Tag Archives: cape town

Spree S/S 14 Launch

1 Oct

Just after I got back from our amazing trip to Rome and Paris [more on that soon], I was lucky enough to attend the launch of Spree’s S/S 14 Launch, and it was just one of those events that ended up being the perfect way to spend an evening. The evening started with bubbly [always good!], and then several people from Spree spoke to us about the online store, the season ahead, and fashion in general. I was thrilled to hear Chris Viljoen speak, and he took us through several designs currently in store.

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After the talking was over, we got to try on the clothes, have our hair and make-up done, and pose for a little photoshoot! I got to wear this interesteing Black Coffee dress, which I wouldn’t normally have picked out for myself but Chris knows his stuff! The heels are Errol Arendz.

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I mean, if that isn’t the perfect way to spend a mid-week evening, I don’t know what is. Add to that some delicious snacks, and great women like Bailey and Natalie… I mean! At the end of the night we also walked away with a handbag from Spree, AND a voucher to spend at the store. I chose this beautiful pleated maxi skirt from Cheryl Arthur, and I’m excited to say that the weather seems to finally be getting summery enough for me to give it a spin soon!

I’m really loving the selection on Spree, but especially the local designers! Chris Viljoen is a legend in the local fashion scene so it comes as no surprise, of course.  I’m definitely keen to buy more local designers’ wares, and Spree’s service is excellent: Free delivery, and it’s fast! Plus the team is on hand to help you at the drop of a hat.

Thanks for a great time, Spree! Here’s to future shoppings.

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25 Things I Learnt In Almost 25 Years of Living

5 Aug
  1. Quality trumps quantity.
  2. Clutter is not good for you. Whether it’s physical clutter in your home, or people you don’t need in your life, a regular spring clean is great for your soul.
  3. Good skin and good eyebrows are NB. Get these two right and you’ll solve many a make-up woe, and you won’t have to wear nearly as much of it.
  4. “Skinny arms are everything.” -Natalie Roos
  5. There’s no substitute for hard work. You can have all the best ideas, and all the talent, but without hard work people are going to overtake you at some point. Learn not to rely on your natural gifts as much, because it can make you lazy.
  6. There are only two things that cost money that make you richer: books and travel.
  7. Speak up, always. Even if it’s your boss, your new lover’s parent, or someone famous or important, I feel it’s important to speak up. I don’t mean insult their ugly shoes or tell them their face sucks. But if someone is being a racist, sexist, bigot, or general douchebag, speak up. Maybe, just maybe, you will plant a seed and that person will start to rethink their attitudes.
  8. The fear and anticipation of pain is often far worse than the pain itself.
  9. Animals are therapy.
  10. You need to rid yourself of the people you don’t need in life. I’m not saying treat people as though they are disposable razors. But sometimes we hold on to people because we’ve known them for too long, or they’re linked to someone else in our life, etc. And we forgive them over and over and over for the things they do that hurt us, anger us, or break us down. It’s not an easy decision to make, but there are times where you need to decide that enough is enough, and cut those people out of your life.
  11. Not everyone has amazing close-knit families who share everything, or a place they’ve always called home. And that’s okay! Because if someday you start your own family, or find where you belong, nothing will beat that feeling. And if you don’t? Well, that’s okay, too, because not everyone needs to have the same stuff.
  12. If you have something important or difficult to say, say it first thing in the morning.
  13. Things happen for a reason. You might have no idea what that reason is in the moment, but eventually it will become clear.
  14. There’s no better feeling than being healthy and happy.
  15. Peplums are not for everyone.
  16. Comparison will make you miserable. Especially in the  age of social media and the internet, you are constantly surrounded by pictures of strangers’ perfect lives. Firstly, people only put the good stuff online. Secondly, for every spoilt brat who had more Louis Vuitton bags than you, there are millions of people who wish they could have the basic stuff you have. Stop comparing yourself to other people, make a list of the things for which you are grateful every day, take control of the things that you don’t like about your life [or make peace with them if they can’t be changed] and be the best, happiest you you can be.
  17. Keep a journal. Even if it’s only to laugh at yourself, or see how far you’ve come.
  18. You don’t need to live by a bucket list. We are often made aware of the amazing things people want to do before they die, and I think we start to believe we haven’t lived unless we’ve been to space and flipping cured cancer. Personally, I don’t want to bungee jump, make an art film, own a vegan lodge in Bhutan, or fly a fighter jet. Not that there aren’t things I want to do in my life. All I’m saying is you don’t have to live by some insane bucket list of things the world has given you the idea you “should” do. Maybe your bucket list is 100 movies you want to watch. At home, on your couch. You watch those movies! And don’t feel like that was a life any less lived than that dude your friend knows who got his foot bitten off by a shark.
  19. Quotes are rubbish. The people in my social media feeds who post inspirational quotes about spirituality and all that deep stuff are some of the people who are least at peace with themselves. Pretty words from Oprah or Chopra are not the key to a fulfilled life. Make your own quotes.
  20. There are only two things in life that are perfect: Mathematics; and classical music.
  21. The best time to take risks and chase that dream of yours is right now. Even if it’s just taking the teensy little first step, our of a billion, stop not doing the thing!
  22. There’s a lot to be said for small pleasures. A perfect cup of tea, a good laugh, a warm bed: The happiness they bring about may be short-lived, but it’s very satisfying. And sometimes it’s enough to turn a bad day into a kind-of-okay one.
  23. Look after your skin. Hair is whatever: You could pretty much singe it off with bleach, and it’ll grow back. Skin won’t. Invest in quality skincare from a young age, and wear SPF. You absolutely will not regret this when you’re older.
  24. Surround yourself with inspiring people. It’s all good having people be complimentary about your achievements, but you need to also have those super people who make you give yourself a kick in the butt. Don’t get comfortable.
  25. Everything is temporary. I’m only 24, so I’m aware that I don’t know much. But so far, almost 25 years into being alive, I can confidently say that nothing is permanent. Broken hearts heal, and the big disappointment you think you’ll never get over fades into the background, sometimes making way for better things. Do take your time to feel all the feels, but remember that whatever you’re going through won’t last forever.

