My 48 hour guide to Canberra

If you have read any of my previous travel guides you would know I love to spend my time eating, drinking, going to local galleries and flower hunting at any opportunity when travelling. My trip to Canberra last week was no exception. The trip may have been short but it was so sweet & exceeded any expectations I had of our capital city. So let’s break it down…

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Accommodation & Travel

The great thing about Canberra is that nearly everything we wanted to see was at most a 15 minute drive away which meant getting around super easy. I would recommend getting a hire car while in town, but if you love riding a bicycle I think this would be the place to do it due to the wide & flat streets. We visited in spring which meant we were treated by seeing so many flowers & blossom trees in bloom.

If you’re wanting to stay close to things on this list I would recommend staying in suburbs like Braddon or Barton. We stayed at Little National Hotel over in Barton. It is the nicest little boutique hotel that I would say has the comfiest hotel bed I’ve ever slept in. If you are someone who rides, they have cute bikes for hire & the hotel is a stones throw away from the Galleries.


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Eat & Drink

Highroad Cafe. A really lovely cafe with a menu that has little surprises eg. Vegemite Ricotta!
KYO Coffee Project. Hidden in a little laneway off Lonsdale St this place is the perfect stop for good coffee
Sonoma Bakery. Stop in here to get some baked treats for the hotel room or on the road!
The Cupping Room. Stop in for breakfast or lunch or even just an amazing cup of coffee. They seriously know their coffee. Since we were there while Floriade is on, they had specialty floral inspired coffee - which of course I had to try!
Penny University. Super close to Little National, so I’d pop in if you need breakfast or lunch & visiting the galleries.

Lazy Su. Our Must Visit! Probably our favourite meal of the trip. If you like bubble tea you must try their cocktails with popping pearls!
Monster. Especially convenient if you’re staying at the Ovolo Hotel but either way it is worth booking in for dinner.
Grease Monkey. It’s the place to go when you want a good burger or deep dish pizza.
Bar Rochford. If you’re wanting a really cool vibe for dinner & drinks, this is the place to go.

Photography by MICHAEL JOHN HUGHES & I

Photography by MICHAEL JOHN HUGHES & I

Where to visit

Floriade. I might be bias but I think Late September - Early Oct is the perfect time to plan your trip to Canberra for one big reason - Floriade. Floriade is Canberra’s flower festival that takes place at Commonwealth Park from September 14 to October 13 this year. It is a one stop shop to take in as many flowers (and bees) as possible. They also have some great little stalls so that you can make a day out of it.

National Gallery Of Australia. Even though it was in-between exhibits while we were in town, it was still one of the highlights of our trip. Inside we were able to see Warhol, Yayoi Kusama, David Hockney & Mark Rothko to name a few. The star of the gallery for me is actually outside. Within Without by James Turrell was absolutely breathtaking. I could have stayed in there all day and probably filled up an entire SD card with images. It is one of my absolute must-sees.

National Portrait Gallery. Situated just down the road from NGA, this should also be on your list. Unfortunately we just missed seeing the Women in Vogue exhibit that starts October 11 until November 24 2019. You can not only see the amazing photography featured in Vogue but see archived copies of the magazine. What a dream.

Pialligo Estate. This also fits into Eat & Drink but if you’re someone who loves to make an experience out of eating and drinking then a winery should definitely be on your list. You can make a booking for a wine tasting or visit their pavilion to enjoy lunch and order your favourite wines from their winery.

Bison Home. We stumbled across Bison home while strolling Lonsdale St and instantly I was glad I bought a big suitcase to Canberra with me. They have stunningly designed ceramics and glassware which make the perfect gift to self while in town. I bought a bulb shaped vase to remind me of our time in the capital city. They also have a location near Pialligo Estate if you’re over that way.

Before signing off I wanted to thank Visit Canberra for truly collaborating with me on this trip. We explored the city like we would any other trip and had such an amazing couple of days.

With Love, Jasmine

How to spend 48 hours in Brisbane

Your guide to where to stay, eat, shop and explore in Brisbane, my home town. The city is changing quite quickly so I thought it was about time I updated a weekend guide for Brisbane.


