal & pepita cookies. For the evening, my sister and I whipped up a Sticky Date cake with butterscotch sauce to end our Mother’s Day dinner on a sweet note (it also masqueraded as a birthday cake!).There’s nothing quite like quiet celebrations at home with the people I love most in this world.

To all the mums, new mums and mums to-be reading, Happy Mother’s Day to you all! As for the rest of us, I hope the special women in your life are deservedly being pampered!

The Collector.

Creature comforts in the form of the Bassike slouch jersey pants I’ve been collecting since last winter.

Daisy dreams.

This week, I’m all about baking oatmeal cookies, drinking mugs of lemon and ginger tea, daisies in Moccona jars, and my dreamy new angora Lover sweater.

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Birthday Cake.

Another birthday has come and gone and although a pending cyclone last night in Perth kept the revelry at bay (I cannot remember the last time it didn’t rain on my birthday) I still had the best day.

A cupcake run in the morning, a spot of shopping after work, deliciously hearty Korean with some of my favourite girlfriends, a spontaneous phone call from my two year old niece, a lovely post-dinner coffee with the girls chatting about things close to our heart and soul and then, coming home to fresh, white daisies and my husband and, finally, some family time with mum, dad and my sister, as we winded down into the night. My mum even put on a roast just for me and although I was so full from dinner earlier that night I managed to fit in a little of her special meal in my tummy.

I’m not a big birthday person but as my 20s become more and more of a blur, I’m beginning to realise that birithdays are not just about asking others to tick things off your wishlist. It’s about being surrounded by your best friends, great company, family, and doing things you love the most, with people who will be there for you, on your birthday, for many more years to come.

It’s also always about cake, though. Always.

Denim dreams.

J Brand 811 in Bliss, Zara navy blazer with polka dot pocket hanky, Zara classic white linen t-shirt & animal print loafers, Celine navy regular Trio, Prada Barqoue sunglasses.

This could well be the first time most of you have seen me in a pair of denim blue jeans. It has been years since I last wore these things – they served me well whilst I was at uni (Sass & Bide East Villages or Tencel Jeans, anyone?) but then I discovered Alannah Hill and then, later on, ponte pants. 

The truth is, I have a love/hate relationship with jeans. Does anyone else find them extremely uncomfortable? I love that whenever I do wear them I don’t get the side-eye from people who are usually the first to tell me I look overdressed. But I hate that I have to undo the top button after a big meal (yes, I realise this is more my fault than the jeans themselves). I also hate shopping for jeans – I find all the different cuts, colours, washes and brands dizzying and so overwhelming.

But anyway.

This post was meant to be an ode to a pair of jeans I chanced upon a few weeks ago at David Jones. I’ve never owned a pair of J Brand jeans so these are my very first. Since cleansing my wardrobe I kind of figured out that a pair of blue, cigarette-leg jeans would probably do my closet a favour. I was immediately drawn to the wash (J Brand calls ‘Bliss’) and the fact that they were ridiculously flattering. The fact that they were also on sale, helped.

It goes without saying that I know absolutely nothing about jeans but somewhere between being a mid-rise, the perfect placement of the back pockets and the super skinny leg, equates to a pair of jeans I can see myself wearing in years to come.

For reference, I’m wearing a size 25 here. I’m hoping they won’t stretch out too much as they’re a tiny bit loose in the waist. I’d say they equate to a size 4 in Country Road jeans, if anyone’s wondering.

Cinnamon & Sugar.

Country Road intarsia spot sweater, Zara ruffle shorts, Witchery ‘Carine’ heels, mnologie perspex clutch, asos leather baseball cap.

So it turns out I’m a little bit obsessed with my leather baseball cap which, I might add, has only been in my possession for just over 24 hours.

Wearing a cap kind of reminds me of when I was a tomboy in my teens, wearing baggy tracksuits to the supermarket and playing basketball with my brother in our backyard. It also takes me back to those 18 months I spent working in a donut shop, slaving away underneath a canvas hat that reeked permanently of cinnamon and sugar. What part-time uni jobs were all about, really.