25 Random Facts About Me, Before I Turn 25

2 Aug
  1. As a kid, I had a fear of pineapples.
  2. My pinky toe on my left foot grows skew, kind of over the other toe, and when I was little they wanted to amputate it because a doctor said it would hurt me. I said no [OBVIOUSLY! It’s my toe, you sickos!] and so far I’m still alive. Phew!
  3. When I was about two and a half, and then when I was three, I had two really bad drowning experiences. The first was in the pool- I was wearing one of those Bentley belts things [is that what they’re called?]. My sister went inside and as Murphy would have it, I tipped over. The Bentley Belt prevented me from being able to right myself, so I just had to kind of drown until my sister got back [she saved me]. The second time was when this freakishly huge freak wave took me in when I was playing in the teensy little baby waves. A teenage boy tried to save me, but got taken in as well. Eventually his dad and a lifeguard saved us. Obviously this was all fairly traumatising and while I can swim, it’s not exactly anything I’ve pursued further than splashing around to cool down during poolside cocktail hour. Stupid water.
  4. My favourite flowers are tulips. Peonies are a close second.
  5. I’m a maths freak. Not in any useful way, but I can multiply big [ish] numbers in my head. I found this out when I was 11 and I am almost always doing sums in my head.
  6. I learnt to ride a bike on Christmas Day… of 2012.
  7. As a kid, I stuttered really badly. I also couldn’t really cope with people so I had to be taken out of pre-primary school for six months. If you met me now, you’d never guess. What a dud kid I was! Jokes. I was adorable and perfect.
  8. I speak five languages. English, Afrikaans, French, Mandarin, and German.
  9. I did horse riding for thirteen years. I even made the provincial team for show jumping, showing, and equitation on a tiny little thing whose owners wanted to shoot him because he threw their daughter. I miss horse riding every single day of my life, so if you’re in Cape Town and need help with your horses, call me. I will love you forever.
  10. My family and close friends call me Lili [pronounced Lee Lee], which I love. My English teacher in grade five once told me Lize is a fat girl’s name. Humph.
  11. One of the absolute highlights of my life [thus far] was seeing Goya’s black paintings when I was 16 at the Prado Museum in Madrid. I can’t explain it, I was just so moved and overcome with emotion. I will never forget that. We saw an exhibition of his sketches in Prague last year on honeymoon which was also cool, although nothing like the black paintings.
  12. The coolest job I ever had [so far] was being a rugby presenter on TV.
  13. I’m an entrepreneur! I own a CC, and so far it hasn’t made us millions but it’s early days and I’m  confident it will be a success. I’ve also gotten funding for a second business idea I recently pitched and next week, on my birthday, I’m pitching this to the woman who I hope will be my partner. Hold thumbs!
  14. My  favourite songs are Hallelujah [by Jeff Buckley], High and Dry [by Radiohead], and Milk [by Kings of Leon].
  15. I am utterly and completely, absolutely obsessed with Paris. I dream of living there someday with SC and Eponine, and I cannot wait to be there next month.
  16. I have a fear of moths, and I hate birds [except owls].
  17. I am always craving salt and vinegar crisps. Like, at any given moment, if you asked me, I would be in the mood to have salt and vinegar crisps. Even if I have just eaten twenty kilograms of food, or am dying of food poisoning, I will have them. Macarons and champagne are a close second, though far classier.
  18. I can’t do a cartwheel or whistle.
  19. I’m one of five kids: A sister eleven years older than I am, a brother eight years older than I am, and two baby half sisters who are four and five.
  20. My hair has been super long, super short, shaved off, pitch black, snow white, silver, and pink.
  21. I have a tattoo on my left side of Jimi Hendrix lyrics, in his handwriting.
  22. I’ve never broken a bone, and besides for being born I’ve never gone to hospital. Up until recently I’d never had stitches, but then I had a mole removed from my face and got two stitches. IN MY FACE. Hard core.
  23. Up until the age of about fifteen I was going to be a vet. I even used to shadow my horse riding instructor’s father, who was a vet, and I’ve put stitches in a sheep, vaccinated sheep and cows, done blood slides, slaughtered a sheep [after which I took it apart to study all its insides], and did an artificial insemination. Yup, I made a baby cow when I was fifteen.
  24. I always had this theory that I was adopted. Sometimes I still do. See, EVERYONE in my family has dark hair and dark brown eyes. Extended, too. Secondly, my mum was adopted, so she would possibly want to adopt a child too, right? Also, everyone except me got a second name. And while there are pictures of my mum and my siblings in hospital, there are none of me. Not even one! I only come onto the scene at age one or two. Suspicious? Absolutely. And till this day, no one has been able to show me my birth certificate. It’s always missing, or with the other parent. *scratches chin*
  25. I actually do believe that Unicorns exist. For real.

