Wednesday, 23 July 2014

How Should You Dress At The Casino?

If you are going to a casino for the first time, you may not be sure of some things about the evening. This is especially true if you’re used to online casinos and have never gambled at a land based venue, as you don’t need to adhere to a dress code whilst playing at an iPad casino.

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For many women, knowing what to wear to an evening out can be a question they have. Usually casinos today prefer that women dress in a style known as smart casual, there’s no need to look like Sharon Stone in the film "Casino". This is a style that falls somewhere between casual clothing and the dressy styles on would wear to the office. Learning to pull together a smart casual outfit can be quite simple as most women have what they need already in their closet.
When thinking about the smart casual style, it may seem fairly straightforward which in a respect it is, with many people donning that attire for work. However, it does take a little effort to get it just right. The reason for this is that it is important to find balance between being too dressy or too casual. The look should fall somewhere in the middle. For some women this may be difficult to get right initially, but it also should be said that there can be so many smart casual outfits put together with a few basic pieces so it is open to many different combinations.
 There are a few garments that can be worked into a smart casual outfit. These would include tank tops, t-shirts, athletic jerseys, sweatshirts and hoodies. However, they should never be worn to the casino in the evening. Additionally, the garments worn should be decent. Casinos do not approve of patrons that dress too provocatively. Tops that show too much cleavage or expose one’s midriff should be left at home in the closet. Pants or skirts shouldn’t be too tight or have high rising slits that show too much leg.

*Written by Abi Stevenson
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Sunday, 20 July 2014

Lifestyle // Nectar & Stone

Sweet Monday, Nectar and Stone Sweet Monday, Nectar and Stone Sweet Monday, Nectar and Stone Sweet Monday, Nectar and Stone

I've been dying to blog about these beautiful chocolates by Nectar & Stone for so long! The lady behind these little pyramids of heaven is Caroline Khoo, single handedly crafting a range of delicious sweet treats from chocolates to cakes to macarons and biscuits. Based in Melbourne, I have followed Caroline on Instagram for a couple of months now and become quite addicted. Not only to her wonderful desserts but also to the stunning photos she takes of them. If you're on Instagram I highly recommend following her account, even if you're not from Melbourne or Australia. It will blow your mind!!

Last week I helped arrange a beauty event at my internship and was delighted to see these pack of 4 pink chocolates in the goodie bags. We had a couple left over so sneakily took a box each home with us. Each chocolate is bright pink in colour, filled with real oreo pieces and finished with gold leaf on top. 

Caroline has created these pyramids in just about every colour imaginable, including pastels, monochromes and ombre effect. There is plenty of inspiration to be had from this wonderful creative lady. She's certainly given me a boost to get back into baking. 

Oh and I promise I'll try to take a few hundred boxes of these bad boys back home for you all!

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Wednesday, 16 July 2014

Lifestyle // The Fish Shop, Potts Point

The Fish Shop, Potts Point, Sydney

Upon leaving Melbourne and our beloved local fish and chip shop Hunky Dory we immediately set about finding our Sydney equivalent… Well that's a bit of a lie. We stumbled upon our Sydney equivalent on our very first night here - The Fish Shop. Located in Potts Point, a 2 minute walk around the corner from our hotel is this fun seafood restaurant. The decor screams nautical, under the sea, best fish in town. Not one detail has been missed from the newspaper style menu which gives you a brief background on where they source their tasty fish and some fun trivia, to the plates, cocktail glasses and even the bill comes on a tuna can lid.

The Fish Shop, Sydney Fish and chips Sydney Fish and chips Potts Point Sydney

We've now eaten there twice. On our first time we tried the seafood piella which was on special offer and included a caesar salad and a bottle of white wine. It was delicious to say the least! Upon revisiting less than 3 days later we decided to sample a bit of everything from the menu. So we shared classic fish and chips, mushy peas, scallops, coleslaw and pickled eggs/onion. It was all cooked to perfect but my favourite had to be the rustic mushy peas. Since living in Australia we've found it near impossible to buy mushy peas in any supermarket so whenever I spot them on a menu at a restaurant I have to get them!

Sydney fish and chips Potts Point restaurant Best fish and chips in Sydney Seafood restaurant Sydney Seafood in Sydney Australia

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Sunday, 13 July 2014

Lifestyle // The Paramount Coffee Project

The Paramount Coffee Project, Surry Hills, Coca cola ox cheek waffle

Before arriving in Sydney a few friends had recommended that we go for brunch at The Paramount Coffee Project in Surry Hills. This suburb is full of trendy places to eat and drink, and The Paramount Coffee Project didn't disappoint.

