Gift Guide: Meaningful Gift Ideas to Avoid Throwaway Culture this Christmas

I am every bit of a shopaholic, but also a little bit sentimental. When it comes to receiving gifts, I often struggle with what to ask for. I want the item to be something I hold on to for a long time, if not forever – something I can look back on and claim as my favourite vase or “a gift from so-and-so for Christmas nearly 10 years ago”, a gift that ties in with a story. 

A few of my gifting tips: 

  • Always prepare a list of who you’re going to buy/make presents for. This makes sure that in the hectic lead-up to the day, you won’t miss anyone out! 
  • Set a budget. This is super important because while I love going above and beyond, Christmas is also about being around loved ones, not just the value of presents. It also makes saving for the season a little easier when you break it down into weekly amounts. 
  • As the gift-giver, don’t be afraid to ask what they really want. It will help reduce waste and give you some ideas of things they have really been wanting. 
  • Consider experiences. It’s generally not something you’d think of for yourself, but this idea can create amazing memories. Even if it’s just a night away at an Airbnb, you know your gift will be used and remembered. 
  • Printed wrapping paper can’t be recycled, so opt for brown paper and get creative. Use a nice twine or ribbon, or if you’re a talented artist, draw something special. 


For the ones who have everything


Experiences always hit the mark, especially for those hard-to-buy-for in-laws who have literally everything! If you know them well, you can pick a specific experience, or opt for a voucher and they can pick their favourite. Staycations, skydives (only for the adrenaline junkies) or hot air ballooning are sure to be gifts to remember.


For the homeware lover


With all the chic home stores (which I love), I almost forgot about the classics. While searching for a gift for my homeware-obsessed friend, I came across the bargain of the century. These Florette Coupes are a fantastic dupe – and if you’re a Nood member, they’re only $9.99 a glass.


For the Queen of Accessories


Little pouches to pop into every handbag are such a saviour. For coins, lip balm, cards, keys – you name it. The new Brie Leon Pouches are on-trend, and an easy gift that will actually be used – almost daily! 


For the Picky Partner


Let Superette do the heavy lifting with their styling sessions. With a $200 deposit (redeemable during the session), your partner will be in the most stylish hands to get decked out for the New Year. Their stylists will curate different looks, and they’ll come out with pieces that fit well, and work well in their wardrobes!


For the Entertainer


Alcohol never goes amiss during the festive season. My go-to gift for the entertainer is the Black Pineapple Cocktail Kits, which will fit right into any bar cart. With everything you need in one box, the kits are the best for travelling between parties, to the beach house, or even, to take camping. If you’re lucky, you might even get to sample it on the night!


For the $50 & under Secret Santa


I don’t know anyone who’s ever been happy with their Secret Santa gift. Chocolates, candles and silly socks are out this season. What always hits the mark? A reusable mug from Frank will make even the non-coffee drinkers happy to return to work in the New Year. If you want to go the extra mile – pop in some roasted coffee or special hot chocolate mix to really jazz it up!


For the Art Appreciator


If you don’t know the name, you sure will recognise the art. Simon Lewis Ward’s latest addition to his glass lollies is the Jumbo Glass Glo-Heart. Simple, yet effective to join the gallery wall of your nearest and dearest.


For the Beauty-Lover


Anyone beauty obsessed is sure to know all the benefits of sleeping on a silk pillowcase (and there are many!). Slip’s new gift edit is the perfect set to gift the beauty-lover in your family, without having to delve too deep into what foundation shade would match the best, or what eye cream they might not already have. 




Our Top 5 Picks For A Summer Long Lunch With The Ladies

I have a tendency to immensely enjoy a ladies’ long lunch over which we share a couple of aperol spritzes and chatter non stop about our lives. 

As we head into summer and we have a bit more time to catch up with the people we love, here are my top picks based on the fact that they serve stellar food items, have an incredible overall ambiance and some which have withheld the test of time by being cornerstone dining establishments in Auckland.

Andiamo Eatery

Located on Jervois Road in Herne Bay, as announced on their website, Andiamo quite literally is the “perfect neighbourhood spot for lunch or a leisurely dinner”. 

Currently the outdoor seating has a beautiful floral arrangement hanging from the ceiling which makes the ambiance just that much more vibrant and inviting. The restaurant is spacious, modern and sleek and it really does just feel like your local.

With a diverse Italian inspired menu, Andiamo caters to all tastes. From the number of sharing dishes (I’m a sucker for the grilled eggplant and the chilli-fried calamari), to having a pizette (a smaller pizza but it really isn’t that small!), to the various pastas (the ricotta agnollotti and fusilli cacio e pepe are divine to say the least) and various fish and meat options available you are spoiled for choice here. 

The cocktail list is extensive with unique drinks. My top recommendations are the “very superior spritz” which is a pampello and strawberry based drink, and the “El Diablo” which is tequila and mezcal (if you like ‘em spicy!). 

The perfect place to go for lunch with the ladies where you can order a bunch of dishes to share, this is one of my top spots if you want a long lunch with a drink in hand.


Soul Bar and Bistro

The viaduct’s finest Soul bar and bistro is the epitome of a long lunch location. 

What more could you want then the vibe that soul has to offer? I’m talking about breathtaking waterfront views, the hustle and bustle of the viaduct on a summer’s day, and just feeling like you’re amongst the action. 

Soul, as an institution, has been in the Auckland dining scene for 21 years and has continuously elevated their dining offerings in that time to grow as we have. 

A spot that you can guarantee your food will always be great at, I go for the incredible outdoor dining venue and the fact that the soul bar macaroni and cheese is literally something I wake up at night craving. 

Soul has some of my favourite cocktails such as the “Pretty in Pink” for a vodka strawberry cocktail and the “Silver Spoon” if you’re down for some gin with vanilla and lemon and egg whites for the foam.

Perfect for a saturday late lunch where you’re sharing a dozen oysters with the ladies and plan to bar-hop around the Viaduct, Soul is perfect for any lunching summer occasion. 



Hotel Ponsonby

This next location isn’t quite a mainstay like the others, but has gained a huge following and is always busy and brimming with people.

A self-proclaimed bar, bistro and beer garden, Hotel Ponsonby truly has it all. Catering to the blokes who love a good lager, the girls who want a vino in the sun, or a few delectable cocktails (I easily always down a few of the coconut margaritas!) this is such a great use of the space on the corner of Saint Marys Road.

The menu changes quite often, but the standouts for me on the recent menu when I went last week was the anchovy burrata on lemon-fried bread (complete sensory overload!), the spinach fazzoletti and an absolutely divine kina tagliatelle (the sort of which I’ve almost never had!).

If you’re in a bit more of a drink and snack mood, there’s so many options making HP my “local”.

No matter what you do this summer, be sure to visit at least once with the ladies on a sunny day!


Prego

Prego has been open since 1986, making its accolades for service and Italian cuisine no small feat. As they’ve declared, they’ve survived three recessions, two volcanic eruptions and one global pandemic which is all attributable to their consistent commitment to greatness which has helped them foster generations of loyal customers. 

Located on Ponsonby Road, the spacious venue boasts an incredible outdoor area at which being seated feels like you’re on holiday.

They cater to all dietary requirements and both the fungi pizza (we love a mushroom medley) and the linguine alla marinara (the prawns are always so fresh and the pasta sauce is so rich!) are my absolute favourite dishes. 

The wine list is so comprehensive with both top New Zealand wines and Italian imports, but nothing beats the Prego Chilli Margarita. 

I absolutely love Prego for a Sunday lunch with the ladies that transcends from the afternoon into the evening.


Non Solo Pizza

Non Solo has been around since 1997, making it 25 years old to date and again a quintessential Auckland restaurant. 

NSP truly thrives in the summer as the dining space is large and has by far one of the most phenomenal outdoor courtyards that feels like you’ve been transported to Italy. From the busts to the fountains to the greenery, sitting in the courtyard is an experience in and of itself. It was the perfect photo spot during my birthday lunch earlier this year.

NSP is lively and radiant which makes it an incredible choice on a summer’s day. To be completely candid, I’m not a huge fan of the pastas at NSP but the pizza choices are second to only a very very marginal few (I mean, it is called Non Solo Pizza after all). The Nerano in particular is a delicious and unique zucchini pizza covered in chilli and whipped stracciatella for a silky texture. 

This is my pick if you have a large group. For my birthday we did the Italian Long Lunch menu, which is $75 per person. They sat 25 of us in the courtyard letting the food roll out to us over the course of four or so hours, as we guzzled down a couple of bottles of the Ricasoli Albia Italian Rose and some Aperol Spritzes. 




Green Sides with a Twist

As the warm weather has well and truly seeped in, our taste buds are craving seasonal produce. Crunchy, juicy and fresh foods are what we’re hunting for in our recipe repertoire. Since we’re in spring, I’ve put together two transitional salads that are winking their way into the warmer months. Now is the time to fuel the soul for the last few weeks where the wind is mildly chilly and you are still choosing red wine over rosé.

I’ve put together two seasonal recipes for green sides – a must with every meal. Each of these salads are the perfect addition to any lunch or dinner, or to just bring some extra flair to your cooking. I like to think that these taste just as good as burgers! While burgers are absolutely and undeniably a very important food group to enjoy when feeling indulgent, these salads will leave you feeling full, nourished and very satisfied! 


Broccolini with Pangritata


Broccolini is one of those vegetables that are never left stocked at the supermarket. Most adults have a foul relationship with traditional broccoli; either having been spoon fed it in mushy form as a baby, or not being able to leave the table until every last piece of boiled swampy green tree has been eaten off the plate. Meet the new and improved older sister – broccolini. Tall, heavenly green, deliciously crunchy and hard to mess up in the kitchen. With absolutely no preparation involved, this is the perfect dish to cook up within 15 minutes. 

I like to keep vegetables simple and strong. They have an incredibly delicious natural texture that needs a little heat to enhance. Lemon, garlic and chilli bring these crunchy goddesses to life. Indulge me here – most vegetables are better with a little bready crunch. I have paired this dish with a herby pangritata – a poor man’s parmesan. If anyone else is like my family, and did Hello Fresh for months on end and seemed to have a never ending supply of panko bread crumbs, this one’s for you. 

