Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Oxfam Online Store

With Christmas fast approaching, it's time to start thinking about gifts for the special people in your life. If like me, you are full steam ahead for the rest of the year, then perhaps online shopping will make it easier for you to get organised in the lead up to Christmas. 

If you are considering online shopping, you simply must visit the Oxfam store – its virtual shelves are full of unique fair trade gifts and products. With a great range of homewares and decor, kitchen essentials, toys and games, food items such as coffee and oils (fair trade of course) and fashion accessories, there really is something for everyone! And what's more, buying gifts from the Oxfam online store means you are also supporting global fair trade. Oxfam Shop is making a difference and so can you by choosing from its exotic and exciting range of homewares and gifts. 

Visit Oxfam today…

Have a lovely day!… Anna

Monday, November 29, 2010

Create Milk

Your wedding stationery is your opportunity to introduce your guests to your wedding day style, and it is oh-so-important that your stationery makes a lasting impression. Set the tone for your special day with beautiful stationery from Create Milk and you can be sure that your individual style will be perfectly reflected in your invitations…

Milk offers a great range of stationery services, including custom and standard invitations, menus, table seating plans, place cards, wishing well cards, RSVP cards, envelopes, and much, much more. What’s more, Create Milk also stock a fabulous range of stationery products in their online store. If you can't find exactly what you are looking for, be sure to contact Create Milk today as they are more than happy to try and make your vision a reality.

Visit Create Milk

Have a lovely day!… Anna

Friday, November 26, 2010

Spa Guide

With Christmas holidays nearly upon us, it's time to think about scheduling in a little pampering time for yourself while you are on your break from work. 

If time permits, why not book a girl-only getaway for some serious R&R for you and your girlfriends at Surf Haven Bali Surf Spa Retreat, Seminyak, Bali. Or, if a couple's weekend is more your style, then the Château Élan in the NSW Hunter Valley would be perfect - there's golf for him and a day spa for you!

Château Élan

With golfing for him and a fabulous spa for you, Château Élan is all about relaxation, rejuvenation and recuperation and only two hours' drive from Sydney, is perfect for a weekend getaway for the two of you… Whatever your reason for visiting the new Spa at Château Élan Hunter Valley, they are dedicated to your peace of mind and physical wellbeing. Behind the pilasters of the porte-cochère are the cool spaces of The Atrium, your gateway to 17 treatment rooms and a team that understands care, comfort and discretion. The spa menu is an Australian first and one that’s exclusive to our guests: much of it is drawn from the distinguished Terraké philosophy and uses French Thalgo products. It quite literally offers a world of treatments.

Château Élan Hunter Valley, Vintage Drive, Rothbury, New South Wales
Phone 02 4998 2500

Surf Haven Bali Surf Spa Retreat, Seminyak, Bali 

Surf Haven Bali is a luxury surf spa retreat for women, unlike any other. It offers a week long surf, yoga and wellbeing program, designed specifically for women of all ages and abilities who want to take time out for themselves and recharge their batteries in paradise. The results are magical with guests leaving feeling lighter both physically and mentally. With warm waters, the world's best surfing waves, delicious food, fabulous shopping and stunning beaches, Bali is THE best destination to experience a women's surf spa vacation and yoga retreat.

Surf Haven Bali
jl merta nadi no 11 Kerobokan kota bali, 80361

Hope this inspires your holiday plans, and have a lovely day!… Anna

Thursday, November 25, 2010

Fletcher & Grace Flagship Stockist has Arrived!

The sparkly and utterly divine creations by Fletcher & Grace are now available at a new flagship stockist, Bella Emporio. Forget walking with your fingers or surfing online, check out the entire collection in one place, up close and personal. The sparkle and delicate design of these gorgeous jewels is truly beautiful.

Make your way to Bella Emporio with your bridal party and have fun playing dress ups and choosing earrings, bracelets, necklaces and hair pieces to embellish your look. Don’t worry, no appointments are necessary at this friendly boutique! What's more, be one of the first 20 customers to mention “New Flagship Store Special Offer”, when making a purchase, and receive a beautiful free gift.  Hurry, only while stocks last!  

