Wednesday, June 29, 2011

Biota Dining

After a long and tiring day at our annual wedding styling shoot for our 2012 editions, we took the photographic team for a well-deserved evening of superb dining at the Southern Highlands' exciting new restaurant, Biota Dining.

Fine-dining at its best, Biota Dining is truly magnificent. The stunning 600-metre space has been transformed by the Viles family to a modern and aesthetically-pleasing restaurant that offers an intimate yet relaxed dining experience. With a focus on organic foods and local produce, the menu was nothing short of divine. While the roast lamb rump with garlic ash proved to be a favourite amongst the team, I opted for the mushrooms with artichoke, parsnip, pine nuts and nettles, and I must say, they were the BEST mushrooms I have ever tasted!

The meal was expertly matched with beautiful wine from local wineries, and we all thoroughly enjoyed finishing off our meals with the yummy caramel pear dessert.

A big thank you to the lovely staff at Biota Dining, we had a wonderful evening, and I will definitely be returning again for more of those amazing mushrooms!

Be sure to visit the Biota Dining website and sign up for their e-newsletter as there are several exciting events coming up.

Have a lovely day!… Anna

Tuesday, June 28, 2011

Australian Wedding Photographer of the Year to be announced tonight…

The Australian Wedding Photographer of the Year is to be announced tonight at the 35th Canon AIPP Australian Professional Photography Awards. Read on for all the details, and from all of us here at The Bride's Diary, a big congratulations to all the talented winners…

Wedding photographer, Jerry Ghionis will receive the highest accolade in his profession tonight when he is awarded 2011 AIPP Australian Wedding Photographer of the Year by the Australian Institute of Professional Photography (AIPP) at a special gala dinner in Sydney.
Jerry, from Docklands in Melbourne, will walk away with $2,500 in prizes for his stunning images thanks to sponsor Lexar. In addition, Rocco Ancora, also of Victoria, will take home the 2011 AIPP Australian Wedding Album of the Year Award.

Winners of Australia’s most coveted professional photography awards will be announced tonight at the AIPP gala dinner held at Sydney’s Dockside restaurant at Darling Harbour and attended by over 350 of the nation’s greatest photographers.

‘The interest in the Canon AIPP APPAs continues to grow each year,’ says AIPP Executive Officer, Mr Peter Myers. ‘Again, the awards have received a record number of entries from photographers from around the country. This year more than 850 photographers submitted over 3,000 images in the competitive awards.’

Conducted by some of Australia’s most recognised photographers, judging for the awards took place over the past three days at the industry’s annual PMA Australia show. Each of the thousands of images entered is critiqued in detail by the esteemed judging panel.

2011 sees the addition of four new categories to the awards: advertising, fashion, architecture and fusion. ‘As the photographic landscape changes, we need to modify the categories to accommodate the volumes of work we are seeing in other areas,’ says APPAs Chairman and Judge, Peter Eastway.

‘The fact that photographers are embracing the video capabilities of their equipment saw the introduction of the new fusion photography category,’ continued Mr Eastway.

In their 35th year, the Canon AIPP APPAs attract a prize pool of more than $60,000 in cash and prizes including the grand prize – $20,000 worth of Canon EOS professional digital camera equipment.

‘To win the Canon AIPP APPAs is the highest accolade in Australian professional photography,’ says Taz Nakamasu, Managing Director, Canon Australia. ‘Creative photography is growing strongly in Australia, with 65% more images taken in the past four years alone, and it is the professionals who lead the way through their inspiration, passion and dedication to pushing the boundaries of their craft.’

