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Gracie Otto, Candice Lake, David Williams and Westfield Take The Stage…

March 21st, 2013

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Check out Westfield’s latest creation with a film directed by Gracie Otto, what do you think?

Directed by Gracie Otto and starring Manly rugby league player David ‘Wolfman’ Williams in his debut acting performance, Fashion Lust is a fantastical fashion tale, loosely inspired by Little Red Riding Hood, in which Candice plays a fashion blogger pursued by a handsome man with wolf-like features.

The film includes fashion from Willow, Zimmermann, Arthur Galan, Ginger & Smart, Sass & Bide, Bottega Veneta, Gucci, Jimmy Choo, Christian Louboutin and Hugo Boss.

About Candice Lake
Australian-born, London-based Lake was one of the most in-demand models of the international fashion show scene during the early 2000s. Now a fashion photographer, Candice has shot advertising campaigns for major international and Australian brands, is a contributor to Vogue Australia, US Vogue and British Vogue, with her fashion blog www.candicelake.com achieving cult status.

ECOYA Flagship Store Launch in Woollahra

August 1st, 2012

I’ve been to many events in Sydney, around Australia and in Europe. Most of these events are perfectly orchestrated, catered and entertained. But I haven’t been to an event for a very long time that was a total invasion of my senses.

Hearing. Seeing. Smelling. Tasting. Touching.

It was the very exclusive opening of Australian candle and bodycare company ECOYA’s Flagship Store on Thursday evening that had me worked up and noticing that every single little detail was covered.

ECOYA candles lined Queen Street, Woollahra and flowers by Grandiflora wrapped lamp posts and street signs and hung from the store’s awning creating an exquisite entrance into the flagship store.

Saskia Havekes of Grandiflora created a decadent arrival to the store, with flowers and lighting hanging from the perimeter of the stores awning – it was simply magical. The colours and textures she used complimented the environment perfectly.

As I arrived, I was cheerfully greeted and given an ECOYA fragrance themed buttonhole flower arrangement before walking into another world that was was music to my ears – literally. Hanna Oblikov and Eliza Morrison of classical music group ASTON entertained us with contemporary songs including Lady Gaga, Rihanna, Sneaky Sound System and Coldplay played on the Cello and Violin.

The ECOYA store/interior designer Megan Morton created a very organic and decadent space, with gorgeous 180 test tube chandeliers filled with seasonal flowers. The long wall of mirrors was also a stand out, which had Neale Whitaker of BELLE and many others admiring it. Treated with battery acid, it made a very interesting, yet slightly morbid and distressing look to the space – which all tied in just perfectly.

There were heaps of familiar faces, including Kirstie Clements (below), Donna Hay (above), Adam Ashley Cooper and gorgeous partner Pip Edwards (below), the effervescent Dr Nikki Goldstein, the distinct BELLE Editor Neale Whitaker (above) and lovely Stylist David Novak Piper (above).

We sipped on flutes of Moet & Chandon Grand Vintage 2002 Champagne, MOA and Steinlager Pure Beer and Santa Vittoria sparkling, but it was the catering that was exceptional. ‘Katering’ put together the excellent combination of canapes, including Salt and pepper barramundi with fresh lime, steamed Peking duck crepes with shallots and hoisin sauce, steamed chicken dumplings with shallot and ginger relish, peppered beef on a potato roesti with truffled aioli and rocket, smashed broad beans, pecorino and mint on charred bruschetta (below) and mini banoffee pies as something sweet to follow. The food was to die for and had every one in the room taking more then what event etiquette would allow.

I also had the pleasure of meeting the wife of ECOYA founder, Lisa Schweighoffer who was easily recognised in her bright yellow Sass & Bide pants! Just like the products ECOYA make, Lisa is a genuine and down to earth person and really in touch with the way people live and lead their lifestyles.

I can’t rave on about this event enough. Everything was perfect and everyone invited was approachable and great to chat to.

Well done to the team at ECOYA.

74 Queen Street, Woollahra.

www.ecoya.com.au

2011 Prix de marie claire Awards supported by Magnum Temptation

March 25th, 2011

Last night’s Prix de marie claire Awards were celebrated with the who’s who of fashion, beauty and entertainment at a glamorous evening ceremony at Fox Studios hosted by Jackie Frank, Publisher/Editor of marie claire.

A star-studded line up of guests graced the red carpet including Megan Gale, Sophie Monk, Lara Bingle, Erika Heynatz, Erin McNaught and Rachael Finch joined by Australia’s most accomplished designers Akira, Alex Perry, Collette Dinnigan, Dion Lee, Camilla Freeman-Topper & Marc Freeman, Carla Zampatti, Aurelio Costarella, Terry Biviano, Kym Ellery, Jacob Luppino & Anthony Pittorini, Lisa Ho, Jayson Brunsdon, Yeojin Bae, Josh Goot, Kit Willow, Nicky & Simone Zimmerman, Therese Rawsthorne, Anna Plunkett & Luke Sales, Sarah-Jane Clarke & Heidi Middleton, for the exclusive black tie gala during which marie claire honoured and acknowledged Australia’s best fashion designers, brands and products through a hand-selected group of international and local marie claire judges.