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Where to Stay

It will come to no surprise to anyone who follows me on Instagram but The Calile Hotel in my opinion can’t be beat if you’re looking at where to stay in Brisbane. Not only is it located along a great set of shops & cafes on James St (see further down) but it is arguably one of the most beautiful places I have stayed, period.

Everything in this hotel is designed to perfection so when you’re not out exploring or running around with your phone shooting everything like I was, I would recommend lazing by the pool. Get yourself a lounge chair or cabana (yes, a cabana) and order yourself some drinks & nibbles. Enjoy the good Queensland weather.

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what should I plan to do while I am here?

You should roll over to the other side of the bridge for two things. Within walking distance from the city there are two art galleries & performing arts centre(QPAC). Since they are so close to each other I would definitely recommend going to both the Gallery of Modern Art & Queensland Art Gallery. Head across to Julius or Gauge for a bite to eat before seeing a performance at QPAC. Currently the BOLSHOI BALLET is in town from 26 June to 7 July performing both Spartacus & Jewels. Spartacus is a story of a leader of slaves uprising against Roman rule. Jewels is a three-act ballet inspired by the stunning gem stones George Balanchine saw in Van Cleef & Arpels New York jewellery store. Find out more here.


Where to grab a coffee

King Arthur Cafe Greenhaus
L’mericano
Bellissimo Coffee
Marchetti
John Mills Himself

Where To Eat

Greca / Howard Smith Wharves. If you can stay for a long lunch and definitely order the Saganaki cheese

Bens Burgers. Burgers are simple but super tasty.

Nodo Donuts

Botanica. If you’re short on time, pick up a salad & some treats.

Julius. Perfect for some dinner before a show at QPAC.

Gauge. Grab breakfast or lunch before you check out GOMA.

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where do I shop?

JAMES ST.
Silk Laundry
Love Stories
Molten Store
Assembly Label
Gail Sorronda
Natalie Schweitzer
By Baby
Camargue
Mr. Zimi
St.Angi
Venroy

IN THE CITY
Double Double
Dinosaur Designs
Folio Books

ACROSS THE BRIDGE
QAGOMA Store


This post was created in collaboration with Tourism & Events Queensland

This post was created in collaboration with Tourism & Events Queensland.

With Love, 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

December Journal

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The Highs

What a huge month December always is.. not only is it one of the busiest months for the online store but personally as well. A major high this month was the support from my community on my online store. Small businesses often rely on the support in November/December not only to get them through the slower months but it also often means they don’t have to be as stressed when they take a little time off over Christmas (no annual leave pay here!). Christmas is always a high in my books. Christmas for me is always hot, with a bunch of family, too much food, late night board games & Pimms in hand. This year was no exception. As you get older Christmas seems to last longer, this year mine lasted 4 days. I headed up to the Sunshine coast for my Christmas to New Years break and it was pure bliss. Lots of sun, salty hair & varying tan lines. I nailed the Spicy Margarita and Michael, Mum & I had mid-afternoon Margarita sessions. One of my favourite days was NYE. A friend came back from Japan for the holidays so we spent the day with him & his girlfriend at the beach. No exaggeration, 12 hours at various beaches. I walked back to the car after the fireworks with a smile stuck to my face, no word of a lie. Early morning swims to wake up. Realised that I never knew how much I needed shells in my life. Got a Lemon Tree and a Magnolia Tree for Christmas! Wore my new yellow bikini - no regrets. Ate fish and chips on the beach. Made a really good garlic bread with my brother. Had too much fun with a pink magnifying glass that I got with a Drunk Elephant gift set.

