Hello, 2014

Monday, 6 January 2014

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Hello, and happy New Year! Did you have a lovely and relaxing holiday break? We spent ours visiting family, and it was nice to get away for a few days and catch up with loved ones.

Like many others, I find that the start of a new year offers a chance to get organised and put some plans into action, but also time to reflect on the year that’s just been. One thing I’ve been thinking a lot about is blogging, and how my heart hasn’t really been in it for the past few months. I've been so busy with work that I haven't had a lot of time to spare, and I think this blog has suffered as a result, so I’ve decided that it’s best to take a break. I might come back to this blog later on, but for now I’d like to focus on other things, and not spread myself too thin. In the meantime I’ll still be kicking about on Twitter and Pinterest, so you’re not altogether rid of me :)

Wishing you all a wonderful 2014! I hope it’s filled with joy and plenty of lovely things. x

[All photos above are from my Instagram feed in December 2013]

Wish You Were Here 2014 Charity Calendar

Tuesday, 10 December 2013

I don't often make snap purchases, but as soon as I saw this calendar it went straight into my shopping basket. Titled Wish You Were Here, this is the third annual charity calendar project from Melbourne stationery label Ask Alice. The creative brains behind Ask Alice, Sass Cocker,  hand-picked a selection of artists from all over the world and across many different backgrounds to generously contribute, with a mind to illustrating their favourite city. 100% of the profits from calendar sales are going towards Melbourne's Asylum Seeker Resource Centre, which is a great organisation that works to provide services and support to asylum seekers.

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There is some fantastic artwork featured, including Cape Town by Studio Muti, Sydney by James Gulliver Hancock, Barcelona by Lydia Nichols, Delhi by Owen Gatley, Amsterdam by Lotta Nieminen, Montevideo by Martin Azambuja, Brighton by Ryan Gillett, Mykonos by Matt Chase, Copenhagen by Michelle Carlslund, Helsinki by Blanca Gómez, New York by Nicholas Girling and Tokyo by Masako Kubo. Some of my favourite artists and designers have contributed their work to this year's calendar, and with the calendar being printed on lovely card stock, I'll surely be cutting and framing some of these prints later on. To purchase, visit the Ask Alice website.

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 photo WishYouWereHere4_zpsfcb15c78.jpg[Images: Ask Alice]

The High Country, Victoria

Friday, 6 December 2013

In lieu of a proper holiday this year (our UK trip doesn't really count, as it was more about visiting family and friends!), Adam and I have been making the most of our weekends by getting out and seeing more of Victoria. The other week I posted about or visit to Wilsons Prom, and just a couple of weeks later we packed up the car and headed north east to Victoria's High Country. The region has a rich history in gold mining (see what I did there?) and bushranger folklore, and features Victoria's highest mountains as well as a host of national parks, lakes, snow resorts, vineyards and boutique breweries. We stayed in a little cottage just outside of Bright, a cute holiday township surrounded by alpine trees in the heart of the region. We made sure to hit up Bright Brewery while we were there, and also drove up to the top of nearby Mt Buffalo and did a short walk to the peak, where you get 360 degree views of the Australian Alps, where these photographs were taken. So beautiful!

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I do love a good mountain view! Other than nerding out over the mountains, we spent a good amount of time relaxing (is there anything better than sitting back with a good book?), and also took a drive out to Mt Beauty, with a pit stop at a small brewery with some really delicious beers by the name of Sweet Water Brewing. On the way home we took a detour to Beechworth, another historic gold mining town, and couldn't help but stop at Bridge Road Brewers for another tasting paddle (well, Adam had the paddle – I was driving!). Can you see a theme developing here? I didn't realise before visiting that there are so many craft breweries in this part of the country, and if you like good beer it's worth visiting for this reason alone! Beer talk aside, it was a really lovely weekend away, and I can totally recommend a trip out this way if you're ever in the area. Now I'm off to apply for a job with Tourism Victoria...