Bella Emporio is less than 5 mins from the Sydney CBD, at 636 Darling St, Rozelle (open 7 days, ph 9810 2044). 

To visit Fletcher & Grace online go to www.fletcherandgrace.com.au 

Have a lovely day!… Anna

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

A Royal Wedding

Photo: AP

After announcing their engagement last week, Prince William and Kate Middleton have set a date for their upcoming wedding. Confirming their intention to hold a spring wedding, they will marry on April 29, 2011 at Westminster Abbey, the 1000-year-old church in Central London where Queen Elizabeth II was married and where British kings and queens are crowned. The date has been named a Bank Holiday by prime minister David Cameron so Brits will be able to enjoy a day off and watch the wedding. Again, we are excited in the BD office to see the wedding planning unfold, so stay tuned…

Have a lovely day!… Anna

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

London Cab Company

Earlier this year we used a traditional black cab from the London Cab Company for our stunning couture shoot in the 2011 edition of The Bride's Diary Sydney. We were absolutely delighted with the result of the shot with the cab (see above) and thought the cab was the perfect accessory for Johanna Johnson's gorgeous The Cosmo dress… 

In fact, the BD team was so impressed with London Cab Company that our art director Tracy has booked two cabs for her upcoming wedding (which is just perfect considering she was proposed to in London!).

Available for weddings, formals and other special events, London Cab Company has five original, fully restored London cabs, each with leather interiors and air conditioning. To complete the London cab experience, each cab comes with a professional chauffeur! 

So, if you want to add a touch of old-world charm to your special day, London Cab Company is simply perfect! Visit London Cab Company to view their online gallery…

Have a lovely day!… Anna

Monday, November 22, 2010

A Visual Feast: Ralph Lauren in 4D

It was a ground-breaking fusion of fashion, art and technology that saw the Ralph Lauren runway hit the street and the surrounding buildings in New York and London. Ralph Lauren transformed its Madison Avenue and Bond Street stores into a 4D fashion experience through the magic of cutting-edge technology, including architectural light-mapping , 3D imagery and digital sound effects. Images of Ralph Lauren-clad models strutted across balconies, while images of iconic Ralph Lauren products like ties, belts and polo horses galloped across the facade. Even scents from Ralph Lauren fragrances were diffused during the spectacular.

Watch the videos above to witness the Ralph Lauren buildings disappear and transform into an innovative fashion experience. 

Visit Ralph Lauren for more about the 4D experience.  

Have a lovely day!… Anna

Friday, November 19, 2010

Eat Healthy in a Hurry

As the year continues to fly past (it's almost Christmas!) and the days are get busier and busier, it's so tricky to eat well when you have so much to do… Here are three fabulously healthy, time effective vegetarian recipes from Australian Women's Health that will ensure you eat a balanced meal without sacrificing too much of your precious time.

Seven Vegetable Salad
Hand on time: 20 minutes | Total time: 20 minutes | Serves: 4
  • 4 medium asparagus spears
  • 1 large carrot, halved lengthwise
  • 1 small zucchini, quartered lengthwise
  • 4 witlof leaves
  • ½ medium red capsicum
  • 10 sugar snap peas, strings removed, or green beans
  • 2 tbs extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 tbs fresh lemon juice
  • 1 tbs white wine vinegar
  • salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 1½ cups tinned cannellini beans, drained and rinsed
  • 3 tbs goat’s cheese
  • ½ cup alfalfa sprouts
1. Shred the asparagus, carrot and zucchini in a food processor. With a sharp knife, thinly slice witlof, capsicum and sugar snap peas.

2. In a large serving bowl, whisk together oil, lemon juice, vinegar and salt and pepper to taste. Add all the vegetables and cannellini beans and toss until thoroughly coated. Season to taste with additional salt and pepper.
3. Pile the salad onto four plates, dot evenly with goat’s cheese and sprinkle with alfalfa sprouts.  

