December 06, 2016

Homewares trends for 2017

I've become a little homewares-obsessed lately. Maybe it's because we've been living in this home for three or so years, and have started personalising it and trying to add value with small renovations and upgrades. Maybe it's because my husband is working all the way through Christmas, and we're not taking a trip anywhere, so I'm pottering around the house trying to make it feel a little fresher.

Whatever the reason, I've been cruising and perusing home and interiors magazines for a while now and would like a large influx of cash into my bank account, please. Some of those renovations are not cheap! Failing bank robbery or an unknown great-aunt leaving me her ill-gotten fortune, I've resorted to smaller additions to our home decor, which surprisingly still pack a big punch.

Since I buy those home and interior magazines for research purposes of course, I thought I'd share some of the top homewares trends I'm seeing for the next year. They're all easy enough to adopt in either small or large doses, and you could even mix and match a few!

There's a one-stop-shop for all homewares in Australia, and that's Reed Gift Fairs. Celebrating the latest in the homewares and gift space,they bring together the people and the products behind everything that’s hot in the design and gift space. With the next one to be held in Sydney in February next year, this fair gives exhibitors the chance to showcase all their new and exciting products, and retailers head there to pick and choose upcoming stock. Sounds like an interiors dream, right? I just need to find a way to nab a ticket!

Top Homeware Trends for 2017

Trend forecasters have started planning for the new season, which will bring with it a change in mood – one that will see earthy tones, hints of mixed metals, and the return of natural materials. I've sussed out some of Reed Gift Fairs' exhibitors to see what they'll be bringing to the table (literally to the table, in the case of some tableware designers LOL) next year.

The earthy tone of terracotta will become a key element in many homes, and a leading trend in the New Year. No longer will you find terracotta restricted to pots in the garden! Unique Australian homewares and jewellery company Jones & Co provides plenty of inspiration on how to incorporate hints of earthy tones to the home. 

Selection of gorgeous pots and planters

Indoor Plants
Succulents have become so popular lately, with groups popping up on Facebook dedicated to growing and swapping succulents - and no hipster cafe is worth it's salt without succulents in unconventional containers on each table! I'm sure we'll see this trend grow even more, bringing the outdoors inside with indoor plants. Displayed in classic concrete pots, woven bags or a glass vase, Reed Gift Fairs will leave you feeling inspired, with exhibitors such as Florabelle, who will show off beautiful displays of indoor planting. I've actually got a few Florabelle artificial plants in my guest rooms, and they always get compliments from visitors!

Green Appeal
Despite seeing an abundance of pastel shades of pink and blue this year, dark shades of green will become a leading trend in 2017 - and I'm thrilled about it! Expect to see this colour incorporated into lots of soft furnishings. Kelly Lane have a great range of statement pieces from cushions to wall art, which will help add a hint of green to any room. 

I love the idea of pairing a rich dark green with lighter aquas, and adding plenty of plants for a really lush tropical look.

Kelly Lane bedroom decor

There are few things better than coming home to a beautifully decorated home. Keep an eye out at your local homewares stores in the New Year and snap up some quick additions to transform your space into the sanctuary you’ve always wanted!

Keen on any of these trends? One step ahead and already featuring indoor plants in your home?

November 23, 2016

Turning your home into a tropical paradise, just in time for Summer

This post is brought to you by Jason Agustina.

I just spent the past weekend Spring Cleaning (my efforts are totally worthy of capitalising those words) with my husband, and while the result is lovely - we're still not quite Summer-ready. You know, where everything is fresh and clean, and looks entertainment-ready for any unexpected drop-ins. (Please note, I will not accept unexpected drop-ins. You are required to call or text your intention to visit at least 45 mins in advance. I need time to freshen myself AND my home up!)

There’s no better way to freshen up your home in Summer than with tropical statement homewares. Not only is it easy to incorporate, but this vibrant trend creates a refreshing vibe indoors and outdoors - and has been my go-to interior decorating trend since I was a young teenager, living directly across the road from the Big Pineapple. Having that fruity view really affected me!

To create a classy look with this trend, think luscious jungle and bright animal prints paired with casual, natural materials like warm wood and bamboo. I like to add some greenery (fake, if the occasion or your black thumbs call for it - no judgement) to 'lush up' the space and really compliment tropical touches. Like most trends, the key is to work from a good base - pieces that are well-made with great simple designs will stand the test of time. I love the range from Jason Agustina, it's a small collection with something for every type of living area, made from gorgeous timbers and fabrics.

