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Second Sunday

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I’ve been going on about the Nike Training Club for months now so I thought it would only be fair to recap the final event – #NTCtourSYD that took place yesterday in Pyrmont. Prior to the event, we were sent some really nicely boxed event packs that came with a magazine, event information and tanks that came in three slogans. I personally thought mine was the best (Burn Burpee Burn) because it was the punniest but they also had ‘Does your core want more?‘ and ‘Sweaty hair don’t care‘.

The morning started with an opening workout led by Nike master trainer Kirsty Godso at 11:30. It was streamed online and simultaneously kicked off Melbourne and Auckland’s event too. There were about 3000 people there so the event was split into groups depending on the exercises you had picked upon registration. I did boxing, circuit and dance. Dance was my favourite because we were front row and they had some fun zumba-style routines to songs like Hotline Bling and What Do You Mean. Each group also had a ‘rest’ period where you could get a massage, have your hair braided, get flash tattoos and special one off nike manis. They also had health lab bliss balls and I tried the mint chocolate one which was super good but the maple water was so gross! It messed my stomach up, 0/10 do not recommend. We had a closing workout at 3:15 and the event wrapped up around 4. We collected our ‘congratulations for killing it’ bracelets and carried our tired selves back home.

It was a decent experience but I don’t think I’ll be going to the full event next year. I definitely recommend taking advantage of all the free classes in the lead up though because those were really fun and much more intimate and well organised! There’s also the option of volunteering as well. If you’re thinking of attending in the future I would recommend you bring a hat, pack lots of snacks, sunscreen up and arrive early if you want to snag all the free goodies!

Hope your weekend was energising – I am super excited for the 4 day week followed by easter long weekend – I need a double weekend filled with chocolate and hot cross buns please! Also, if you’re curious, the white sneakers in the first photo aren’t real, they’re actually made of plaster!

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First Sunday

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Slow Sundays are where its at. I like to go for a morning dip and then come home for a noon shower, scrub, cleanse, moisturise, condition, shave, wax, tone and polish situation. I’ve added a couple of new products to the mix thanks to Lush and now I’m a smooth milky sesame smelling bun of a son. My descriptions are mediocre at best and I apple c’d the lush descriptions so you can get a good whiff of an idea from your screen.

Soothing Sesame Lotion – I love a good dim sum and this sesame lotion reminds of the inside of a black sesame steamed bun. It’s very thin and runny in consistency and exactly what you need for the upcoming colder months, providing you with a nice glow and subtle sun protection. I’ve had it on for about three hours now and I still smell lovely and yummy haha! Mentally adding this to my things to repurchase next cart. What Lush says, “Dewy, radiant complexions start with walnut leaf infusion. Providing a bronzed glow before you step into the sun, simply glide this velvety lotion all over your body. Its sunkissed colour and lashings of hydrating cocoa butter from community growers in the Dominican Republic will give skin a head (to toe) start. If the great ball of fire in the sky could smell, it would likely be attracted to the irresistibly nutty scent of organic sesame oil too.

The Rough with the Smooth – Do you remember how in science class, they told us that human bodies get a new set of cells every 7 years? I’m pretty sure a good scrub down like this will definitely aid the process. I broke the bar into smaller bits but its a bit messy (melts slightly in the current heat) and I would rather it come in a tub. Regardless, it does what its supposed to do and I feel like my skin might be as soft as a baby’s. What Lush says, “This deeply exfoliating treat will take rough skin in hand, leaving you soft all over.”

Milky Bath Bubble Bar – I haven’t tried this one yet but with all Lush products, I find the glitter a bit unnecessary. If it’s like any of their other bubble bars, I’m sure this one will be a gem because who doesn’t want to bathe in milk a la Cleopatra? What Lush says, “This comforting little milk bottle bubble bar is filled with uplifting orange oil and skimmed milk to treat your skin to a dose of happiness. A cocoa butter bottle top adds a little bit of extra softness.

These Sunday Sessions will be a new addition to my site, designed for me to have an extra posting day where I can work on my still life photography and get a little rambly with you over some iced coconut milk and banana coffee … and if you don’t like it, there’s always another post to look forward to in the next 24 hours. I’ll be writing about anything on my mind and they won’t be pre-written unlike my other posts. I want to add some spontaneity to this site! Hope your weekend has treated you well lovelies x !