Vintage Drinks Trolley Because We’re Fancy

1 Aug

Since seeing Emma Jane‘s beautiful drinks trolley, I started looking out for one. It’s very Mad Men, no? And the perfect excuse to invest in expensive alcohol, like Jorgensen’s Gin or Vodka.

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Every now and then I’d spot on at Vamp or Mint, but every time they weren’t 100% perfect. I’d agonise over whether to feed my impatience and just buy the one that wasn’t quite what I was looking for, but eventually, thanks to the lovely Miss Moss, I found one that was perfect! It’s very similar to Emma’s, but I thought it was okay since we live in different cities. And she said it’s okay so long as it’s stocked up for when she visits!

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This one came from a guy in Jo’burg, so the in-laws picked it up last time they were there, and brought it down to Cape Town when they visited us last week. Now, for some bizarre reason, the previous owner has painted the shelves black. PITCH bloody black. Like a drinks trolley for brothels. It was vile, and we got working on stripping the paint right there in our dining room. It was a quick, easy job, and after removing the black paint and cleaning the glass we assembled it, added the booze, and voila!

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We need to get some fancier liquor. I mean, Gordon’s Gin is simply not going to cut it for this pretty drinks trolley. But other than that, I am pleased as punch!

Surprise Weekend Getaway

27 Jun

A few weeks ago we had a long weekend here in South Africa. On Friday night we went to a gig and stayed out till 4am (when last?) and Saturday was spent having brunch with a friend, and chilling out to recover from the night before.

On Sunday morning SC suggested we go for coffee at Kirstenbosch. When he missed the offramp I was confused, and eventually he told me we were going for a picnic in Elgin.

Well past Elgin we stopped at a wine farm, Wildekrans. It’s about ten minutes from Hermanus. He stopped the car, saying he’s found a good picnic spot but I needed to help him with something. When we opened the boot, it was completely full, and turns out he had packed for a surprise weekend away!

SC packed not only an amazing picnic with French loaf, cheese, cured meat, strawberries, wine, and more, he also packed meat and veggies for a braai that night, coffee, tea, Lindt for dessert, and bacon and eggs for the next morning! On top of that he packed clothes for me, including a full and perfectly stylish outfit for the next day, toiletries, AND make-up. I mean!

After unpacking and marveling at our lovely rustic but comfortable cottage, we went for a walk. From the cottage you can see vineyards, fields full of sheep, and mountains. Walk five minutes and you get ocean views, too. Doesn’t get much better than that! We then settled down for a scrumptious picnic in the warm sun (cloudless sky, windless day- perfection). After a nap and a quick stop in Hermanus we made a big fire (there are tons of bonfire pits around for braaiing) and drank red wine as the sun set.

Braaiing was a treat in itself since we don’t have a braai at home. We ate outside on the porch with blankets wrapped around us, and afterwards we finished our wine by the fire, amazed at how many stars there are in the countryside.