1. Jason Agustina Volt Sofa in Blue 2. Blue Thumb Sticky Beak limited edition print by Emma Ward 3. Drunk on Water Monstera and Pineapple cushion 4. Jason Agustina Beholm Coffee Table in Oak 5. Annabel Trends artificial banana bunch and cockatoo

Some of my favourite colours for the tropical trend this year are yellow, green and all the shades of citrus - I love seeing these combined with a soft blue or crisp white for an elegant finish. If you already have some blues in your home decor, you can still adopt a tropical vibe, just pick sea-green and deep-ocean hues, and make sure you add plenty of greenery.

1. Jason Agustina Locke Sideboard in Natural 2. Kmart belly basket 3. Kmart Anthurium plant 4. Drunk on Water Watermelon print 5. KMart succulent in concrete pot 6. Annabel Trends artificial large pineapple

So make sure your key furniture pieces are classic, simple and beautifully made (check out Jason Agustina's story for their wonderful commitment to customer care), choose some tropical pieces and create your own slice of paradise this Summer. I promise you that it'll help your summer cocktail vibe for sure!

Is it possible to have too many pineapples in your home, if you live in an estate that was once pineapple and sugar cane farms?

November 09, 2016

Brisbane Fashion Weekend 2016 - making a weekend of it!

Inaugural events can be a little hit and miss, but the first Brisbane Fashion Weekend held last month was, in my entirely non-fashiony opinion, a smashing success!

I wore a stunning Yannika Designs (local Queensland brand) shift dress to BFW, perfect for the 30 degree day and rushing around like Andrea Sachs. Low nude heels and a bright yellow Mimco clutch borrowed from Brooke of Blonde Ambition and French Connection raffia tassel earrings finished my outfit.

Held at the recently opened Royal International Convention Centre (where parking was a breeze!), BFW featured two days of runway shows, a well-curated pop-up precinct, a Pamper Room where a small donation to fabulous local charity Dressed for Success got you a hair and makeup freshen-up, and two stages with programs full of styling advice and fashion industry experts and influencers. If all that got too much, the Moet Lounge was the place to sit and rest those weary high heel-clad tootsies!

But let's not get ahead of ourselves here.

I headed down to Brisbane the evening before Day 1 of BFW, as Adelaidean Jenni of Styling Curvy was in town and had organised a meet-up for some of her Queensland blogging mates. That's how lazy relaxed Queenslanders are, we wait until someone comes to visit us, then let them organise it so we all go catch up with them. #hakunamatata

I'd planned to get ready at Brooke's place, head out to the meet-up and not get lost (yikes... alone in the Valley, as Brooke had fancy Singin' in the Rain plans) and then crash on her couch, so was pleasantly surprised when I arrived at my host's apartment and asked 'So, where's this hip venue I need to get to?' and her response was 'See that building less than a block away? There.' GOLD.

Traffic had been pretty decent heading into Brisbane, so I had time for a shower, wash and curl my hair, to give myself a mani/pedi and catch up on some work emails. Instead, I napped, watched the end of Season 2 of UnReal, showered super-fast, then helped myself to Brooke's plethora of dry shampoo and hairspray options. My fingernails and toenails would have to wait.

Keeping it simple in a Country Road flutter-sleeve frock - basic black is always a great comfort zone for me when I'm meeting bloggy-types.

I know I've said it before, but blogger events and meetups are usually pretty awkward for me. And even more so when it's stylish people like fashion folk. *insert hand-wringing and excuse-making here* Unless I know someone really well to latch on to, it's typically just me standing in the corner near the food.

So many gorgeous girls crammed into one terrible-quality photo!

Jenni had arranged for the event to be held at the Tryp Hotel's rooftop bar, Up on Constance, and it was perfect for a bunch of blinged-up ladies enjoying champagne cocktails on a warm October evening. It's a gorgeously NY-inspired open space, with chilled music and great views. One of the brands that Jenni works with - Capriosca Swimwear (stunning styles!) - unexpectedly and generously put on the lovely spread of food and drinks, thank you so much Marcia!

This late-night phone photo is about as fuzzy as I expected, the Apricot Dream tequila cocktail really made some heads spin!

My pineapple glo-mesh clutch from (of all places) Domayne loves an outing, and a city view.

On to the main event!