New In Review

Lucy Folk Bag. I have been eyeing off the clutches by Bondi based Designer Lucy Folk for the longest time but I knew myself enough to know that I wouldn’t get enough use out of a clutch. However in the latest releases their iconic clutches have come with a handle option which meant it was now a perfect addition for me. For transparency, I am a partner with Shopbop (a stockist of Lucy Folk) which meant I was able to be gifted this bag but it was already on my to-purchase list before this. As much as I love all of their colour ways, I chose the transparent option so that I could wear it with anything therefore getting the most use out of this beauty. It was the only handbag I took away with me and it is guaranteed compliments! In future I would love to also get a longer strap so that I could use it as a cross body bag also. Is it a everyday handbag that you can fit a lot in? No. However I only use small bags because it means I don’t carry around unnecessary items. Shop Here

Glamglow Cleanser. This cleanser was gifted to me mid December from Mecca Cosmetica and it came at the perfect time. I was at the end of my current cleanser and there would be no better time to test it out than over the Christmas / New Year period. Not only because I would be battling my hormonal break outs but also my skin freaks out with heavy sunscreen & zinc use. Boy oh boy though, this impressed me. Since it lightly exfoliates while cleansing, it meant that I was able to give my skin a good clean after a day of heavy lotion use. I would definitely purchase this cleanser once I have used it all up. Shop here.

Op Shop Finds. I didn’t do any online shopping over the break, instead I found myself only purchasing shell & a couple of things from the Op Shop. Honestly I don’t know why anyone would buy new glassware. The Op Shop always has great stuff and I ended up getting a crystal tray & bottle for $3! No regrets there. I also bought a few sea shells, one big boy so that I could listen to the ocean when I am at my studio desk and some to hold my earrings and other small jewellery in. Most homeware stores near the beach will stock shells so keep an eye out.

Yellow Bikini by Fella Swim. Now I definitely didn’t need these, but swimwear is a weakness of mine. I had my heart set on finding the perfect yellow bikini and after many hours searching online, I chose to go with Fella Swim. The thing I love most about Fella swim are their options, in one colour they have 9 different top & bottom styles to choose from which means you will be able to find shapes that suit your body & size. They also make to order for finer adjustments. I went with the casanova top and fell in love with the shape on me. Even though it was a little bit of an unexpected purchase, I don’t regret it one bit. Shop here.


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The Lows

I grabbed my curler by the hot rod part just before heading to my family Christmas. It blistered immediately and meant I had to keep an ice pack on my hand all day to stop it feeling like it was on fire. It took a week to heal. I saw a dog get hit by a car. It was the fucking worst. By the end of the year I get super drained with social media. I was done. I got over standing up for myself then being attacked for it, I got over the critics thinking my life/my personality/my choices are something I need opinions on. That leads me to really needing to refocus and draw boundaries for myself this year when it comes to social media.

If they don’t know you personally, don’t take it personally. I always try to be kind and considerate of how what I do & say can be taken by others so I take it very personally if someone either attacks that or takes what I am doing or saying completely differently. I need to realise that often these responses are self serving. They are to assert their own knowledge, opinions, insecurities etc. They are often nothing to do with you personally. Secondly, I am not a Google Search Engine. I want my audience to be self-motivated, intelligent & curious. Everything you need to know can be found. If I haven’t already written about it on the blog or saved it to my Story Highlights I am sure it can be found on google or youtube. Otherwise I will be most likely writing about it soon.


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How do I stop working?

First day of holidays this hit me, what do I do when I am not working? Netflix was boring me & I didn’t want to go out because I knew I had some full on days coming up. I first thought I would do some Christmas craft activities but then I knew I would want to document and share it which would turn into work. So what do you do when your fun thing turns into your work thing? (not a bad problem to have)

I had to find something that was creative but something that I wouldn’t turn into work. So I did something I wasn’t good at. Illustration. Faces in particular. They are quick and sassy and best yet, they aren’t something I would sell or really talk about at all. A few days in I caught myself thinking about how I could do one a day and post it and then have a collection of maybe try 50 of them before I get back. I managed to try and turn it into work. I caught myself though and abandoned all of those thoughts. Here are six. Creating for the sake of creating. Nothing more, nothing less.

