March Journal

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Highs

Going away to the beach for my sister-in-law-to-be’s hens. It was one of those weekends that I got to be almost completely offline without feeling any internal pressure to ‘capture’ it - pure bliss. As I went to lay in the bed at the Airbnb, the window was perfectly aligned with a vision of the moon. It was the best way to go to sleep. Had the best gingerbread waffles at Little Boat Espresso which were topped with edible flowers so a win-win really. After complaining about there not being any storms all summer, autumn came and we got plenty of thunderstorms. I got all my client shoots done before deadline even though I stressed myself out about it so much that I lost sleep (note to self. don’t do that again) I pushed myself creatively for a client shoot and even though the images they selected weren’t from that pile I know it was still worth it and I will still share them next month. I managed to squeeze in a little time here and there to experiment for some personal photography. I am not there yet but I am closer than last month and that is good enough. By the end of the month I really felt like I was regaining a lot of my personal creativity after what felt like a draining month. There are a lot of butterflies around. The last morning of march was pure bliss. I woke up and it suddenly felt like the season had changed, the air was cooler and I could not have been happier about it.

Lows

It rained a lot in march which normally I wouldn’t be sad about but I also had back to back shoots booked in which meant my stress was pretty high over things I couldn’t control. I am aware that I come across as the goldilocks of weather. I have been ordering white dress after white dress and they are all see through, even lined dresses and fabrics/styles which you wouldn’t think would be. All been returned. This also means I have only bought 1 item of clothing and 1 swimsuit this whole year so far?! This month was the month of transition for Michael as he finished up at his old work and moved into his new position which meant he wasn’t home as much. I missed him.

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Podcasts I’ve Been Listening To…

Now that I have no Michael to listen to I have been jumping more and more onto podcasts to get my daily fix of human sounds. Some of my favourites are: Glow Journal, Offline The Podcast (Stay tuned for my episode soon) How to Live (Alice Tran’s episode in particular) Shameless, Who The Hell Is Hamish?, The Pineapple Project, Under the Skin with Russell Brand & The High Low to name my favourites. I have been taking a little break from True Crime for the moment but I am sure I will get back into it soon.

Newly added albums

To be honest I am not sure how new these are but they are new to my Apply Music Library (sorry for the Spotify playlist people out there) I have been listening to Chiaroscuro - Ocean Alley on repeat, especially The Comedown. Beward of the Dogs - Stella Donnelly is also full of sass which I always enjoy. Other than that I have been going back and playing the Hottest 100s from different years. I kind of feel like my taste in music developed in 2008-2010 and then just stayed there. I would love to know if you feel like there was a time in your life that you feel like your taste in music developed and just stayed. I can probably say that the mix tapes that were released with each O.C season definitely influenced my taste.

Ahead for April

I am writing this in April so hello. The start of April looks pretty tough on my schedule so the plan is to really buckle down, focus and push through for the first two weeks. A lot of client work has deadlines Mid April but once that is done I am loosening up the schedule to prioritise personal work and development. April is also a big social month. Not only do I have two work events on the first weekend, we also have Easter & I have a weekend away for a friend’s hens. Getting my creative mojo back will be the focus for April.

What podcasts & music are you loving at the moment? Jasmine x

Slowing Down with Fast Fashion

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Let’s talk about fast fashion. Is there any way that when shopping fast fashion we can adapt our shopping habits so that we are doing so as responsibly as we can? First of all let me say that when it comes to purchasing sustainably or only buying from ethical fashion labels there are so many ways around it and it is something you should address personally for your own situation. Is buying something from a fast fashion chain, wearing it for years, taking care of it and repairing it still worse than buying something locally, hardly wearing it then later disposing of it? Often the advice around building a sustainable wardrobe is focused around where you’re shopping. Don’t get me wrong, in an ideal world we would all be shopping more locally and purchasing from smaller designers where you know exactly where your money is going. How amazing that sounds I don’t think people are going to suddenly stop shopping fast fashion all together. This post is going to talk about changing your approach to shopping to avoid falling into the traps of fast fashion.

Fast Fashion brands are those of the likes of ASOS, H&M, TOPSHOP, ZARA etc that mass-produce clothing at a very high turn over to bring trends to the masses. For the purpose of this blog post I am not going to go into the negative impact of this system. This isn’t a blog post for or against fast fashion. There are a lot of issues with this model and its popularity but I instead wanted to focus on how you can shop at stores like these but ensure you are doing so the best way possible.