Of the thirteen stunning labels appearing on Brisbane Fashion Weekend's Runway, including Tengdahl, Saylor & Saige, LouenHide (always love their stuff!), 400 Co and Kahlo Kahlo, my favourites were SunSoaked and Wilde Willow. Brooke loved Wilde Willow so much that she punched me during their runway and whispered 'Gotta BOLT outta here the minute this show finishes and buy that sequin kimono'. So she did.

Brooke in her new prized possession, the Wilde Willow Charms of Light Kimono.

I'd love to share more photos, but you'll find that the best photos and videos I took were on other people's devices! I loved being there to help my mate Brooke as she prepared to speak on the Centre Stage as an online fashion influencer (we both cringe at that word, but she DOES influence me to buy things I don't really need, so applicable), and then rock her model socks for the awesome Cate Massi of Individual Style 101. I will also take full credit for making sure Brooke turned up where she needed to be, at the times she needed to be there - I feel that without a 'PA for a Day', she may have been found wandering the foyer in one shoe, loaded up with purchases from the Pop-Up Precinct stores.

Thanks so much to BFW for the invitation, and for such a spectacularly well-run event - kudos! Cheers to Jenni for her perfect timing, it was wonderful to see local ladies that I never really get to see. And big ups and proud mama feels to Brooke for nailing her presentation, saying no to bootleg jeans, and generally being a babe.

For more comprehensive wrap-ups of the event, I highly recommend you check out the following:

Sally of Steele My Style's blog

October 31, 2016

Test driving the new Hyundai Tucson

Although I'm in my (ahem) mid-thirties, I've not been driving that long. I only got my license when I was 28, prior to that I was the quintessential public transport and taxi queen. I just wish Uber existed back then!

My first car was a small second-hand hatchback and while I loved her, I always knew I needed to get a proper grown-up car. My husband encouraged me to 'size up' and we shopped around for a car which looked cute (my priority) and was safe, fuel-efficient and drove well (his priorities)! We ended up at Sunco Hyundai at Maroochydore and chose a Hyundai ix35, at the time one of the most popular SUVs in its class, and it has served me incredibly well for three years now.

As an already happy Hyundai customer, I was thrilled when the sales team from Sunco Hyundai gave me the chance to test drive the new Tucson recently - how lucky am I? I promise I told them that I'm not a revhead car buff, and any review I shared wouldn't be as comprehensive or informative as a CarsGuide article!

I would be lying if how cute a car is didn't make up 90% of my opinion of it! 

Whilst I love my ix35, there's certainly something awesome about stepping into the newer version - this year's Hyundai Tucson is like my current car, but luxe. From the moment I collected the Tucson and got the full tour of how all the great gadgets worked, driving this vehicle felt like an experience, instead a 'daily drive'.

On top of the standard features which you can read about here, the Elite Tucson model comes with extras that I just love, such as a panoramic sunroof, full leather interior, large multi-function screen and reversing camera.

Reversing cameras... how did we ever live without them? This colour screen is a fantastic size.

Yeah, this stuff doesn't matter so much to me, but my husband loves that he can track fuel economy really easily using the Mode button on the steering wheel. Me, I just like knowing how many kms until my petrol tank is empty. #livingontheedge

Hello soft sumptuous leather. 

All the boot room I could possibly need for a weekend full of shopping!

The 60/40 split-fold back seats can give even more room than the spacious boot provides, and I know from personal experience with my ix35, the removable roller blind over the cargo bay keeps everything right where you put it, and shields shopping and luggage from prying eyes. 

Apparently the Tucson is a five-star ANCAP recipient - that means safety first, folks. Again, that's husbo was interested in, and I'm sure if you were a mum carting precious little ones around, that would be important to you too.

For more on the new Hyundai Tucson, visit Sunco Hyundai's website. Thanks to Ky, Collin, Leah and the Sunco team for the opportunity to take it for a spin!

*Sunco Hyundai kindly loaned me this vehicle. Like everything you'll find on Katy Potaty, thoughts and opinions are all my own. For more info, check out my disclosure policy. Please check the suppliers' website for car specs.

October 19, 2016

My Summer Picks - That Shop in Doreen

I love small businesses, I really do. I have worked in retail for both small and multi-national fashion brands, and there's something super-special about a little design and buying team, who choose styles based on what they know their customers will like, because they have a relationship with those customers.