By Dr Arthur Agatston. Per serving: 795kj, 10g fat (2g sat), 20g carbs, 160mg sodium, 6g fibre, 8g protein

Asparagus Bisque
Hand on time: 10 minutes | Total time: 25 minutes | Serves: 4
  • ¼ cup sliced almonds
  • ¼ cup low-fat powdered milk
  • 2 tbs chickpea flour
  • 3 cups low-fat milk
  • 1 tsp dried tarragon
  • ¼ tsp salt
  • pinch cayenne
  • 500g asparagus, chopped
  • 2 wedges light cheese spread
1. Spread almonds on a baking sheet and toast in a 180°c oven for 5 minutes. set aside. 

2. In a large saucepan, mix powdered milk and flour. Gradually whisk in milk until smooth. Cook over medium heat, whisking constantly, until the mixture is the consistency of heavy cream, about 5 minutes.
3. Whisk in tarragon, salt and cayenne. Add asparagus and cook until tender, about 5 minutes. Transfer the soup, in batches, to a blender (or use a hand blender) and puree until smooth.
4. Return to the pan and bring to a simmer over low heat. Add cheese and stir until melted. Serve sprinkled with almonds.
per serving: 791kj, 6g fat (2g sat), 20g carbs, 559mg sodium, 3g fibre, 14g protein

Almond & Chickpea Burgers with Chilli Mayo
Hands on time: 15 minutes | Total time: 25 minutes | Serves: 4
  • 2 garlic cloves, unpeeled
  • ½ cup slivered almonds
  • 1 can chickpeas, drained and rinsed
  • ¼ cup chopped fresh parsley
  • 1 tsp ground cumin
  • ½ tsp ground coriander
  • pinch salt
  • 1 large egg
  • 4 tsp extra-virgin olive oil
  • 2 tbs mayonnaise
  • ½ tsp minced green or red chilli (deseeded) or to taste
  • 2 cups shredded cos lettuce
  • 1 tomato, coarsely chopped
  • 4 wholemeal pita breads (15cm)
1. In a small pan of boiling water, cook garlic for 3 minutes to soften. When cool enough to handle, peel, transfer to a large bowl and mash with a fork.
2. Meanwhile, in a frypan, toast almonds for 3 to 5 minutes, until lightly browned and fragrant. Transfer to a food processor or blender. Pulse on and off to grind almonds into a fine meal (be careful not to turn them into a paste).
3. Add chickpeas to garlic, mash with a potato masher or fork until no whole chickpeas remain. Add almond meal, parsley, cumin, coriander and salt to taste. Stir to blend.
4. Add egg and mix well. shape the mixture into 4 patties. In a large non-stick skillet, heat oil over medium heat. add the patties and cook until browned and crisp on the outside and heated through, about 5 minutes per side.
5. Meanwhile, in a small bowl, blend mayonnaise and chilli. Spread each burger with 1½ teaspoons chilli mayo.
6. Divide half the lettuce and tomato evenly among bottom halves of pitas, add a burger, then top each with remaining lettuce and tomato.
per serving: 1616kj, 21g fat (2g sat), 44g carbs, 465mg sodium, 16g fibre, 17g protein

Visit Australian Women's Health for more great recipes and meal ideas.

Have a lovely day!… Anna

Thursday, November 18, 2010

Donna Hay General Store

Food stylist, magazine editor and publisher Donna Hay has recently opened her online General Store, stocking the virtual shelves with fabulous kitchen items, stationery, and styling pieces galore. 

I am so excited that I can shop the great Donna Hay range with a simple click of my mouse, and with Christmas fast approaching, the store has opened just in time! I just love the gorgeous Christmas puddings, and the gift hampers are a fabulous Christmas gift idea. What's more, if you are having trouble deciding on the right gift, you can purchase a gift voucher so your special someone can browse the store and find exactly what they want. Perfect!


Visit the Donna Hay General Store and start shopping today!

Have a lovely day!… Anna

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

A Royal Engagement

After a very long courtship indeed, Prince William has finally asked his long term girlfriend, Kate Middleton to marry him. Proposing to her in Kenya last month with the late Princess Diana's diamond and sapphire ring, the future queen of England happily accepted the Prince's proposal. 

The happy couple will marry in the British spring or summer next year, and the wedding is set to be the biggest royal event since Prince Charles married Diana almost 30 years ago. It will be a wedding watched by many, and the question we are all asking here in the BD office this morning is… what will her wedding dress be like?! With Kate's sophisticated and demure style, we are sure the gown she will choose to walk down the aisle in will be nothing short of pure glamour. 

