Entries in sponsor (178)

Saturday
Dec022017

Fantastic Furniture

This time of year I always get a bit antsy with my decor and start thinking about making spaces over. If you're based in Australia and you've got the decor itch, head over to Fantastic Furniture. They're a great resource if you're looking for budget-friendly furnishings, and they have a wide range of styles to choose from, on top of offering everything you could possibly need for your next project. 

A modular sofa with chaise is a family-friendly, movie-night watching necessity. This is the Dakota 5-seater modualr chaise with storage.

Futons are awesome for compact spaces and great if you need a place for friends to crash. I love this Siesta 3 seater futon.

Photo by @alwaysloved_designs of her Jazz 3 seater sofa

I'm shocked. This is a futon!! The Drift 3 seater futon with a cool scandi vibe. There are also several options for lounge sofas from Fantastic Furniture.

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Monday
Nov132017

How to get that modern industrial look for your home

Do you love the modern industrial look? Exposed brick walls and loft like spaces make you weak at the knees? How about rust and steel, old wooden benches and Edison bulbs hanging in wire cages? You're not alone. Modern industrial furniture is one of the biggest styles trending over the past few years and it's definitely here to stay. It's one thing to live in an untouched warehouse in a big city or to have the cash to splash on fabulous old pieces that dealers have pulled from the depths of a derelict factory but how do the rest of us get the look?

Luckily I found this fabulous collection from Memoky. Created by a team of artists who are committed to making it accessible and affordable, Memoky hand selects the highest quality products crafted from the finest materials from factories that share their commitment to accessible art & design. What does that mean for you? A carefully curated range of furniture with a luxury look but without the huge price tag. I've chosen a few of my favourites from their range but I'll tell you the truth, it was hard to keep it to just these few. Whether you're after seating or storage, lighting or accessories, beds or desks, Memoky has the right piece to build your modern industrial look from scratch or just add that final statement piece you need.

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5/6/7/8/9

Industrial not your thing? Don't worry. You're spoiled for choice. Mid-century, traditional, boho, Scandinavian, country or contemporary you're guaranteed to find something you'll love at Memoky.

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This post brought to you in collaboration with Memoky.

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Thursday
Nov022017

Renovating Your Sydney Home? Here’s What You Need To Know

You might find a sudden urge to knock down a few walls at your Sydney house and create a brand new zen garden. Renovation is an art form and if you pull it off correctly you could end up having a lot of fun. Besides, renovating is all about upgrading your property, which means it can help you increase the value of your most prized asset.

So, if you’re considering renovating your home, here’s what you need to know:

Rules and Regulations

In case you didn’t know this already, Sydney is the largest city in the country. Nearly a fifth of all Australians call it home and the city is jam-packed because of it. What keeps it all in order are the rules and regulations around property. You may need to get permission from your local council to approve the renovations you’ve planned. Do some research online and figure out the local building code, legal limitations and the health and safety requirements before you get started. If you own a strata titled property, for example, you may have to figure out what exactly you own. Technicalities on ‘airspace’ and ‘cubic boundaries’ may come into play here. You may also need to get a DA onboard if your planned renovation project involves removing trees or heavy demolition. Don’t get caught up in the renovation red tape.

Plan Perfectly

Consider a renovation project as important as a new build. You wouldn’t start building a house without a blueprint, so why consider tearing down the kitchen without a written plan? Get all your redevelopment paperwork out of the way and hit the drawing board as soon as you can. Figure out how much you want to push yourself, what tasks you’ll be doing on your own and how much you should budget for the project. Create a simple checklist for everything you need to do. Plan as much as you can, but be prepared for the unexpected.

Do It Yourself

If you love handy work and have some time on hand, consider doing some of the simpler tasks yourself. Putting together a new cabinet, demolishing the patio or tearing down a wall is not just easy, it’s incredibly fun. DIY enthusiasts are always available to help you out with quick tips if you ever get stuck. Doing part of the project yourself will also help cut costs.  Just know your limits and call in an expert for the seriously complex stuff, like heavy construction, electrical wiring and landscaping.

Aim for Value

Your house is an asset, so renovating it should help it appreciate. Aim for value-oriented projects that offer a return on every dollar you invest. Add space, redesign the kitchen or make the bathroom nicer. Balance your need for personal expression with the need to add value. A bright red wall may look trendy, but it won’t appeal to everyone. All these efforts are sure to get you a better price for your home when it comes time to sell.

Cut Costs

It should be obvious, but cutting costs is a big part of renovating. It’s really easy to go over budget with even the most simple home project. Cut costs wherever you can, but balance it out with a focus on long-term value. If it costs extra for reinforced cabinets or better quality windows, go for it.  Build a house that’s meant to last forever. Frequently repairing and replacing stuff is likely to cost a lot more time and money than simply buying the best quality. The way a project shapes up financially depends on how well you’ve planned the budget and how much money you have as contingency.

Be inspired

Walk around the block and gets some ideas from your neighbors. They probably have homes similar to yours, and some of them are bound to be really fancy. If you’re genuinely interested, pick up ideas on blogs and Pinterest. Experiment a bit. Your house is the ultimate form of personal expression, so make it count.