One of the small businesses I've discovered this year is Victorian brand That Shop in Doreen - cute name, huh! The brainchild of Samantha Tupper, That Shop in Doreen began life as a bricks-and-mortar store in (you guessed it, Doreen) and now encompasses an online store with seasonal pieces as well as really fun and lovely social media accounts. Check out their Facebook here, and Instagram here.

Now, I'm sure you all know that Summer is my favourite season. I mean, I can never really be too hot, as long as I'm dressed appropriately in light and floaty pieces. Samantha stocks some gorgeous styles, so I thought I would share some of my favourite That Shop in Doreen picks with you!

My Summer Picks - That Shop in Doreen

I love the short sleeves on this and the sweet little twist tie at the front. And the stripes (who am I kidding, I love the stripes the most). It’s only $35 and also comes in grey and white, and black and white.

Remember how Justin Timberlake couldn't stop this feeling anymore? That’s how I feel about all the off the shoulder tops around this Summer. I'm well aware that they require (gasp!) a strapless bra, but they really are worth it. This one also has an adorable fringe around the hem and sleeves!

If you’re looking for just a great basic top with a little bit of extra flair, this is the top for you. I love the jersey fabric, it drapes beautifully and doesn’t wrinkle. I’m a big fan of the grey marle but it also comes in white for those of you who can keep white tops clean!

Let's be honest here, sometimes the whole cold shoulder style can look a little mumsy, especially with a gaudy print - but I’ve got my eye on this simple black dress because I do like the open shoulder with the ability to wear a normal bra, or throw it on over bathers for a quick dressy option.

I don't know what I wore before I discovered stripe t-shirt dresses? Was I wandering around naked half the time? Who knows! Seriously, this is a fab little number that I have in the navy and white stripe, and wear on repeat every week. Actually, we might as well just call it my Tuesday dress.

A photo posted by katy_potaty (@katy_potaty) on

I’m not usually one for pink... in fact I don't have a single non-activewear pink item in my wardrobe, and my mates Trainee Mama and Blonde Ambition have challenged me to change that this Summer.  This floaty top is so versatile – it could easily be dressed down with shorts for day, or dressed up with a cute skirt or pair of jeans and heels at night.

Probably my favourite TDIS style at the moment, this Blossom Midi Dress is even prettier in person. I wore it for a long day of partying at the Caloundra Music Festival a couple of weeks ago, and received so many compliments. They say it's a midi length, but I'm not the tallest giraffe in the zoo, so it looks like a maxi on me.

A photo posted by katy_potaty (@katy_potaty) on

I continue to put this denim jacket in my cart and then leave it there because it’s going to be too hot for sleeves for the next six months, but stretch in a denim jacket is something that I'm always searching for, and I love the mid-blue wash of this one. If I lived in a cooler climate, this would be high on my wish-list.

Someone recently asked me about the right shoes to wear with Summer shorts and pants for a casual look. I’m a big fan of an espadrille because I think they can be worn with everything from jeans to dresses, and they’re way more casual than a regular flat.

Need more style inspiration? Head to That Shop in Doreen and I'm sure you'll find a few pieces to add to cart too!

*That Shop in Doreen kindly sent me a couple of styles to try, thank you so much Samantha! I was thrilled with the service and my parcel arrived beautifully wrapped, so I'm more than happy to share the love here.

October 09, 2016

What's on in Brisbane - Oktoberfest 2016 and WIN TICKETS TO OKTOBERFEST!

Oktoberfest Brisbane is Australia’s largest German Festival, and it is run by local German-Aussies with a passion for sharing their heritage to ensure an authentic experience. I've been to this before, and it's always a massive blast, with plenty for everyone to do, and definitely no cheesy 'beers and boobs' atmosphere.

Held over two weekends in October (7-9 and 14-16), Oktoberfest Brisbane is expected to be even bigger this year, as the festival celebrates the 500-year anniversary of the famous ‘Bayerische Reinheitsgebot’, the famous ‘Bavarian Purity Law’.

For 500 years, this law has limited the ingredients allowed to brew German beer to water, malt, hops and yeast. Fast forward to 2016, and the anniversary of this law means that ye olde German brewers were onto something clever - we're all chasing simple and pure food and drink!

Thousand of people hit Oktoberfest Brisbane every year to enjoy traditional German food, beers and wine, and experience authentic German culture. So grab your lederhosen and press your dirndl, and head to Brisbane Showgrounds for a festive day of German food and music. For more information, visit Oktoberfest Brisbane's website or Facebook page.

