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Oxygen Apartments Competition

posted by Danielle Lewis March 30, 2015 1 Comment

WIN with Oxygen Apartments!

To celebrate the launch of the first edition of The Insiders Guide to #Brisbane, Brisbane Threads and Oxygen Apartments are giving one lucky person a weekend away with 5 of their friends in the luxurious PENTHOUSE apartment and a bottle of Moet & Chandon Champagne to kick off the festivities.

To enter simply use the competition box below. There are loads of different ways to enter for more chances to win!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

 

Terms and Conditions

1. Entries close Midnight April 30, 2015. Competition will be drawn at random on May 1, 2015. Winner will be notified by email.

2. Prize must be used by December 30, 2015.

3. Weekend must be booked no further out than 10 days of stay.

4. During their stay winner is bound by the standard terms and conditions at Oxygen Apartments.

5. All entrants will be subscribed to the Brisbane Threads newsletter and Oxygen Apartments newsletter.

 

OxygenApt-3-4500x3000

solid shampoo travel
BeautyTravel

Travel Essentials – Part 2 (health & beauty)

posted by Alice Duffield March 27, 2015 0 comments

Earlier in the week we spoke about tech, gadgets and fashion travel essentials. Today we’re talking health and beauty travel essentials and which products I’ve found work best to keep you feeling squeaky clean, healthy and happy on your travels. Don’t you find travelling makes you feel like a public street-bin? From the dehydration on the plane to the constant public transport journeys, I’ve got you covered – here’s my list of must-haves.

beauty travel essentialsSolid Shampoo – Um these things are amazing. They are by the talented makers at Lush and are completely nasty-free which isn’t even the best part. Never mind packing your chunky shampoo bottle, just throw one of these compact sold shampoo bars into your toiletries bag and choof! You can even get nice conditioning ones so you don’t have to leave conditioner in your hair for five minutes each time you wash! Just make sure you let it get nice and dry before you throw it in your luggage.

solid shampoo travelAnti-bacterial – This is a must-have in my opinion, although my germ-loving husband begs to differ. When you’re travelling and using public restrooms in not so sanitary airports or even having to use natures bathroom, antibacterial is so handy before meals or just whenever you feel a bit feral. I never really love that alcohol smell that they have though. Enter, Thankyou Group. TG has managed to make the most deliciously smelling antibacterial ever. It’s lemon and lime and smells amaaarzing and even better yet – you’re contributing to a company doing good in the world. You can even ‘track your impact’ with a code thoughtfully placed on the back of each bottle.

Vitamin C – When you’re travelling around a lot, your immune system always seems to get compromised. You know how you always get a cold as soon as you arrive at your holiday destination? Well my solution is starting vitamin C a week before you leave. One thing I’ve learnt over the years is that there’s nothing quite like a good quality vitamin C. My favourite is C-Caps. It’s in capsule form so don’t expect a nice chewy orange flavoured tablet but it packs a punch and should keep that cold at bay so you can play!

beauty travel essentials

Lucas Pawpaw – This is a strange one that just always feels like home and always comes in handy. Who doesn’t love their pawpaw cream?! It’s great for bites, super chapped skin (like knuckles in the cold!) and of course feels like home on your lips. And it’s made in Brisbane too!

Evohe Oil – Flying and dry weather always leave my skin crying out for some nice natural oils. Brisbane is so humid that more often than not my skin is oily as it is. Flying takes all the moisture out of my face so I recover that with a rich oil like this one from Evohe. It’s a godsend in cooler weather! Evohe is sustainable and made on the Gold Coast / Northern NSW which makes it even better of course!

beauty travel essentials

Another great way to keep that skin moisturised is using a good mist. I love this one from Bella Box. Full of beautiful Australian oils that smell divine.

MooGoo Deoderant – Nothing worse than feeling stinky on the plane! This one is natural but still does a good job. It smells good but you might want to keep it in your bag and reapply it whenever you feel necessary. I reapply this baby twice a day instead of just using it once in the morning. To me, it’s a small price to pay to cut out the chemicals used in anti-persp deodorants.