One large problem I see with fast fashion brands in particular is that it is consumed fast and disposed of fast. It is the trap of the shiny, new & inexpensive product. Try your best to snap out of it to ensure you are thinking about these inexpensive purchases as much you would an expensive purchase. For example; one approach to shopping sustainably is to shop consciously. Play close attention to what you are consuming to make sure whether it is higher end or not, it will stay in your wardrobe and be worn for years to come. These following things are so important to think about every time you shop but even more so when the item is a part of fast fashion.


Look at the fabric & Construction.

Some fashion pieces you can tell straight away whether they are constructed well or not. If things already look a little rough when you pick it up or open the parcel then you know it isn’t going to wash & wear very well so stay clear! Next I look for fabrics that I know will go the distance. I bought a 100% cotton denim dress from ASOS over 3 years ago and it is still going strong today. Some viscose & rayon can be a little iffy so proceed with caution. If you’re buying outerwear look for pieces that are lined.

How Does it feel on?

I really do think this is the biggest thing that has completely changed how I shop and my consumption of fashion in general. If we don’t feel 100% once we put something on. WALK AWAY. Send it back. No you won’t grow to love it, you won’t feel comfortable in it next week. If it isn’t making you feel amazing straight away I bet you will only wear it once or twice (if that) and then you’ll end up donating it down the track when your wardrobe rack collapses due to the weight.

is it versatile?

Can you wear it at least three different ways? To be able to get the most wear out of an item you need to have a look at how it fits in with the rest of your clothes. Will you be able to wear it over and over again and not feel like you look the same every time? This is also the reason I stopped buying printed midi skirts (they are my kryptonite). Yes they are beautiful and I love and want them all but outside of pairing them back with plain t-shirts / knits they aren’t super versatile.

Is it something missing from your wardrobe?

The trap with fast fashion is buying stuff you don’t actually need because it is cheaper. You can be more sustainable with this if you just stop yourself checking out and go look in your wardrobe. For me it is do I really need another printed mini skirt? I want it, but I don’t need it and I already have too many for one girl anyway.

Is this a trend item?

This is where things get a little more personal. Do I think we should be spending a lot of money on items of trend? No. Do I think we should be buying trend throw away pieces? Probably not. I do think we have to be really careful when buying items that are the trend of the moment. If you can honestly say that you will be still wearing that silk leopard skirt in 3 years time and won’t be sick of it then by all means you do you. Just ask yourself if the item is too much of a trend that it won’t be having a long life in your wardrobe. This also goes for slow fashion.

Check the return policy.

Check them twice. You don’t want to buy something only to find out after that you can’t return it for a refund or that it will cost you more to send something back than the item itself. There is no shame in returning something so if you buy something and it doesn’t work out, send it back the next day. That way you can’t procrastinate and then miss the return deadline. I think the longer it hangs around in your house the less likely you are to return it.


 

I would love to know if you’ve adapted your shopping habits over time to slow down your consumption of fashion! It is such a tough topic to talk about sometimes because most answers don’t seem like the ‘perfect’ one. jasmine x

February Journal

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February went by so damn fast that I only realised the other day that it was mid March and I hadn’t wrote my Journal yet. Oops!

Highs

There was a lot of work highs this month. I not only rebranded myself into Studio Jasmine after playing throughout January to get it right. I also launched new phone cases with The Dairy & spent the majority of the month doing client shoots. I ended the month a little 24 hour getaway but I wrote all about it in my last blog post so I won’t go into it again here. The Dirty John documentary coming out, could already watch it again. Is it wrong to also say that I was pumped that RHOBH & RHONY are back? Yes that is my guilty pleasure TV. I finally got around to getting my hair cut again. Ps. I go to Mia form The Mia Collective, the wizard of long bobs for anyone in Brisbane.

My biggest highlight of this month (most likely year) wasn’t actually anything that happened to me personally. This month Michael got a job that is just so perfect for him. I feel like the last few years of him creating this body of personal work has really paid off. It is honestly the best feeling to be with someone as they work so hard for what they want to be doing and everything falls into place.