Now, here's the fun stuff - I'm giving away TWO double passes to Oktoberfest Brisbane (to be used over the weekend 14-16 October 2016), simply check out my Instagram or Facebook to find out how to enter!

*Double pass giveaway and all images courtesy Oktoberfest Brisbane, all opinions my own - I love this event!

September 28, 2016

Looking after blonde hair

I'm a bit of a creature of habit. For the last 16 years, I've been a blonde of sorts - not a real, light-up-the-room Scandi blonde, but I've been getting foils and highlights on the regular for almost all my adult life. Right up until October last year, when my regrowth looked so much like bad ombre balayage that I wanted to see what GOOD ombre balayage would look like on me. And I liked the results and I loved the lack of upkeep.

Freshly balayaged in October 2015 for Styling You's #everydaystyle birthday party

I loved the hair salon which gave me that look, and I was really pleased with the condition of my hair afterwards - it's like taking a big break from all-over blonde gave my hair a rest and recuperation holiday. 

My biggest issue with my balayage was that it 'threw warm'. This is my totally untechnical term for the way my mouse-brown hair always has more brassy notes when it's lightened than cooler, creamier notes. This has the undesired effect of making my hair look dirty (even though I wash it every. damn. day.) and kinda trashy.

The way I dealt with this for the last year was to blonde tone the heck outta it, and hope that I just never had that silver rinse look that Bea and the Golden Girls rocked so well. It wasn't until July that I finally found a blonde toning range of products that actually worked for my super-porous locks, and now I'm in love with the Marc Daniels Blue Cypress Blonde collection.

After two weeks of regular use of the Marc Daniels Blue Cypress Blonde shampoo, conditioner and toner, my blonde hair was so much creamier. 

My thoughts on the Blue Cypress range? Well, firstly it really worked. I didn't get that dreaded Violet Beauregarde shade at all, and the condition of my over-processed blonde ends definitely improved after regular use of the leave-in toner. All three of the products smell delicious (think a light Body Shop Dewberry scent, circa 1994 YUM!) and I really only needed to use them sparingly - no palm-sized dollops required just to lather up!

I also had the chance to hit up Marc Daniels Ambassador, Eugene Sokolovs from Gold Coast salon Ette Studio, to find out his top tips for keeping blonde fresh, especially as we head into Summer and all the coastal girls load on the fake tan and lighten our hair!

Eugene recommends using a quality toner on towel dried clean hair, such as Marc Daniels Blue Cypress Blonde leave-in toner to keep blonde in peak condition throughout the warmer months.
The best feature of this time-saving product is that it's a leave-in treatment!

His biggest do's and dont's for blondes?
Regular visits to the hairdresser for colour refresh and cut, wash and condition hair regularly and use a treatment product such as Marc Daniels Blue Cypress Blonde at least once a week.

Blonde ombre and balayage hairstyles are still everywhere, what's the latest spin on them for this Summer?
Balayage and ombrรฉ are still highly in fashion. For SS16, 'Nude' hair is popular, where there's an even amount of warm and cool tones applied which cancel each other out to create a neutral colour.

The leave-in toner is now a hair essential for me - I won't leave home without it!

The Marc Daniels Blue Cypress Blonde range is available at Woolworths and Chemist Warehouse, and priced super-reasonably at around $13-$14 for each product.

Please, if you have blonde hair care tips, let me know! What do you use to fight the brassiness?

*I was gifted the Marc Daniels Blue Cypress Blonde range, and under no obligation to write about it. I've tried it now for 8 weeks, and have been super-impressed. Thanks Marc Daniels!

September 26, 2016

5 of the Best Blowdries on the Sunshine Coast

Today is the first is a little series of posts I'm sharing about Spring hair and beauty. Let's all agree that I'm no beauty blogger - I don't know how to contour, Kylie Jenner's lip kits are well beyond my lippie-application skills, and I may have the world's most boring hair. But I'm interested in it all. I have friends with fabulously bouffy hair, and I really appreciate a good brow. So here's hoping I learn a little sumthin' sumthin' when I write these posts!

My locks are limp. Always have been, and probably always will be. I send texts on the regular to my bouncy-haired best mates, saying 'Nah, not coming tonight, I've hurt my neck blowdrying my hair upside down', and 'My hair doesn't want to come out and play with your hair tonight, it's feeling insecure'.

