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ADRIAN CAN’T COOK with Ibby of Cuckoo Callay – Episode 5

February 14th, 2014

Tucked away off King Street, Newtown is a crazy little oasis called Cuckoo Callay.
Incredible design, delicious food and charismatic staff, Adrian Can’t Cook was very excited to meet part-owner, Ibby Moubadder and learn how to make one of his favourite family recipes, learnt from his mother.


Special thanks to:
Rodney Meier
NaraCamicie Australia
Bruce Lynton Mini Garage


Here are some photos from the shoot, it was such a fun day!





Palm Beach Collection – The New Luxury Scented Experience

October 4th, 2012

Any reader of my blog, or anyone they knows me personally will know there is one luxury that I don’t mind spending money on… Candles.

If I could, I would have scented candles burning around me 24/7. I love them. They make me feel different and special things, they transport me and they smell absolutely divine!

But they only smell divine if you find the right ones… And as I’m always searching high and low for great candles, I have once again hit the big time on these ones. Palm Beach Collection.

Palm Beach Collection is an exquisite new eco-friendly Australian lifestyle product range for true lovers of contemporary style, with a feeling of indulgence.

The all-natural Palm Beach Collection range is luxurious yet affordable and consists of beautiful hand-poured scented candles and reed diffusers in an extensive array of delicious scents including Vintage Gardenia (my fave), Coconut & Lime, Pear & Cinnamon, Honey & Peach Blossom and Mint Leaf & Avocado.

I did my research and discovered what Palm Beach Collection was all about and who was behind it.  Brother and sister duo, Kirsten Walkerand Mike Grey developed this incredible collection of eco-friendly soy wax and essential oil candles with the landscapes of Sydney in mind.

Kirsten and Mike’s childhood was spent in the beachside surrounds of Avalon, Clareville and Palm Beach in Sydney, where their parents still reside. Palm Beach Collection is very proudly a family owned and run Australian business. The team are passionate about ensuring their product remains Australian made close to the shores of their beloved home in Sydney.

The clever pair have travelled the globe extensively over a number of years to research and develop what they believe to be the finest fragrance creations from leading international experts in the art of perfume. From humble beginnings as a start-up business less than three years ago, Palm Beach Collection is now recognised amongst the best Australian made and owned candle collections, with more than 400 stockists Australia wide.

I had the pleasure of interviewing Mike Grey about Palm Beach Collection.

1. There are many candle collections out there, what makes your product different?

This is a very good question. I believe the story behind Palm Beach Collection and how we came about as a brand has a lot to do with creating our originality. Palm Beach Collection is not just a substandard product with a label slapped on its jar or bottle, we have created this collection with love- the love of family. The entire Palm Beach Collection team are family and we have created this together-family made and owned, it is truly a heart-warming story and I feel like this translates in our brand and product. We are an eco-friendly collection and use renewable supplies such as soy which is a big point of difference.

2. There is a luxurious beach Hamptons style feeling around the collection, have you purposely gone for this style? Is it one you live in your own life?

We love everything about the area we live in and we wanted to create a Palm Beach experience in every product we have. Our packaging and fragrances reflect our lifestyle and surroundings, being both beach and sophistication. I think this has caught the eye of Hampton enthusiasts but personally you can’t beat Palm Beach Sydney!

3. Scents trigger memories, especially candles for me. Do any of your candles bring back special memories?

Absolutely! I love how quickly I can be transported back to a time in the past just by scent. White Rose & Jasmine reminds me of our family garden where I grew up. The Jasmine is such a strong trigger that I literally visualise a certain day, just amazing. Mint Leaf & Avocado brings back Christmas for me as a small boy. I can remember the holidays and the excitement of the beach bringing back so many memories. Our scents have been created with this in mind, everyone has a history making each favourite so personal.

4. What is your inspiration behind each of the candle and diffuser concoctions?

We have been inspired by our surroundings here on the Australian Northern Beaches. Many native flower oils and beautiful citrus extracts accompanied by wooden base notes have helped create this. Mood plays a big part in the creation of a fragrance, like mentioned above scent does entice feelings through the senses. This is why I love this range, I can use a fragrance to create mood or to alter it. We have also travelled extensively and taken ideas from European inspiration, some of the fragrances being developed in Europe are just superb. We like to look for points of difference to inspire us as well.

