2016

Forcast: Balmy Autumn Weekend

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Forcast of the Day: A Balmy Autumn Weekend. You wake up and it’s 7am, Saturday, last weekend of the season. Far too early for a weekend for sure. Its chillier than usual but you haven’t taken the thickest duvet out of your storage cabinet yet. Just another monotonous item to add to your things-to-catch-up-on list.

You consider staying under the covers to scroll through Instagram but then you decide that you need caffeine to power through the day: local markets, spin class, brunch, grocery run, late lunch …. You crave a Trenta, no foam, five-shot half-caf, no foam pumpkin spice latte with no foam at 210 degrees. Then you realise you don’t have a designer name nor a trust fund so you roll out of bed and get dressed.

You pull on the turtleneck you’ve been wearing everyday this past week – the one that can be unbuttoned at the neck to be a cowl neck and the one that looks good over a tulle skirt, under overalls and with a blazer. You slide into some jeans and moccasins, both varying shades of autumn and nod to yourself, Jobs had the right idea.

Then its 5pm and somehow your things-t0-catch-up-on list has grown longer and you’ve done nothing all day. You have to start getting ready for dinner, you need to be out the door five minutes ago. Its too late to change so you start trying on the heels stashed under your bed. You start with a patent block heel Mary Jane then you lace on some suede oxfords but nothing seems to work. At the last minute, you see your half patent, half suede court heels, buckle yourself in and troop out the door.

Recreate my look:

Violet Button Turtle Neck Knit / Sydney Double Breasted Coat / Kerise Skinny Jeans / Adelle Contrast Court Heels (all c/o Forcast)

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Mint Condition

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Hello hello! 3 weeks without posting :0 This is the longest absence I have had in a year and I’ve missed the excitement of scheduling a post to go live. I could tell you work got in the way or mid-semester exams took over or Sydney was having terrible weather but in actuality, I was not feeling the buzz to shoot. Then, during the ANZAC long weekend, the clouds parted, the stars aligned, I was finally digging my Insta feed and my creativity fuel was back!

Kicking things off, we have this autumn-appropriate outfit, shot in the cute little streets of Surry Hills. The hero piece is a great thick and structured double-breased blazer perfect for work and dressed down with boyfriend jeans for the weekends. So here’s to a better month ahead filled with blog posts!

Recreate my look:

Blazer / Tee / Jeans / Shoes / Sunnies 

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Marble Timepieces and Double Pinstripes

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In the last one to two years, there has been a sudden influx of watch companies popping up over the internet. Over the weekend, I read this article in the Herald about how ironically timed these start ups were – coming in at around the same period as the launch of the Apple Watch. Apparently, the market isn’t as saturated as I originally thought because watch brands that haven’t even hit the one year mark are managing to make turnovers of almost a million.

Today I’d like to introduce to you a new player – Valor Watches, founded by T. Bermejo and launched only a handful of days ago. To give you some context around the title of the post, the Cross of Valour is awarded “only for acts of the most conspicuous courage in circumstances of extreme peril”. When I look at this watch, it reminds me of one of my personal mantras – I am made of courage, compassion and commitment. When jewellery can transcend its original purpose to become something invaluable for the wearer, you know its a special piece.

The marble face paired with the classic black leather band perfectly embodies what I like to refer to as ‘modern prep’. Carrying the theme into the rest of my outfit, I went with the ultimate preppy pattern after feeling incredibly inspired by the Australian Olympic team’s uniform unveil by Sportscraft earlier this week. To give it that modern twist, I layered two pinstripe pieces but kept the base crisp with white jeans. Front ties have been popular of late and knotting a complementary second piece will give you a similar silhouette.

The white denim, flowers and linen must make you think that I live in the northern hemisphere! Nope! Sydney has just brought a lot of warm weather this month but I’m hoping that the end of daylight saving will bring some colder weather along with it.

Recreate my look:

Shirt / Blazer / Jeans / Watch (c/o)

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Four Fall Pastels

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As much as I love prints and patterns, I also like how solid colours look together and since March officially kicks off autumn weather, I wanted to show you my four favourite colours to wear transeasonally: blue, camel, grey and white.

Recreate my look:

Hat / Turtleneck / Skirt / Shoes

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Don’t Stop at Good

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In a month NTC Sydney will be happening! I am SO excited for a whole day of getting sweaty, pushing my limits and meeting like minded people. I’ve been training for the last couple of weeks in the lead up to this event – attending Nike Women Week and all the complimentary classes they have provided and eating a ton of green juices and bliss balls. I went to the launch party which was a 90 min cruise around Sydney Harbour during which we did a 30 minute circuit session and afterwards we had breakfast and went home with some sweet as freebies. I’ve also been using the NTC app as well as my less intensely paced monthly Blogilates exercises and Yoga by Adrianne which is perfect for rest day and stretching out sore muscles. If you’re interested in signing up to the 2000 strong event, click here before tickets sell out!

Recreate my Outfit

Tank / Shorts / Sunnies / Watch (c/o) / Sneakers

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Topdeck NZ Northern Explorer

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When I was initially researching this trip, I looked high and low for a review about this specific Topdeck tour but I couldn’t find anything that answered all my questions and was also recently published. Now that it has been almost a month since my return, I wanted to create a post for anyone who is looking to do the Northern Explorer tour in the future. I will be covering accommodation, food, attractions and the people 🙂

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I booked my tour a few months in advance with STA travel but you can also book online directly through Topdeck’s own website. I would definitely recommend doing it in person through an agent because you can ask as many questions as you please, the price is exactly the same and you don’t have to pay the whole trip up front, only a small deposit. If you don’t want the hassle of booking flights and buying insurance separately, STA are happy to hook you up as well but if you want to save some money you can grab those through Webjet which is what I did.