Products all from Lush (c/o)

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Nook of the Day

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As soon as Christmas was over, I sprung into action and got everything straightened out to welcome the new year. I threw out a lot of junk and added some new bits and bobs to my work nook and bookcase. Here are some of my January rituals that I like to always complete:

  • Donate old clothes, accessories, etc. – anything that hasn’t been worn for more than 12 months should go. I let a lot of old costumes go that I had been saving for future dress up events but I decided that I’m better off with a whole empty drawer than one filled with things that I may or may not wear once in a blue moon.
  • Delete duplicates of photographs – as I create 100% of the visual content on this blog, I have a LOT of pictures in my hard drive. Whilst I like to keep a few hilarious candids, I have so many pictures that are basically the same that I like to delete as much as possible to free up future storage space.
  • Unsubcribe to email lists that I don’t even open. This is a serious chore but just something you have to do. Put on a lighthearted sitcom in the background or some YouTube vlogs and get rid of all that spam.
  • Get a new calendar! Kind of an obvious one but there are so many free printables on Pinterest that look gorgeous on a clipboard 😉
  • Swap out your photo frames – I always have quotes in my frames so I like to change my mantras every year depending on what life goal I am aiming towards. This year mine is ‘good things come to those who hustle’.

I’m so glad I started early too because would you know it, I caught a cold on NYE ( almost didn’t make it to midnight!) and spent the next few days finishing off the last season of Friends. It was frustrating not being able to catch the new year bug and be all motivated, creative and fit. I’m on my last few sniffles and have been snapping photos, writing emails, editing and writing up drafts all day in preparation for my cruise. As you read this, I will be sailing away from all my responsibilities on the Pacific Eden for just over a week! I am very lucky to be working with P&O to bring you guys some very fun content so look out for that soon. If you have any queries as to where certain decor pieces are from, just ask in the comments but the answer will probably be Kmart or Ikea 🙂 If you are looking for some throwback SS, check out my desk decorating post from last year or my last shelfie
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‘January’ calligraphy thanks to cable car couture

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SSCHRISSY

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dress /  flats / laptop case

In an ideal christmas wonderland, I would be able to create 24 days worth of content (an SS advent calendar type thing if you will) to ring in my favourite holiday of the year. Unfortunately, time and lack of wifi for the first third of this month got the better of me so with 10 days left until the big fellow be creepin’ I have created a smorgasbord of festive things that will make you say oh oh oh. Oops I mean ho ho ho! Read on to see what I have been up to in terms of decking the halls and how you can give your house that Rockefeller treatment even if you are experiencing 30 degree plus heatwaves on a weekly basis.

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NETFLIX & HEAT

I.e. stay horizontal to the ground as you wait for the thunderstorms to roll in and signify the end of yet another 30 degree Sydney day. All the Home Alones are always a classic, Love Actually, Elf and Santa Clause are viewed with greater enthusiasm each year and any Christmas themed television episode is always a delight. I watched Christmas Eve on the weekend which is a 2015 film – very realistic but not the greatest. Vlogamas has also become quite a tradition my favourites being: Zoella, Rachel Jade Annear (Australian), Aspyn + Parker & the Sacconejolys. If you want to feel like a Christmas Grinch, go watch these people. Do it in style with a marble laptop vinyl like mine from CaseApp and get 20% off your next order with the code SMORGASBORDCASE20. 

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BAKE IT OFF

Make like T-Swizzle and have a baking day with your squad. Listen to Christmas albums with some JB on the side because as much as we love to hate the Biebs, we all love Purpose. Was our icing intentionally crafted to look like snow or was it purely an accident? Only you and your friends will know this delicious secret that you will take to the snapchat grave. Great bonding sessions guaranteed. NB: No gummy bears were hurt in the process of building our gingerbread mansion despite the fact that they do look like they are falling off the roof.

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MONOGRAMMING IS SO 2015

Personalise your tree with print outs of photographs from the year. If you could do this on a 2 metre pine, it would be the perfect conversation stater piece slash subtle bragging ensemble. Oh yeah .. this quick snap was from the Maldives in early Jan and ah I look so tan here from my 2 week Greek Island escape.

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TREAT YO SELF

As important as giving and receiving is blah blah blah … you know whats the most important? When the giver and receiver is both yourself. Yeah that’s right hun, you go and spoil yourself silly this silly season. A nice long bath away from all your responsibilities and to treat those paper cuts from over wrapping is a start. Lush knows whats up with the Merry Christmas gift set filled with their most popular Christmas treats: Cinders Bath Bomb, Golden Wonder Bath Bomb, Lord Misrule Bath Bomb, Father Christmas Bath Bomb and Dashing Santa Bath Bomb . If you’re feeling generous, I guess you could give them to friends and family too. Look at those smart cookies, saving you from doing any wrapping.

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Products featured c/o Pocket Prints / Lush / CaseApp 

Don’t forget to follow me on Instagram @stylesmorgasbord for all the latest #sschrissy updates and I wish you all a safe and happy holiday season! 

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Did you get the Memo(bottle)?

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As a business student, I have looked a lot into start-up businesses this year, in particular, the importance of crowd funding and how it has changed the landscape of entrepreneurs in the last decade … Mind you, the word crowdfunding really only emerged in 2006 so technically speaking not even a decade ago but lets not dwell on examinable details like this because ITS SUMMER TIME! Oh golly I am so excited because I’m going on two trips and I’m decking the halls tomorrow!!!!

