Dear New Zealand, I owe you an apology

Dearest New Zealand,

I’m sorry for all the times I called you boring.  You are a magnificent bastard of a country.

Thanks for the chocky fish.

Love Stacey x

I grew up in New Zealand from the age of 10 – 21.  I will call these my least appreciative and some what ungrateful years.   Perhaps I was too busy thinking about school, boys and what my career will be, to appreciate the beauty of my surroundings.

People would say ‘Oh New Zealand, its beautiful, so many sheep and the landscape is spectacular.

I would tell them, ‘it’s boring, there are no cool animals like pandas and the isn’t everyones greenery, well green?’

After 31 years on this planet,  Ive had an epiphany that no, not everyones greenery is green.

I travelled back to NZ last week for a family wedding, and took some time to explore the country I had taken for granted a decade ago.

For the first time, I truely saw the natural beauty.  The country side previously slated as boring, is so lush it was mesmerising.

The rolling hills looked like scenes from a movie, I had half expected King Kong or a hobbit to stroll past.

The beaches and mountains in New Zealand are world class, perhaps it took a few years and some travel abroad to realise that.

The stand out from my brief trip was Cathedral Cove, Coromandel.   A short hike, a climb over a keep out danger sign and navigating some missing stairs had us arrive at a beach so stunning, I thought would only exist in a far off exotic island.

I now look back at my old home of New Zealand with a heart full of appreciation and a tummy full of chocolate fish.

 

 

 

Postcards from Summer – Take me back

A few weeks ago I was eating a hot dog and drinking beer at the Roar Football game.

Now Friday nights watching football at Suncorp Stadium is a far cry from my natural habitat.

I don’t follow or play sports…. but I do quite fancy a guy who likes sports so much, he flew from Australia to England return for a weekend to watch a football game.  That’s over 47hrs flight time for a 90 min football game.  Crazy right? – But I like crazy.

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*Go sports team* Note: Beer and Hotdog are just out of frame. Crazy sports guy Mark & Stace

So here I was at the football when I received an invitation to spend the following Friday on a super Yacht with the gorgeous creatives of Naudic at the ‘Postcards from Summer’ event.

Swapping my beer for champagne?

Swapping my hotdog for Hors d’oeuvres?

As you can imagine my reply was ‘Holy Crap Yes’ 

‘I’d be delighted to attend’.

I had met Emma the owner /creative boss babe of Naudic a few weeks earlier when I modelled her beautiful clothing collection in a charity catwalk event.  Emma is a smart, savvy, fashionable and fun business woman.  Naudic clothes are beautiful, bold and bohemian.

Onboard the incredible Crystal Blue luxury yacht we had the chance to meet and mingle with like-minded women.  

Whilst sipping champagne we viewed some stunning Naudic clothing that was styled to suit three travel destinations in collaboration with Chic Travellers.

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Feet on Fleek

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‘We’re gonna need a bigger boat’ – actually no no this one is just fine!

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Jorja, Stace & Marie (@thebrisbanegirl)

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Bohemian girl band Album cover… or just some Naudic loving babes crusin’.  Photo cred: @thebrisbanegirl
Whenever I look at the photos from this crazy fun fashion day, all I think is ‘take me back‘.  Thanks for having me Emma.

This post isn’t sponsored, all views expressed are my own.  I was a guest of Naudic at the post cards from Summer event.

Watch this space

A blog post on watches? About damn ‘time’!

It’s no secret I love my accessories, I mean good grief have you seen my scarf collection?

Scarves and watches happen to be a couple of my favourites.  I had just published my scarf blog post, when I was approached by Jord Watches keen to collaborate.

Now I’m super fussy when it comes to my timepieces.  For my style a watch needs to be not only a functional accessory, it needs to be a statement piece.  I love watches that are oversized, unique and little bit masculine yet with still some feminine traits.   Tall order am I right?  Well I was pants peeing excited when I jumped online and saw the Jord range ticked all the boxes.

Functional, Oversized, Unique with Masculine and Feminine traits.  Tick, Tick, Tick, Tick … JACKPOT!

