Candles aplenty at the Jo Malone “Just Because” dinner I hosted earlier this year
If there’s one thing my house is never without it’s a beautifully scented candle. I love having one burning in the background as there’s something quite luxurious about a gorgeous fragrance filling up your home (note: this is why I always have one burning when I have visitors over). A candle also adds warmth to any space which makes it a simple way to decorate a room. There’s no shortage of wonderful candles out there. And there’s definitely one to suit every taste and budget.
Check out some of my top picks below…
Tip: Candles usually come poured into a perfectly re-usable glass or metal jar so when you’ve used one up be sure to repurpose its home; you can use it for everything from a makeup brush holder to a vase.
To clean out the jar simply pop it in the freezer so the wax hardens. Once frozen take it out and scrape out the excess wax and wick which should leave you with an empty jar. If you’re removing the label, using a hairdryer, blast hot air over the jar to melt the glue, peel off the label then run it under hot water to clean off the sticky residue.
If there’s one thing that I can attest to it’s that having a solid supply of basics in your wardrobe makes getting dressed so much easier. Having the right tees and tops and shirts at your disposal means you have the building blocks of a look sorted and the rest is just what you want to pair it with according to your mood on the day. I’m always on the hunt for a good basics brand (let me know your faves!), trying and testing to find staples that are a good fit, good quality and at a good price. These are a few of my current faves.
I can’t tell you how much I love Uniqlo for basics. Over winter I always live in their Heattech tops to stay warm and love their basic t-shirts. The quality of their garments is great and stands up to constant wear (an important criteria for basics), they come in a huge array of colours and are reasonably priced.
Bassike is a tad bit pricier, but I’ve found that their garments do have longevity. They’re my go-to for tanks and t-shirts, but they also have a great range of button down shirts which are ideal for pairing with everything from denim to skirts and shorts.
I stock up on a range of tees in different colours from General Pants. They do a great bundle deal most of the time which means I can grab a few shirts for a fraction of the price. The colours they do are the staples everyone should have in their wardrobe — think grey, white, black and navy so are ultra wearable.
What I like about Seed’s basics is that they’re plain and unfussy — everything a basic should be. They do a great camis, tees and lightweight sweaters in cotton, linen and wool which makes their garments perfect for wearing on its own or layering.
Investment purchases often have a few more zeros in the price tag than your average chain store buy but when you factor in the longevity and its cost per wear you’re definitely getting a bargain. I’ve spoken in the past about my approach to buying designer goods that you won’t regret, but there are definitely certain pieces that will forever remain stylish. Add these to your wardrobe and I promise you’ll have a long and happy relationship.
If you’re going to splurge on a trench coat make it one by Burberry. The coat was designed by Thomas Burberry for military personnel in World War One to keep officers protected against wind and rain and the design has been around ever since. The hardware and fabrication are of course top notch but one glimpse of the iconic checked lining sets this trench above the rest. I promise a trench coat is one purchase that you will get plenty of use out of all year round. Plus if you’re after a unique touch, Burberry now offer a personalisation service that allows you to monogram the inside of your coat.
Everyone knows the quilted 2.55 bag by Chanel and whilst its ubiquitous it’s also one of the few designer bags that will not only appreciate in value (research has shown that the bag has increased in value by 70 per cent over the last six years) it’s also the kind of bag that will not date, will go with virtually everything you own and will always be a classic staple that you’ll be proud to carry. It’s a hefty investment I know, but if you’re going to splurge on a designer bag this one is definitely worth considering.
The ultimate in wrist candy the beautiful Cartier LOVE bracelet first came to prominence in the 1970s and has only grown more popular since its inception. Available in a variety of metals including yellow gold or rose gold plus if you’re really looking to splurge there’s also a version studded with diamonds this is one piece of jewellery that you’ll remain in love with.
I have had my Balenciaga leather jacket for years and its still the kind of piece that has remained in constant rotation in my wardrobe over the years. The perfect moto style jacket is ideal for wearing with everything from dresses to denim. I particularly loved Balenciaga’s design but designers like Saint Laurent, Tom Ford and Acne have all released their own versions of this jacket style. A major splurge it may be but one feel of the buttery leather, the sturdy metal hardware and the perfect fit will inspire instant love.