What I Read

I finished Tweak by Nic Sheff this month. I had been wanting to read it after watching Beautiful Boy (the movie) late last year. This book is from the son’s perspective going through drug addiction and yeah it is pretty full on. I really liked it because I felt the movie was more from the Dad’s point of view. The book meant I was able to get some more insight into the why. I also starting Rushing Woman’s Syndrome by Dr Libby Weaver. I found some parts really interesting while other parts I didn’t feel applied to me so I glossed over. I haven’t finished it yet.

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New & In Review

I didn’t buy much this month. I have been close to a savings target and I love whole numbers so I really tried to get there this month. I did purchase a dress though that is already been worth every cent. It is the Marle Black Maxi that if you follow me on Instagram I am sure you have seen it on me at least three times. It is linen and I don’t have to wear a bra with it so for these 33 degree days is amazing. It doesn’t touch my body and that is all I can ask for right now. I need someone like it in a lighter colour though so if you see something let me know. I also found some steals from ASOS. I bought a brown polka dot one piece for $50 with the assumption it wouldn’t fit properly and I would most likely send it back. However to my surprise it was divine on and for $50 I have zero complaints. I also bought some pearl clips but they are no longer available. Something about spending $30+ on one clip rubs me the wrong way. I was ripped off as a child buying hair accessories and the grudge has stuck with me obviously. I am currently thinking my next blog post will be how to shop fast fashion sustainably* So let me know if that is something you’d be interested in. *Sustainably as you can for mass produced fashion.

Lows

I had a bit of nervous energy through the month of February. It is a short month so all of a sudden I felt I didn’t have enough time for everything. Everything was also so up in the air, Michael was in the process of applying for this new job and there was a cyclone that was potentially going to push back all of my shooting deadlines. It ended up all okay but I guess I can only say that in hindsight. Trying to not worry about things that are out of my control though. Let’s see how that goes haha. We had our fire alarms go off one night numerous times and they are wired in. I had enjoyed a few margaritas with friends that night so it wasn’t fun. Invoices weren’t paid on time and that is never a good time. Probably could leave this in every month to be honest. Feb is also a month where everyone is starting to chat about new projects but no one has set timelines so you are feeling like you are juggling and waiting to see what’s happening & when.

what do I want from March?

March has a lot of projects already booked in but I really need to make time for some personal work. I have been getting flashes of what I want to create & play with as if my mind is just begging me to make time for it. I need to bring that up in my to do list so that I have time to figure it out & play. I really want to sort out my savings account. I don’t think I am getting good interest on it so I am going to try meet with my bank and explore term deposits. We have some weddings in the first half of the year so I am excited for some weekends away coming up for hens parties. They will be forced weekends where I can’t think about work which will be nice. Also you might be able to help me out, if you see a dress or outfit that screams ‘jasmine needs this’ please send it to me. I will be on the hunt for a few outfits.

Short month, short post (kind of). Wishing you all a beautiful March ahead! jasmine x

How to spend 24 hours in Cabarita Beach

Earlier this week Michael and I took a 24hr trip down to Cabarita Beach. To be honest, before going I thought it would be quite the drive, only to be shocked when it was only 1.5 hrs from Brisbane. It may not be as hyped as Byron Bay but I think that is what is special about it. It feels like a small coastal town without being stuck in the past. This place has something special about it. So here is how you can have an amazing 24 hours in Cabarita Beach…

 

Where to eat.

Tucker. A very short drive from the beach is this gem of a cafe. We had breakfast there during our stay and it was something to write home about. They also have a lunch menu which you should definitely check out if you’re staying for 48.

Paper Daisy. Located at the very beautiful Halcyon House I would suggest you knock out two birds with one stone by taking some snaps & checking out their bar menu.

Taverna. This was on my must-eat-at list but unfortunately we went on a Tuesday and it’s only open from Thursday so take note. Maybe it will be my excuse to travel back just for a greek feast.

The Stunned Mullet. Because you can’t go to the beach without Fish & Chips. This place also has really great vegetarian options!

 

Where We stayed.

We stayed at an Airbnb during our stay called Grounds of Cabarita. Honestly, what a dream. It is probably about 5 minutes walk from the beach however if you come during cyclone warnings like us you really don’t need to leave the house. Not only does the design of this home make you want to have your camera on you, but it is so inviting and makes you want to enjoy it for all that it is worth. With a pool, fire pit, huge outdoor entertaining and a sparkling water tap (yes, that is correct) it is honestly a dream to stay in. I am already thinking about when I can go back next with family or friends (it has 3 bedrooms!).