5. It’s hard to ask a mother or father which one of their kids is their favourite – but let’s be honest, they all do! Which is your favourite candle and diffuser?

Ha ha I love it, and may I say quite the fitting question as we are brother and sister! We all have our favourites and mine is White Rose & Jasmine in both the candle and the diffuser, I generally am not a floral lover but this fragrance I just can’t get enough of!

6. What is the most common piece of feedback you get about your collection?

Love the name, love the scents and love the packaging. Also what ideas have you got for the next candle fragrance?

7. Do you know of any celebrities/high profile people that use your products? If so who and is there a story behind that?

Nicole and Lionel Richie loved the candles while they were in Australia and took some back to the US with them, Australian Olympian Leisel Jones is a huge fan and Lara Bingle and her mum also love the brand!

8. What is next for Palm Beach Collection?

We are still growing as a business and we have started to export to Europe and the UK. Along with the launch of our E boutique just last month we have a some exciting things in the pipeline.

It is important to remain dynamic in this market so without giving to much away you can expect to see some amazing newness happen to the range in the next few months.

Expanding out into new countries and representing quality Australian made products in various markets is next. We want to be the best ambassadors for Australian made home fragrance products both at home and off shore.

The Palm Beach Collection prices range from $37.95 for the Candle Collection and Diffuser Collection through $109.95 for theDeluxe Candle range. With a growing selection of more than 20 divine fragrances such as Coconut & Lime, Tahitian Mango, French Vanilla and Sweet Basil & Citrus, Palm Beach Collection continues its rapid expansion with the launch of their first e-commerce store as well as more product lines currently under development and due for release soon.

Do yourself a favour and purchase one of these candles. I love them and am stocking up on them for summer!

TIP: Grab some of the smaller ones to take with you on holidays, I’ll be taking a few to Byron Bay this year. What this does is sets a scent and a memory – you’ll be able to take yourself back on holidays while you’re burning your candle at home or the office.

For more please visit www.palmbeachcollection.com.au

Mic Ritter’s Chest Of Drawers – Unique and Personally Handcrafted

June 9th, 2011

Mic Ritter, ‘Young Designer of the Year’ at the ‘Powerhouse Museum’s Young Blood Designer Exhibition (2010)’, is now an award winning furniture designer and maker. Mic’s latest designs continue to showcase his talents.

I have a love for old trunks, which I have featured the ones in my home on here before, but nothing really beats this amazing creation by Mic. It’s by far my favourite piece of all.

It’s called Chest of Drawers, personally handcrafted with a combination of custom built trunks made from scratch (the top three in image) and re-fashioned vintage trunks (the bottom two). The top three trunks have been covered in fabric and re-used leather (ripped out from an old couch) to replicate the look of old luggage.

All five trunks have a timber frame constructed of Tasmanian oak. The construction of the drawers for the false fronts has been created using traditional hand cut dovetail joints with Australian cedar. Kourie pine was used for the rest of the drawer assembly. The top right case has a compartment set out as a jewellery box crafted from Australian Cedar. Talk about an all Australian product, constructed by an Australian for Australians. Strong, sturdy and a real stand-out piece in any home. It would be perfect in mine!

Based on the Central Coast, Mic says “The idea for the piece was conceived when I was working with antiques. At the time I was repairing an old chest of drawers and noticed that one of the drawers had the same dimensions as a vintage suite case. The concept of using different styles of cases to create a chest of drawers followed on from there. The five individual cases have been fixed together and sit on a timber base styled with cabriole legs and finished with a french polish.”

What a clever guy!

For further information, to view Mic’s other work and for interviews please email him on: mail@micritter.com OR you can see it in person at Original Finish, in Newtown – www.originalfinish.com.au

Sacred Collections Quilts – Perfect For Colouring Up The Home This Season

April 1st, 2011

Yesterday I posted an article about Sacred Collections, a collection of fashionable clothing for women which launches today, but their range doesn’t just do fabulous clothing – they also have gorgeous 100% Recycled Sari Quilts available in Single, Double & King Size.

They are so beautiful and have a great range – perfect to give your home a warm feeling throughout autumn and winter.

Check out their site for more details, www.sacredcollections.com.au.

Fashionable Clothing For Real Women – Sacred Collections

March 31st, 2011

Now we all know fashions aren’t just for size 6 women. So this is why I love what Sacred Collections has brought to the table for real women with real bodies, who are fashion conscious and love to look beautiful.