The Bride's Diary would like to wish the happy couple all the very best for their engagement, and we look forward to seeing the plans for the royal wedding unfold over the coming months.

Have a lovely day!… Anna

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Moi Moi Launches in Perth

Moi Moi Fine Jewellery has opened its first interstate store in Perth, in the CBD's Carillon City.

Outstanding value, fine craftsmanship and impeccable service is what you can expect from Moi Moi. Each Moi Moi piece is designed with passion and crafted with flair and distinction. All set in 18 karat gold or platinum, Moi Moi jewellery is of heirloom quality and will be cherished by generations to come.

It is this commitment to Moi Moi's high standards that has made Moi Moi Fine Jewellery one of Australia's most sought after jewellers. 

Be sure to visit Moi Moi's new Perth store to see beautiful Moi Moi creations for yourself! You can also shop Moi Moi online

Have a lovely day!… Anna

Monday, November 15, 2010

Statement Jewellery from Net-a-Porter

Complete your wedding day look with beautiful statement jewellery from Net-a-Porter. From gorgeous chandelier earrings to pretty necklaces, you are sure to find something to raise the glamour stakes on your special day…

Isabel Marant  | Jacno Bis crystal drop earrings | £178.72

Lanvin  | Clou Diamants necklace | £765.96

 Isabel Marant  | Bus crystal-embellished drop earrings | £178.72

Erickson Beamon  | Duchess of Fabulous gunmetal-plated necklace |

Visit Net-a-Porter and find your perfect statement piece today…

Have a lovely day!… Anna

Friday, November 12, 2010


With the warm, sunny weather, gorgeous beaches, and a myriad of other stunning locations, Queensland is a fabulous state to have your wedding in. And, if you are looking for a creative and unique wedding photographer, then make sure you check out Poppics.

Based in Brisbane, international award-winning photographer Hannah Millerick of Poppics is all about creating fresh and modern images that truly capture and depict the essence of who you are. Poppics promises to capture images that tell a story about your special day from a unique and artistic perspective. "We’ll take what is yours and turn it into a bold, fun, eclectic, and exciting visual experience. We freeze the in-between moments and turn what was real life, into fine art", says Hannah. 

Below are a selection of my favourite images from Poppics' gallery – visit Poppics to view the full gallery. And, while you are there, be sure to have a read through Poppics' gorgeous blog too.

Have a lovely day!… Anna

Thursday, November 11, 2010

Remembrance Day

The hostilities of the First World War came to an end at the 11th hour of the 11th day of the 11th month, 1918 with the signing of the armistice, and it is on this day that we remember our fallen soldiers. After the end of World War II, the name 'Armistice Day' was changed to 'Remembrance Day' and it remains a day where we commemorate all those who have lost their lives as a result of war.

On the first anniversary of the armistice, in 1919, one minute's silence was instituted as part of the main commemorative ceremony. In London, in 1920, the commemoration was given added significance with the return of the remains of an unknown soldier from the battlefields of the Western Front. 

Throughout the Allied nations, the Flanders poppy became the flower of remembrance to be worn on Armistice Day. The red poppies were among the first plants that sprouted from the devastation of the battlefields of northern France and Belgium, and according to soldiers' folklore, the poppies were vivid red as they grew from the ground that was drenched with the blood of the fallen soldiers. 

After the end of World War II in 1945, the Australian and British governments changed the name to Remembrance Day as an appropriate title for a day which would commemorate all war dead. In October 1997, then Governor-General of Australia, Sir William Deane, issued a proclamation declaring 11 November as Remembrance Day, and urged all Australians to observe one minute's silence at 11.00 am on Remembrance Day each year to remember the sacrifice of those who died or otherwise suffered in Australia's cause in wars and war-like conflicts.
Please visit Culture and Creation to read more about Remembrance Day. 

Have a lovely day!… Anna

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Peninsula Tea Gardens

In the charming historic gardens of Tranby House overlooking the beautiful Swan River, you will find an exquisitely furnished tea garden that serves a stylish high tea under pretty white umbrellas. 