If you're too lazy to lift a brush, or like me, just don't have the skills to create Victoria's Secret-worthy bounce in your limp locks, the solution is a salon blowdry. Once the sole domain of the rich and famous with private stylists on call 24/7, the professional blowdry is fast becoming the quickest way to freshen up limp locks - especially if you've got a BIG weekend coming up. Best part is, the professionals can really make a blow dry last, sometimes up to four or five days with the right products!

Whether you're after a glam retro beehive, Gigi-style blowout (always my goal!) or a casually undone lob รก la Jennifer Lawrence, check out my favourite lock-lifting blowdries on the Sunshine Coast, and swish your way through the day in style.

Heads in the Cloud, Buderim
This smart salon doesn't just boast an adorable name; it's practically a description of how high they can get your hair with the magic of their driers! With brushskills that are recognised around the world, head stylist Sam Rizzo can really make you feel like a Texan beauty queen, and he's recently been crowned 2016 Creative Artistic Ambassador for Keune Haircosmetics. The locally owned salon is also often searching for hair models for training, competitions and photo shoots - who knows, you might end up on the cover of one of the world's big hair glossies!

Evalyn Parsons, Moffat Beach

For the coastal Southerners who like to channel a big-haired Southern Belle, the team at Evalyn Parsons know how to transform - and you won't be left waitin' around either, darlin'! Their Glam & Go services will pack a punch, transforming you from drab to fab in under 20 mins for just $30, or if you need a little more work, upsize to the 30-40 min Style package for only $50.

House of George, Maroochydore
The goal: thicker, fuller hair with volume that lasts. The action: book a blowdry at House of George. New salon manager Samantha joins the George team with a wealth of knowledge from her UK-trained background, and official ghd educator. Anyone who can wield a straightening tongs with that much experience definitely knows how to add shine, body and ontrend style to every 'do! PS it's part of the cutest old Queenslander, and their barista serves fab coffee too, so every moment at House of George is totally Instagram-worthy!

Image credit: House of George

Never fear, hinterland readers – you have follicle friends in your part of the world too! Rhonda and the team at Uptown Hair will give you a big city blowdry, with classic regional Queensland service with a smile. Uptown has won Sunshine Coast Business Awards Excellence in Business awards for so long now, that they were inducted to the Hall of Fame - really speaks of a loyal customer base, doesn't it! What really sets Uptown apart is their attention to detail: complimentary beverages served with tasty cookies, stylists who don't treat you like the next part on the assembly line, and plenty of advice on styling your hair at home. Pricing is super reasonable too, so there's no excuse not to pop in and freshen up before you hit the rapidly growing nightlife in the sugar town. 

Universal Hair, Maroochydore
Another Maroochydore salon makes the cut, with Universal Hair consistently nabbing places on 'best salon' lists. With experts in upstyles, braiding and curling, you'll be ready for your big night out in now time. Or if it's a seamlessly smooth blowdry you're after, the soft results from their iron-free blast dries will have you craving such straight hair, you'll be back to book in for their Perfection or Keratin Fusion permanent straightening treatments!

Got a great blowdry salon I missed? Let me know in the comments?

Are you a fan of the salon blow dry?

September 21, 2016

A favourite Spring outfit

After a Winter of cool weather (ok, 10 degrees is mighty cold for a Queenslander), aren’t we all daydreaming about those balmy days at the end of Spring? This feminine-yet-tomboyish outfit would be perfect to wear on bike rides, to brunches and on picnics…

Fate Lilibeth chambray dress from Birdsnest, Amity necklace from Indera Beads, Longoria Fedora from Blue Bungalow, Philly Putty crossbody Louenhide bag, Chill Leopard sandals from Freya and Sabine.

I wear similar spins on this outfit pretty regularly, adding or subtracting a stripe sweater tied around my waist, a kimono, or mixing up the sleeveless shirtdress to one with a print. Simples.

 Do you have a go-to outfit this season?

Don't forget to sign up to get Katy Potaty via email to go into my September subscriber draw to win a luxe Glasshouse candle!

The winner of my August email subscriber giveaway was Louise Mc. I've emailed you, Louise - so holler me back with a postal address! Congratulations!

September 08, 2016

Instagram ate my photos

Instagram is my favourite social media channel, for two solid reasons.