If you ever have a moment to spare, go onto Kickstarter and have a look at some of the innovative ideas out there. There are some weird and wonderful ideas like the Folding Lamp & ONELID and something that personally interests me greatly: The Spark Planner but there are plenty others that have great potential. One of these ideas that has successfully made it off the site is Memobottle, a project that was launched back in May 2014 and backed by 6118 pledgers and $ 261 148 AUD. To learn more about their journey towards production and distribution, click here.

Memobottle is kind of a sick concept. I don’t know about you but when I used to be a basic beesh with a cylindrical drink bottle, sometimes I would walk around with this curved thing pressed against my spine … well Memobottle has solved that weird back rubbing for me. Its very slim and flat which means it’s the perfect shape to fit in those made to look battered messenger satchels and this season’s It bag, the Chloe Faye, so essentially its hipster and couture approved. I fit into neither of those demographics and after using it for a month I approve too and so do my secretly jealous friends haha. They’ve also just released an A6 size next to their original A5 bottles and you can learn more on their Site, Instagram, Pinterest, FB and Twitter. #ONEBOTTLEMOVEMENT

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Namastay in Bed All Day

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Namastay in Bed All Day‘ – is that the general consensus among students this time of the year? Yeah … you and me both buddy … but we soldier on knowing that in a fortnight’s time, ‘school’s out, we can sleep as late as we want too’.* Here’s a little lifestyle editorial for your viewing pleasure today in collaboration with Shhh Silk. They launched their online store a few weeks ago and specialise in fancy schamncy silk pillowcases to keep your hair silky soft (the puns continue, apologies). I’m a violent thrashing sleeper who often wakes up in the morning looking like Hermoine so hopefully this will minimise the damage. My favourite thing about these pillow cases aside from how they make me feel like Eloise at New York Plaza is that they come with a zip! I haven’t found a pillowcase with a zip ever – they usually have nothing or little fussy buttons that no one has time for. For some more dreamy photographs, check out Shhh Silk’s Instagram, Facebook and Twitter. Also, if you are interested in learning more about my creative process, have a look at my Pinterest Board to see the inspiration behind this editorial.

Since this is a collaboration and all, I would like to address something that has been on rotation in the social media loop in the last week. As someone who uses Instagram and the like I feel like I should talk about the whole Social-Media-Is-Evil-Essena-O’Neil-Quits-Everything matter. I use my blog and other social media channels to express myself creatively and part of this process involves collaborations with companies and brands that I am proud of. I am proud to be working with Shhh Silk because I think the fact that the founder quit her 9-5 job to pursue something she was passionate about is inspiring. I have been offered paid content before but I’ve turned it down because it meant giving the reigns to someone else. I’m not saying that I will never publish a sponsored post but when I do, it will be disclosed and it will be in line with my brand. I also think very highly of my readers and I am confident that they are smart people who can tell that my content is staged. Because, no, I do not have breakfast in bed like this every morning. If you would also like to read another opinion on this click here for some lolz.

*Millennials I do hope you get that reference because if you don’t SHAME ON YOU 😉

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Single Silk Pillowcase in ‘Blanc’ (c/o) Shhh Silk

Copper Wire Basket, Fairy Lights and Breakfast Tray from Kmart

Bustier from Cotton on Body (navy and pale blue are my favourites)

‘365’ Diary from Kikki-K 

 Bowl from Freedom; Vase from Ikea  

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Coppered Budget

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Furniture should be an investment so you should allow yourself to spend a little more but home decor is a frivolous, extra tassel expense so there’s really no point in buying expensive things when you can give your house that extra bippity boppity boo courtesy of your local Target and Kmart! All these pieces are under $25 with the exception of the floor lamp so hurry on kiddies! Let there be light with the luminoso floor lamp ($49) or the geometric pendant light ($15 !!!). Tuck away the nasties into these gems instead: copper pedal bins ($25) and rose gold paper bag ($12) and copper basket ($12). Add some sayings into the every day with the light box ($19 and a great alternative to the typo original) and foil print ($7 !!!). Display your favourite food and floral arrangements on the trendy flask vase ($4) and round acacia wood paddle board ($10). End the day by kicking off your shoes onto a fluffy faux fur rug ($19 and a much more easily accessible and a third of the price to the Ikea one). Hold on tight gems, its almost the weekend!

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DIY Marble Side Table

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Thought I would up my bed side table game by hopping on the marble trend in the least expensive way possible. Considering marble will be out of trend within the next few years, I wanted to do something that would cost me next to nothing. I have been contemplating ordering marble contact paper for a few months now but some rolls cost up to $50 on Etsy which is ridiculous since my side table was probably less than half that price!