Sacred Collections launch their A/W Collection tomorrow (1st April) which provides sizing for the everyday woman – from 10 – 22 – meaning every woman can add a touch of chic this Winter in beautiful apparel.

They are an ambitious and emerging Australian label, with plenty of experience behind them, providing fashionable and quality clothing for all women.

Check out their website www.SacredCollections.com.au or their facebook page here.

“The Real Hustlers” Airs Tonight On Channel 9 – It Has To Be Seen To Be Believed!

September 14th, 2010

Adam Mada in "The Real Hustle"

Adam Mada in "The Real Hustle"

Tonight at 9pm on channel 9 after Top Gear, “The Real Hustle” will air which I’m quite excited about watching. Hosted by Gyton Grantley, this is going to be one series to watch!

Most people think they could never be duped and conned, but every year one in three Australians will be exposed to some sort of scam. It might be you handing over your hard earned cash unless you learn the inside tricks of the thieves’ trade on this TV show.
Filmed with hidden cameras, a team of three Australian hustlers, along with their counterparts in the UK and USA, carry out some of the most notorious scams ever cooked up on unsuspecting members of the public.

Here in Australia three practised con artists pull off the scams. They are Clare Werbeloff, better known as the infamous “chk-chk boom” girl who became an overnight sensation after conning the media by fabricating an “eye-witness” account of a Kings Cross shooting in 2009; the so-called “honest con-man” Nick Johnson, an expert swindler who knows every trick in the book; and Adam Mada, a sleight-of-hand expert, trained magician and master of manipulation.

These hustlers show how easy it is to rip off a stranger, extract cash from the unsuspecting, and steal your belongings in seconds. This awesome series will feature more than 30 spectacular scams and expert advice on how to avoid being ripped off, with tips from Detective Superintendent Colin Dyson of the NSW Fraud Squad.

There is a disclaimer though for those of you who watch it: “All the innocent people who were in fact scammed during the making of The Real Hustle have been given their money back. They also agreed to let the footage of them being conned be broadcast as a warning to others.”

Deliciously Healthy Cereal Toppings from realgoodfood

September 9th, 2010

Some mornings I have a delicious fresh juice for breakfast if I’ve got the time to prepare it, but lately I’ve not had enough time and have a breakfast cereal instead.

I’d normally just have a fairly healthy cereal like Sustain or Just Right with Soy milk and Goji berries. But it’s only recently, since having cereal that I found a cereal topping which is absolutely delicious and super healthy.

Realgoodfood is an Australian company which makes exactly that – real good food. Everything is organic, made right here in our country. Four deliciously healthy Gluten free toppings to choose from;

Toasted Cereal Topping with Berries: raw linseed, cranberries, blueberries, Goji berries, sesame seeds, buckwheat, sunflower kernels, almonds and cinnamon

Organic High Protein Mix: organic almonds, organic sunflower kernels, organic sesame seeds and organic linseed.

Toasted Cereal Topping: raw linseed, sesame seeds, buckwheat, sunflower kernels, almonds and cinnamon.

Toasted Seed Mix in Shoyu: sesame seeds, sunflower kernels, pumpkin seed kernels and organic shoyu.

All uniquely tasting, all packed with essential ingredients for a balanced diet and all such a great addition to the perfect breakfast.

Grab a jar of cereal topping from the excellent health food store, Dr. Earth Health Foods at 311 King Street, Newtown – (02)9519 3495

Eccentric Glamour On An Armhair At Edit

June 8th, 2010

EDIT is renowned for their stunning designs and creative fabrics, which are so elegant, yet somewhat scream eccentricity.

This simply stunning upholstered wingback ‘Chandelier’ arm chair is one of the standout pieces inside the store. Made from hemp, it’s natural, comfortable and made by skilled and passionate Australians.

Imagine this armchair in a stark white modern room, begging for one piece of standout furniture with colour, but also character. Or imagine it inside a bleached timber Hampton’s style home with white exposed beams, natural carpets, books, lamps and a glass of Scotch swirling away by the fire. Divine.

Upholstered Wingback armchair in EDIT ‘Chandeliers’ hemp – $2,900.

Have a look at this amazing piece at the EDIT store in Surry Hills.