The next day we woke up early to watch the sun rise with coffee from our porch, and went to Stanford for coffee with Robyn (we gate-crashed a family brunch because we’re hardcore like that) and then Thaya. We then headed to Hermanus for lunch which was a bit of a mission since everywhere has closed for winter. Toto, I don’t think we’re in Jo’burg any more!

Anyway eventually we had lunch at Oskar’s which had the bonus of being next door to my favorite book store ever, Hemingway’s. I picked up a gorgeous illustrated hardcover copy of The Wind in the Willows, and we celebrated with sort serve overlooking the cliffs and the ocean.

After a walk along coast we drove back during the most breathtaking sunset, ending off a perfect weekend.
I highly recommend Wildekrans as affordable accommodation is a gorgeous area, and I definitely recommend getting out of the city now and then for some quiet, fresh air, and down time.

Also, my husband is the BEST.

PS. These pics uploaded in reverse and jumbled-up order. Can I be arsed to fix that? Nope.

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Cape Town today

21 Apr

This time of year is Cape Town’s best kept secret. Forget coming here in summer: April is the time to visit the fair cape! Not a cloud in the sky, the temperature is still warm enough (most days) to walk around without jerseys and jackets, and (best of all) there is no wind! I love this city but man this place’s wind makes me want to kill myself. (Exaggeration).

Sure, the ocean is bloody freezing but it pretty much always is so I tend to look at it and nothing more, most of the time.

This weekend was magical. Sleeping in, brunch, seeing The Kooks live, spending time with a long list of special friends, walks on/along the beach, naps… Thanks, Mother City. You are too kind.

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A Weekend In Franskraal

7 Mar

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photo 4This past weekend we drove out to Franskraal, a coastal town just past Stanford on the East Coast. Now that we’re married we are eager to have tons of “weekends away”, and the Western Cape is so ideal for that. Just a few hours’ drive takes you to beautiful coastal towns, the winelands, mountains, and more!

We drove up after work on Friday which was a good move as it made the weekend seem so much longer! Plus the drive was beautiful and we enjoyed a beautiful sunset over the mountains, lighting up the beautiful Elgin valley, and finally setting the ocean on fire as we got to Hermanus.

On Friday night we drank and braaied to celebrate Stef’s birthday [the whole reason for the weekend away]. We all chipped in to buy him Settlers of Catan and an extension pack that allows up to six people to play.

On Saturday morning after a big breakfast we went to the beach. SC and I went for a jog and then walked back in the waves. I’m pretty sensitive to cold but the water was a perfect temperature and I have decided the East coast is where it’s at; I just can’t face the arctic waters of the west coast! After some reading time on the beach [still on Les Miserables, should finish in the next decade] we went for a swim and then finally headed home where we had a late lunch with some bubbly. We then went to Birkinhead Brewery in Stanford which has the most incredible mountain views and delicious beer. We watched the rugby which was not as exciting as the drinking game we invented: Take a sip every time the angry Afrikaner at the end of the bar drops an f-bomb. After that we played Settlers of Catan which I was sure I would hate but completely loved. At 2am, Chris won.

Sunday morning was another big breakfast and then SC and I went for soft serve. I’m not much of a sweet tooth but man oh man, give me soft serve on the beach and I am one happy girl! It has to be the strawberry and vanilla kind, or if it’s plain vanilla it needs to be dipped in caramel. Obviously.

After that we went horseriding on the beach. On Saturday we saw horses on the beach and jogged until we caught up with them to ask for a number. It was just Simon and I on the ride and he was a bit nervous because he hasn’t ridden much and the last time I took him riding he was put on a fairly grumpy horse. Simon got a palomino gelding Goldy, and I was put on a feisty little skewbald called Harry. He was a handful, but such fun to ride! Simon went from being nervous to even be on a horse, and having never done more than ten steps of trotting, to galloping on the beach! I was so chuffed and I definitely plan to do this again, soon. Having done horse riding for 13 years of my life, I miss it every single day.

After a really stunning ride, made better by the fact that we were the only two, along with the guide, we drove to Hermanus en route home. We stopped there for a walk around. It really is a beautiful town and was pleasantly quiet. We went to Hemingway’s which is contending with Book Lounge to be my favourite book shop in South Africa. I got a better copy of Captain Corelli’s Mandolin [ours is falling apart] as well as the complete works of Shakespeare because buying them individually is a mission and takes up too much space in our little flat.

After a lunch of gin and tonics and  fish and chips with a view, we drove back to Cape Town, enjoying another beautiful afternoon of sunshine.

It’s energising escaping the city, even if only for two days. I plan on doing more of this in future!