I chose a piece from the Frankie Collection – I’m wearing the Zebrawood & Champagne , as I loved the soft champagne and gold tones against the wood.

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Watch: Jord

The watch arrived in my postbox the night of my 31st birthday party (Thank you Jord, you shouldn’t have…..but I’m glad you did).  I was so impressed with the packaging.  It arrived in a beautiful keepsake wooden box , with the watch carefully wrapped around a soft hessian cushion.

I knew the watch would fit perfectly, as Jord sent me tape measure to print and advise my wrist mesurements to ensure I got my perfect fit.  This was magic for me, as living in humid Brisbane, I prefer my watches slightly looser fit.

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Watch: Jord | Scarf: Dog & Boy Designs
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Watch: Jord

In terms of styling this watch, I’ve found it works well both casual and dressy.   I like to match it with denim, fresh whites, neutral and bright accessories.      The watch looks great with leopard print as well.

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Watch: Jord | Boots: Frankie 4 Footwear | Clutch: Camilia
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Watch: Jord

My Jord watch has quickly become my everyday style watch, and I often receive compliments on it.   You’ll see this beauty popping up frequently on my instagram outfits of the day.

This post was sponsored by Jord Watches with the watch being gifted, however all views expressed are my own. 

My love affair with scarves – every season

It’s no secret … I am a woman in love… In love with scarves.

This love affair isn’t just a winter fling.  Living in sunny Brisbane means that winters are short to non-existent, so I make wearing scarves an every season all year relationship.

A great scarf is a versatile fashion staple providing practical and fun versatility to your wardrobe.

I carry a scarf in my handbag every day as a lighter and more portable option to carrying a jacket.

I also often find myself pulling it out on sunny days to provide some sun protection when I’m out and about.

The secret to getting an every season wear from your scarf investment (unlike some financial investments, you always get a great return from scarves!) is choosing the right scarf partnered with some creative styling.  Give me an oversized scarf, and I’ll show you over 10 ways to wear it.

Stace McGregs Scarf Styling Tips

Half Cape

Fold the scarf in half, knot each short end, slide over a black slip or dress, add a cute clutch, and you’re ready to rock and roll.  Perfect to give a simple outfit a little bit of Va-va-voom.  You deserve some va-va-voom.

 

Scarf: Dog & Boy Designs ‘Because’ | Slip: Sports girl | Smoothing top: Love Intimo | Clutch: Mimco | Heels: Michael Kors

Full Cape

Similar to the half cape but creates a more billowy and dramatic effect. Simply tie the 2 short ends together and pop your arms through the loops you have created.  I recommend lots of twirling as you’ll feel fabulous.   Just don’t stand too close to balcony edges when twirling. Safe twirling only please friends.

Scarf: Dog & Boy Designs ‘Because’ | Slip: Sports girl | Smoothing top: Love Intimo | Clutch: Mimco | Heels: Michael Kors

Belted cape 

For a fun stylish bent to the corporate office attire, belt the cape over a black dress and add corporate heels and accessories – it really is a modern and creative alternative to wearing a suit.  Just add a strut, talk pivot tables and rock out a clipboard accessory. Career and style advice all rolled into one!

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Scarf: Dog & Boy Designs ‘Make a wish’ | Slip: Sports girl | Bag: Charles Keith | Shoes: Hush Puppies | Belt: Maiocchi

Wrap Dress

Perfect for drinks by the pool – which is exactly where this look took me.   All you need is a slip, a belt, and a cute pair of heels and clutch to complete the look.  Lengthways, knot the ends halfway along the scarf.  Slip your arms through the 2 loops you have created, wrap around your body and belt it to close.   Espresso Martinis optional…but recommended to finish this look… White wine spritzer is also deemed acceptable.

Scarf: Dog & Boy Designs ‘Because’ | Slip: Sportsgirl | Clutch: Mimco | Shoes: Michael Kors

Halter Top 

A scarf acting as a halter style top – yes please.  I drape the scarf over my neck, taking a corner from each end and wrap it around my waist before securing the ends together at my lower back.   I absolutely love the super hero theme of Graffio and was sure to highlight key areas of the design such as the vintage batman ‘Bang’ lettering.