You can find it on AirBnb here or on Instagram at @groundsofcabarita.

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What to do.

Personally, I don’t know if you need a list of things to do for only 24 hours but here are some suggestions anyway. Eat, always top of the priority list. Go in the ocean or at the very least go to The Cabarita Beach Look out. If you are staying at the Grounds of Cabarita, enjoy it. Go in the pool, lounge next to it with a book or a podcast, talk to the chickens, make the mistake of making yourself sick by swinging around in the hanging chair like me & try relax. If you have trouble relaxing on your own accord, head to Halcyon House for a spa treatment. If you realise once you’re down here that you left you bikini at home, check out Nikkou Store, Casuarina. Their curation of clothing, swim & accessories give city boutiques a run for their money!

I would love to know if you enjoy these more local travel posts, they may not be Paris or Japan but I think sometimes we forget how truly lucky we are locally and I would love to share that more with you.

Let me know your thoughts,

Jasmine x

January Journal

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The Highs

This year started off with a real job high for me. Late last year The Calile Hotel opened up in Brisbane, straight away I knew I had to shoot there. At the time I brainstormed some brands that I thought would be a great fit and The Daily Edited was one of them. Fast forward to mid January and it was actually happening. With work like that all the time I don’t think I would need a holiday. As exhausting and as full on as it was, it was honestly the most fun. I had Michael there working with me on the shoot over 2 days and there was at least 5 times where I looked at him and just said how is this my life? Onto other more frivolous highs but not to be discounted… I finally got my hands on a Lucy Folk towel that sold out last year and came back in stock. We got back into our afternoon walks despite the heat being less than desirable. I put up my disco ball by my window and it tells me when to finish my work day with a little light display in the afternoon. I kept my new magnolia & lemon tree alive.

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new in tech

I almost forgot, I bought a new lens this month! I went into the camera store to buy a new reflector and then started being tempted by lenses. I am not that much of an impulse spender so I left the store and Michael & I spent the afternoon and into the night researching lenses. I already had a 23mm fixed which is a great allrounder lens for me. It suited what I’ve been shooting perfectly but I also wanted to experiment more. For the variation I ended up going with the 16-55mm lens. It is large and in charge in comparison to my 23mm but I love it. I first shot with it for TDE x The Calile project and I had so much fun playing with it. I love that I can go wide with it at 16mm which is a view I have never played with before. No buyers remorse here.

New In Review

A whole month with no spending on new clothes, however I still have been treating myself with little bits & pieces.

Lucy Folk. This designer can do no wrong. I may have a problem as this month I bought both a towel, hair tie & was gifted a necklace (by Shopbop). The towel I had on my wish list since November so it was in my cart as soon as it came back into stock. The hair tie was a little splurge considering it just ties up my hair. I normally don’t enjoy wearing my hair up and it’s normally something that makes me feel like I am not putting effort in. So the woven gold snake detail really makes putting my hair up feel a lot nicer. Lastly was the necklace. I have been on the hunt for a solid gold pendant necklace for around 2 months now and I finally found the perfect one. I saved up my Shopbop vouchers & took the plunge. It has a little lion on the pendant which coming from a Leo, I love.

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The Lows

I came back from the coast and my most problematic fiddle leaf was doing what it does - being problematic. Whenever I leave the house for more than a couple of days (it doesn’t matter if someone comes to water it) it sheds all its leaves. Separation anxiety. So that’s sad. I started to feel uninspired by my branding and was almost confused by it. It started to bring up some self doubt as to where I am & where am I going? I ended the night of Cash Conversation on such a high just to get into my DMs and come crashing back down. Really need to work out this DM situation. Please send tips & thoughts. Other than that this month was really pretty good.

Goals for February

Sort out my brand. Also try and change some of my phone habits. Try making it a rule that you’re not able to pick up your phone until you’ve had breakfast. Experiment with how I approach your Direct Messages on Instagram. For some reason at the moment it is taking its toll on me and I don’t want to shut them off completely but I have to try and find a way for it to work for me. Please leave any ideas you have in the comments! Make an excel spreadsheet for the purchases I want to make. I feel like I want to keep more track of my spending and how I am spending to make sure it is on the right things.

I hope you have all had a wonderful start to the year! Did you make any resolutions and by the end of January had you kept them? Jasmine x