Life & Style Blog - Special Occasion

Events, outings and all things happening in and around Forrest Chase

Nailed it

21 February 2014, by Rachael Ciccarelli

2014 Nailed it

Image source: media-cache-ec0.pinimg.com.

More than just a little shield of armour to protect the squishy bit on the end of your finger or something to bite when you’re nervous, nails are a fashion statement. An oft-overlooked opportunity to accessorise. The crucial bit of polish on a carefully constructed outfit. Manicures, pedicures and all things nail-art have been enjoying their time in the spotlight for the last few years, but like any trend, it’s one that is constantly evolving – and because the medium of nails is paint, the possibilities are endless. So, let’s get inspired and have a look at what 2014 has to offer us in the world of nails:

2014 Nailed it 1

  1. Chrome:
    As always, metallics rule the roost – shades of silver in particular. You can’t go wrong with a good bit of chrome on your nails: you can get away with a few scratches and chips and it will tone in with anything you wear.
  2. Fresh takes on the French mani:
    Fashion loves taking the known and turning it upside down – this is no different. Take one classic nail, invert it, turn it upside down or any-which-way you please.
  3. The halo effect:
    This is sort of like an inverted French manicure to the next level: on a black or white background, carefully apply a pool of colour leaving a pencil thin glow around the edge. This one is best left to a pro.
  4. Stiletto nails:
    I love this shape – it elongates the finger and reminds me of those dream “lady nails” I used to fantasise about as a young girl. You knew you had made it to womanhood if you couldn’t peel an orange or open a yoghurt lid without assistance. Wear them sharp and pointed or soft and almond shaped, either way; you’ve got a lot of growing to do.
  5. Retro airbrushed nail art:
    I sense the return of slightly cheesy airbrush nail art might be in our midst – it’s a great one to try out in summer and a wonderful counter to a more serious outfit. Airbrushed nail art also has a very heavy west coast hip hop vibe, which is right on trend for everything in street wear at present.
  6. All things leopard:
    If you’re going to do any nail art at all, you can’t go wrong with leopard: fashion’s official mascot. Make it bright like the rainbow, paint spots on a nude background or go for classic tan shades.

As always, some things (like the halo effect or leopard, or airbrushed stencils) are only really achievable with someone who knows nails like the back of their hand – the folks at Foxy Nails and Professionail on level one at Forrest Chase know what they’re doing and the prices are low enough to keep you coming back for something fresh. But even without tricky nail art, it’s still nice to get your nails done by a pro – the mani always lasts longer and looks smoother.

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Category: Featured
Tags: Fashion, Special Occasion, Trends

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The look of love

06 February 2014, by Rachael Ciccarelli

2014 The look of love

Image source: data3.whicdn.com.

Love it or loathe it, Valentine’s Day is officially upon us and numerous cupids and things shaped like hearts will be in and around your grill in approximately 10 days. Personally? I’m excited. I snap up any excuse to dress to theme and February 14 is no exception. There’s something brilliant about turning a global day of love/ cards with cats holding boxes of chocolates on them into a private personal celebration centring around a really fantastic outfit. It’s something you can high five yourself about or share with your significant other if you’ve got one: either way, you’re making the world a better, more visually appealing place with your excellent look and your super confident strut – and if that isn’t true love on a global scale, then I don’t want to know what is.

Date Night Valentine


2014 The look of love 1

Image sources: Cameo Overload dress, $172.45, from Pigeonhole; YB J’amie Love Silk Meghan dress, $270, from Myer; Lioness Liana maxi, $80, from Live.

I hate to be predictable, but if we’re talking serious Valentine attire, it’s got to be a) a shade of red, b) lace or c) covered in some sort of adorable thematic print. When else is a YB J’amie (That’s Yeojin Bae’s label) heart print dress going to look more appropriate than on the official day of heart motifs? Whether you sway toward sexy or cute, all three of these dresses are going to work some serious Valentine’s magic on your public.

Corporate Valentine


2014 The look of love 2

Image sources: Sleeveless bib shirt, $89.95, from Witchery; Geometric jacquard pencil skirt, $195, from Cue; Summer Fun necklace, $19.95, from Sportsgirl.

To bring a little romance into the workplace (the sort that won’t raise the attention of HR), go for classic monochrome with a splash of red – don’t be afraid to pucker up and put on some red lipstick as well.


Casual Valentine

2014 The look of love 3

Image sources: Mini shell top, $49.95, distressed jeans, $89.95 and Flatform creeper sneaker, $39.95, all from Sportsgirl

You don’t have to dress to the nines to look chic – it might be my inner sloth talking, but I think relaxed jeans and a sweet top is just as sexy as a barely-there lace dress: there’s something about the ease of casual clothes that is incredibly appealing and telegraphs comfort in your own skin. Plus, you know, hearts.