Peninsula Tea Gardens is located at the site of one of the first farms in the colony and is the earliest residence still standing in the metropolitan area. Constructed by Joseph Hardey in 1839, Tranby House offers a unique opportunity to explore the first years of European settlement in Western Australia.

Offering dainty sandwiches, cupcakes, chocolate eclairs and strawberries, Peninsula Tea Gardens specialises in 'Traditional Afternoon Tea' as introduced by the Duchess of Bedford in the late 18th Century. 

So if you are searching for the perfect venue to celebrate your special occasion, make sure you visit Peninsula Tea Garden

Have a lovely day!… Anna

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

Free Give-Away - Avado Organics Skincare

Avado Organics and The Bride's Diary are giving you the chance to WIN a fabulous skincare pack, valued at over $60.

The Bride's Diary team love to give our members free give-aways throughout the year. We are always excited when new products are launched and our members are 'in the know'! And like everything we do at The Bride's Diary, we only promote the highest quality products and services available. So enter today for your chance to win and don't forget to visit often to see what other fabulous products we are giving away.

The wonderful soothing properties of avocado oil have been kept a secret for too long! Avado Organics brings you a range of certified skin care products formulated with the 'wonder-worker' that is pure avocado oil. Rich in anti-oxidents and vitamins A, C and E, avocado oil also boasts lecithin and potassium - the 'mineral of youth'.

Extracted from organically grown avocados, the avocado oil used in Avado Sensitives hydrates, nourishes and moistures the skin, leaving it plump, smooth and radiant, while the anti-bacterial, anti-wrinkle and healing properties help to keep dry and sensitive skin soft and supple. The soothing and healing properties of the Avado Sensitives range make it perfect for all the family, especially those seeking relief from the dryness and itching caused by dermatitis, psoriasis and eczema.

Pack includes:
• Organic Gel Exfoliant (100ml)
• Body Lotion (200ml)
• Organic Avocado Oil (50ml)
• Organic Cleanser (100ml)
• Organic Face Moisturiser (75ml).  

To enter, simply email your name, address and contact number to mail@bridesdiary.com.au with 'Competition – Avado Organics Skincare' in the subject line. Entries close 26th November, 2010.

Have a lovely day!… Anna

Monday, November 8, 2010

Absolutely Flowers

From gorgeous couture gowns to stunning colour themes for decorating your wedding, we have put together some amazing photo shoots this year and it's always so exciting to see the beautiful images in print. The photo shoots would not be possible without the help of our wonderful suppliers, and I would just like to give special mention to the fabulous team at Absolutely Flowers for putting together the stunning bouquet that was used for the cover image for the 2011 edition of The Bride's Diary Illawarra & Southern Highlands.

More than a dozen cream David Austin roses were arranged into a natural stem posy, and gorgeous sweet peas completed the breathtaking bouquet. The flowers were simply stunning and perfectly complemented the traditional styling of the gown, so a big THANK YOU to Kate and Michael Powell for all their help, we really appreciate it!

Visit Absolutely Flowers and browse through their gorgeous online gallery.

Have a lovely day!… Anna

Friday, November 5, 2010

Fabulous Holiday Stationery from Rifle Paper Co

Gorgeous US stationery company Rifle Paper Co has released a stunning Holiday collection, including the highly popular postcards sets (perfect for the quick holiday greeting), as well as cards, invitations, and screen printed wrapping sheets.
Rifle Paper Co are also debuting a holiday version of their personalised illustrated notes, so now you can get your family's custom portraits illustrated and printed on A2 folded cards with a personalised, hand-painted greeting.
Visit Rifle Paper Co and shop the holiday collection now to enjoy 10% off all holiday goods from now until November 15th (just enter "HOLIDAYCHEER" in the check-out to receive your early bird discount). 

