Four years ago my French love and I made the momentous decision to move to Sydney after four years together in Paris and Amsterdam. Although I spent most of my youth in the northern beaches of Sydney, I’ve always felt more whole in Europe, and I didn’t want to lose all I’d found be moving back to where I was born. As long as we could move to a new-to-me community of the Sydney area, I felt we would be okay as it would ignite the sense of exploration I so love and need to flourish in my creativity. So we came across Rozelle, part of the inner west, a village I’d only ever visited a handful of times in my stylist days a decade ago. In those days, I remember driving around visiting shops like Herbies and thinking “wow, I’d love to live in a town like this one day!”. It felt so vibrant and unique, I loved the atmosphere and friendliness. Now I live here, and it has surpassed all I dreamt up those many years go.
About seven weeks ago, there was an explosion in one of rozelle’s shops, three people’s lives were lost including a baby, and many others were greatly affected, including friends that lived above the shop, their home and contents completely destroyed. The incident shook the community to the core. Surrounding shops were shut for weeks, Darling Street (the main street) was closed off. Although I feel like I always appreciated the village, it wasn’t until this horrific incident that I realised how much I relied on all the shops on a daily basis and how special that is in today’s world. Now I have an even stronger appreciation and awareness of how valuable a village is and how connected we all are. And how lucky we are here as in our little inner suburb of Sydney we have four wholefood cafes, three fabulous French bakeries, a chocolatier, a sustainable fish restaurant, a wholefood supermarket, a weekly organic fruit and vegetable market and a weekly vintage market!! And not a fast food outlet in sight. There are also a number of wonderful practitioners and services including acupuncture, physiotherapy, nutritionists, and yoga. And I take my little girl Laly to a great French music class each week called Bonjour Babies, created by my friend Sara.
On November 30 the council will hold a village street fair to raise funds for those in need. In the lead up I thought it’d be fun to showcase some of the boutiques and cafes that I love and visit regularly around the village, to help connect and inspire all of us who live here, and inspire those who don’t to come and visit! if you’d like to find out more about that fund raiser, visit #rozellerocks.
A little background:
• Rozelle is over 200 years old.
• The name derives from the stunning parrots that were in abundance in the area, called Rosellas. Now I see mostly rainbow lorikeets which are also a type of parrot with beautiful plumage.
• It’s part of the Balmain peninsula so it’s surrounded by bays, with parks and bushland.
• It’s home to Sydney Collecge of the Arts which is the visual arts college of the University of Sydney and occupies historic sandstone buildings set in beautiful and spacious grounds on the edge of the harbour at Rozelle.
some of the must-stop places of Rozelle:
Bellingen Gelato – artisan gelato
Labancz – french bakery
C’est Bon – French patisserie
Love Fish – ethical & sustainable fish (best fish and chips!)
Egg of The Universe – wholefood cafe
Ungaro Raw – health conscious cafe
Fashion, home + culture:
Tali Gallery – Indigenous art and crafts
Mama Green, Sounds Like Home – warehouse space of furniture
Shady Designs – home furnishings, wallpapers, lamp shade makers
The Local Store
There’s only one thing missing – a bookstore!! Hmm, maybe I’ll have to do something about that :)
• all photography by pia jane bijkerk.
giving books for the holidays is one thing i’ve always felt really good about. i mean, we all have so much stuff — but books, well they’re just timeless. i love giving books, just as much as receiving them, and this year i’m getting my wish, thanks to chronicle books.
we’re giving away to one very lucky winner all ten of these books i’ve selected from my favorites at chronicle. the idea behind this giveaway is a lovely one — we’d love for you to share the love of reading, support your local bookseller, and help promote literacy! For every person who pledges to #GiveBooks this holiday season, by sharing this intention through social media, Chronicle Books will donate a book to a child in need through First Book. so, please Help us donate 10,000 books by TAKING THE PLEDGE HERE.
i chose these ten books from my favorites — so if you love cooking, interior design and fashion, this giveaway’s got your name all over it. the books in this giveaway are: Tartine Book No. 3; Plenty; The Country Cooking of France; Modern Tea; 100 Years of Fashion; Home Style By City; Decorate; Decorate Workshop; decorate with flowers; and Make Map Art.
to win these 10 books from chronicle books, simply:
• share with us below in the comments “What’s the best book you’ve ever received as a gift?”