Note – this is something that you can top on any loosely inspired Italian dish and taste its transformation first hand.


Pangritata Ingredients

  • 200g bread crumbs (I always store my sourdough ends in the freezer for this, however, panko bread crumbs are extra delicious!)
  • A ‘glug’ of your preferred oil 
  • Minced garlic, to taste
  • Dried herbs of your choice (oregano, italian mixed herbs, etc.)


Broccolini Ingredients

  • 2-3 bunches of fresh broccolini (broccoli will also work fine for this recipe)
  • Herbs and spices of your choosing – I would recommend onion and garlic powder, chilli/red pepper flakes, lemon zest and flaky salt
  • Preferred oil – here I have used the oil left over from making my confit garlic.



Method

Preheat your oven to 190 C – you know your oven best. This recipe works well between a 180-200 degree heat, as we want to keep the crunch and avoid making it soggy. If you find your oven doesn’t circulate heat very well, place the pangritata on the top tray, and the broccolini at the bottom. 

To make the pangritata, add oil to your oven tray and place it in the oven to heat. Preheating your oven tray with oil helps to heat it up before any additional food is added – ensuring the crispiest pangritata possible. Once hot, spread the bread crumbs, dried herbs and garlic until your heart’s content. Season with salt and add back to the oven. 

To make the broccolini, preheat your oven tray, doused with your oil of choice. Remove when hot, add the broccolini, herbs and spices. Toss around, and then place in the oven. I cooked mine for approximately 7 minutes. This dish is best served with the broccolini crunchy but cooked. 

Remove both broccolini and pangritata from the oven. Place the broccolini and residue juices in your serving dish and sprinkle heavily with your pangritata. 

Top tip – try save some for your guests (;


Asparagus & Walnut Salad


Everyone loves whole cooked asparagus with butter but shaved asparagus ribbons calls for a party – it tastes like a party too. With half mildly pickled, and half left crunchy, this calls for textural indulgence. Though this might not initially sound as good as a burger – wait until you get the pickle, saucy, burnt walnutty goodness.


Ingredients

  • 2-3 bunches of asparagus 
  • 1 spring onion stick
  • Vinegar of your choice – I chose white wine vinegar but rice wine vinegar could also work 
  • ½ cup walnuts 
  • 1 tbsp sesame seeds 
  • Oil of your choice


Preparation

Separate the asparagus into two piles. Snap off the ends and trim if necessary. Use a mandoline, but a peeler should work as well. Take one half and add it in a bowl and lightly coat in sugar and salt. Add vinegar and water to ensure each ribbon is coated. Let rest for 10 minutes. This will form a light pickle to add texture and taste variation to this dish. You could leave this pickle for up to 30 minutes if you prefer a more acidic bite. Toss the other bunch lightly in olive oil.


Method

Once prepared, drain and toss all the asparagus together in a preparation bowl. Sprinkle with your sesame seeds. 

Add walnuts to an oven tray with a little oil. You can either use a high heat or the grill setting. I like to take the walnuts until half of each has formed a black burnt colour. This gives it a popcorn-like taste. 

Slice the spring onion on a diagonal, very thinly. Add all the ingredients to the bowl and use your hands to toss. Get those juices flowing! 

Choose your desired plate, using tongs twist onto the plate as an Italian would do with pasta. Top with additional walnuts and spring onions for a garnish. This is a dish that compliments flaky salt, so season to your preferred taste.



Slippers to Rock Day in, Day out

The finest slippers have the ability to make any gloomy day enjoyable. They not only guarantee that you’ll end the day on a soft note, but they also put a cosy spin on the weekdays if you choose to work from home. 

From slip-ons to moccasins and everything in between, slippers are the ideal footwear to keep your tootsies warm and comfy during the colder seasons – and do it in style. It’s time to ditch those pink bunny slippers and the fuzzy socks with holes in ’em and treat yourself to a pair that will spark joy. 

You may have already found your perfect match, and I’m not one to home-wreck your relationship with your slippers. But I suggest gifting a pair of top quality slippers to a bestie or your wonderful Mum this upcoming Mother’s Day. 

Slippers are highly underrated in the big scheme of footwear and act as a thoughtful gift to your loved one. They’ll be reminded of you each time their toes seek refuge in their snuggly gifts from heaven. Scroll below for our favourite slipper picks that I wish I could own in entirety!


Sheepy Slippers in Moss

Sheepy Slippers in Moss $119.90



La Tribe (who are mentioned a fair bit in this lineup) slippers are well-known for their adorable look, great fit, and quality. What more could you ask for? The Moss La Tribe Sheepy Slipper is a handcrafted 100% sheepskin slipper with a functional rubber sole.

Plush Fur Scuff Slipper

Plush Fur Scuff Slipper $29.99



These beauties are giving off designer vibes despite being less than $30. Slip them on to elevate your home look and simultaneously treat your feet to some seriously soft plushiness. Plus, these come in green and navy too. One pair for you and one pair for your partner, perhaps?

Tarte Moodles

Tarte Moodles $118



If colour is what you crave in life, meet the Tart Moodle collection! Fresh Retro Love and Shelley have collaborated to produce a selection of comfortable wool blanket slippers from New Zealand that are suitable for all seasons! These slippers have plush sheepskin and wool blanket linings. They also come with an added bonus: exceptionally soft EVA foam soles that may be worn both indoors and outdoors. The best part? They’re also completely recyclable!

Double Strap Slipper

Double Strap Slipper $119.90

A fusion of beige plush and open-toe slipper fashion comes together to provide you with the ultimate bed-to-couch-and-back-again footwear, perfect for those whose tootsies prefer the open air. The best-selling Sheepy Slippers are carefully crafted using 100% sheepskin and finished with a hardy rubber sole.


Karen Walker x Classic Crochet Knit

Karen Walker x Classic Crochet Knit $139



The Karen Walker x Classic New Zealand Sheepskin Slippers are handcrafted in Hawke’s Bay by a team of four skilled crocheters using Classic’s 100% New Zealand sheepskin and woollen yarn from Napier-based spinners Skeinz. In case you need some extra ankle warmth, the knitted cuff folds up as well.


Superette x La Tribe Cross Over Sheepy Slipper

Superette x La Tribe Cross Over Sheepy Slipper $119



A round of applause for the snuggliest of all kiwi collabs. Leaving your comfy blankets on colder mornings tends to be a struggle, but at least with this extremely plush pair by your side, your feet can have that extra 15 minutes of snooze time. The crossed straps keep feet well in place and will make it very hard to part ways with them when it’s time to step outdoors.

UGG Twinface Sheepskin Slippers

UGG Twinface Sheepskin Slippers $89

They contain memory foam, are water-repellent, and appear to be the softest booties ever to grace the world, so of course, we’re totally into them. Slide your feet into these Sheepskin Slippers and enjoy the softness and warmth of hand-selected Australian sheepskin. While I don’t own a pair myself, my fellow slipper-lover flatmate does. Since purchasing these, I’d say he spends 90% of his time at home in these guys – and yes, he absolutely wears them out!

UGG Fluffy Slipper

UGG Fluffy Slipper $65

The Fluffy Slippers are the epitome of comfort. The slip-on slippers, made of luscious natural sheepskin wool with a fluffy strap, will keep your feet cosy all over the house. These slip-on Uggs will keep your toes toasty, and the rubber bottoms protect you from sliding around. They’ll also fit with any loungewear combo because they are essentially neutral.




Let’s all take a moment to appreciate the amazingness of slippers. They’re the ultimate comfort footwear that can turn a dreary day into a cozy one. So, go ahead and upgrade your slipper game with a stylish and comfy pair that will bring a smile to your face. And don’t forget to share the love by gifting a pair to your bestie or mom on Mother’s Day. Trust me, their feet will thank you! Happy slipper shopping, folks!


Our 5-Minute Solution for Puffy Eyes

If sleep deprivation and a poor diet is part of your never-ending saga of struggles, you’ll be elated about this golden nugget of a manual.

A woman using a guasha tool to get rid of puffy eyes.



It’s reasonable to assume that given the current global climate, we’re all under more stress than usual. For me, everyday stress is usually accompanied by a lack of sleep and periodic episodes of sobbing. It’s okay to be upset about the state of the world, but it doesn’t mean you have to wake up with dreary eyes. Concealers and eye creams can only do so much when you wake up with dark circles, swollen eyes, and more apparent wrinkles. So, we have devised a time-efficient rescue strategy to combat under-eye troubles and interrupt that appointment with the dermatologist to get fillers under your eyes.


Why do we get puffy eyes in the first place?

Puffy eyes arise when the tissues surrounding the eyes expand, while the dark and dreaded “eye bags” occur when the tissues below the eyes inflate. Yes, there is a difference. The leading reasons for these eye problems are from what you already know – lack of sleep and crying – and temperamentally, having allergies, being on your period, or absorbing excessive amounts of sodium can also affect this. Because the skin around the eyes is amongst the thinnest on our bodies, as we age, both the skin and the vessels lose their suppleness, allowing more fluid to seep out of the fragile blood vessels, resulting in puffiness. So, it’s natural. Loss of collagen is a right of passage and as a result, we find ageing in our under eyes. From your 22nd birthday, you will start to notice a change in elasticity as face muscles and tendons begin to waiver with it.


The 5-Minute Solution

0.00 – 2.00 Minutes: Cold Compression


Colder temperatures are known to make blood vessels shrink upon contact. Wet a clean cloth with cold water and place it across your eyes while applying gentle pressure. Anytime you apply anything cool to your complexion, it will instantly calm and de-puff the skin by reducing any inflation you might have as well as redness. This will reduce the swelling around your eyes.


2.00 – 4.00  Minutes: Kitchen Remedies

Lady with teabags resting on her eyes in order to remove puffiness from eyes.

We’ve seen the classic use of cucumber slices as a port of relaxation on the screens. But placing a couple of slices over closed eyes does absolute wonders for puffiness. Just 2 minutes of this will ease any pains and reduce swelling. If cucumbers are $5 each then we have a backup. 