Ballet flats will always be a wardrobe staple but add a pair of interlocking Cs and you venture into try style classic territory. Whilst they’re not the type of shoe that you’d wear daily to run errands (they’re definitely a bit more special than your average ballet flat) they are an easy and stylish footwear option for those days when you just want to take a casual look up a notch. A close runner up in the shoe departmet would be the classic Gucci horsebit loafer. Over 60 years on and it’s still going strong.
First released in 1953, the Gucci loafer has been around for 65 years and whilst it has never ever really gone away it has experienced a huge resurgence in popularity. Whilst the range now encompasses everything from floral print to an array of colours, fur trim and a version with a collapsible heel, this style is a forever shoe. Translation: if you invest in this you’ll be wearing it for the next few decades without it ever dipping in style cred.
If you’re currently in the mood for a few new wardrobe updates then you’re just in time because there are so many great, affordable pieces out there right now that are just waiting for a new home. From dresses to accessories and shoes, I’ve rounded up some cheap and cheerful buys that look luxe, and will elevate any summer look.
Le Specs are such a fun affordable brand and they always do great on-trend eyewear. This pair has a classic yet modern feel that will see you through many a summer day.
Adding a textural element to an outfit is always a great way to add extra interest to a look. This pouch will carry all your essentials while adding a fun touch.
There’s always something appealing about anything personalised and these letter earrings are such a great way to accessorise and give an outfit your own unique touch.
This bracelet is such a sweet and understated way to finish off a look. It would also play well with other jewellery so it makes a great layering piece.
You can’t beat a crisp white dress worked back with a golden (faux) tan. This is perfect for summer, and can easily be dressed down with sandals or with heels for a slightly dressier look.
These mules are such an affordable way to bring an on-trend element to a look. It’s a great way to add a touch of luxe to your wardrobe at an affordable price.
A versatile piece with sophistication, this top can easily work back with everything from shorts to skirts, and a dream with all things denim.
A wrap skirt is such a flattering piece and this one, with its animal print, can add a fun element to any summer outfit.
Look no further for your ultimate summer dress. This frock with its bohemian, Byron-esque vibe will be on high rotation, and can take you from beach to bar with ease.
Shirring is such a on-trend feature of dresses right now and this printed number is an inexpensive way to dip your toe into the trend.
These pool slides are a great way to do beach footwear in a stylish way. It also comes in different shades so you can choose the perfect hue for your summer wardrobe.
There’s something about shopping for a summer wardrobe that’s just fun. From dresses to shorts, jumpsuits and rompers, the easy, breezy, holiday vibe of dressing for an Aussie summer means we can embrace all the playfulness of resort wear for a few glorious months. And given travel plans have largely been put on hold, why not let your wardrobe let you feel like you’ve been on vacation? The best thing about being in Australia during summer, is that Aussie brands do summer wear better than anywhere else. From lightweight linen, to floaty silhouettes and killer swimwear, there’s myriad reasons to get behind Australian designers this summer. Definitely add the following to your list.
There’s something about the intricate detailing used on Joslin’s pieces, from pin-tucks to ruffles and shirring that make each piece feel so luxe and special. If you’re after something for a special occasion, it’s definitely a brand worth bookmarking.
Simple and elegant, Matteau should be your go-to this summer for truly beautiful understated swimwear. Their dresses are also the kind of thing you’ll want to be in all summer—think elegant silhouettes and strong hues and prints.
Their on-point swimwear, featuring an extensive style selection from bikinis to one-pieces in modern shapes and styles means Bondi Born should be on your must-have list as far as swimmers go this summer. Also, they do truly beautiful resort pieces such as classic wide leg pants and floaty dresses.
I’m a huge fan of Steele, particularly their dresses which I’ve managed to acquire a few of such is my affinity to them! They do really classic silhouettes but I love the prints and hues they work with the most.
Think of the pieces in your dream holiday wardrobe and it’s highly likely Sir have it in their collection. Think matching sets, sleek separates and just the right punchy prints to add a touch of personality.
If you’re a fan of sleek, minimalist designs then St Agni is right up your alley. They do both clothing and footwear (think linen shirts and understated slides), but the vibe is still simple and sophisticated, and oh-so elegant.