I am not going to write about goals for January because to be honest it is intimidating
and I am not in the space to do so. Maybe next month.

jasmine x

October Journal

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THE HIGHS

Where do I even start with the highs from this month?! At the start of the month I flew down to Sydney for the Cosmopolitan Women of the Year awards and this girl took out the title of Creative of the Year!! I have worked from home, (what seems like) alone for almost 5 years so I found this to really be a chance to stop & take in all that I have achieved. Even though I work for myself there are so many of you that are out there supporting and sharing the love for my work which made this award even possible. The trip was made even more special by my mum joining me for the 4 days. Hotel Revesis, a high on it's own merit (more on that below). Spicy margaritas at North Bondi Fish. North Bondi Fish in general. Room Service & Foxtel nights after extremely exhausting days. My mum absolutely nailing being an #instagrammum even though she did take a minute long burst (candids for days). Being by the ocean even just a little bit. Releasing my new artwork collection and it being so well received (thank you thank you thank you). Such interesting discussion around my last blog post: Pressure to be a Girl Boss. It has probably been one of my favourite blog posts from this year that I have written. Finding a house to move into & signing a lease. Donating unused beauty to Friends with Dignity.

SYDNEY TRIP SUMMARY

WHERE WE STAYED..

Hotel Ravesis, Bondi Beach. Without a word of a lie, this was kind of my dream hotel. Firstly the location is perfect. Not too far from the city but right across from Bondi Beach! The interiors are also as if they were designed right out of one of my dreams. Archways, moss green, pink & white everywhere. Everything is so beautifully designed down to the Do Not Disturb sign. It even made me want to buy all the merch available at the mini bar (I had to have the set of playing cards, see above) Their food & cocktails were also really yummy. Can not recommend more!

WHERE WE ATE... Since I was out at the awards most of the first day, and the photoshoot the next we didn’t explore too much. But we did stop at a few worth mentioning.

Sonoma Baking, Bondi. Went here a few times for breakfast & baked treats, 10/10.
Bills, Bondi. My mum had never had the hotcakes so I of course had to take her there at least once.
North Bondi Fish, Bondi. Mum and I had the best long lunch here, their spicy margaritas had me hooked. I still crave them.
The Grounds of Alexandria. I finally got there! My COSMO shoot was actually just across the road so I met up with Mum there after. After two big days of nervousness, I got a big burger and chips and was surrounded by flowers - perfection.

WHAT WE DID…

The first day in town I had the COSMO awards followed by a meeting so needless to say after 3 hours sleep the night before I was incredibly overwhelmed and exhausted by the time we got back to Ravesis. I just wanted to eat room service in bed and prepare for the shoot the next day. I was a little nervous about the COSMO shoot because I had no idea what to expect. What would I wear, would I feel like myself, what if I froze? All of those worries went away once I got onto set. The team was so beautiful and made me feel comfortable and more importantly like myself. The rest of Friday was spent at The Grounds then back at Ravesis for cocktails. Saturday was a big eating day. We went to Bills for breakfast, people/dog watched at Bondi then over to North Bondi Fish for a long lunch. A few cocktails later we headed over to paddington to look around at the single fronted houses & stores. Super Dreamy. Sunday was fly home day.


THE LOWS

The first week of October felt really stressful, I wasn’t in control of a lot that was going on which meant I was a little all over the place and didn’t feel organised. This didn’t last though, as it never does. Not being able to sleep until 4:30AM on the night before the awards. I ended up getting desperate at 4AM, downloaded some sleep story app and listened to someone who sounded like David Attenborough talk about lavender fields. It was quite a rainy month so there was a lot of days that shoots were planned but we couldn’t do them. Realising that we now have to do the nightmare moving part after finding a house. The realisation that I have way too much for one human. A new copyright infringement came up so I am now having to go through that with yet another national retailer. Thought I would get through the year without a major one but no such luck.

GOALS FOR NOVEMBER

Launch the HIS & HERS Italy photo book along with some re-prints of Paris & Japan in Mid November. I also am currently working on the 2019 Calendar for release late November. As I type this I am currently in our new house but my goal for the last week was really just to get through it. It was beyond exhausting so I am really just looking forward to enjoying being in the new space and get re-inspired.

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What happened to you in October?!

J x