As well as Rifle Paper Co being available online, the fabulous stationery is now also available in several locations throughout Australia, including:

One Penny Black - Newcastle, NSW
Newspaper Taxi - Newton, NSW
Ramona Tienda - North Melbourne, VIC
Nook - Queensland, AUS
Shelf Life - Surray Hills, NSW

Have a lovely day!… Anna

Thursday, November 4, 2010

French & Country Open Days at Hopewood

French & Country, the fabulous interior decorating, gift and homewares store at Hopewood Country House in the beautiful NSW Southern Highlands, will be holding its Spring/Summer Open Days this weekend, Saturday, November 6 and Sunday November 7, 2010. Amongst the fabulous products, you will find wonderful new European arrivals, including ladies and men's fashions, ceramics, toiletries and Christmas gifts. 

Take a break from perusing the fabulous items on offer to enjoy a quiet coffee and a bite to eat in the cafe in The Pavilion, before you continue wandering the grounds of Hopewood - the garden is in full spring bloom and is sure to delight! 

Bring your friends for a fun day out. If you are unable to make it to the open day this weekend, don't worry as French & Country will be trading in The Pavilion every Thursday and Friday from 10am till 4pm until mid December.

French & Country is located at Hopewood Country House, Centennial Road, Bowral, Southern Highlands. Visit French & Country for more information.

Also, French & Country have recently opened a stand at the new Dirty Jane's Emporium and Antique Market in Bowral. So if you're looking for something rustic and chic for your home or garden and can't make it to the French & Country Open Days this weekend, be sure to check out the French & Country stand at Dirty Jane's Emporium, Shop 5/391 Bong Bong Street, Bowral.

Have a lovely day!… Anna

Wednesday, November 3, 2010

The Bride's Diary® - 2011 Adelaide/South Australia

We are thrilled to announce the launch of the 2011 Adelaide & South Australian edition of The Bride’s Diary, Adelaide's most luxurious and stylish bridal publication. With 500 pages of inspirational wedding day ideas, this is the ultimate wedding planner for Adelaide's brides-to-be.

The Bride’s Diary was the first bridal magazine published exclusively for Adelaide & South Australia. Launched in 1987, you will benefit from over 24 years of our experience in the wedding industry. Exploring both traditional and modern wedding etiquette, The Bride’s Diary is an encyclopaedia of everything ‘wedding’.

This incredible edition – 'the opulent edition' – celebrates Adelaide’s fabulous bridal couture with an absolutely divine fashion shoot, showcasing the finest couture gowns, shoes and accessories ensuring you find just the right inspiration for your dream wedding day fashion.
We are delighted to bring you our beautiful jewellery feature, Jewels of the Aisle, where the superb photographs of a myriad of ring designs will simply take your breath away.

Our superb Real Life Wedding profiles bring to life all the colour and vibrancy that characterises a South Australia wedding, and you are sure to find the profiles an invaluable source of inspiration for wedding theme and style ideas.

This year's Wedding Styling Feature offers you some of our most sensational styling ideas. Also, don’t forget to enter our fabulous competition! You could win the ultimate honeymoon escape to the Cook Islands, South Pacific.

With so much to read, explore, review and revel in, you will want to make a big cuppa, relax and loose yourself in the pages of The Bride’s Diary. The 2011 edition of The Bride's Diary Adelaide is a must-have publication for anyone planning a South Australia wedding, so be sure to drop in to your local newsagent or visit our online store to order your copy today. 

Have a lovely day!… Anna

Tuesday, November 2, 2010

From the Vaults of Mondial Neuman…

I absolutely love pink diamonds – they are just so pretty and feminine and pink diamonds are becoming a very popular stone of choice for engagement rings amongst today's modern couples. So if you are after a flash of pink sparkle for your ring, then you simply must visit the upcoming Mondial Neuman exhibition and sale.

To celebrate 50 fabulous years in the diamond industry, the Mondial Neuman family invite you for the first time ever, to the largest in-store exhibition and sale of some of the world's most exquisite and rare pink diamonds at the Mondial Neuman store in the Queen Victoria Building. 

Open to the public: Thursday 4th November to Tuesday 9th November, 9am-6pm. Pink Diamond Workshops will be held 5pm-6pm daily, with coloured diamond expert and G.I.A-qualified gemologist, Michael Neuman. 

For a private viewing, please contact Michael Neuman or Jacob Neuman on 02 9267 7974 or michael@mondial.com.au 

Have a lovely day!… Anna