Chamomile Tea – Travelling can often make me really anxious, stressed and bring on constant butterflies when things aren’t going to plan. Take some chamomile tea on the plane with you. Most airlines won’t provide chamomile and it’s a great way to calm those travelling nerves. Not only that but it’s an easy way to keep those hydration levels up. It’s so easy to forget to drink water in the air but it’s SO important!

Toms Organic – Women’s issues can seriously be the most inconvenient of issues when you’re travelling. When I don’t have easy access to my usual conveniences and routines, I like to keep my beauty and health habits and nasty-free and natural as possible. I love Toms Organic sanitary products all the time but especially for travelling. It’s nice to know you’re using organic cotton in the most sensitive of places.

I hope you’ve enjoyed my tips on keeping your best while travelling. Stay gorgeous and healthy my travelling beauties.

 

tech travel essentials
FashionTravel

Travel Essentials – Part 1 (Tech & Gadgets)

posted by Alice Duffield March 25, 2015 2 Comments

I recently made a move to the other side of the world. Here I am in chilly England and still living temporarily until I can get myself settled. Moving is hard, travel is challenging and tiring but I must admit, 2015 is a great time to do it. We have so many luxuries to ease the stress of travel. I’ve collated a list of travel essentials that have made my life just that much easier. Let’s talk tech and gadgets first!

tech travel essentials

I-pad keyboard – I am currently on the plane as I write this. Having an i-pad on your flights and in your general travelling time is such an awesome way to entertain yourself. You know what’s even better? HAVING A KEYBOARD TO GO WITH IT? You know what’s even better than that? Having a gorgeous aqua one! Seriously this logitech keyboard is the coolest product to have on your travels. It has wireless, bluetooth, the whole shebang. If you can’t easily carry your laptop around or just don’t want the extra weight for that weekend away, slip your keypad into your handbag with the i-pad and still have convenient typing at your fingertips.. Yeah you like that one, don’t you.

Locks – This might seem obvious but don’t forget these babies. I used these ones– they are TSA approved, easy to use and stinkin’ cute. In my opinion, the risk you take not keeping your luggage secure is a bit stupid! Get some fun colourful ones and make it easier to spot your suitcase at the carousel too!

International power adapter with USB slots – Be prepared and grab some of these before you leave the country! There’s nothing worse than arriving overseas and your phone or laptop has died before you can email your Mum and say you’re safe! I like this one because it has USB slots in it. I can charge a few things at the same time as blowdrying my hair this way. Poifect!

USB – Grab a USB and fill it with photocopies of passports, birth certificates, drivers license and anything else you might need. It’s not an uncommon story to be mugged or lose important documents overseas and it’s best not to risk it.

Now let’s talk FASHUN. I know you’ve all been waiting for it! As I walked onto my private jet they were all ‘Ms Duffield, who are you wearing?!’ and I was all ‘I can’t tell you before I tell my BT fans I’m afraid’. So you get it here first. The essentials to a comfortable journey.

The perils of living in Australia is that to get most places we have a good few hours of in-air misery. I did four countries in 30 hours to get to the UK and boy was I glad for strechy pants and a baggy top to cover that plane-food bloat! I did, warm knit sweats, a plain top and a warm knit to slip over the top.

The plane always gets cold but make sure you have a big tote to throw your warmies in if you’re arriving to a warmer climate. Another thing to do is ensure your bag has a zip! Always good to keep your things secure, as you’ll be carrying your passport around for the first while of your journey. Here’s some inspiration for your next travel outfit.

travel essentials

travel essentials

These items are a mix from Gorman, Witchery, Country Road, Uniqlo, Rollasole and Sportscraft. Here are my simplified do’s and dont’s for travel.

Do:

  • Carry a big tote bag that is secure (even better if you can get one with a long shoulder strap)
  • Throw in a comfy pair of ballet flats (i use rollasole because they’re totally flexible and can be thrown in anywhere)
  • Wear a wireless bra – so worth it
  • ONLY wear clothing with give and stretch. You’ll thank me when you’re 13 hours in and ready to throw yourself out the window.

Don’t:

  • Forget a jumper
  • Wear jeans
  • Wear shoes with laces or buckles
  • Forget warm socks.

Coming up next on BT we have our next edition of Travel Essentials focusing on BEAUTY! Your fave I know. Enjoy, my travelling munchkins.