Scarf: Dog & Boy Designs ‘Graffio’ | Pant: Veronika Maine | Jacket: Dotti | Watch: Diesel

Blouse

Try this out if you want to give the ‘scarf as a top’ a try but also want some coverage over your arms. Simply drape the scarf over your shoulders as if you were wearing a shawl and tie the opposite ends at the small of your back.    With some subtle tweaks, I’ve angled Papillon to sit asymmetrically to provide an optical illusion of length.

Scarf: Dog & Boy Designs ‘Papillon’ | Pant: Surafina | Shoes: Hush Puppies | Watch: Guess

Halter Dress

A good variation to the wrap dress is the halter dress.  Hold the scarf lengthwise and tie the short ends and pop your head through the loop you have created letting the scarf fall.  Taking the opposite end of the scarf, lift it up to your waist and secure at the small of your back.   If you are petite, you will get full coverage from this style around the tooshy (technical term).  I’ve got a few curves, so if you’re like me please also wear a slip underneath – we don’t want to look like we have escaped a hospital in a backless gown.  Not on my watch friends, not on my watch.

 Scarf: Dog & Boy Designs ‘Because’ | Slip: Sportsgirl | Shoes: Michael Kors | Jacket: Dotti

Wrap

This is a very classic pashmina style look and an alternative to taking a bulky jacket out with you in the evening.

Use a fun statement scarf like Papillon to keep this look modern and avoid looking like a child fresh out of the pool wrapped in a towel.  It’s an adorable look on your 3 year old nephew, but you my friend are a fully grown babe and deserve better.

Scarf: Dog & Boy Designs ‘Papillon’ | Dress: Table Eight | Shoes: Hush Puppies | Bag: Seed Heritage

Twist & Knot – aka statement jewelry 

Oversized scarves don’t have to be worn billowy.  Twisting the scarf will condense the size.  I’ve twisted the scarf, wrapped it twice around my neck, and knotted it to one side.  This is a fun scarf-like statement necklace.

Scarf: Dog & Boy Designs ‘Graffio’ | Blouse: Bohemian Traders | Skirt: Hunt Kelly Label  | Shoes: Frankie 4 Footwear

Belted

One of my favourite styles that features heavily on my Instagram page is belting a scarf over a plain dress.  Instead of the scarf being an add-on accessory, this styling incorporates the scarf almost like it is part of the dress – like it born to be part of that dress but only needs you to make it happen.

Scarf: Dog & Boy Designs ‘Possibilities’ | Dress: French Connection UK | Boots: Frankie 4 Footwear

Classic wrap

Feeling footloose and fancy free – a simple wrap around the neck and leaving the ends flowing in the breeze  This look is perfect for when making a dramatic exit in 3 easy steps:

Step 1. Dramatically toss scarf end over opposite shoulder

Step 2. Pivot

Step 3. Strut away baby, strut away

Scarf: Dog & Boy Designs ‘Because’ | Jeans: Katies | Blouse: Sportsgirl | Shoes: Thrifted| Clutch: Louenhide | Watch: Diesel  

Long Vest

I wore this scarf as a long vest, and my colleagues called it my cape and referred to me as Super Stace for the day – if that’s not a good enough reason to give this style a whirl, then I don’t know what is.  Similar to how we styled the wrap dress lengthways; take the ends and the middle and knot, and pop your arms through the loops you created.  Off you go to solve crime in your cape. … I mean long vest.

Scarf: Dog & Boy Designs ‘Magnolia Imprints’ | Capri: Katies | Blouse: Surafina | Shoes: Hush puppies | Necklace: Mimco | Sunnies: Quay Australia

Open

If in doubt, drape a beautiful statement scarf over your neck as it will give even a monochrome outfit a bit of lift, and always seems to be conversation starter.

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Scarf: Dog & Boy Designs ‘Make a wish’ | Skirt & Blouse: Surafina | Shoes: Novo 

Giving a style a try? – Let me know, Id love to see you rocking your scarves creatively, either tag me or leave a comment on Facebook or Instagram.

Sale: Dog & Boy Designs  is currently having a 30% sale on their entire collection, with a percentage of sales being donated to Frocktober for Ovarian Cancer Research.