The Canon AIPP APPAs are a celebration of photographic excellence and represent the pinnacle of Australian professional photography – also some of the best in the world.
For further information, visit

Winners for the 2011 Canon AIPP Australian Professional Photography Awards are:
  • 2011 Canon AIPP Australian Professional Photographer of the Year – Gerard O’Connor, Prahran (Vic)
  • 2011 AIPP Australian Advertising Photographer of the Year – Adrian Brown, Alexandria (NSW)
  • 2011 AIPP Australian Fashion Photographer of the Year – Peter Coulson, Kilsyth South (Vic)
  • 2011 AIPP Architectural Photographer of the Year – Tim Griffith, Castlemaine (Vic)
  • 2011 AIPP Australian Sport Photographer of the Year – Adam Pretty (Getty Images)
  • 2011 AIPP Australian Travel Photographer of the Year – Michael Langford, Queenstown (NZ)
  • 2011 AIPP Australian Landscape Photographer of the Year – Christian Fletcher, Dunsborough (WA)
  • 2011 AIPP Australian Science Environment & Nature Photographer of the Year – Chris Barry, Sorrento (WA)
  • 2011 AIPP Australian Documentary Photographer of the Year – Lesley Downie, Noosa Waters (Qld)
  • 2011 AIPP Australian Illustrative Photographer of the Year – James Simmons, Fremantle (WA)
  • 2011 AIPP Australian Fine Art Photographer of the Year – Gerard O’Connor, Prahran (Vic)
  • 2011 AIPP Australian Portrait Photographer of the Year – Sue Bryce, Leichhardt (NSW)
  • 2011 AIPP Australian Family Photographer of the Year – Michael Chetham, Willoughby (NSW)
  • 2011 AIPP Australian Wedding Photographer of the Year – Jerry Ghionis, Docklands (Vic)
  • 2011 AIPP Australian Creative Photographer of the Year – Dan O’Day, Campbell (ACT)
  • 2011 AIPP Fusion Award – Christian Fletcher, Dunsborough (WA)
  • 2011 AIPP Student Photographer Of The Year – David Glazebrook, Springwood (NSW)
  • 2011 AIPP Tertiary Photography Institution Of The Year – Photographic Studies College, Southbank (Vic)
  • 2011 Highest Scoring Print Award – James Simmons, Fremantle (WA)
  • 2011 Athol Shmith Award – James Simmons, Fremantle (WA)
  • 2011 AIPP Australian Wedding Album of the Year Award – Rocco Ancora, Fairfield (Vic)
  • 2011 AIPP Australian Photography Book Award – Eugene Tan, Bondi Beach (NSW)
 For further information, visit

Have a lovely day!… Anna

Friday, June 24, 2011

Vegetarian Pizza

Friday nights are a great night to have a yummy pizza and a nice glass of red (after all, it is Friday and you have worked hard all week!)… Here's a fabulous vegetarian pizza recipe that is laden with delicious toppings - it's as yummy as it is healthy!

Ingredients (serves 6)

• 1 quantity Basic pizza dough (see related recipe)

• 1 teaspoon olive oil
• 1 small brown onion, finely chopped
• 1 garlic clove, crushed
• 1 small zucchini, coarsely grated
• 1/2 x 400g can diced tomatoes
• 1 tablespoon shredded fresh basil leaves
• 1/2 medium red capsicum, thinly sliced
• 1/2 medium green capsicum, thinly sliced
• 4 (120g) bocconcini cheese, sliced
• 1/2 cup grated reduced-fat mozzarella cheese


1. Make pizza dough. Place base on a greased baking tray. Preheat oven to 240°C/220°C fan-forced.

2. Heat oil in a saucepan over medium heat. Add onion, garlic and zucchini. Cook, stirring, for 5 minutes or until onion has softened. Add tomatoes. Bring to the boil. Reduce heat to mediumlow. Simmer for 5 minutes or until sauce has thickened. Add basil. Stir to combine.
3. Spread pizza base with tomato mixture. Top with capsicum, bocconcini and mozzarella. Bake for 15 to 20 minutes or until cheese has melted and base is crisp. Serve.


Super Food Ideas - October 2008, Page 67 | Recipe by Emma Braz 

Visit Taste for more delicious vegetarian recipes
Have a lovely day!… Anna

Wednesday, June 22, 2011

Styling Shoots…

The office is abuzz with activity today as we are holding our annual Styling Shoots here in our fantastic new studio. With four inspirational themes set for the 2012 editions, we are so excited to once again be working on our decorating pages, and can't wait to see how the themes unfold…

Stay tuned for more details!…

Have a lovely day!… Anna

Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Introducing the new PANDORA Magazine

As you all know, I just love PANDORA, so I was understandably ecstatic when I came across an email in my inbox this morning introducing the launch of the new PANDORA Magazine!