When you’re next in the kitchen, toss a few wet green tea bags into a snaplock bag and place them in the fridge. When you are in dire emergency of an at-home depuff, pull out two of these and place them on your eyes while lying down for 2-3 minutes. Your eyebags will diminish thanks to the synergistic effects of caffeine and the cold. While you’re perusing through the fridge, grab an ice cube and rub it beneath the eyes to compress and alleviate puffiness.


4:00 – 5:00: Serum Time

Using the right eye serums that include the right ingredients is so important. From our research, the key ingredients to look for within your eye serums when solving puffy eyes are vitamin C, vitamin K, tetrapeptide-5 and heparan sulphate. You need to ensure that your eyes won’t be irritated any further from using whatever product you have. Also, look for ingredients like tea extract, cacao, arnica and caffeine. 

Without meaning to belittle creams, serums are the way to go if you want to see results. With an eye serum, the emphasis is more on the active chemicals than on the moisturising characteristics. That being said, the formulation should still be hydrating, but it won’t be as heavy as a cream.

Serums are distinguished from other liquids by their distinctive thickness. Creams have an obvious creamy consistency, whereas serums are more fluid. Because of their light consistency, eye serums may be absorbed quickly and readily by the skin. Serums are ideal because they moisturise the skin without making it feel greasy or heavy, making them ideal for those with oilier skin types.

Hailey Bieber recently revealed her holy grail eye serum to achieve her signature glow – the Beauty Stat, Universal C Eye Perfector is her go-to for wide awake, brightened under eyes. Skincare TikTok star Hyram Yarbro swears by Versed Vacation Eyes Brightening Eye gel. Hyram claims that this eye ointment prevented the appearance of dark under-eye circles that had plagued him after a string of all-nighters. Only a little amount is needed to conceal dark circles and dullness beneath the eyes thanks to the vitamin C and ginseng extract it contains.


Ultimate Time-Saving Tools

Rose Inc

The Rose Inc Cooling Spheres Facial Massager duo.
Rose Inc Cooling Spheres Facial Massager Duo, $60

These funny-looking wands are a must-have. Rose Inc is leading the game in skincare and make-up and they have thought of everything when releasing these tools. “I wanted to create cooling spheres that reduce puffiness, minimise the look of redness and achieve a rosy glow,” Rosie Huntington-Whiteley says.

By swooping these wands across the face in an upward motion, the cooling sensation combined with the pressure supports lymphatic drainage which visibly makes a difference. These will elevate your skincare routine and provide elevated relaxation while gently sculpting your face.


Make-up Revolution Cooling Eye Roller Ball

Make-up Revolution Cooling Eye Roller Ball.
Make-up Revolution Cooling Eye Roller Ball, $18

Use the cold metal tip from this stick to roll over your under-eye area. This will gently wake you up while increasing blood flow. It also helps to absorb your eye creams deeper into the skin while reducing puffiness and fatigue. A fabulous facial massage for a refreshed look and feel in the morning. 




Nu Face Trinity Device

The Nu Face Trinity Device.
Nu Face Trinity Device, $577

While looking like an obscure gadget, this device does facial wonders. This non-invasive tool works to define facial contours, reduces wrinkles and tightens sagging skin (eyebags). I promise the microcurrents you press along your face are so gentle. You can literally feel a tightening with each click of the button. Just five minutes a day of this will help skin to look more youthful and radiant.


5 Common Dreams That People Have And What They Mean

Dreams are quite literally a universal human experience in which when we are asleep, we experience an array of ideas and emotions in a story-like pattern. In some cultures, dreams are perceived to be a window of yourself in a different dimension. In ancient Egyptian culture, dreams were believed to be a form of seeing into a different reality. In Hindu culture, dreams are a window into the future and in some cultures, dreams are held to have no significance at all.

Dreams can (despite being relatively cohesive and coherent at the time) feel fleeting. They can range from being enjoyable to horrific; with some dreams being entertaining, some exhilarating, and others, outright disturbing or bizarre. There may be multiple storylines at play, faces in the background which are recognised by your subconscious but fundamentally they are actually vastly complex. 

Studies have shown that certain dreams may represent emotions that we are currently feeling in our lives, albeit somewhat subconsciously. Dreams tend to be symbolic and allude to a wider apprehension that we have in our lives. As a frequent haver of dreams, I’m here to tell you about 10 common dreams that people have and what they supposedly mean.

floating bed with clouds with a sky blue colour scheme.


1. You dream that you’re being chased

In general, dreams of being chased suggest that you’re anxious but are not entirely conscious of the source of this anxiety. 

According to the book ‘Man and His Symbols’ by author C.G Jung, it examines the world of unconsciousness and symbols revealed in dreams. Any dreams where you are being chased indicate a current sense of heightened stress or anxiety and avoiding taking active steps to understand the cause. This is also a standard interpretation of the dream amongst modern psychologists who believe that any chase related dreams display avoidant tendencies. 
If you’re having this dream, take it as a hint from your unconscious state of mind that you’re avoiding an issue or a person that needs to be dealt with. The answer to the why may even derive from who you’re being chased by, according to some psychologists. 


2. You dream about death

This dream can manifest in different ways; you can be the person dying or you can dream that someone else is dying. Although dreams of this nature can be somewhat unnerving and feel ominous, professional dream analysts and psychologists alike say that this is actually more representative of a death of a cycle. It represents a stage of major transformation.

Dreams about death tend to represent a significant change in your life. Psychologists believe that a peaceful death represents acceptance of a change, whilst a more tumultuous death can be indicative of resistance to transformation and change, and being afraid of the change that’s going on. 

If you have this dream, I urge you to consider what cycles you may be welcoming into your life and allow change to take its course.


3. You dream about taking a surprise test or exam

According to best-selling author and dream scientist Michael R Olsen, this is one of the most common dream types.

Dreaming about an exam or test that is upcoming and suddenly sprung on you invokes feelings of stress and surprise as you lack control. Olsen says that such dreams tend to symbolise an upcoming decision that needs to be made about you rather than by you. It symbolises a lack of control and autonomy over your own decision-making and inherent anxieties that you may have over a situation e.g., starting a new job, becoming a parent, moving to a new city – the question is whether you’ll succeed or fail in this endeavour.

If you have this dream, recognise that you may be unduly scrutinising yourself for something which isn’t in your immediate control and let the situation play out as it should.


4. You dream that you’re cheating on your partner

Theresa Cheung is a UK Sunday Times bestselling author in the field of dreams and the science of consciousness. In her book  “The Dream Dictionary from A to Z,” she noted that cheating dreams are actually very healthy to have because they represent that you’re not being completely honest with yourself and that “there’s more of you to discover.” 

Dreams involving cheating with people you know are said to symbolise underlying issues with your partner, but more a lack of being fulfilled in general. They are generally believed to represent a sign of insecurity in yourself, hidden fears of abandonment or discontent, or anxiety regarding your own adequacy. Such dreams are a sign to take a look at yourself and work out any insecurities that you may have rising to the surface. 

Alternatively, cheating dreams with celebrities are said to be representative of human curiosity and often mean nothing at all. A means to experiment which you wouldn’t in real life, they provide a window into an alternative life that many of us may not have access to.

distressed woman trying to find the meaning of dream.


5. You dream that you’re somewhere completely in the nude

This dream is often believed to symbolise feelings of shame and an attempt to hide but being unsuccessful in doing so. Many authors and dream scientists (including Jung, and Freud) believe that this dream relates to anxiety about being forthcoming and honest about a weakness or secret to the public.

The best way to get over dreams like this, is to try to unpack what it is that may be causing you to feel this way when conscious. It could be an indicator that you’re being far too critical of yourself while awake and an important reflector to become more self-confident. 


Kiwi Jewellery Designers We Love To Wear

If there’s a myth that needs busting, it’s that only the rich and famous can afford nice jewellery. So many incredible and affordable Kiwi small jewellery companies are changing the jewellery industry by making it easier for consumers to try out new styles without breaking the bank. This includes the return of pearls, statement earrings, shells, beads, and semiprecious stones.

*This is a voiceover created by AI and therefore some of the words or pronunciations may be incorrect. We hope you still enjoy this listening experience

New Zealand is home to so many rising and renowned jewellery designers. From names, we know and love, to fresh styles that will blow your mind. Nothing completes an outfit like the perfect piece of jewellery – especially when it’s New Zealand-made. The proliferation of social media has spawned a new crop of artists who are creating stunning jewellery. By reclaiming the luxury space of necklaces, earrings, and rings, these independent designers have avoided the overwhelming experience of walking into a jeweller and feeling out of place, often leaving empty-handed. Several of these brands on this edit operate solely online, which is incredible. 

Whether you’re looking for a set of bold, statement earrings or a dainty ring stack, we’ve compiled a list of eight jewellery labels run by kiwis that you may or may not be familiar with but should add to your bookmarks for your next shopping trip.


Mars



Mars can be found on the necks, wrists and fingers of many Auckland women. Taking inspiration from architecture and art, each item is handcrafted in New Zealand by the very talented Holly Marbeck. In addition to its ready-to-wear assortment of necklaces, bracelets, earrings, and rings. Mars also creates custom designs and never fails to produce pure beauty.


Herasaabi



The talented Maeve Woodhouse designed and handcrafted the Heera Saabi brand in Auckland, New Zealand. Hera Saabi’s jewellery depicts the universe in twisted structure, inspired by juxtaposing flawed nature and geometrically structured environments. Every new piece by Maeve outdoes her last, and it’s riveting to follow a brand that does so much with its creativity.


Zoe & Morgan



Zoe & Morgan jewellery has become the go-to for the style-conscious, the individual-minded, and those who appreciate the unusual and spectacular. From exquisite Moroccan-inspired Ketama earrings to intrinsic Chakra necklaces, you will indeed discover the perfect piece to compliment your look. Their collections include sterling silver, white gold, and gold necklaces, rings, earrings, and bracelets. Zoe & Morgan also stock at leading retailers like Walker and Hall and Sisters and Co. 


Kevin Thorne



You may have read our interview with Kevin on his craft and inspiration, and we have him on this lineup. Kevin is a practising Architect and infuses his knowledge of construction with jewellery design. He’s no stranger to experimental materials. Suppose your jewellery box needs pearls, Kevin Thorne is where you’ll find the perfect string of them.