LifestyleTravel

Alice’s Five Tips for Moving House – Without Crying Like a Baby

posted by Alice Duffield March 2, 2015 2 Comments

FIVE TIPS FOR MOVING HOUSE

I am an old hand when it comes to moving house. In the past six years I’ve lived in FIVE different homes. Cool, huh? Wrong! Not cool. On the upside I’m super good at moving house. I have it down to a fine art. I’m about to move countries and in terms of the actual move, moving across the world with only two cases is way less intimidating then my last move from the Sunshine Coast to Brisbane!  Here are some useful tips I’ve found to work over the years.

1. Pack the spare room first. One of my techniques is to get that spare room packed up as early as three weeks before the move. Stack your boxes up against the wall. Once you have one completely packed up and empty (bar the boxes) room, you can use this as the box room. Every time you fill and seal another box, stack it in that spare room. This way when the removalist comes, they can get access to every box from the one space.

2. Don’t be a hero. Get help. We’ve all been there and wanted to save that $500 by hiring a trailer and getting a mate to help. Then after one load, we’re looking down the barrel of thirty more trips, an aching body and being too tired to unpack at the other end. In the past, I’ve found removalists like Your Local Movers to be the best decision I’ve ever made. If you’re budget conscious, all you have to do is follow my box room step, then move all of the furniture into another empty room so the removalists only have to access two rooms. This will speed up their process and save you a lot of money.

3. Be careful with labels. In saying that – also label, label, label! Here’s what I mean… Definitely make sure you’ve clearly marked where every box belongs – BUT, don’t fall into the trap of the movers placing each box in their labeled room. I usually choose a room at the new place and get the movers to put all boxes in there. Working from one room means that you’re not overwhelmed with boxes in your living space and you can take your time. Work through your boxes one at a time, dismantle the cardboard and place to the side. There’s nothing more overwhelming than sitting in your lovely new lounge room being surrounded in crap you don’t know where to put!

4. Keep your friends. Don’t let them help. The people who love you will always offer to help you move. It’s lovely isn’t it? Don’t fall for it. Moving will bring out the worst in you. You’ll be under the pump to get the movers out of there before they start charging another hour, you’ll have an embarrassing amount of tissues and dirt under your couch – there are just some things better left unknown about friends. Leave it to the professionals, and invite your friends over for the first pizza and beer in the new place to celebrate instead. Tell them to bring the pizza if they’re desperate to help!

5. Cleaning is the worst part of it all. Get pros. I usually hit up gumtree and search for bond cleaners. The $200 was VERY worth it last time. The awesome thing about getting an official bond clean is that  they can keep going back until it’s perfect for no extra charge. I really don’t know why it took me so many moves to work out how utterly wonderful bond cleaners are. BEST.DECISION.EVER.

Well these are the five steps I take to ensure a smooth and easy move. It’s such an awful thing to do when life gets so dang busy, so hopefully these tips can help you too! Happy moving peeps.

* This post was written in collaboration with Your Local Movers. Thank you for allowing us to work with local business’ so we can keep providing fresh content at Brisbane Threads!

BT on the RoadCultureFoodTravel

Hotel Review : NEXT Hotel Brisbane

posted by Chloe Clark February 15, 2015 0 comments

When invited to spend a night at NEXT Hotel Brisbane and dine at Lennons Restaurant & Bar I jumped at the chance to sus out this new Brisbane hot spot. What I didn’t expect was the NEXT level service and style that the swish new Hotel has created.

Next Hotel Brisbane

With the motto “Designed to make your time count”, NEXT Hotel does just that and more with their re-engineered space, technology and service designed for the time-crunched modern business traveller, but also equally impressive for tourists or those on a mini-break in their own city.

Let me break down just some of the stand out things about NEXT Hotel.

Space

“Enjoy our amenities before check-in and even after check-out” are not words you hear from many Hotels. Designed to work for you, and for you to work, the spaces on offer at NEXT Hotel for guests to enjoy include the Club Lounge, The Pantry, Gym & Pool, Shower pods, and my personal favourite, Sleep Pods. All available for you to use if you are waiting to check in or have some time to kill before your flight after check out, accompanied by complimentary wi-fi, naturally.

sleep pods NEXT hotel

And while we’re talking about spaces, it doesn’t get fresher than Lennons Restaurant & Bar where you can watch the chefs prepare your order on the spot whether it’s a breakfast meeting, power lunch or social dinner.