This post is not sponsored, as a Dog & Boy Designs Ambassador, all scarves were gifted for editorial consideration and worn with love.

‘Whatever floats your boat’ – Sensory Deprivation Floating with City Cave

Do you recall the Simpson’s episode where Homer takes Lisa to a New Age store?  The owner convinces them to undertake a spiritual journey by floating in a sensory deprivation tank?   I fondly recall Homer floating and singing ‘oh ee oh ah ah, bing bang, walla walla bing bang’ in his tank.

Well, if it’s good enough for Homer and Lisa, it’s good enough for me.  So I made my way to City Cave Float Centre in the Valley.

Having been opened only 3 weeks the premise was immaculate and welcoming.

Sensory Deprivation Therapy also known as Float Therapy is laying in a pod filled with water and a heap of Epsom Salt (350 – 400kg to be precise!)  This combo creates a fluid which makes you float effortlessly.  The water is matched with your body temperature which gives you the feeling of zero gravity.  Closest thing to floating in space.

Being deprived of all of my senses with the exception of the sound of my own breathing to me sounded intriguing and just slightly daunting, in particular being left alone with only my thoughts.

I had a couple of burning questions before ‘diving in’…

Can I drown?

What if I fall asleep and go past my allocated hour?  

The owners Tim & Jeremy patiently answered all my questions and indulged my every Simpsons reference and pun.

Firstly – No one world-wide had ever drowned, it’s practically impossible the boys tell me.  The Epsom salts keep you buoyant regardless of your weight or size and even if you did by some Cirque du Soleil way manage to flip onto your tummy, the Epsom salts in your eyes would remind you where you are quick smart.

Secondly – If you relax so much you fall asleep (which I did have a wee kip), gentle music plays for the final 10 minutes, which signals it’s time to get up and out and showered…. after ten minutes if you are still asleep, they put on Foo Fighters which will definitely get you up and at ’em and searching for the nearest Monkey Wrench.    Note they have only had to use the Foo Fighters technique once.

You can opt to go in the Pod in your cozzie, although in the nudie is recommended, and nudie is what I did.

For the first 15 minutes of my allotted hour I sloshed around enjoying the novelty, whilst singing ‘oh ee oh ah ah, bing bang, walla walla bing bang’ to myself.  I was plagued with thoughts did I leave my hair straightener on?  What time did I say I was meeting my brother after?  Did I remember to mute my phone? Am I relaxed yet?  Is my ear plug slipping out? I think its slipping out… oh dear god it’s slipping out…. before I willed myself to clear my mind and actually relax, so much I had a wee snooze.  Sure enough sweet sounds awoke me up, and I hopped out feeling all the zen, before enjoying a shower in City Cave’s beautiful facilities.

For those who may be slightly claustrophobic, they have a float pool available, which will give you a similar sensation as the Pod although open air.

The clientele for Float therapy ranges from professional athletes to hippies and high end business people.   It’s been reported that some pregnant women may even hear their bubbas heart beat?  – How cool is that?

In a nut shell, I enjoyed the experience.  The novelty, then the actual relaxation.  I will be going back again this month for another floaty float experience.  I might even try their new ‘couples float pool’ …. should I have a willing participant that is… please leave your expression of interest in the comments below.

City Cave Float Centre can be found at 29b/25 James St, New Farm QLD 4006, (07) 3252 5674.  Check them out on Facebook or Instagram.

Editors note: This post is not sponsored, all views expressed are my own. 

 

 

“It’s okay, I’m in the Cartel” – BTS on the Champagne Cartel Photoshoot. 

Ahhh ocean cruising – where cheese platters and espressos martinis aren’t just for a night out anymore – it’s just Tuesday morning brunch.

This blog post isn’t titled ‘My time indulging on the ocean’ though, and a few days into the trip (and reaching for another stuffed green olive) I felt my phone buzz.

It was an email from the writing and marathon running half of Champagne Cartel, Carolyn. Champagne Cartel is an online publication for smart, sassy women who want to live an F— yes life featuring a collection of writers who contribute to healthy and positive discussions for women in our community. I met Carolyn and Gillian of Champagne Cartel earlier this year at the Style & Champagne event and developed the biggest professional boss babe crush on these best buds and killer business women.