Meadowlark



Meadowlark jewellery is inspired by love, art, nature, connection, and expression. Claire Hammon and Greg Fromont (husband and wife team) are the interwoven inspirations behind everything Meadowlark.

Meadowlark’s creative staff handcrafts and designs most of its products in New Zealand and has seen evident growth in popularity since its inception. Artists and celebrities worldwide, including Bella Hadid, Kate Moss, Rihanna, FKA Twigs, Florence Welch, Grimes, Alicia Keys and Zoe Kravitz, have all worn and adored this epic brand.


Karen Walker



Karen Walker is possibly New Zealand’s most well-known fashion designer. Her trademark modern, fitted, androgynous design has won her international acclaim. It’s hard to come by a kiwi gal who doesn’t own a Karen Walker piece. Every teenager wore her superfine collection alongside her classic Runaway girl necklace. Now, I see her stunning pendants and filigree rings everywhere I go. Karen Walker has been a pioneer in marketing campaigns and her ever-evolving collections. New Zealand is so lucky to have this creative genius producing on our soil.


The Rolling Mill



For the more bespoke and potential bridal shoppers, meet The Rolling Mill of Wellington. Nick and Vee Hensman are a creative husband and wife duo who take delight in crafting exceptionally beautiful, world-class designs that will last the test of time. Naturally, they would be glad to share this wonderful experience with you when the time comes for you to have your own personalised piece of jewellery designed and crafted.


Silk & Steel



Silk & Steel is a New Zealand jewellery brand that promotes casual luxury. Sarah’s iconic couture designs, vibrant gemstones, and edgy-luxe statement pieces have made it successful, combining traditional elements with the combination of juxtaposition. You’re bound to find something to love with this jeweller. 





The WOMAN-approved Accessory List for Summer

If you’re dreaming of jetting off to tropical destinations, spending summer days by the pool, and balmy evenings clinking fruity cocktails over backyard dinner parties. We have a compilation of outfits for every sunny occasion. 

We’ve put together new ways to refresh past season favourites, and yet, make our closet feel brand new! The solution? While we opt for floaty dresses and classic light linens, summer is the perfect time to pull focus to our accessories. We can’t emphasise the power of investing in a few key accessories enough. It’s a more cost-effective way to change up multiple outfits, without the need to splurge on an entirely new wardrobe. 

For example, if you take a new bag in a fresh seasonal colourway, it can be worn with every Marle dress you’ve previously invested in. By mixing and matching with other accessories, you’ve already created a range of new outfits that will still have you excited to get dressed each morning. 

Pull focus to statement sunnies, colourful beach bags and layered jewellery to bring more interest to a simplistic outfit.  We’re leaning into tonal summer colours – think blues, browns, yellows – that will seamlessly compliment a summery colour palette. 

So without further ado, you’ll find the WOMAN-approved accessories to satisfy your summer shopping cravings. 



Deadly Ponies Mr Sling Micro Atoll

It’s the handbag of a European summer romance. Your new partner in crime, he’s both practical and opulent in a vibrant teal blue, perfect for a dopamine hit!



La Tribe Elke Braided Sandal

We’re loving La Tribe’s new summer releases. The Elke is a standout for subtly updating your everyday casual sandals. The leather braiding is quite luxe so you can easily wear these day-to-day or to dress up for dinner.


Creeps & Violets Pearl Sunken Sleepers

Handcrafted with freshwater pearls, the Creeps & Violets Pearl Sunken Sleepers are an elevated approach to the classic sleeper hoops. We love the unique shape you’ll find on each hoop, a delicate detail to catch the eye.




Saben Claudette Crossbody

Something a little more formal than your favourite beach bag, but still casual enough for afternoons in the sun. The Claudette is your everyday carry-all for summer. 




Mi Piaci Aida Heel

Ballet flats are the It shoe of the season, so I love this heeled take in Mi Piaci’s collaboration with Kate Sylvester. It gives a feminine edge to a floaty linen dress.




Jules Mila Jacci Sunglasses

Brown turtle sunglasses from Jules Mila Jacci accessories.
Jules Mila Jacci Sunglasses, $265

Homegrown brand Jules Mila sunglasses are made of 100 percent plant-based cellulose acetate. All eyes will be on you! Sun-smart and fashion focused!




Pigment Studio Gossia Necklace

Hand-made in Tāmaki Makaurau, this up-and-coming jewellery label must be put on your radar! The Gossia is made with organically formed links, making each necklace unique to the wearer.




Havaianas Top Animal Flip Flop

It’s giving Scandinavian-cool. After seeing Havis flop around Copenhagen Fashion week, we’re sold for the summer! We’re loving the new prints and the Rotate Limited Collaboration! 




Baina Pool Towel

A must-have in any beach bag is a standout towel. One that’s chic, well-made and will go well with  hues of whites and blacks. Baina’s reserved and sophisticated colour palette is sure to bring joy to any trip to the beach.




Marle Nonna Hat

Sun-smart is always chic. Marle’s Nonna Hat is an accessory staple at WOMAN. In muted beige tones, she’s perfect for the true minimalist and Marle lover.




The Best Kiwi Airbnbs for Summer Getaways

There’s nothing better than a classic Kiwi holiday. Usually spent parked up at the beach, G&T in hand. There’s an endless supply of magnificent spots to hide away during the summer break, and with that comes incredible batches, nooks, tiny homes and apartments just ready for you to explore. 

We love the option of renting a holiday home over a hotel during summer vacations. You can get closer to the beach, spread out and make the place your own. There are so many options across the country that regardless of your destination, there is bound to be a cosy home waiting for you. But first, it’s all about deciding whether you’ll be heading North or South. 

New Zealand’s North and South Islands are so different in many ways. If you’re looking for sandy beaches and hidden coves of crystal blue waters, the North Island is your pick. For a more dramatic landscape framed by picturesque mountain ranges, you’ll be heading South.



Upper North Island

Russell Cottage

Interior of Russell Cottage, one of the top summer Airbnb rentals in New Zealand.



A quaint chapel from the 1870s has been renovated into unique accommodations. With the entire property to enjoy, you can choose to hide away, or explore further, with Russell only a five-minute drive away.


Piha Retreat

the exterior of Piha Retreat, one of the most luxurious summer Airbnb's in New Zealand



Go bush with one of the best views of the iconic West Coast beach. You almost feel like you’re in a tree house, but with all the amenities of a luxury getaway. The outdoor bath is a standout for a couple’s night away.


Waiheke Cabin

Unique summer airbnb, Waiheke Cabin, surrounded by nature and clear waters.



There’s more to Waiheke than long lunches and wine tours. Renee’s clifftop cabin is the best vantage point for exploring the hidden beaches and secret coves below. You’ll be close enough to Waiheke’s main centre, but far enough to explore less walked parts of the island.


Matakana Bush Retreat

Matakana Bush Retreat outdoor area.



Situated perfectly between incredible stretches of beach, you have Omaha, Leigh, Tāwharanui and Snells Beach at your doorstep. This tranquil spot is ideal for a quick weekend getaway from Auckland.


Hot Water Beach Bird’s Nest

Hot Water Beach Bird's Nest airbnb in the Coromandel Peninsula.



When we think of summer, we think of the Coromandel Peninsula. Beach-hop to your heart’s content, basing yourself at Hot Water Beach. The Bird’s Nest has the most spectacular views of the bushland and beach below. 


Lower North Island

Taranaki Tree House

The Taranaki Treehouse airbnb.



Show us a more unique holiday spot than the Taranaki Tree House. Fitted with its own slide, this Airbnb is an architectural marvel – your friends will definitely be asking about it! Located just south of New Plymouth, you’re in the perfect spot to explore Mount Taranaki or the beachside township.


Beachfront Waikawa

The beachfront of Waikawa airbnb.



Planning a road trip down the North Island? You couldn’t ask for a better pit stop location. You are quite literally beachfront, giving you the perfect opportunity to pop the kayaks out right off the front lawn or sit back in the outdoor tub and take in the view.


The Nest, Taranaki

The Nest airbnb in Tarakani.



Another incredible find near Mount Taranaki is The Nest. From the clifftop, it’s just you, as far as the eye can see. There’s an outdoor bathtub, of course, to take in the views in the most relaxing way with a wine in hand.


Upper South Island

Golden Bay Ecohouse

The Ecohouse NZ airbnb in Golden Bay.



You couldn’t ask for a better spot to enjoy Golden Bay. Close enough to the Abel Tasman National Park, this Ecohouse is your post-exploring haven.


Kererū Hut Canterbury

The affordable NZ airbnb, Kereru Hut in Canterbury.



Unplug from reality in this award-winning tiny-home in the middle of rural Canterbury. At the foothills of Mount Hutt, Kererū Retreat can’t be missed on your South Island road trip. 


Woodpecker Bay Bach

Woodpecker Bay Bach with the sea and forest.



The quintessential Kiwi bach, aka a rustic tin shed. Woodpecker Bay Bach sits right on the coastline, so be sure to come ready to watch the crashing waves come right up to your window.


Hokitika Fire Station

interior of modern furnishings at the Hokitika Fire Station airbnb.



Another West Coast beauty. The Fire Station, in the heart of Hokitika, is a stylish apartment located only a few blocks back from the waterfront. Be sure to see the other listings within the building!


Lower South Island

Rural Twizel

Rural Twizel Airbnb night time view with the sky full of stars.



Mackenzie Country is an experience in itself, offering rugged mountains and valleys. Spend a night under the stars from bed, with the custom skylight above. We recommend spending a few nights to really sink into relaxation.


Wānaka Lookout

Wanaka Lookout airbnb with outdoor bathtub.



Wanting to be closer to the action without giving up the cabin experience? The Wānaka Lookout sits high above, with panoramic views of the lake and mountain surrounds, but only a five-minute drive from the township.


Oamaru Chapel

Unique Victorian interior of Oamaru Chapel airbnb.



Oamaru is known for its limestone architecture, Victorian heritage and the love of steampunk. It’s key to stay in accommodation that reflects the town’s quirky nature. The historic chapel couldn’t be a better pick.


Lake Views Te Anau

Outdoor spa from Te Anau Airbnb.