Featuring fashion updates, behind the scenes of PANDORA, an interview with the gorgeous Penelope Cruz, and of course, lots of inspiration for your jewellery box, the magazine is an exciting new concept from the PANDORA brand that allows you to explore, interact and share the inspiring content.

The new magazine is exclusively for PANDORA Club members, so if you're not already a member, visit PANDORA now to sign up and be amongst the first to view the exciting launch edition of the PANDORA Magazine.

Visit Pandora

Have a lovely day!… Anna

Monday, June 20, 2011

Heavenly Headwear

Hair accessories are a fabulous way to personalise your wedding day style, and make a gorgeous alternative to a traditional veil… If a headband is to be your hair accessory of choice for your big day, instantly add some sparkly glamour with this gorgeous headband by Matthew Williamson!

Matthew Williamson | Star diamanté-embellished headband | £341.67
Visit Net-A-Porter
Have a lovely day!… Anna

Friday, June 17, 2011

Wonderful Wine Regions

Here in Australia we are fortunate enough to have several world-renowned wine regions, and even though we've just had a long weekend, why not plan a little mid-year escape with you and your special someone to one of these picturesque locations! 

Hunter Valley, NSW
Stayz properties to visit:
• Bonnay from $225 per night
• The Hunter from $150 per night
• Rosamund House from $340 per night

 Yarra Valley, VIC
Stayz properties to visit:
• Fernglen Forest Retreat from $170 per night
• Wild Orchard Olinda from $230 per night
• Holly Gate House B&B from $185 per night
Margaret River, WA
Stayz properties to visit:
• Forest Walk from $180 per night

• Gracetime from $190 per night
• The Outrigger from $210 per night

Wine & High Country, VIC
Stayz properties to visit:
• Candlebark Cottage from $120 per night
• Glendoon from $300 per night
• Maple Grove B&B from $124 per night
With so many wonderful accommodation options at a range of unique and picturesque locations, visiting Australia's wine regions is an experience not to be missed. 

Visit Stayz for more…

Have a lovely day!… Anna

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Wine Romance…

If yours is to be an organic or vineyard-themed wedding, these table number cards from Weddingstar's Wine Romance stationery collection would make a delightful addition to your wedding decorations. Featuring a lush vine motif on a rustic background, the Wine Romance table number cards are as beautiful as they are practical, and will ensure guests can easily find their table.

Visit Weddingstar to view the full Wine Romance stationery range.

Have a lovely day!… Anna

Friday, June 10, 2011


Ever since I was a little girl, I have always loved charm bracelets. I enjoyed collecting charms from different places that I visited and I love the resurgence in popularity that the PANDORA brand has inspired. The PANDORA Charm Bracelet has become the modern girl's answer to a traditional charm bracelet, and with more than 1,500 charms in the PANDORA range, there is a charm to suit just about any taste or momentous life occasion.  

Since its launch in 2000, PANDORA has offered women throughout the world a universe of high quality, hand finished products at affordable prices, thereby inspiring women to express their individuality. All women have their unique stories to tell – a personal collection of special moments that make them who they are. That is why PANDORA celebrates these moments. 

Visit PANDORA to learn more about the charms, and take a moment to explore the gorgeous new website, it's very inspiring!

Have a lovely day!… Anna

Thursday, June 9, 2011

Couture Shoot

We held our annual Sydney Couture Shoot earlier this week, and we are so excited about the images. Featuring stunning gowns from a range of designers and couturiers and the latest in bridal accessories, and again working with one of Sydney's leading fashion photographers, we simply cannot wait to bring you our 2011 couture story!
A big thank you to all involved, it was lovely to work with you and we look forward to sharing the stunning images with you shortly…

Watch this space for more details!

Have a lovely day!… Anna

Tuesday, June 7, 2011

L'Amant | The Lane

L'Amant from The LANE on Vimeo.