If you’re a fan of pared back styles that you’ll have for years to come then Esse is for you. There’s plenty of incredible dresses and two-piece sets that are made for glamming up your summer wardrobe.
After doing my round-up this month I can safely say the chain store game is strong right now. There are so many great pieces, plus lots of great lightweight, easy breezy staples for spring/summer. If you’re looking to update your wardrobe for the season ahead, you’re definitely going to be spoilt for choice. There’s plenty of luxe linen, cute dresses and versatile buys that will ensure you’re well-dressed, and ready to welcome the warm weather.
A long sleeved dress is perfect for transseasonal weather. This dress comes in different print variations so if you like the style, definitely consider snapping up another one.
Tie dye is still doing the rounds and this cropped sweatshirt is perfect for adding to your gym repertoire. Just the right punchy print to lift your fave tights and tee combo.
Gingham is such a great print for spring/summer—equal parts sweet and classic. A tiered dress is also perfect for throwing on over your swimmers on a trip to the beach or an easy go-to work from home look.
If you like the no-brainer convenience of a dress, a playsuit is a great alternative. Just pop it on and it’s a no-fuss outfit option that doesn’t require having to think about tops and bottoms. Also, the tie feature is an elevated touch.
It’s never too late to start a love affair with linen, and these crisp white pants are a great place to start. I’m a huge fan and have always relied on linen pieces during the summer months. It always looks elegant and it’s supremely comfortable too.
These navy cropped pants are the kind of staple every woman should have in her wardrobe. It’s so easy to pair it with a tee in summer or a jumper in winter and as you can see, works a dream with a denim jacket. Double ticks.
Snap up these shorts because they will honestly see you through the next few months. Both elegant and on-trend, it’s the kind of staple that will be on high rotation.
Love the structure of this linen midi dress. It’s chic and polished and just the kind of thing to throw on when you have an occasion that requires an effortless, nonchalance vibe to your look.
Slides are a worthy investment for spring/summer because they’re the kind of thing that can easily become the finishing touch to most of your spring/summer looks. Invest in a classic black pair like these and you’ll wear them to death.
It starts to become abundantly clear in the lead up to summer what particular silhouette is going to be big. This season, it’s all about the muscle tee. The padded muscle tee to be exact. This t-shirt style has been given a strong update with the addition of padded shoulders (I’m obsessed with this style). There’s something about the addition of a little padding working back with a nipped in bottom such as a pair of high waisted jeans that makes for a really strong look.
There are no doubt going to be a few iterations of this top come summer so when you’re shopping for one be sure to firstly try it on if you can. There are some styles with a hefty amount of shoulder padding which doesn’t suit everyone so it’s key to see what it looks like first. Also it’s better if the padding isn’t super visible. This can sometimes occur when the material is slightly thinner and the padding hasn’t been sewed in securely and this can make the shoulder pads quite obvious. Other than that, don’t be afraid to jump aboard this trend.
Every new season I like to invest in a pair of new spring/summer shoes to take me through the next few months. There’s always inevitably a style that stands out as being the trend item, and when it comes to sandals this season there’s definitely plenty of choice. However if you want to go for something that will quickly update your wardrobe, here are four of the most popular silhouettes to look out for.
The ‘Dad’ Sandal
Chanel made these sandals the ‘it’ shoe of the season, and judging by the fact it’s becoming increasingly difficult to get your hands on a pair, it has cemented its place as being the MVP of spring/summer shoe wardrobes. There are now plenty of brands doing riffs on this style from Birkenstock to Tony Bianco and Alias Mae, so you’re guaranteed to find a pair to suit your budget.
For those who want a little extra height, here’s the shoe for you! The Row’s ‘Ginza’ shoe is the high end iteration of this look if you want to go down the designer route. The platform style gives the humble thong an updated silhouette, while the style is ultra versatile and can be worn with dresses to cropped pants. You can bet you’ll see this style being done by multiple brands.
The classic Hermes ‘Oran’ sandal is an eternal style classic, which is why it’s a spring/summer shoe must season after season. This style has also been done by a variety of different brands making it ultra accessible if you don’t want to go down the Hermes route. A simple tan colour will get maximum wear as it’s so versatile but it often comes in other shades such as white or black, so definitely choose the hue that works the best with your wardrobe.