No Kiwi experience is complete without a trip to Milford Sound/Piopiotahi. As the gateway to the sounds and Fiordland National Park, this 11-acre holiday home is an ideal getaway from all the adventure.



Scent-Scaping: 3 Easy Ways to Elevate your Home

Scent-scaping is one of the easiest ways to elevate your home. Here’s how to do it right. The three pillars to scent-scaping with the right home fragrance pieces: cohesive, complementary and charming.

Think of scent-scaping as decorating the home with your nose. You’d be surprised at how incredibly rewarding this process can be. It’s a great way to take care of your sensory needs by creating an inviting experience for the different parts of your home. 

home fragrance line from Cire Trudon displayed on a bookshelf.


It may seem like an unnecessary or overly-extravagant thing to do, but it’s a simple way to engage in self-care that can affect your mental state in a very big way. Knowing what kind of products to employ in the different spaces in your home can change the way you view or experience things.

Here are three easy rules to make sure you can become a scent-scaping pro!


Cohesive

The Tom Ford room fragrance candle, Bitter Peach.
Tom Ford Bitter Peach Candle, $215NZD

Once you have decided on the fragrance family, it’s time to decide what kind of vessel to use. There are so many choices. Diffuser? Candle? Room Sprays? The choices are infinite. Choosing the right kind of vessel that compliments the space that you want to scent-scape is crucial. 

Candles are perfect for a slow release of your favourite scent that travels far and fills the room. I also recommend candles for guest bedrooms as less people are coming in and out of these spaces.

Diffusers are great for common areas and hallways where there is a lot more action. This way, you can get the most out of your spend as diffusers have a limited life-span, unlike the candle. 

Have you ever heard of the Diptyque Scented Oval? It is one of our favourite discoveries for scent-scaping that has absolutely changed the game. They are beautifully crafted scented ovals that can hang from your wardrobe or bathroom hooks. Due to its size, you can emit a controlled amount of fragrance that is perfect for smaller sized rooms and spaces or even drawers.

Room Sprays are a great option for a short-term and fast release of fragrance. Sometimes, waiting for a candle just takes too long. Keeping this handy in the kitchen or bathroom is an exceptional way to cover up any unwanted smells after an intense night of cooking or freshening up the bathroom space.


Complementary

The Diptyque Scented Ovals handing from hooks- they are a great room fragrance idea.
Diptyque Scented Oval, $97 NZD

Once you have decided on the fragrance family, it’s time to decide what kind of vessel to use. There are so many choices. Diffuser? Candle? Room Sprays? The choices are infinite. Choosing the right kind of vessel that compliments the space that you want to scent-scape is crucial. 

Candles are perfect for a slow release of your favourite scent that travels far and fills the room. I also recommend candles for guest bedrooms as less people are coming in and out of these spaces.

Diffusers are great for common areas and hallways where there is a lot more action. This way, you can get the most out of your spend as diffusers have a limited life-span, unlike the candle. 

Have you ever heard of the Diptyque Scented Oval? It is one of our favourite discoveries for scent-scaping that has absolutely changed the game. They are beautifully crafted scented ovals that can hang from your wardrobe or bathroom hooks. Due to its size, you can emit a controlled amount of fragrance that is perfect for smaller sized rooms and spaces or even drawers.

Room Sprays are a great option for a short-term and fast release of fragrance. Sometimes, waiting for a candle just takes too long. Keeping this handy in the kitchen or bathroom is an exceptional way to cover up any unwanted smells after an intense night of cooking or freshening up the bathroom space.


Charming

A range of the Cire Trudon candles in different sizes.
Trudon Candle, $169

Don’t forget that a home fragrance falls under the category of interior design. These days, fragrance brands are coming out with some of the most beautifully decorated pieces that are full of character and charm. Finding a brand that speaks to you is one significant way to engage the visual aspects of scent-scaping. 

Trudon is one of our favourite brands for home fragrance. Not only do they provide an in-depth range of home fragrances that are unbelievably classy, but the packaging is also just jaw-dropping. If you utilise golds, greens or beiges in your home- Trudon would be the perfect addition that won’t detract from your home style. If anything, it will only elevate your home in the most luxurious way.

A selection of the Byredo candles- they are modern and black with a white label.
Byredo Candles, $124

Modern architecture calls for chic home fragrance pieces. Byredo candles are some of the most elegant candles I have ever seen. The black mouth-blown glass candles are sophisticated and quintessentially New York. It is a home accessory for those who want a stylish touch to their interior. The same applies for their room sprays which are also fabulously black and chic.


Marketing Yourself If You’re Not An Extrovert

Whatever industry or job you’re in, a cornerstone aspect of developing your career is your ability to market both yourself and a brand. 

Whilst that may come naturally to people with extroverted tendencies as myself (like… if I had a dollar for every time I’ve been told I am a rainmaker), I do feel that the commonly held belief that being an extrovert is the preferred personality style to be in marketing is a misconception. 

If you are introverted, doing things such as attending networking events and mixers or speaking in large groups may be things that you shy away from. However, there are ways you can still excel. Introverts make up 30-50% of the population, and many extroverted people have introverted qualities so unpacking how to market in a way that suits your personality is pertinent. 

An introvert is defined as a personality type that gains energy and is more comfortable focusing on their inner thoughts and ideas, rather than what is happening externally. In general, they enjoy spending time with just one or two people rather than constantly being in a crowd. 

So how can you make sure you engage with people, build your brand and continuously network if you’re more introverted?

Form real connections

A few weeks ago, I attended a talk by a very successful international lawyer who started his firm at 22 years old. He is well known for being extremely sociable, amicable and well-liked in the legal community. He talked about how he actually was extremely shy when he first got into this game, but slowly built up his international connections by aiming to actually create meaningful connections. He said his number one tip was to make sure you catch up with at least 1 person a week – be it for a coffee, a lunch or even a drink. By doing this, you’re building a real and intimate relationship and can ask questions that are personal and find similar interests. He anecdotally also recited that there’s now one partner at a firm in London who he exclusively only catches up with by going on hikes as they both found that as a point of common interest.


Attend with a friend

A great way to decrease the stress of a networking event is to attend such mixers in smaller groups with people you know. It ensures company and you can be a part of a table of people you already know and meet new people alongside them.

Attending with a friend is one of my favourite tips despite being extremely extroverted, as it’s nice to have somebody to turn to and it can also attract other people in pairs or small groups to come up to you. I also like to check whether any friends from the same industry I already have may be attending, so that there’s always people to gravitate towards.


Use the internet to vet the scenario

Using social media to figure out who may be there, and some people you may want to connect with will make the event far more intentional and considered. 

I like to also run a google search on people generally, to understand their background and think about talking points that may interest me and them.

If there’s a specific speaker you want to introduce yourself to, trying to understand a bit about them and their history will show that you are interested, which will increase the likelihood of them reciprocating. I recently attended an event where the speaker had lived and worked in New York, and when approaching them, I asked about this experience which ignited a 25 minute conversation about living in the East Village and how incredible New York city was.


Use the introvert tendency to be a good listener to your advantage

My final tip is that generally introverts are good listeners. At most events, people tend to talk about themselves and promote themselves which can undercut the premise of forcing a meaningful connection. As introverts are inherently comfortable with silences and are reflective, you can use the ability to actively listen and have more substantial conversations.

Hopefully, these tips give you the confidence to go out there and get networking. 





Plum & Gin Cured Salmon with Cucumber Salad 

This dish embodies everything that a classic Prada heel captures – classy, timeless and divine – and will leave an impression on any path it walks. Deceivingly simple, with minimal effort required, the fridge and gin are doing the heavy lifting here. 


Salmon is a cult favorite for many. Its delicate texture and palatability creates a canvas ready to paint with fresh citrus, herbs and spices. This dish is one to indulge with your own flair. Plums are my personal preference due to their tangy nature and sun-and-sugar-kissed skins. This is a not-so-ordinary fruit to add a sweet and sour flavour to your next dish. Salmon is also commonly cured with beetroot as it offers a stronger skin stain, but the plum will always have my heart.


Preparation

Find the freshest piece of salmon you can source. Curing salmon is a very safe process if done correctly, but with fish, fresh is best! Place your salmon in a dish big enough to cover with juices. 

In a blending device, combine 6 dark purple plums (fresh or canned), 1tbsp fennel, 1 bunch of dill, 50ml of your favourite gin, lemon and orange zest, 3 tbsp sea salt and 3 tbsp white sugar. 

Spoon the cure over the salmon to cover the entire flesh. Cover with glad wrap and refrigerate for 24-48 hours.


Finishing

Take the salmon out of the fridge. Place a cooling rack on top of an oven tray, and transfer the salmon on top. Scrape away excess cure and pat dry with paper towels. 

Find the sharpest knife you can and slice to your desired texture. I opted for some very thin diagonal slices – some thicker to roll, and used the ends to dice them up.


Serving Suggestions


Cucumber Salad


Salmon and cucumbers are like bread and butter. Both exclusively delicious, but perfectly balanced when paired. 

Use a peeler or mandoline to thinly slice the cucumber. I always leave the skin on for extra nutrients. Cover in rice wine vinegar, a pinch of salt and sugar and leave to rest for 15 minutes. Finish with chilli flakes and sesame seeds. This one is irresistible! 


Horseradish Whip:

Horseradish is the opposite in terms of food palate, making it the perfect accompaniment to salmon. Its creamy fragrant taste leaves you wanting more. Simply combine horseradish, cream cheese (or feta, ricotta, cottage cheese) salt, and lemon zest to a blitzer and combine. Serve on a perfect side dish and drizzle with a herb oil, or olive oil of your choice.


Jalapeno Hot Sauce:

It feels right to have something green on every dish. The jalapeno hot sauce is an insane combination. This is something I always make at home every time I can get my hands on some jalapeno peppers. Additionally, source the best quality at your local supermarket or taco store. I used the cutoffs from the salmon and diced them, coated them in the hot sauce and sesame seeds and ate them on a cracker as I was preparing the rest of the dish! 10/10 would recommend, every chef needs a simple snack that’s almost better than the entire dish itself.