Set in an old warehouse type building upstairs you can find an old school cinema and in the back of the restaurant is a hipster bike shop. Random but that's what makes these kind of places so popular and interesting. The best thing about this restaurant is in the name… the coffee! They change their menu every month and use lots of different local coffee manufacturers so it's a great place to keep revisiting if you like your coffee and want to try something different. I have been getting into coffee since living in Australia (well lattes and cappuccinos) but I opted for their pomegranate soda on this occasion as it was a hot day.

The Paramount Coffee Project Surry Hills Sydney The Paramount Coffee Project The Paramount Coffee Project Sydney

The food is equally as amazing as their coffee. With a range of unusual ingredients and flavours it's hard to choose what to try. I wanted to eat the entire menu! But we had been told that we couldn't visit with out trying their famous coca cola ox cheek waffles so we went for that and their aubergine schnitzel. Both were incredibly flavoursome and left your taste buds tingling for more. the coca cola ox cheek was like nothing I've tasted before, and being served on top of a sweet waffle with salsa was unusual to say the least but it worked fantastically. If you're planning on visiting Sydney this place is a must!

Paramount Coffee Project Paramount Coffe Project, Aubergine schnitzel The Paramount Coffee Project

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Wednesday, 9 July 2014

Lifestyle // Sydney so far!

Sydney Opera House

Since arriving in Sydney we have been so busy. After having a nightmare at the airport and throwing away 7kgs of my beloved clothes and shoes, we've been enjoying our first week and have treated it like a bit of a holiday. In between exploring the city again and revisiting restaurants and bars we enjoyed last year on holiday, we've been busy looking for apartments and arranging lots of viewings. We saw a few beautiful places, and a few not so great ones, but eventually found a stunning two storey apartment right in the centre of Sydney. The apartment features a huge balcony over looking the city skyline, an open plan kitchen/living area and two double bedrooms and two bathrooms upstairs. We're going to be sharing with a couple from New Zealand in their late twenties and the building features an outdoor rooftop pool! I can't wait to use that when the weather gets a hotter. We've been staying in a hotel for the first couple of weeks as we have to wait a while before we can move in. But as soon as we do I'm sure I'll take some photos to show you all. 

Although living in a hotel might sound nice it's driving me mad! I hate living out of suitcases and not being able to cook and do our washing easily is getting annoying. Although the hotel has facilities for self catering it's not great and eating out all day every day is very expensive!

Sydney Sydney, Australia Sydney Harbour Bridge

On top of that we've also had to find new jobs again! This is always the hardest part when moving to a new city but I was organised this time and began looking when we were still living in Melbourne. I secured a part time three month internship at a company called Tailor Maid Communications who handle many Australian fashion and beauty brands, as well as Boohoo Australia. So that's super exciting! I haven't started it yet but can't wait to get stuck in :) 

I also set up an interview at a bridal boutique called White Runway which I had last week and it went so well that I was asked to come in for a trial last weekend. Since then I've been offered a job as a bridal stylist and will be able to work there around my internship which is fantastic. Although I've never worked with bridal dresses before my trial was really fun and exciting. The bridal parties I helped were all lovely and so excitable themselves that it rubbed off on to me. It's so nice to try something different and work with a great group of girls again. I've missed that since leaving etailPR at Christmas. Fingers crossed I make some friends through it!

Circular Quay Sweet Monday blog, Circular Quay Sydney

The best thing so far about moving to Sydney has been the weather. I don't want to jinx it but it's been beautiful since we arrived. Highs of 22 degrees and not a cloud in the sky. If this is what their Winter's like I can't wait for Summer! It certainly beats the 10 degrees and rain we left behind in Melbourne. I love the fact we can eat alfresco and wear t-shirts and not have to take a jacket, scarf and hat out with us! It does get pretty chilly at night though. 

Spit Spit coastal walk to Manly

The photos above and below are from a walk we did on Sunday from Spit (North of Sydney) to Manly a beautiful seaside town which we visited last year. The walk was a whopping 10km and we finished it in just under 3 hours, stopping off for photos along the way. Although we've been walking everywhere around the city as it's the best way to explore, my legs were feeling like jelly by the end of this. Nothing that a cold cider couldn't fix though!

Manly to Spit costal walk

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