Carolyn’s email was along the lines of “Stace – something something fashion, something something style – let’s book you to model for this super duper exciting new online store”

As I typed yes straight away while munching on that stuffed green olive, I made a silent prayer that this modelling assignment would feature Moo-Moos or some other sort of highly forgiving kaftan. Because this chick be espresso martini sippin’ and cheese board nibblin’ her way through the Pacific with her personal trainer thousands of kilometres away.

Back on dry land I arrived on set of the shoot with no moo moo in sight.

The Champagne Cartel collection did, however, have an array of adorable, sassy and completely relatable slogan tee’s, singlets, beautiful dainty jewellery, and lush home wares. Every piece in the collection was stunning and so true to the Champagne Cartel brand.

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Model behaviour: Nicole, Danielle & Stace

Gillian led the creative direction, and developed some great looks for the three models. Champagne Cartel tees and singlets were expertly partnered with cocktail evening appropriate skirts and heels, as well as some snazzy Active Truth tights and Frankie 4 Footwear sneakers for off duty style.

Our hair and make up pro, Suzie of Gold Coast Hair and Make Up, was an onsite angel (even though she usually works with Miss Universe contestants). Bless her and her industrial strength contouring pallets.

It was an amazing day surrounded by a flurry of creativity. I loved being in a room with smart driven witty women who support and encourage each other, which is essentially the ‘Champagne Cartel’ MO.

In between nabbing those great shots of the stunning pieces from the collection, the girls and I sipped champagne, ate cheese and swapped awful yet ultimately hilarious dating stories.   So, I assume not unlike backstage at Victoria Secret shows.

To wrap up – This has to be one of my favourite days in 2016.

Thank you Champagne Cartel for having me.

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Stacey, Gillian, Danielle & Carolyn

 

Editors note: This post is not sponsored, all views expressed are my own.

OH GOSH, I’m a statistic!

That awkward moment when you find out you are in fact a statistic.

And, not the good kind, like when you read an article telling you that as the youngest sibling you are statistically smarter and funnier.  (Actual fact*)

I’m talking about the kind of statistic where you are one within the over 70% of women who wear the wrong size bra. *gasp*

How could this happen?  I’m a smart, funny (statistically remember), 30 year old woman.  How did I get this wrong for so long?  Why didn’t I ever get properly fitted?

Actually the reason I never got fitted, is I always pictured a well meaning older lady would be man-handling my boobs with cold hands, under some unflattering light.  This assumed experience wasnt high on my priority list.

I had just accepted that wearing a bra came with a certain level of discomfort, that inspired many internet memes.

However, this changed when I met Carys Martin of Intimo a couple of weeks ago.  My goodness, she is the ‘Bra Whisperer’.   Having been a professional in the bra fitting world for over a decade, Carys took one look at me, and expertly ‘hakuna-my-tatas’ into the most perfectly fitting bra.

No cold hands, no man-handling, and very acceptable lighting … all in the comfort of my living room.   Why didn’t I do this years ago?

The Intimo range has a good array of sizes and styles, from classic pieces to some gorgeous lacey numbers with the AhhhhooooooGaaaaaah effect.   The products are simply beautiful.

What I especially connected with during my styling session, is Intimo’s approach to social responsibility.  The intimate nature of their service enables the Stylists to communicate the vital importance of regular self-checks and early detection of breast cancer.

This is reinforced by a breast check instruction card coming attached to every Intimo bra.

As the Intimo Stylists come in contact with over 3,500 women every week, that’s over 7,000 ‘tatas’ a week, and a one heck of a lot of awareness.

This is just one of the many ways the Intimo brand works with and gives back to the community.  Which is something I look for when I consider working with a brand.

Now if you’ll excuse me, I need to go organise a sacrificial burning of all my old ill-fitting bras.

Editors note: This post is not sponsored, all views expressed are my own.  A piece was gifted for editorial consideration.  

*Smarter funnier statistic may not be an actual statistic, more-so a personal study conducted, from personally being a younger sibling.  Peer review pending.