• please comment by thursday, november 27th, 12pm PST.
• as always, be sure to leave a way to reach you via twitter, facebook, email or your website.
• sorry, but this time the giveaway is for U.S. residents only.
• we’ll announce a winner selected by random number generator on my twitter account later in the week of december 1st, so be sure and follow along.
*in addition chronicle books is generously offering my readers 30% + free ground shipping (excluding personalized products) at chronicle books now through the end of the year with offer code GIVEBOOKS.
i’m in love with this mid-century modern home in silver lake — a popular neighborhood on L.A.’s east side, recently featured on c home and martha stewart. Silver lake drew in fashion stylist Jessica de Ruiter and husband sculptor Jed Lind with “all things cool: midcentury modern and high design, coffee spots and boutiques, the lake meadow and reservoir” — and i can see why. having spent a lot of time in silver lake recently, it certainly does have many charms. i love the effortless L.A. chic of their renovated 1950’s space — and that pool. well, i could dive right into all of this.
it’s becoming a regular thing for me — hosting parties with women & whiskies, and it couldn’t feel like a better habit to have. i love hosting pretty parties, doing all the planning and decorating, and i do love my whisky drinks, so we threw another fun bash last week for an intimate group of interesting and talented women from around the bay area. this time we rented a very cool space — jared rusten furniture studio’s mission district 23rd street events and i couldn’t recommend it highly enough. jared and emily were so lovely to work with, and gave us free rein to transform their industrial chic studio into a feminine space perfect for a women & whiskies cocktail soirée.
the star of the party, though, were those amazing whiskey cocktails, and we of course had lucia, the queen of mixing a mean drink and brand ambassador for women & whiskies creating quite a few delicious cocktails for us — we started the evening with the glen grant sparkler, a wonderfully perfect punch for wowing your guests over the holidays. we also set up a little DIY station for the ladies to create their own rosemary simple syrup — one of the key ingredients in the glen grant sparkler.
it also helps when you’re hosting a party to have kiana underwood of tulipina creating amazing floral arrangements for us once again, so that part i didn’t have to give a second thought to. i can always trust kiana to go above and beyond and this time was no different. for this women & whiskies party we had the idea to hang globe lights across the space, and then hang flowers from the strands of lights — and it turned out so, so pretty! tulipina also created two gorgeous floral chandeliers and they were, well, just show stopping.
other cocktails on our whiskey tasting agenda for the evening were the paper plane, the 1757 manhattan and a divine canadian punch — mmmmmm. all of the recipes lucia created from the delicious whiskey collection in the women & whiskies portfolio, including wild turkey, russell’s reserve, forty creek, and glen grant, as well as their mixes, like aperol, campari, and cinzano (i just like saying all those fun names). all of the yummy concoctions listed on that stunning chalkboard cocktail menu created by designer christine herrin, can be found on the women & whiskies website — so we’ve made holiday party planning that much easier on you. cocktail recipes? check!
we had such a great team helping out — allison white, my new assistant editor was utterly amazing and i couldn’t have done it without her. i rented beautiful cocktail coupes and goblets from frances lane — the perfect resource when your having an event. did y’all know that the shape of a coupe (or champagne glass) was modeled after the shape of marie antoinette’s breast? true story (it’s my new go-to party repertoire). the food was created by chef jennifer cho of kitchit, who created some delicious appetizers that went really well with whisky — mini cornbreads with pulled pork and coleslaw? oh yes, please. and snapping photos for us for the evening was the lovely leslie santarina – thanks, leslie! oh, and if you’d like to check out more pretty instagram photos from my guests — check out the hashtag #whiskeyfortheholidays, and follow women & whiskies on instagram.
• photography by leslie santarina.
i don’t know about you, but when i see these tall double doors offering up sneaky peeks into ultra pretty rooms, the intrigue and envy in me goes into overdrive. first of all, i want some big old doors like these. and secondly, my curiosity for what lies behind these beautiful entryways spikes, big time. they simply beckon to me for more. why, oh why, do they not make doors like they used to? those cruddy particle wood doors they put in nowadays should be utterly ashamed of themselves. give me a sleek, towering, very european-looking double door any day. here’s some majestic beauties to make you ooh and aah. and quite possibly, make you want to shut the front door!