We love seeing the creative and inspiring ideas that other industry professionals bring to the wedding industry, and I just wanted to draw your attention to L'Amant, a stunning video that's posted on The Lane's Blog. A collaboration between The Lane and the very talented director Sybil Steele, the video is a short fashion film that embodies the emotions of falling in love. Stunning videography combines with enchanting styling and a beautiful musical score to create a captivating short film sure to inspire many a bride-to-be.

Be sure to visit The Lane to view the beautiful video.

Have a lovely day!… Anna is an innovative new web platform that allows you to buy, store and read ebooks all from the comfort of your mobile, laptop, iPad, iPhone, Blackberry, etc. Basically, is your own ebook library in the cloud, accessible from anywhere and on almost any device, and allows you to buy ebooks online, store them in the virtual library, and read them either online or offline in a smartly designed reader on the device of your choice.

Sounds good doesn't it! Visit to learn more about this innovative concept. 

Have a lovely day!… Anna

Friday, June 3, 2011

Sydney Guylian Belgian Chocolate Cafe


Got a chocolate craving? I have found the cure! For the ultimate chocolate indulgence, you simply must visit the Sydney Guylian Belgian Chocolate Cafe.

Located at The Rocks, Sydney's historic precinct, your taste buds will literally jump for joy as you peruse the tantalising menu. Open from 8am till late, the cafe serves yummy breakfast, lunch and dinner meals, but the real reason you're there is to sample the finest Belgian chocolates, exquisite cakes and decadent desserts that are on offer! 

Choose from the most luxurious milk, dark and white Belgian chocolate truffles, rich hazelnut pralines and velvety fruit mousses. I know from experience that the Guylian Baked Chocolate Cake, served with signature ganache and a scoop of Belgian 65% chocolate ice cream, is simply divine! Or the Dark Chocolate Raspberry Cheesecake with cream cheese and raspberry coulis is equally delicious. If ice cream is more your style, the Individual Ice Cream Scoops served with vanilla bourbon, Belgian chocolate 65%, praliné cream, strawberry cream, pistachio cream, mango cream is a heavenly choice…

Sounds good doesn't it?! But don't just take my word for it, you simply must experience the Guylian Belgian Chocolate Cafe for yourself! Also, visit the website to view the full menu, and to find other cafe locations.


Have a lovely day!… Anna

Wednesday, June 1, 2011

Couture Creation…

From the design concept through to the making of the gown, I am fascinated by the process that couturiers go through when creating a wedding dress. Read on for a snapshot into this process, as Vera Wang discusses the making of her Ghilian gown. 

"One of the exciting challenges I face each season when I’m designing a ball gown is finding new ways to create volume, without adding weight. I’m looking for an effervescence and a weightlessness that will envelope the bride, but very gently, just like the way a blooming garden surrounds you with its evening fragrance.

Ghilian is an extravagant ball gown that represents one of my signature studies in contrasts. The frothiness of the skirt, which is made up of chrysanthemum blossoms in varying shapes and sizes, is set off by a very sculpted, asymmetrical drop-waist bodice. But there’s an unexpected balancing act at play between these two seemingly disparate elements. The asymmetry in the bodice actually echoes an asymmetry in the skirt, where smaller, tightly wound rosettes at the top eventually explode into larger blooms at the base. It’s the hundreds of yards of fabric used in the rosettes that create all that beautiful volume, instead of crinoline, which is a more traditional method. What I wanted was a princess affect that was light, never cumbersome. All of these elements are really what give Ghilian, the ultimate princess gown, such a modern sensibility.

The bodice features more studies in contrasts. The first one is in the fabrics: the crisp, matte feather faille is hard and structured, so the pleats done throughout the bodice mold, shape and define in a way that really shows off that sexy curve of the body. The other twist? The bodice is completely flat and plain. This provides a dramatic, stark contrast to the romantic blossoms of the skirt that float, drape and fan out from the torso: a beautiful tension from top to bottom.

You could say Ghilian is a bit more of an exhibitionist dress, a dress for a bride with a bold, daring sensibility."