Like any other major city, Sydney has a protocol on how residents can repair or renovate their homes. Get in touch with the experts and do your research before you get started. Stick to the rules, do some of it yourself, cut costs and aim for value. Your house will need some upkeep every few years, but there’s no reason for this process to be stressful or expensive.

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This post is a contribution by a guest writer

Wednesday
Sep272017

Miele's first bagless vacuum 

If a trip to Germany to witness the launch of Miele's Dialog oven wasn't enough of a sweet deal, then a brand new vacuum soon to be launched in Canada is the icing on the cake! As an owner of many shedding cats, vacuums are essential items in my life that help maintain my sanity, so getting my hands on Miele's first ever bagless vacuum was very exciting! The Blizzard CX1 is launching in Canada in a couple of days (the first country in North America) so I thought I would share a little sneak peek with you.

That's Felix enjoying it in the box before I unpackaged it. Already the cats approve. 

The black model is the Hardfloor model, which is what I received. There is a red model that is Cat & Dog, which unfortunately I did not receive (given the amount of cats I have) but the Hardfloor is also perfect for me in that I have hardwood throughout my house. Then there's a blue model that is the TotalCare. 

This is a good looking vacuum, as far as vacuums go. 

This is where the magic happens. Super handy that the nozzle attachments are right there underneath where the container is so they're not in the way. (The one on the left is for crevices and the one on the right is for upholstery. I'll use that one A LOT).
Some fun facts about this vacuum:
It is very quiet compared to most vacuums thanks to its Vortex technology (a single, large cyclone). My cats appreciate this. 
It has a three-stage filtration system, ensuring the user doesn't come into contact with dirt when emptying the container or cleaning the filter. Coarse particles are separated from fine dust, and the dust ends up in the dust filter (which is easily removed and cleaned once or twice a year). Then there's a HEPA filter that collects the smallest particles and allergens.
It has 4 power settings so you can tell it whether you are dusting off your curtains or cleaning hardwood or a rug. 

You all have seen a vacuum in action so I didn't put together a video of me vacumming, plus, I would have had to make myself look presentable, so instead I thought I would show you my reality.  

This is the typical state of my gorgeous Moooi rug. I have 2 jobs and alot of cats so this is my reality. Plus, I wanted to give this vacuum a run for its money so I let this go longer than normal. And after cleaning this rug, I have to say that I am soooo stoked to use this vacuum on a regular basis throughout my house. Check out the after...

BOOM! It worked so well 3 days later as I write this post the rug still looks spotless. 

The proof is in the container. This is from ONE RUG. Dear gawd. It's no wonder I don't wear black around the house. 

See that little yellow thing on the container? You push that release mechanism over your garbage can and POOF the dirt is all gone. This vacuum is my new best friend. I think it needs a name. Maybe Vivian. Thank you Miele so much for this gift. I will surely treasure it for the next 20 years. 

Sunday
Sep102017

The launch of Miele's revolutionary Dialog Oven

I had a blast in Germany recently (my first visit there!) thanks to the folks of Miele Canada and Maverick PR firm who invited me to participate in the international launch of the revolutionary new creation - the Dialog Oven. We had no idea what was being launched before the trip so it was really exciting to finally learn what the hype surrounding this event was all about. Myself and a handful of other Canadian bloggers, food writers and magazine editors flew into Berlin and had a great afternoon and evening doing a bit of sight seeing and enjoyed a fantastic dinner where we spent most of the evening trying to guess what product Miele was launching (LOL). You can check out more photos from Berlin here on my page. At the airport this big red Miele bus was waiting to take us to our hotel:

The following day the bus dropped us off at Bolle Festsäle, a stunning industrial building that was completely revamped for this event. It was VERY impressive, and the "show" they put on blew me away at each stage.

We were greeted with champagne and hors d'oeuvres and photos were taken of each of us and our faces then flashed on the wall of the initial space that was decked out with a history of Miele products. 

Introductions were done by Dr. Reihnard Zinkann (executive director & co-proprietor) and Dr. Markus Miele (executive director & co-proprietor). Interesting bit of history of Miele: since its inception in 1899, the company has been in the ownership of the Miele and Zinkann families. All of the 80 or so family stakeholders are direct successors of one of the two company founders, Carl Miele and Reinhard Zinkann.

Following introductions we began to learn about this new Dialog Oven with a 4 course meal cooked by superstar chefs. And this is where the voodoo, the magic, the mind-blowing technology started to emerge. This oven cooks food in a way you have never seen before. It uses electromagnetic waves, and "communicates" with the food it is cooking. The oven has 2 antennas on the ceiling in the interior that is able to calculate how much energy it has sent out and the food has absorbed. This is not like a microwave, and the proof of that was when during the demonstration, a frozen German cream cake was put in a Miele microwave, and another was put in the Dialog Oven. The microwaved cake became a soupy mess. The cake in the oven came out perfectly thawed and ready to serve. 

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