Looking for an amazing salmon breakfast recipe – check out salmon toasties here


Five Ways To Become A More Financially Free Woman

Women are naturally more risk averse and perceived to be worse with money. It’s statistically proven that we are far less likely to make a risky, bullish move than a man. Is there an underlying expectation that the man is our breadwinner? Despite the fact that women are in positions of power in the workforce more so than ever before, we’re still disproportionately disadvantaged when it comes to achieving financial freedom and investing. We often get ‘mansplained’ about the basics of investing from wannabe Wall Street men, who tend to overcomplicate it in an attempt to make it sound far more complex than it is. 

Although understanding money and investing is risky, there’s often a proportion of people that get extremely wealthy during a bear market (which is when the market experiences prolonged price declines and on average, lasts around 230 days). We are currently experiencing what is anticipated to be the ‘worst bear market of all time’. 

This is an opportune moment for us, as women, to seize the opportunity and educate ourselves on some healthy money habits so as to better equip ourselves with the resources to build a more financially free future

Here are 5 things you can do to kickstart your journey to be more financially free:

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Get Reading

Books like Robert Kiyosaki’s ‘Rich Dad Poor Dad’ are great to get into the mindset of multiple streams of income. Similarly, ‘The Intelligent Investor’ by Benjamin Graham is also a great place to start. If you want something closer to home, there’s a great book by Mary Holm who is one of New Zealand’s most trusted and favoured personal finance journalists. Not only does she write a great personal finance Q&A column in The Herald, she also wrote a great book which appeals to our Kiwi sensibilities and need for banter – ‘Rich Enough? A Laid Back Guide For Every Kiwi.’ With summer right around the corner, picking up any of these great-for-beginner books will help get into the mindset of planning, goal setting and ultimately being more efficient with your money.

Listen to a Podcast

During lockdown, one thing that kept me sane were my daily park walks where I would listen to podcasts. The great thing about podcasts is how accessible they are and that they may even do things like recap whole books whilst being short, sharp and usually quite captivating. My favourite podcast that really got me into the genre of podcasts focused on financial wellbeing was ‘She’s On The Money’. Hosted by Victoria Devine, this podcast has a format that’s compelling and useful with listeners often sharing their money wins and losses of the week. More interestingly than that, they have a Facebook community which makes achieving your money goals more attainable and they’ve created useful things like ‘Savings Bingo’ where you pick a tile each week and save an amount based on that, and ultimately it may get you to $1,000 or $5,000 within a year! Other great podcasts for beginners are ‘Girls That Invest,’ created by NZ’s very own Simran and Sonya, or ‘Cooking The Books’ with Frances Cook.

Stay up to date with financial issues

Although people like to believe that ignorance is bliss, being up to date with financial issues and legislative changes and any benefits you may be eligible to receive is actually one of the best steps you can take in ascertaining financial freedom. Things like the cost of living payment that came out earlier this year, and being aware of tax legislation changes and even the effect of inflation are pertinent to understanding the wider picture and the bargaining power of your dollar. With current inflationary pressures and the employment market in NZ booming with the effect of significant brain drain overseas post Covid, you should be going into your next pay review or negotiations with the amount of inflation as the BARE minimum of your pay rises, before asking for more money.

Make a Budget

This seems simple and counterintuitive, but understanding your incomings vs. your outgoings is such an easy way to see how much you could actually save. Having a benchmark and an understanding of how much you could actually save each week, fortnight or month will make you look back and reflect on where you may have gone wrong. It’s also a regular routine, so for those of you who are creatures of habit, it’s a good way to keep yourself on track and fight the urge to splurge.

Start Investing Now

It’s never too late to start investing, but the best time to start is now. Technically, we’re in a ‘bear’ market. And whilst the study of economics is a study of patterns over time which help us to predict what trends may occur in the future, most bull markets (where security costs significantly rise) are marked by the end of a bear market. This means that shares are technically on sale at the moment, with potential for significant growth over the next 10-20 years. With compounding interest (which means you earn money on both the interest you’ve earned AND the money invested), investing has been historically proven to be the single most efficient way to grow your money. Whilst being an investor and trading on the stock market may seem daunting, there are way more accessible ways to start. Platforms in New Zealand like Sharesies, Kernel Wealth, Hatch, InvestNow and Stake (and a few more) make it easy to invest through their platform whilst paying them a management fee. You can even invest in Exchange Traded Funds or whole stock market products, which decreases the risk involved with investing by making the direction of your investment move with the stock market as a whole.


The worst thing you can do for yourself is to do nothing, so follow these 5 tips to pave the way for a financially free future!



Woman+ Mothers Day Gift Guide

Mother’s Day is getting close, and now is the time to show your mother all your love by treating her because we all know how much they deserve it. Our gift guide has everything from opulent hotel experiences to practical yet stylish gifts. We’ve curated a collection of items to make mum feel pampered, cherished, and appreciated. So, look no further than our guide below, whether you want something useful or something lux.


The Hilton Karaka



Let’s start with a bang, shall we? Hilton Karaka offers an incredible experience where you can indulge in some of town’s best food and drinks. You’ll be surrounded by stunning views of the hotel and its lush gardens, making for a picture-perfect Mother’s Day memory. To celebrate Mother’s Day on Sunday, the 14th of May, the Hilton’s chefs have curated a special menu, which will be paired with a glass of bubbles. Don’t miss this opportunity to treat one of the most important people in your life. Limited spaces are available.

Book a table here: https://bit.ly/dtkarakamothersday23


Wild Poppies x Black Pineapple



Kiwi cocktail connoisseurs Black Pineapple and leading New Zealand floral and gift provider Wild Poppies have come together to create a specially-conceived hand-crafted gift called ‘Wild at Heart’ this Mother’s Day. It brings together the best of both worlds – cocktails and flowers. Who’s mum isn’t going to love this perfect combo? 

“Teaming up with Black Pineapple is the perfect collab for Wild Poppies. Wild at Heart is such a beautiful and thoughtful gift to celebrate mum and we can’t wait to bring a smile to the faces of amazing mums all over New Zealand.”  – Georgia Brodie of Wild Poppies. 




Aesop Gloam Fragrance



Looking for a bottle of heaven? Look no further than this new blend by Aesop. A co-creation by the brand’s long-term fragrance collaborator, Barnabé Fillion, whose approach favours the impressionistic to create scents that are highly susceptible to body chemistry, emerging unique to each wearer. This scent is the perfect combination of neroli, orange blossom, jasmine, and sandalwood. It’s a complex tapestry of rich, warm spice interwoven with light floral notes that simultaneously evokes interior worlds of an antique charm. 


Ashley and Co


If your mum is into self-care, Ashley and Co have got you sorted. The modern day scent experts announce a new limited edition scent to join their unique fragrance library. The new fragrance captures the essence of a fresh bouquet abundant with juicy berries and blooming buds. Bonberry Waxed Perfume is the gift that keeps on giving as its sweet aroma circulates through the home with each burn, transporting you to a garden bursting with florals.


Holski



Help transform mum’s skin from the inside and out with marine collagen and clinically proven ingredients that care for her and the planet. 

Consisting of a simple two step system – one silky smooth hydrator and a great tasting supplement powder full of marine collagen, natural antioxidants, prebiotics, vitamins and peptides – this skincare duo is perfect for those seeking healthy, beautiful skin in a sustainable way.


Glasshouse’s Latest Collection



Glasshouse Fragrances has launched a limited-edition collection of eight fragrances that celebrate the beauty of femininity and the strength of nature. One of the highlights of the collection is Pink Suede, featuring the delightful scent of Peony that brings out the texture and depth of the fragrance. Imagine a stunning bouquet of flowers wrapped in soft pink suede, and you’ll get a sense of what this fragrance has to offer. Give your mum a gift that captures the essence of beauty and femininity this Mother’s Day!


July Suitcases



July suitcases are the perfect companion for the mums who love to travel. Not only are they stylish, but they’re also lightweight, durable, and built to last. From the very on trend moss green cases to metallic mirroring sleekness, your mum will love how easy it is to manoeuvre around the airport or down to the bach with one of these suitcases.



Saben Handbags



Every outfit isn’t complete without a fabulous handbag, and Saben has got you covered.  Designed by the wonderful Roanne Jacobson (an epic mum herself) their collection of bags are both stylish and practical. I am very lucky to own a couple of Saben’s top sellers and you can best believe I’m going to hook my mum up this year with one of their navy perfectly sized wallets. You can choose from various sizes and colours to find the perfect one for your mum.


Asap Skin Care

For the mums who love to take care of their skin, asap has got the perfect skincare routine. This very fun limited edition pack contains the powerhouse of serums. Their products are gentle on the skin and effective at the same time. My favourite from this pack is the Super B Complex, famous for its hydrating properties and high niacinamide content. Your mum will love how her skin feels after using these highly credible products.


Be Pure



Bepure’s wellness supplements are perfect for the mums who prioritise their health. If herday starts with breakfast and her supplements, why not introduce a bottle from BePure? Their supplements are made with natural ingredients that are safe and effective. They’ve got everything from magnesium to energy formulas that she will love. Can’t decide which one to start with? My all time favourite is their One multivitamin which is packed with pretty much everything good for you.


Specsavers



Does your mum wear glasses? Or do you want to encourage her to check up on her eye health? Specsavers has a fantastic range of prescription frames and lenses that are both stylish and affordable. With some of the best customer and practitioner service, your mum will love how attentive their team is and will soon fall in love with how comfortable and stylish her new glasses feel. It’ll be you that she thanks for it too (big win).


Skintopia – Cooling Globes


For the mums who are always on the go, Skintopia has got a unique and refreshing product – cooling ice globes! Include these globes into mum’s skin care regimen to provide her with a relaxing, cooling face and eye massage anytime she wants. Cooling Ice Globes are everyone’s favourite part of Skintopia’s skin treatments, so now they’ve made them available for use in the comfort of your home. 


Hej Hej



Looking for something fashionable, high quality and sustainable? Check out Hej Hej’s women’s clothing boutique. Think colour, texture, and style – they’ve got it all. You can see their collections on their online store or head into their Wellington store. Your mum will love the confidence these clothes instantly emit. 