Next hotel Brisbane

Technology

What if I told you, you could download a NEXT Hotel app to gain absolute power over your stay? Well that is exactly what you can do, and by power I mean you can control the gadgets in your room including lights, music, and air conditioning. Use it to book room service, check in, check out and wait for it… use it as your room key! Yep, just open the app, hold it up to your door, and you’re in! If you don’t have a smart phone, you can do all of the above on the Samsung Galaxy S4 waiting in your room that is yours for the stay. You can take it out with you for the day, and use it to have room service waiting for you or have the room chilled to your desired temperature.

 Service

Wi-fi and expensive mini bar items; two things that often get you with extra costs when booking a hotel room. Not a problem when staying at NEXT Hotel as wi-fi is complimentary and so are 4 mini bar items, daily!

So you might have caught on by now that everything at NEXT Hotels revolves around you and your schedule, making it the perfect place to stay for a business trip, or simply for a staycation in your own city!

Info & Booking

NEXT Hotel Brisbane

72 Queen Street, Brisbane

Queensland 4000, Australia

+61 7 3222 3222

[email protected]

 

 

CultureFashionFoodLifestyleTravel

BT on the road : Hunter Valley part 2

posted by Alice Duffield December 7, 2014 1 Comment

Welcome to the second and final post on our recent road trip to the Hunter Valley. Here you will be able to check out some of the stops on the way that we felt were worth the mention and a visit! If you missed out on our first post about the Hunter Valley, check it out here.

First stop – Brunswick Heads

For brunch – Footbridge

Footbridge is about 200m from the gorgeous clear blue river at Brunswick Heads and a short walk from the Coast. It has a cool and relaxed vibe with bearded friendly faces behind the counter and nice fresh produce.

For threads  – Sunshine Trader

SUNSHINE TRADER

Sunshine Trader is exactly what you would imagine. It’s a bright, beautiful store full of fun. I listened to the gorgeous and charismatic owner Sheridan talk to her new customers like they were all old friends. The store has been open only a couple of weeks and stocks local fashion, home wares, kid’s goodies and all manner of unique bric-a-brac. If you’re passing through Brunswick Heads, this one is a must-stop!!

(side note: we did actually stay at Coffs Harbour overnight but were kind of disappointed with the accommodation and food so won’t be reporting on that!)

Next Stop – Newcastle

Newcastle Shopping

For coffee and cake – Frankie’s Place

This retro little cafe was a good call to start our morning in Newcastle. We indulged in French toast with bacon and maple syrup, chai lattes and lemon cupcakes. It was like stepping straight into nana’s place with an eclectic collection of vintage chairs and decor.

For Gluten-Free Treats – Ma Belle

This sweet café specialises in all things gluten free. THE WHOLE CABINET WAS GLUTEN FREE. That is super duper rare! Even better yet, if you call ahead they will make you a delicious loaf of gluten free bread. Get on this my gluten sensitive friends!

Newcastle retail

For threads – Scout & Abicus

Scout and Abicus are technically the same company from what I can gather. They are directly across the road from each other in Newcastle’s trendy Darby Street. I think they have a big sister – little sister type thing going on, with Abicus being big sis. I bought a gorgeous pair of Sol-Sana white leather sandals but could have bought much, much more. This place is definitely worth a look for threads. Abicus also has a fantastic music collection, where every album is worth taking home.

For threads & homeBlue Star Elements

I was somewhat hesitant as I walked through the front door of this little shop but I emerged half an hour later with it being an all time favourite. Blue Star sells labels like Elk for attire and plenty of Aussie designers of jewellery and home decor. Walk through to the back of the store and you enter a sun-filled outdoor area piled high with gorgeous plants, succulents and greenery potted in vintage and new pots, not one the same. This sweet store is a definite must-do in Newcastle. I WANTED ALL OF THE THINGS.

Thanks for tuning in to the final post on our road trip adventure. Plan your own and make some of these stops along the way!

 

Images courtesy of the amazing Gabriel Veit Photography.