ONE To create this side table, print off several copies of this marble print (download here). Take out your drawer and unscrew the knob. TWO Then, trim off the whites of your marble paper and affix it to the surface of your drawer using a gluestick. THREE Neatly, cut away all excess paper and fold it behind. FOUR Measure a piece of contact paper large enough to cover the surface of the drawer and the edges too. FIVE Slowly peel back the contact backing and smooth it over your drawer. If you fail at contacting surfaces, maybe practice contacting some old magazines to ensure your final product is always bubble free. SIX Trim off excess contact and re-pierce the hole where the knob is meant to go. SEVEN Screw knob back into place and you are finished! EIGHT (option lol) Artfully style your DIY, take many photographs and boast to family and friends 😉 Make sure they always stand 5 metres away so they can’t tell if its actually marble or not.

OPTIONAL: Before attempting this side table, I actually made a jewellery holder first. I printed off the marble sheets, glued them to card stock, contacted the whole thing and affixed it to my cork board using white push pins.

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Shelfie

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Did you know bookshelves say a lot about a person? Take the bookshelf test here and then share your shelfie with me! I am a bit OCD with my Ikea expedit shelves; I need them to be their aesthetic self but at the same time, I need them to be functional and hold as much junk as possible. Here are my tips!

ONE: Collect a bunch of boxes and magazine holders to store the unattractive bits. You can also buy very cheap binders and decorate them like I have done here a la Kate Spade.

TWO: Hold onto those champagne bottles, glass candles and jars and fill them with fresh, dead or fake flowers.

THREE: Display your favourite accessories that you never seem to get to use. For me, these are my quirky clutches and my cat flats which have died a bit.

FOUR: Let it go. Its basically impossible for your shelf to resemble a Pinterest shelf so don’t worry too much. Have fun, switch it out regularly and inject as much personality into your bookcase as possible. Magazines, gift bags, candles, travel memorabilia and picture frames are all great space fillers. Try stacking stuff sideways and if all else fails, shove it in a storage bin and try again tomorrow!

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Speckled Easter Cake

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Here’s an indulgent (both in terms of time and calories) type of cake that you can spend your easter long weekend making and eating. Its a four layered densely packed whopper that should be able to hold you over for at least four days!

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Banana Cake

  • 3 ripe bananas
  • 1/2 cup unsalted butter, softened
  • 1 cups sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1/2 cup plain Greek yogurt or sour cream
  • 1 1/2 cups all purpose flour
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/4teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt

Pre-heat oven to 180 degrees Celsius.  Prepare two round pans and set aside. Mash ripe bananas in a mixing bowl with a potato masher or fork and set aside. Sift together the dry ingredients and set aside. In the bowl of an electric mixer, beat the butter with a paddle attachment until smooth. Add in the sugar, and mix until light and fluffy. With the mixer on low, add in the vanilla and eggs – one at a time. Stop the mixer.  Scrape down the sides and bottom of the bowl. With the mixer on low, add in half of the dry ingredients. Mix in the yogurt or sour cream. Add in the remaining dry ingredients and mix until just combined. Fold in the mashed bananas until combined. Pour batter into prepared pans and bake until golden – about 22-25 minutes for the recommended size. Cool on a wire rack. Invert the cakes out of the pans once they are cool enough to handle. Cool completely before slicing each cake in half horizontally to create four layers of cake.

Dark Chocolate Buttercream

  • 3 egg whites
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1/2 cups unsalted butter, softened
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 block of dark chocolate

Place egg whites and sugar in the bowl of an electric mixer.  Whisk until combined. Fill a medium saucepan with a few inches of water and place over medium heat. Place the mixing bowl on top of the saucepan to cream a double-boiler. Heat, whisking occasionally, until the egg mixture is hot to the touch. Once hot, remove from heat and place bowl on mixer. Whisk on high until the bowl of the mixer becomes room temperature. With the mixer on medium-low, add in the vanilla, butter, and melted dark chocolate. Once added, mix on medium-high until smooth. Place buttercream between each layer of cake before frosting.

Green Frosting

  • 1 cup of unsalted butter, softened
  • 4 cups of icing sugar
  • A dash of salt
  • Green food colouring

To make frosting, in large bowl, beat softened butter and powdered sugar with electric mixer on low speed until incorporated; beat on high speed 3 minutes. Add vanilla and salt; beat 1 minute longer. Add green food color 1 drop at a time, beating until a light green colour is achieved.

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Speckles

  • 1 tablespoon of baking cocoa
  • 4 1/2 teaspoons of vanilla extract

To make speckles, stir the 2 ingredients together to create a paste, load it onto a dense paintbrush and flick at your cake.

Decorations

  • Instant Noodles
  • Mini Eggs

Break instant noodles into large chunks and assemble like a nest. Fill circle with mini eggs!

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