Riser by Allbirds



Allbirds has got you covered with the perfect sneakers for your mum. These shoes are stylish, eco-friendly, comfortable, and perfect for everyday wear. Allbirds have released their latest creation – the Riser, the perfect shoe for dressing up and dressing down. Your mum will love how easy it is to style them with any outfit. But watch out. She may get addicted to Allbirds like so many other New Zealanders!


Cricut Explorer 3



For mums who love DIY projects, Cricut is a must-have. This machine can cut, write, and draw on various materials, making it perfect for any crafting project. Your mum will love how easy it is to use and how creative she can get with it. I’ve used one of these impressive machines to cut stickers, print onto t-shirts, and I have so many more things on my to-do list that I can’t wait to get busy with—the ultimate hobby holder. 


Deebot Vacuum Cleaner



Watching mum work all day and look after us all night, I know how frustrating it can be to try to keep the house clean with chaos running around. The Deebot takes the hassle out of vacuuming by doing it for you. This robotic vacuum cleaner is a game-changer, with its intelligent mapping technology that ensures every corner of your home is thoroughly cleaned. One of the things I love most about the Deebot is how easy it is to use. Simply set it up using the app on your phone and let it do the rest! Plus, its sleek and modern design means it will look good in any home.


We hope that something in this guide has tickled your fancy and inspired something special to add to the shopping list. We want to take this opportunity to wish a very Happy Mother’s Day to all our motherly figures – you deserve the world.




Dog Breeds that Match You

Probably one of the most exciting chapters you’ll ever embark on is getting a new pup. Whether it’s your first or you’ve homed many through your life, the decision of what type of dog all comes down to doing some homework. Likely, you will probably have one hundred questions about breeds, personalities and qualities. The big question is, which breed will best fit your lifestyle (and theirs)? 

*This is a voiceover created by AI and therefore some of the words or pronunciations may be incorrect. We hope you still enjoy this listening experience

I love the common stereotypes of dogs matching the personalities of their owners. But research has shown that this is entirely true. You can learn a lot about a person based on the breed of dog they own.

Whippets were particularly common among risk-takers.

Big-shot optimists were more likely to own golden retrievers.

Those who were well-organized had tiny schnauzers.

Pomeranians were preferred by friendly extroverts.

Staffordshire Bull Terriers or Jack Russell terriers belonged to loving and kind people.

With these fun partnerships in mind, you can delve deeper into things to consider when  searching for the best dog to fit you and your family…



Woman with afro and fluffy dog



Deciding on the Breed

Choosing the right breed is a big decision. What’s important to establish is that you can’t just pick the cutest puppy in the patch. With over 400 dog breeds, each with its own needs and qualities, aligning with the right breed for you is essential. The more compatible you are with your dog, the easier and more enjoyable your time together will be. You also need to consider how your lifestyle will change over the next 10-15 years by ensuring you will live in a home that is still fit for a dog’s lifestyle.


Level of Physical Activity

Your dog’s activity level must match yours. Ask yourself, how much exercise can you give your dog? All dogs require some training, although the degree varies widely from breed to breed. You don’t want to deny your dog something as vital as exercise since it might lead to other problems: a well-exercised dog is a calm dog who is less prone to create commotion! It doesn’t mean you have to be a fitness freak to own a dog; certain breeds don’t need as much exercise as others. It’s simply a question of choosing the proper match. Furthermore, remember that size only sometimes matters regarding workout needs!


High Energy 

Australian Cattle Dogs

German Shepherds

Border Collies

Boxers 

Dalmatians

Jack Russell Terriers

Labradoodles

Huskies

Doberman


Low Energy

Bulldog

Bull Mastiff

Cavalier

Spaniel

Chow Chow

French Bulldog

Pug

Chihuahua

Maltese


Trainability

Before getting a new dog, you need to be honest and think about how much time and energy you can put into training your new pup. If your dream dog is obedient and well-trained, you must spend two hours a day training and schooling. Some dog breeds are far more laid back and casual, while others have a higher intelligence which benefits owners that can keep their activity stimulation high. All dogs can be trained and taught obedience; however, it will all come down to how much effort their owners will put in.


Woman on a cliff watching the sunset with her red haired dog



Highly Intelligent Breeds

Border Collie 

Australian Shepard 

German Shepherd

Poodle

Huntaway

Kelpe 


Laid Back/Calm Breeds

Shih Tzu

Maltese

Basset Hound

Cavalier 

Bulldog

Greyhound

Pug


Rescuing a Dog

So many dogs need good homes at animal shelters that encourage people to adopt dogs. With so many incredible dog-fostering teams across New Zealand, you can feel assured that you will have support from these teams when you are ready to adopt. You can always talk to the team at the rescue group if you wish to adopt one of their dogs, they will be able to tell you more about the dog’s character, and whether or not they have any behavioural concerns you should be aware of.


Awesome Dog Rescue Teams

Rescue Revive Rehome – Bay of Plenty

The Last Lamp Post 

Chained Dog Rescue 

North Auckland Dog Rescue

Keysar Rescue




Our Top 6 Picks for Running Shoes

Running shoes have to be the unsung heroes of our exercise gear. 

This is a voiceover created by AI and therefore some of the words or pronunciations may be incorrect. We hope you still enjoy this listening experience


Let’s face it, those old trainers you’ve been wearing since 2017 aren’t even up for a quick walk to the shops anymore, let alone a 5k. But alas, finding the perfect trainers for jogging and sprinting is easier said than done.

Whether you’re looking for trainers to help you achieve that marathon goal or maybe you’re looking for a little wardrobe refresh to revive and motivate your daily runs, we’ve done the research to track down the best running shoes on the market so you can conserve your energy for the racetrack than the internet!

P.S.If you want to become a committed runner, it’s best to visit a local running store for a complete arch evaluation before investing in a new pair to uncover what type of runner you are.


ON Cloudsurfer Womens

ON Cloudsurfer Womens $279.99


The ON Cloudsurfer provides all-around comfort for your feet. The premium training shoe is specifically developed for road runners and allows for softer landings and more explosive take-offs thanks to the revolutionary rubber pods embedded in the midsole. Additional foam is strategically placed throughout the outsole to provide durability and shock absorption, while the zig-zag pattern ensures good grip and traction on wet and slippery surfaces.

The Cloudsurfer is light and bouncy, with a rocker shape in the sole that ensures a seamless transition with each step. Overall, an excellent all-around shoe that is cushioned enough for easy kilometres yet light and responsive enough for your short stints.


 

Adidas Adizero Running Shoes

Adidas Adizero Running Shoes $200


Adidas’ most recent addition to the high-performance Adizero family is great for anyone aiming to set new personal bests without breaking the bank. Adidas ADIZERO SL is a quick daily training shoe packed with important components and design cues from our world-renowned Adizero series. The midsole is made up of a full-length lightweight Lightstrike EVA chassis that delivers stability, robustness, and cushioning. The complete rubber outsole ensures grip on every surface, which is important as we head into New Zealand’s unpredictable and stormy weather. Don’t let the rain stop you in these kicks!


Zoomx Invincible Run Flyknit 3

Zoomx Invincible Run Flyknit 3 – Women’s $299


Nike has transcended its status as America’s apparel giant to become a source of invention, knowledge, and potential in their quest for peak human performance. Every pair of swoosh-branded footwear is developed and made using biomechanically verified technology that has been shown to minimise injury risk and improve perception and feel. The ‘Just Do It’ brand has revolutionised the route to athletic achievement with the Nike Air midsole, Lunarlon Foam cushioning, and FlyKnit fibres. These invincible fly knits are a go-to for serious runners who love running long distances. These are incredibly lightweight and breathable. Just note that due to the soft fibres, don’t tie the laces too tight!


Ultra Glides

Ultra Glides $210


When your trail running ambitions take you far and wide, you’ll need a shoe that will keep you comfortable all day without weighing you down. That’s why Salomon crammed as much grip, fit, and lightweight comfort as they could into the new Ultra Glides. You can conquer any long-distance obstacle with these on your feet. These trainers feature an amazing bounce that will have you on the go with a fresh spring in your stride. I love how these feature a drawstring toggle which replaces the usual laces. You won’t need to worry about undone or loose laces anymore.


PE Nation x Gel-Quantum 180 VII

PE Nation x Gel-Quantum 180 VII $250


One of my best pals is a runner; she couldn’t recommend this pair enough – “This pair from P.E. Nation and Asics, designed specifically for more uncertain trail terrain, felt like a dream from my first run.” The ASICS Institute of Sport Science developed the GEL-QUANTUM 180TM VII shoe, which blends a futuristic form with innovative cushioning technology. Its top has been redesigned with a jacquard mesh upper for improved ventilation and comfort. The streamlined appearance of the design also includes smooth lines and fewer layers to produce a more adjustable fit. 

They just look freaking awesome, which is difficult to achieve with trainers. I hypothesise that dressing in bright, cheery colours makes the average joe more inclined to get up and move about. And with this jazzy design, this entertaining pair surely meets the description. They’re incredibly light and bouncy, and they will feel great straight away.


Allbirds Wool Tree Flyers

Allbirds Wool Tree Flyers $270


If you’re one for sustainability, look no further than Allbirds for all your eco-friendly shoe needs. Meeting the highest standards of animal welfare, environmental care and social sustainability, these lightweight and uber warm sneakers are made with a ZQ certified Merino wool upper. The midsole is made from sugarcane, the insole foam is made from castor bean oil and the outsole is natural rubber. If you’re wondering how these are water resistant in a sustainable way, the shoes are treated with a fluorine-free water repellent coating! Even the nylon eyelets are bio-based and the shoe laces are made from recycled plastic bottles. Flexible and warm with sufficient traction, once you try Allbirds, there’s no going back. 

So, there you have it team, the unsung heroes of exercise gear – running shoes! Don’t let your tired old trainers hold you back from achieving your running goals. Check out our researched list of the best running shoes on the market and treat your feet to the support they deserve. And remember, a visit to a local running store for an arch evaluation is always a good idea to find the perfect pair for you. Happy running!




5 Reasons You’re Tired And How To Combat It

With daylight savings officially over, we’re entering the colder days. I’m sure I don’t just speak for myself when I say that I’m struggling to keep my energy levels and stay awake.