In true marie claire style, the event was one to remember for the 250 guests. Upon arrival, guests mingled while enjoying a glass of Moet & Chandon, before being ushered beyond the eight metre walls of a mysterious structure in the centre of the room.

Guests discovered a lavish Parisian courtyard where they were seated at mirrored tables, reflecting the candlelight and chandeliers around them. Following a sumptuous three course meal by renowned caterers JOHNANDPETER, the room darkened and the Piazza walls suddenly disappeared to reveal the dramatic entrance of forty models dressed in gowns designed by the celebrated fashion finalists.

The 2011 Fashion winners included WILLOW, who took out the prestigious Best Australian Designer Award; Alex Perry for Best Australian Designer (Readers Choice): Ellery won the Best new up and coming Designer; sass & bide won Best Australian Fashion Brand; Cue, who won Best Australian Fashion Brand (Reader’s Choice) and Carla Zampatti who won the Special Achievement Award.

The 2011 Beauty Award winners included Best Fragrance, Calvin Klein EDP; Best Skincare Product (Splurge), Dermalogica Ultra Calming Serum Concentrate; Best Skincare Product (Steal) Dr. LeWinn’s  Facial Moisturising Lotion SPF 30+; Best Make-Up Product (Splurge), Chanel Rouge Coco Lip Colour; and Best Make-Up Product (Steal),  Rimmel London Volume Flash X10 Mascara.

Faye De Lanty And Her Love Chile

April 6th, 2010

As a youngster, I grew up watching a few different shows like Heartbreak High, Hey Dad! and Home and Away. I also watched a show called Totally Wild, which started off the successful career of the very talented Faye De Lanty.

The gorgeous TV presenter and fashion designer with her own fashion label, Love Chile has captured the hearts of many Australians over the years, including mine. A kind, honest and spiritual person, her warmth pours out of her.

When I met with Faye to interview her, I was welcomed into her home, greeted at the door by her cute beagle, Soho. A glass of Puglia red, vegetables and lamb roasting in the oven, Faye and I relaxed on her exquisite Louis XV lounges and talked about everything that makes Faye, Faye…

What projects are you currently working on or have in the near future?

I have my own clothing label called Love Chile (pronounced ‘Chyle’). I have been working on my 2nd collection. It’s inspired by Hindu Goddesses and it’s a range of accessories for clothes – detachable shoulder pads, double brooch chains, pieces for the hands and feet, as well as some gorgeous customised vintage pieces. Before I could finish the collection the first few pieces got snapped up for a show at the L’Oreal Melbourne Fashion Festival. I also just supplied all the accessories for the White Party parade at Sydney Super Club ‘Ivy’. It’s an Amazonian theme so I had a ball creating crazy feathered/chain pieces. I will be finishing the collection and taking part in an event during Sydney Fashion Week called the Fashion Forward Festival. I am also a freelance TV Presenter/Producer so I have lots of on camera/voice over work that always pops up. Plus I teach TV Presenting for NIDA and AFTRS.

Who or what influences you most in Fashion and home décor?

Fashion wise I LOVE the 70’s rock aesthetic… Robert Plant from Led Zeppelin had killer style back then, so did Mick Jagger. I also love the American Indian culture so my two favourite jewellery pieces are hand crafted silver/turquoise pieces from NYC. Designers that really resonate with me are people like Karl Lagerfeld, D Squared, Anna Sui, Zuhair Murard – these guys are storytellers – they are always pushing the envelope and doing something unique, always with exquisite attention to detail.

In my home I love quite a few styles so I like to mix them… my home has a real eclectic feel. I have a baroque vintage couch teamed with a glass top table from the 60’s. There are feathers everywhere (I am obsessed with feathers) I love colours. A white room with splashes of green or a bright yellow lacquered chair taking centre stage. Personality, warmth and richness.

What is your favourite piece of clothing or accessory?

Accessory wise I think it would be a tie between my turquoise cuff I mentioned before and my caramel leather embossed handbag/satchel – it’s an original piece from 1973, long plaited leather strap – worn in leather and carvings of flowers and birds. I found it in an antique store in Brisbane for $30 about 10 years ago!

Clothing – I think it would have to be my black silk Butterfly tuxedo jacket. It was my Dad’s in the 70’s – it’s an original from the coolest store back then called ‘Granny Takes a Trip’ (there is now a remake of the store in Surry Hills). The jacket has coloured butterflies all over it. There were only two made – Keith Richards from the Stones has the other one!

Do you have one feature in your home you love most?

Oh so many things I love in my home… I have the most divine tree outside my balcony window – I have filled it with fairy lights – it looks beautiful at night, makes me feel like I am a fantasy forest somewhere. Nature aside – I have a beautiful pearl/oyster like vase from BIBA – the most unbelievable style destination in 60’s/70’s London. My Mumma was a BIBA girl and my Dad bought the vase for her – it takes pride of place on my mantelpiece in the lounge room – it’s filled with giant feathers.