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Category: Featured
Tags: Fashion, Special Occasion, Trends

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Advance Australian Flair

20 January 2014, by Rachael Ciccarelli

2014 Australia Day

Image source: resources3.news.com.au.

There’s nothing quite so sweet as holidays followed by more holidays, so it’s little wonder Australia Day is so beloved. Could you typify our work hard, play much harder culture better? I can just imagine our forefathers: “Two weeks back at work, you say? Better get a long weekend in there while the beach is still good, eh? Make sure there’s plenty of frothy cold beverages in tow. That’s right, write it in the constitution after the bit about kangaroo bartenders. Good lad.” Further to the clause regarding marsupial servants, constitution also clearly states that all Australians must pile on some unsuspecting family member or friend with a pool, or get down to a sandy body of water and grill meat or feel the wrath of our unforgiving sun. So, it’s splashy water times, barbecues and drinks for everyone! Let’s start thinking about how you’re going to dress poolside, avoid heatstroke and get a teeny bit patriotic on the Aussiest day of the year.

2014 Australia Day 1

Image sources: Australia Day Boardie, $20 and Oversized boyfriend tee in white, $12, both from Jay Jays; Lawrence sunglasses, $39.95, from Sportsgirl.

Exhibit A: the classic “Aussie/Oi” outfit complete with flag print garment. The great thing about these wee shorts is that they’re boardies, so you can wear them in the pool and dry out in them as you wait for the fireworks. Keep it simple with an oversized tee (those are some very short shorts, so it’s nice to balance) a colourful pair of sunnies, and later, some John Farnham lyrics screamed at the top of your lungs.

2014 Australia Day 2

Image sources: Strappy trapeze maxi dress, $99.95, from Witchery; Luscious metal toe sandal, $39.95, from Portmans; Bondi Beach Bag Co floppy hat, $49.95, from Myer.

Exhibit B: the fancier, resort style look for when your Australia Day celebrations include beautiful finger food and champagne glasses made from actual glass. You know what? You can’t go wrong with a floaty maxi on a hot day. It’s loose enough to wear your swimwear underneath, and not only is this particular number colourful enough to be downright festive; it’s heavily patterned enough that if you (or someone else) spill, nobody will be any the wiser.

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Category: Featured
Tags: Fashion, Special Occasion, Trends

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How to win at Boxing Day sales

24 December 2013, by Rachael Ciccarelli

2013 Boxing Day

Image source: jaxmomsblog.com.

Congratulations, soldier. You’ve made it through the Christmas Season of Extreme Silliness unscathed and only one notch looser on your belt. For this, you deserve a reward. May I suggest an array of deals at this year’s Boxing Day sales? I know, I know - they get bigger and more intense every year, but you’ve got to rock them or feel the crushing regret of paying full price for new towels in March. Lucky for you, I have served many an intense sale on both sides of the counter and have come away with many lessons to help you not only survive the sales, but to emerge a victor, waving your purchases above your head in triumph as you walk slow-motion out of the store to the cheers of your fellow shoppers.

  1. Go in with a plan
    Consider what you actually need before you hit the shops. Make a list, or form a vague one in your mind so when you arrive and are affronted with mountains of discounted goods, you know what you’re looking for, how to move through the premises and you come out on the other side faster with things you actually need. Of course you are going to be distracted by something fantastic that wasn’t on the list, and that’s fine – that’s what bargain hunting is all about – but if you at least have an idea of what you need, you’ll feel in charge and it will keep the stress to a minimum.
  2. Get the essentials
    The greatest things to buy on sale are usually the most boring: underwear, haberdashery, leather goods, wardrobe basics. Use the sales as an opportunity to stock up on those often overlooked corners of your world, and stock up well – buy quality that will last (and feel great) while it’s affordable. It’s also a fantastic time to stock up on little miscellaneous gifts (hand creams, candles, fragrances, books) that you can give at all of those last minute birthday parties you’re invited to.
  3. Think before you buy
    Here’s the thing: if you never use your awesome bargain sales item, it’s not an awesome bargain. Whatever you’re diving for that you would never ordinarily consider, be it feathered hat or cupcake maker, think first. What are you going to wear it with? Do you already have something like it (like, I don’t know, a cake tray and an oven and parental supervision) that will do the job? If you’re not one to get things altered or mended, don’t buy it on the premise you will (because you won’t).
  4. Eat first
    Just do it. If you’re preparing yourself for the long haul, the last thing you want to be feeling when you’re knee-deep in party dresses is a growling stomach and a caffeine headache.

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Category: Featured
Tags: Fashion, Special Occasion, Trends

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