The Under $25 Australian Gift Guide (for cool ladies)

Monday, 2 December 2013

Oh, hi there December, where the hell did you come from?! I feel like you've completely snuck up on me, and I am not at all prepared for birthday/Christmas month (both mine and Adam's birthdays are in December, which is so well timed!). Last year I celebrated the start of December with a whole bunch of holiday-themed posts, but I just haven't had the time to do the same this year, so instead I thought I'd put a wee gift guide together full of items from Australian designers and makers, because it's pretty nice to support local artists and craftspeople. Everything here is under $25, which also makes it a budget-friendly collection, and I know I'd certainly be happy with any of these ace gifts. Hopefully there are some good ideas here for all the cool ladies in your life!

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1. Ask Alice camera boxed blank notebook / 2. Yardage Design freckle tea towel / 3. Ena & Albert patchwork studs from Little Shop Of / 4. Kester Black Parrot nail polish
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1. Hello Pants skull print / 2. Ella Mobbs floral sugar skulls brooch / 3. Rare Indeed wayfarer glasses stud earrings / 4. Poppies For Grace sweetheart gift set

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1. Aunty Cookie ampersand tea towel / 2. Blank Goods DIY geometrici necklace / 3. Ena & Albert bracelet from Little Shop Of / 4. Kester Black/Beci Orpin nail stickers (since sold out, but you can get this Kester Black guide to nail art book instead)

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1. Able & Game tea towel / 2. Ena & Albert studs from Little Shop Of / 3. Rare Indeed Marvellous banner brooch / 4. Frankie gift paper book

The Design Files Open House 2013

Monday, 25 November 2013

This past weekend saw the return of the annual Design Files Open House. You might remember my posts about the 2012 and 2011 events, and this year saw Lucy, Lisa Marie and the rest of the Design Files crew take over a lovely house in East Hawthorn. The open house is unique in that every single item on display is up for sale, from bedlinen to books to kitchenwares. This house had a lovely open-plan layout, which meant high ceilings and large walls filled with beautiful artworks, including some favourites from Esther Stewart and Kirra Jamison, and some lovely lady portraits by Sandra Eterovic, a Melbourne-based artist whose work I hadn't seen before.

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When I'm a grown-up with my own house I want that garden! Something to aspire to. Well done to the Design Files team for putting together another great event – no mean feat, I'm sure. This year the open house will also be headed to Sydney for the first time, and will be in Surry Hills from 5-8 December, so if you're close by make sure to visit! All the details can be found on the Design Files Open House website.

Fish Creek Cottage

Monday, 18 November 2013

Following on from last week's post, I thought I'd share a few photos of where we stayed during our visit to South Gippsland. This isn't a sponsored post at all, I just liked our stay so much that I wanted to share (and because I think you'll like it too!).

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Cute and cosy, no? The cottage is located in the small township of Fish Creek, which is about a half hour drive away from Wilsons Prom, and is kitted out with retro finishings and a nice, big kitchen and dining area. It was raining for most of the weekend so we unfortunately didn't get to sit out on the deck, but we did get to enjoy the wood fire stove (which I honestly didn't think we'd be needing in the middle of October – silly me!). It was lovely to cosy up on the couch and watch a film with the fire going and the rain falling outside. More info about the cottage can be found here.

Wilsons Promontory

Monday, 11 November 2013

Last week I mentioned that we visited Wilsons Promontory National Park, and today I thought I'd share some photos from our trip. Wilsons Prom is located in the South Gippsland region of Victoria, and forms the southermost part of the Australian mainland. The park itself is huge, and the road only takes you part of the way (which is why it's a pretty popular spot for overnight hikers). The landscape is beautiful and diverse here, ranging from mountains and sandy beaches to bush and grassland, and even reminded me of the New Zealand south island in parts. The park is also home to lots of native animals, and we were lucky enough to spot a couple of wombats (CUTE!), a kangaroo, some emus and plenty of other lovely birds.

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Such a beautiful part of the world! For more park info, visit the Parks Victoria website.
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