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Accommodation

My friend and I went together so we upgraded to twin share which was an extra hundred each. This was a really great decision on our part because our room was always much nicer and we would always have access to our own private bathrooms and amenities. I think the accommodation was fantastic in terms of variety, as you can see we stayed in a ski resort, a Maori Marae (which is the sacred meeting place) and also a small boat!

These are all the places we stayed at:

  • Pre-Accommodation at Travelodge Hotel, Wellington
  • Skotel Alpine Resort, Mount Ruapehu
  • Maori Marae, Rotorua
  • Sudima, Rotorua
  • Rock the Boat, Bay of Islands
  • Tanoa Paihia Hotel, Tanoa

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Rotorua Museum of History & Art

Attractions

I paid for three optional extras: Hobbiton, Hell’s Gate mud spa and Rock the Boat. There is a ton of other cool things that you can also participate in such as white water rafting, zorbing, inflatable kayaking and bungee jumping.

Hobbiton: to read more about my Hobbiton experience, you can visit my first New Zealand post here.

Hell’s Gate: was a nice experience after having skipped way too many showers on this trip! We spent an hour in the hot mud and springs where our noses accommodated to the sulphurous scent of Rotorua.

Rock the Boat: this was my favourite part of our entire trip! For 22 hours we went on a tiny little boat and saw all 144 islands with a very enthusiastic local crew. There was a paint balling introduction, fishing for dinner followed by night kayaking which was breathtaking. We paddled out at 10pm and the water was filled with phosphorous algae so when we dipped our paddle or arm in the water, a beautiful trail of glow in the dark algae moved along with us. We also lay in our kayaks and looked up at the glowing night sky and it was quite magical 🙂 After kayaking, the brave kids jumped in for a swim. It was cold but so worth it because as we swam, the algae continued to glow and everyone felt like a mermaid. Once all warmth had escaped our bodies we jumped back out and sat by the fire. The next morning we went snorkelling and hiked up a lush island barefoot. I don’t think I’ve ever had that many adventures in under 24 hours!

The activities that were already included in our tour were just as great and the night at the Marae was my favourite. Some of the things included a hike in Tongariro which you can read more about in my previous post here, a rugby lesson at the NZ Sports Academy and a night learning about Maori culture including the haka and poi dances at the Marae.

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If you choose not to participate in an activity you have the option of exploring the city yourself. None of the activities are affiliated with Topdeck so you can do as little or as much as you would like. Here’s a snap of me ‘skydiving’ and another of my friend bungee jumping.

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Te Papa Museum

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Food

Breakfast is included every morning at the location of the accommodation for the previous night. We had a combination of cold and hot breakfasts and three dinners were included. Lunch was always up to us and we were given the opportunity to go to grocery stores and stock up on water and snacks if we were heading somewhere remote.

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People

For the trip we had a tour leader, a driver and an extra person who did both jobs whenever the main people were tired. No tipping is required and they were all very helpful. Most of the the other travellers were Australian like myself but around 30% were from overseas. We had a big group of almost 40 including people from the UK, US, Germany, France and Switzerland. The best way to describe the environment would be like a big school camping trip. I know tours like these have a reputation for being party tours but I think it usually depends on the group itself. This was a bit of a quiet group so there was no pressure to drink if you didn’t want to and the places we travelled to lacked night life so there wasn’t much on offer in terms of after hours entertainment.

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Waiotapu Geothermal

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Overall, Topdeck tours are very fast paced adventure packed trips. If you want to see lots of scenery, I wouldn’t recommend going on one because we were only allowed 10 to 30 minutes tops at some scenic lookouts. However, they are very well organised so you don’t have to do much thinking aside from getting to the bus on time.

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Huka Falls

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I never have much use for souvenirs so I only bought one thing for myself – a kiwi charm (only available to purchase in New Zealand) to finish off my pandora bracelet for 2015.

Hopefully this whopper of a post was helpful for some people. If you have any questions in general about Topdeck tours or more specific ones about the northern explorer I would be happy to answer them in the comments below. Thanks for reading and I’ll be back with a fashion post on Friday! Lets hope this weather clears up a bit too eh?!!

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Black for the Summer

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Happy New Year! I have had a two week break from Style Smorgasbord because I wanted to recharge, reflect and redirect my energy towards the holiday season. Whilst we should aim to improve upon ourselves daily, the first day of the year is always a great ritual of self assessment that demands personal honestly and reinforces humility. Instead of coming up with new year resolutions for 2016, I decided to create a list of 101 things I want to achieve in 1001 days. You can see my list here

I would say I am a very excitable person. Thusly, I rarely wear black especially head to toe black. However, I love a good oxymoron and black in the summer is refreshingly that. I received this boater for Christmas and plan to wear it forever. The brim is wonderfully wide and perfectly practical and adding it to any outfit just makes me feel like I am on vacation somewhere tropical.

Hat / Top / Skirt / Scarf

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/ Photography Credits – Matthew /signoff2

Coming Up Rosy Gold

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Anything copper or rose gold I am down. Particularly love it when its paired with maroon, pink or navy. What I like most of all about this bomber is the little pocket by the arm. I’ve never been one for magic tricks but when I whip out my opal card in two seconds and slam it on that rainbow circle triumphantly, I chuckle to myself a bit whilst all the plebeians have to go through the process of taking out their wallet from their bag, behind, etc. and flipping through their cards in slow motion.

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// Bomber Jacket: H&M (similar here) / Cropped Sweater: Miss Shop (similar here) / Peplum: Forever 21 (similar here) / Leggings: DottiSlip Ons: Zu (similar here) / Purse: CoachBracelet: PandoraWatch: Vintage / Ring (c/o): Elyia / Scarf: Old (similar here) //

Pictures by Adela 

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