Which foods and drinks most excite your taste buds?

I love lobster, goat’s cheese, beautifully cooked fish or lamb and I am a sucker for anything with caramel or white chocolate. Drinks – French Champagne for sure – Moët and Dom Pérignon would be my pick. Apparently when Benedictine Dom Pérignon discovered he could make champagne he called to the other monks “Come quick, it’s as if I’m drinking stars!!!” I also love a good vodka on the rocks with fresh lime… If I’m feeling extra fancy I’ll add a dash of soda water and chopped up fresh chillies from my little garden.

What is your greatest extravagance?

French Champagne, going out for a beautiful meal and I love to buy flowers and candles for myself.

Greatest lesson learnt?

You have to love and honour yourself before anyone else can!

What advice would you give someone if they were thinking of a career in your industry?

If it’s what truly makes your heart sing – go for it! Life is too short not to do what you love. Immerse yourself completely in it, become a sponge, learn and do all you can. Become a ‘junkie’ for your craft! Work hard, believe in yourself and know that you can do it. Then stop talking about it and go get your dream!

How do you maintain a life balance between work and home?

Transcendental Meditation. It saved my life! I was such a stress head, always thinking/worrying I didn’t have an ‘Off switch’! It came to me just at the right time and has opened up my world – I have more energy, clarity and an unlimited supply of creative thoughts and ideas for my label. It’s taught me to honour and love myself, be kind to myself but has also instilled an overwhelming need to give love and help people in my life or those I come into contact with. Check it out www.timbrownmeditation.com.au

Which celebrity wardrobe would you love to raid and why?

Definitely Robert Plant from Led Zep, Mick and Keith from the Stones. The Girls – Mary Kate Olsen and Rachel Zoe.

How did you get into doing what you do?

TV – I started when I was 15 on a show called ‘Totally Wild’. I actually jumped out of a plane for a story while I was on work experience – the GM of the station at the time said to me “Your that crazy b*tch that jumped out of the plane, I said if she’s that F’ing crazy, give her a F’ing job!” True story. Fashion I have wanted to start my own label for as long as I could remember, so 3 years ago I decided to do it.

What is your one design rule you like to stick to around the home?

Always fresh flowers in the lounge room and the bathroom, turn as many lights off at night as possible and use candles to illuminate your home and always do the washing up before you go to bed!

My Mother/Father always told me…

To be cool! (don’t ever get too big for your boots!)

Is there a cause that is close to you and if so, why?

The Butterfly Foundation www.thebutterflyfoundation.org.au

My label is aligned with The Butterfly Foundation – a charity dedicated to supporting people suffering with eating disorders and negative self-image. I have been through low self-esteem and an eating disorder myself… my life journey was a big reason to create Love Chile. Love Chile is all about inspiring women through style to love and believe in themselves. We did a big fashion fundraiser together last year called the ‘Night of the Butterfly’. We plan to do lots more together this year too.

Where is your favourite place to relax in Sydney?

My house or Camp Cove at Watson’s Bay.

How often do you eat out and cook at home?

I probably eat out casually once a week. A really special dinner once or twice a month.

Signature dish?

I’m just getting into cooking so right now I’m keeping things pretty basic – I ‘m loving my oven baked lamb cutlets, sweet potato and pumpkin dusted with fresh herbs, cracked pepper and seasoning.

Your thoughts on Australian fashion in comparison to International fashion?

Look I think we have some fantastic labels – I’m a big fan of Sass & Bide, Toni Matichevski & Antipodium. But I feel like we could take more risks and tell more of a story… I love to see a show that is dripping with personality and detail or where the models actually look like they are happy and enjoying themselves like in a Sonya Rykiel show! She even got them to speak in her last one! Fashion can tend to take itself a little too seriously sometimes. I feel like International designers push it a little further.

The one thing I can’t leave home without is…

My lipgloss, eyedrops and a happy heart.

What frustrates you most about Sydney?

That it’s not New York!

If you were Clover Moore, what would be the first thing you’d inject money into fixing?

Dogs allowed in all restaurants – that request comes from my Beagle! From me – the roads… there are holes and bumps everywhere.

Favourite beach in Sydney and why?

Camp Cove at Watson’s Bay – this place is heaven. No matter how crappy a day you may be having – go there and everything is washed away – it’s magical.

If you could be a fly on the wall of any celebrity home, who’s wall would you like to sit on?

Robert Plant or maybe Lady Gaga to see what she wears to bed!

Three pet hates?

1. Smoking

2. Nastiness/negativity

3. People who drive up my street the wrong way.

Fashion and home must-have’s?

Fashion – a great tuxedo jacket, a cool rock tee, sexy jeans and a killer pair of heels.

Home – fresh flowers, candles and a clean space. Your home is your haven – it should be well looked after and reflect your style and personality throughout.

What is your one diva demand?

A special meditation room with Indian paintings, lotus flowers, Buddhist or Indian goddess statues, a small potted palm tree and incense, a soft pillow or designer blanket for my dog and vanilla scented candles everywhere! (Man I could definitely handle that!)