FashionFoodTravel

BT on the Road – Hunter Valley Pt. 1

posted by Alice Duffield November 23, 2014 1 Comment

Recently I was lucky enough to have a few days off work down in the Hunter Valley in New South Wales. It wasn’t quite what I was expecting but by no means disappointing! While we did make the mistake of starting our holiday on a Monday, not realising that the HV’s weekend is a Monday/Tuesday, we ate scrummy smelly cheeses, tasted locally brewed beers and sampled wines that we couldn’t afford.

vines with a view hunter valley

Looking down over the Hunter Valley region

It could be assumed that the Hunter Valley region is aimed at those with some cash to burn. Given that the readership here at Brisbane Threads aren’t ALL as rich as I am (ha!), I thought I’d give you a taste of a few different price point options for a more affordable luxurious wine-filled holiday. I kind of did the old ‘stuff yourself sick during the day and snack at night’ thing. I found that a lot of the restaurants were pretty pricey for dinner in the HV region. If you’re down there on a budget, my advice would be to eat up big during the day and take home some quality stinky cheese, olives, sourdough and a local bottle of summin’ summin’.

I’m breaking this post up into TWO because there is just too much to cover. SO firstly I’ll take you straight to the Hunter Valley and next time, we’ll go over the stops we made on the way. Enjoy the read and then get into your car and do it yourself.

hunter valley

This is the lake our little home for the week was on.

  Lovedale (Hunter Valley region)

For coffee and cake and all things Lovedale – The Lovedale Store.

Being welcomed by super friendly store owner Paul absolutely made our day. I recommend this being one of your first stops if you’re staying in the Lovedale area. Here you will find home made sweet treats, locally grown produce and flyers and information for the surrounding businesses. Paul will treat you like an old pal and can answer any HV questions you might have. Paul can also take you round the back to show you the quirky art gallery on site.

Accommodation201 Lake house is an absolute picture of perfection as you are driving down the long country drive-way through the vineyards. From a few hundred meters away you can spot a gorgeous cottage surrounded by a duck filled lake. I recommend taking this trip with a group of mates. This gorgeous house has three queen bedrooms with THEIR OWN BATHROOM EACH. The kitchen is kitted out with brilliant quality appliances and everything else you could need to cook up a storm with local fresh produce. There is a sweet deck overlooking the lake and it’s kitted out with a BBQ for sunset dinners. Best.

Lovedale Lake House

The process of organising the Lake House was seamless. Anita, the property manager had left fresh local milk in the fridge and the house was absolutely spotless. You have all the luxuries of a four star hotel, including delicious thick white bedding, feather-filled pillows and beautiful toiletries provided. Every single detail has been VERY well thought out and invested in. The house feels completely private and isolated and yet is within a few km’s radius of several wineries and restaurants.

I couldn’t have found a better option for accommodation. We were also treated to a bottle of 201’s champagne on our first night on the deck overlooking the lake at sunset. I won’t lie- it was a stand-out part of our holiday.

Lovedale guide

For wineWandin Valley Estates (Lovedale).

We were greeted by the lovely Mercedes (pronounced mer-said-ez) and she promptly had us seated for wine tasting. I have to say Wandin was the best service and wine we experienced in our trip to the Hunter.

I am the first to admit I am no wine connoisseur, but I know what I do like and I know what I don’t like. I stumbled over my preferences with terrible descriptions and Mercerdes jumped to my aid and gave me exactly what I was after.

We came out happy with a bottle of chardonnay and one of the white wines from the Pavillion range (I can’t remember which – we didn’t stop to read the label before we downed it). Most of the Wandin Estate bottles range from $20-$25 each for whites and $20-$35 each for reds. I guess this was fairly common among the wineries, perhaps a little more towards the affordable end than others.

Other Honourable Mentions – definite must-trys while you’re in the region

The Smelly Cheese Shop, Sabour in the HUNTER (desserts galore), Hunter Brew Co., Hunter Valley Chocolate Company,  The Deck Cafe in Lovedale.

Stay tuned for next week’s post where we head to Newcastle and a few other stops along the way. We’ll talk threads stops and more food of course. 

Images courtesy of the amazing Gabriel Veit Photography.

Alice Duffield