It's just too easy, I can just take a picture, add a mildly-amusing caption, and boom. Done. No sitting down at a computer, logging into Blogger, editing (apart from a quick caption scan for typos) or typing with both hands required. It's just so user-friendly. 

And it's engaging. It's the fastest way for me to see what my besties are up to at any given moment, and I can comment on huge brands' fashion photos and they can respond almost immediately. 

I love the beautiful little community I have on Instagram.

But right now, I'm trying not to pick up my phone and check into Instagram, because it ate over 200 of my recent posts. Posts about fun times with my friends, posts about coffee, and posts that featured gifted product or were sponsored. All goneski.

I know it's not just me, that thousands of other people are dealing with this first world problem, but I'm praying that my Insty feed will be restored sooner rather than later.

I promise I'm trying to think positively about it (now, that is - yesterday I was ready to murder over it!), but in the meantime, there will be minimal Instagram cruising, and a lot of puppy-cuddling and coffee-sipping.

All without me taking photos of it!

Have you ever lost some of your social media and thought you'd just DIE?

August 28, 2016

Father's Day Gift Guide 2016

Dads can be tricky creatures to buy for and my ex-hippie, all-softie stepdad is the perfect example!

If you follow me on social media, you might know him from such comments as 'Things and possessions won't make you happy', and 'Facebook is for people who have no friends'. Whatever.

However, I think one of my fave exchanges with him might have been when I was staying with my folks for a few weeks one September while waiting for our house settlement to come through...

Me (walks into kitchen, ready for a day of work at Lorna Jane): Happy Father's Day *kiss*
Dad: Thank you! What is on your face?
Me: My face is on my face.
Dad: No, all the makeup...!
Me: Yup, that's my face. When I go out, I put on makeup.
Dad: But... but you work at a sport store.
Me: Yup.
Dad: Oh. It looks like you're going somewhere fancy. Too much, Katy. Too much.

What is it with Dads who think we're all naturally beautiful and that any makeup is too much? It's actually the sweetest thing ever when you think about it.

Anyway, with Father's Day just around the corner next Sunday 4 September, I thought it was just the right time to put together a gift guide, chock-full of ideas for all the fathers in our lives.

For the dad who loves to kick back, this pair of eco-friendly pyjama pants from Good Spender are made from 100% certified woven organic cotton and screen printed by hand.

For the adventurous dad, or maybe the dad with a passion for photography, a trip up in the clouds with Floating Images would be a dream come true. They're Brisbane's closest hot air balloon company, which makes that 5am start a little easier to handle!

For any dad, this print would be a sweet reminder of their importance in your life. Find this and other sweet Father's Day prints at Turquoise Designs.

For the hirsute dad, keep him tidy with a beard grooming kit from the folks at Milkman. They really know their stuff, and this gift pack has everything the beginner beardie or expert-level grooming guy needs for the best lumberjack look in town!

For the dad who scrubs up alright, or perhaps the java-junkie coffee-loving dad, check out Sal Remedia's range of yummy body scrubs - my vote goes to the Daily Grind, a caffeinated treat for your old man's skin!

A Son's first hero, a Daughter's first love. Nawww.
For the first-time dad celebrating a new bub at Father's Day, this Daddy print from Coco & Ella Designs will make his mushy heart melt. Cue happy tears.

For the buff dad (not mine, but I'll be honest, I prefer him more Santa and less Thor), this muscle tee from Through the Milky Way will give him a chance to show off those guns when he takes the kids out for an active day at the park. Plus, it can be personalised with the 'established' year, so you can pop in the year he became a dad. Adorable much?

For the dad who has four-legged kids... my husband would adore these socks from our puppy Stevie, and with so many fur-kids out there, we really can't forget those kinds of special fathers! You can find these and other fun personalised socks from Alphs at Hard to Find, an online store packed with more nifty gifts than you can imagine!

Now to the really mushy stuff. My step-father has been a constant in my life since I was 15, and I can honestly say (and I tell him all the time) that if I could choose a father from any man on the planet, I would choose him.

His patience and love for our family, his supreme cooking skills, his willingness to drop everything and help my brother, husband and I at a moment's notice, his hilarious chuckle which makes the rest of the family laugh uncontrollably, all these qualities are just the ones I can put into words.

Mainly, he's just always been here for me. And isn't that what a Dad is for?

Love you Dad. Love you every day of the year. 

Got Father's Day sorted yet?