The hiking sandal
These shoes, a shoe staple of travellers and hikers worldwide has had a bit of a fashion glow up. They’re also ridiculously comfy so if you want to feel like you’re walking on a cloud, then I’d like to introduce you to your summer shoe. Check out the range by Arizona Love or Teva who have all incorporated more ‘fashion’ features such as gingham or leopard prints to embellishments or rainbow hues into their line-up.
When I was pregnant I often borrowed things like jumpers and shirts from Luke’s wardrobe as it gave me just the right oversized fit I was looking for. Plus when it comes to certain pieces such as the t-shirts, shirts and jumpers, you’d be hard pressed to find the difference between something specifically tailored for women and a tiny size in the men’s range. And that’s just the beginning of why you really need to start broadening your shopping horizons to the men’s department…
Items are sometimes cheaper
I’ve noticed that there is sometimes a big price difference between something that is marketed to men and something marketed to women, particularly designer items. Yes, it’s not entirely fair, but it does happen so you may as well use it to your advantage. Take this Balenciaga camera bag for example. Check out the price here in the women’s section and check it out here in the men’s. There’s a price difference, no? They’re almost identical styles but you’re saving a few hundred dollars by buying it from the men’s department. So it often pays to scour the accessories and clothing section of men’s sites/sections because you may just save yourself some money by choosing to buy there.
You have more chance of finding your size on sale
It’s not uncommon for really popular sizes to disappear quickly when they’re on sale, so if you want to up your chances of snapping up a great find, try scouring the men’s section. There’s not much difference between getting an XS or S men’s size and a women’s S or M, but the main difference is that you have increased the chance of finding something in your size as those sizes are generally not amongst the first to go in the sale section for men. This is once again particularly great for designer items, as a branded jumper for men is often priced very differently than it is for women.
You can get a perfectly oversized fit
I’m often searching for a slightly oversized fit when it comes to basics such as t-shirts and jumpers and there’s no reason not to find those items in the men’s department. The fit that you can often get is that just perfectly relaxed look.
Designs are different
If you want to broaden your horizons style-wise then you may just find what you’re looking for in the men’s range. The cuts or prints are often different so you’ll often unearth things that you may not see in women’s stores/departments. It’s a great way to give your outfits a more unique spin.
There’s SO much good stuff out there at the moment on the shopping front. It’s been fun scouring my fave stores for great, affordable buys and I have to say, I wasn’t disappointed. Plus, there are lots of great sales happening now too so it’s a double whammy on the bargain hunting front. If you’re in the mood for a fashion fix, here are a few amazing buys to snap up.
This is one of those versatile, just throw it on and you’re ready to go kind of dresses that’s hard to pass up. The colour’s also perfect for spring and I love the ribbed finish which gives it a nice textural element.
These comfy shoes are going to be everywhere this summer so you may as well snap up a pair now. White is also such a fresh colour that can easily be worked back with myriad looks.
Who wants a Camilla and Marc skirt for a fraction of the price? If you’re nodding then snap up this sage-coloured beauty which is now heavily discounted on The Iconic.
Sleek black slides are going to be your go-to shoe in the warmer months and this style is so understated and cool. The square silhouette adds to its on-trend appeal.
You can never have too many sunglasses in my opinion and these are the right shade of tortoise shell to be worn back with so many different looks.
Not only is this a gorgeous colour, the camera bag silhouette is classic and ideal for those days when you’re on-the-go and need to remain hands-free.
Bookmark these shoes for many a summer outing. I love the simple style and also the low block heels which means it can be worn on a casual day out or with a slightly dressier look.
A classic tote bag is a wardrobe must. The best bit about this style is that it’s reversible too which means you get double the wear out of it.
Snap up this little black dress now! Love the puffed sleeves which are so on trend this season. Also, this is one of those magic dresses that can be turned into so many different looks with a few strategic additions.
I couldn’t go past these adorable ring holders. It’s such a cute way to keep jewellery in order.
The muscle shirt with padded shoulders is going to be a big trend you’ll want to consider adding this top to your wardrobe. The grey shade is also a tick in the versatility box.
The pretty silhouette of this top is what initially drew me to it. That sweetheart neckline is so perfect for working back with everything from jeans to shorts or a skirt.