Research has split tiredness into three aspects, and this is how most doctors analyse fatigue. They can stem from psychological, physical and lifestyle causes. While psychological causes are common (such as insomnia or stress), they’re more contextual and related to specific people. On the other hand, the physical and lifestyle causes are far more easy to detect.

Without further ado, let’s dive into the 5  main reasons that you’re feeling tired.



You Overslept

I was going to start this article off with the classic “you overslept…” but I thought that it was far too obvious and cliche. We all know that if you don’t get enough sleep, your body tends to crash throughout the day. 

So I decided to go the less obvious route of oversleeping. Yes, oversleeping is bad for you. 

Quite often, we think a big long sleep is good, but research by the US’s National Health Society has proved that sleep debt can never be repaid; you can never make up for lack of sleep by oversleeping another day.

Research from the Johns Hopkins Medicine institute has shown that too much sleep is just as bad as getting not enough sleep, as it increases general lethargy and brain fog, but can increase the risk of diabetes, coronary heart diseases, anxiety, obesity, depression and consistent headaches. 

As an adult, you should be aiming for 6.5 – 8 hours of sleep to hit the optimal point.




Nutrition Deficiencies

A lack of key nutrients in your diet can lead you to feel exhausted and fatigued, despite the fact that you’ve clocked a full 7 hours of sleep. 

Common deficiencies that are linked to feeling fatigued, and are also common in people are Iron, vitamin B12, Vitamin D and Vitamin C. 

As a person who has been deficient in iron in the past, I know that this is very common and fatigue was the most common symptom which had a severe turnaround as soon as I implemented iron supplements into my daily routine. 

As the above deficiencies are very common, if you’re feeling particularly drowsy, I would urge you to get your levels tested.


Dietary Imbalances

Closely linked to point (2) above is your overall diet. 

Your diet affects your energy levels, your attention span, and ultimately, the way you feel. To maintain an energy level that’s commensurate with the energy you expend in a day, you need a balanced diet which is packed with nutrients and proteins. 

If you undereat, your body doesn’t get enough nutrients and will break down fat and muscle to meet its energy demands, which can in turn, trigger fatigue. If you overeat foods that are more processed and high in sugar, your body will start to crave more food of this sort which impacts your sleep cycle, blood sugar levels and insulin levels. We’ve all fallen victim to a sugar high and subsequent crash. 

Following a diet low in processed foods and added sugars like grains/legumes with vegetables and a protein source such as fish, eggs or meat can reduce fatigue. So trade in that caramel slice for a mandarin instead!


Hydration

This is one of the biggest lifestyle causes of tiredness and fatigue. I know we always hear people say that you need to drink water, but we really underestimate the importance of staying well hydrated.

Our body is approximately 60% water, so we need adequate water level restoration to replace the water loss that takes place on a daily basis through sweat and urination. 

When we get dehydrated, our entire bodies are affected. On a smaller scale, dehydration can cause dizziness, light-headedness, headaches, tiredness, dry mouths and skin, fatigue, lethargy, inability to concentrate, bad breath and have negative repercussions on our sleep cycles. Left unchecked, it can lead to kidney stones and failure of your kidney function. 

The average person should be aiming to drink around 8 glasses of water a day. I’ve found that buying a cute water bottle and aiming to drink 3 full refills of my 750ml bottle (keeping in mind that I exercise daily!) has helped me keep my dehydration in check.




Caffeine Dependency

Who doesn’t start their morning with a coffee. It’s part of my daily routine to wake up, go to the gym, go to work and then make coffee. 

While they do give us a boost of energy, studies have shown that a dependence on caffeine is detrimental to us in many ways. In some people this can manifest as shakes and tremors, but very commonly, it can lead to caffeine cravings and dependencies, and feelings of extreme tiredness without caffeine. 

Many studies have shown that due to caffeine dependence, people tend to consume large amounts of caffeine, which causes an overuse of caffeine and negatively impacts our sleep cycle. As you may have experienced, caffeine causes energy crashes at unexpected times during the day and if you top up regularly, it can also keep you up at night by causing nighttime anxiety and worrying and disrupted sleep due to the increased frequency of waking up. This all leads to sleepiness and fatigue the following day. 

A dependency on caffeine is directly linked to sleep disturbance, and I’ve noticed a significant improvement in my sleep at night now that I’ve restricted myself to only having one coffee per day at 8:30am. 

If you’re heavy on energy drinks or coffees but find yourself feeling lethargic and in a slump, I’d highly recommend cutting out one or two of those caffeinated beverages and replacing it with a walk or some movement to release some endorphins and restore energy levels immediately.




Awareness is key – hopefully this list has made you aware of why you may be feeling fatigue and the means to combat it!

Bathroom Mirrors You’ll Love to See Everyday

The right mirror can make a world of difference, whether you’re redoing an old bathroom or upgrading from the old crusty mirror that came with the house when you moved in. The perfect mirror for your bathroom can do such wonders for your space, like making the room feel more spacious, dividing the room up to create a fresh look, and even serving as a storage station.

In my research to create this epic lineup for you, I learnt some incredibly useful tips. For instance, designers say that round mirrors work particularly well in narrow vertical areas. If you are tight for space, longer and more narrow mirrors work best for giving the room a better height appearance. 

To save you the trouble of settling for a mirror that you may regret, we have compiled a comprehensive list of the finest solutions available in various sizes, designs, and prices. Each mirror selected in this edit below is sophisticated and chic but simple enough to work within any space.


Citta Oval Wall Mirror



Oval mirrors are an excellent way to make a subtle statement in a bathroom. Designed by David Moreland and Nikolai Sorensen, this classic mirror is a favourite. The classic design of this oval wall mirror ensures that it will last for years to come. Looking at it from the side, you can see a thin, natural wood stripe that serves as the perfect finishing touch.


Backlit Large LED Mirror


Need a big mirror for your double sink? Mirror World presents this Backlit LED Mirror. This rectangular design comes in five sizes that are suitable for horizontal and vertical displays. If you prefer a higher appearance, you may need to acquire two and hang them vertically; most sizes will span the width of double sinks when placed in a horizontal orientation.

An awesome LED system lights the mirror’s frame with dimming settings and a built-in defogger! Installation requires two people because of its weight and size, neither of which are typical of standard bathroom mirrors. It’s not cheap, but it’s built to last and won’t need replacing very soon.


Brass Outline Mirror by Joska & Sons



If it’s within your budget, consider the stunning Brass Outline Mirror by Joska & Sons. This beautiful mirror is handmade in Christchurch. You can add the option of a LED glow of diffused light to your bathroom to elevate your space. This mirror is a great choice if you want to add more style to your bathroom and want to do so in a chic, New Zealand-made way. AC Homestore also gives you the option of black or gold finishings, which may suit your style perfectly. 


Hayden Oval Pivot Mirror



Amplify the space and light in your home with the Hayden Oval Pivot Mirror in chrome. The pivoting design is perfect for the bathroom or at the dressing table. I’m such a lover of this mirror’s sleek chrome finish, as it matches most bathroom faucets and shower utilities. It’s all in the small details, right? 


Sail Backlit Mirror



If you prefer a more obscure shape but still want a frameless mirror with an elegant look, we recommend the Sail Backlit Mirror as a great option for bringing a statement into your space. This one hangs flush against the wall without any visible hardware for an elegant look. You can hang this artsy sail-shaped mirror vertically or horizontally.


Mirror with an Aluminum-Alloy Frame




This Aluminium Frame rectangular mirror is a timeless and budget-friendly option if you’re shopping for a new mirror at The Warehouse. The sleek profile and clean design are very upscale. The square shape is distinctive enough to attract attention without compromising timeless elegance or adaptability. It’s great since it lasts a long time and doesn’t impose any certain design aesthetic on the room.

The standard size this comes in is ideal for most vanities, and if you need extra light in a larger bathroom, you can just hang two of them side by side. It comes with everything you need to hang it up, and it can be done quickly and easily.




The Winter 2023 Boot Edit

I’m usually open to exploring new brands and styles, but when it comes to selecting the best boots for the winter season, I like to learn a little bit about the brand before making my final decision. After all, harsh weather can inflict a lot of wear and tear on a shoe and I want to know that my beloved boots will last me a long time – which is good for both the environment and my bank account. It may be dreary and grey outside, but if you wear a new pair of shoes, things will certainly feel a little better. All of this prompts the question: which brands and boots have the most reliable styles to pick from?


What To Look For

The best women’s boots are versatile. When the temperature cools, they can replace your trainers, party heels and sandals – yes, the perfect pair can do all three!

Women used to pick between practicality and style, but we’re now seeking chunky, punk shoes with comfortable platform soles due to the geniuses behind brands like Bottega Veneta and Prada. The kind who can toughen up slinky evening gowns and floral day dresses while also looking terrific in skirts, denim, and everything in between. If the biker/hiker aesthetic isn’t your thing, our selection has plenty of attractive easy-to-wear choices with wedges, block heels and strong soles that will easily transition from day to night. Take a look at our WOMAN+ approved picks below.


Annie Cowboy Boot

Annie Cowboy Boot $600



Have you heard that 70’s styling is coming back? Mi Piaci’s Annie boot rocks the cowboy boot trend with Western-inspired topstitching and a Cuban heel that feels incredibly modern and wearable. You heard it here first: embroidered, stack-heeled Western cowboy boots are coming back. If you don’t believe us, just ask Dua Lipa, Kourtney Kardashian, or Kendall Jenner, who have all been seen wearing them recently. Wear it with an over-the-knee skirt or underneath your favourite denims.


London Rebel Chunky Boots

London Rebel Chunky Boots $116



For something stylish and versatile, meet these chunky knee-high boots. All of our favourite fashion ‘it’ girls have been spotted in this style. These ones are from ASOS and are made from faux leather. I have a pair similar to these, which are such a fun pair with short dresses and skirts as their silhouette adds a loud statement.


Tucky Ankle Boots

Tucky Ankle Boots $103



These are the boots you’ll reach for night after night. Perfect for dinner dates and even the office, these ankle boots are comfy and durable, with raving reviews online. Their pointed toe ups the level of the class immediately, and you’ll have plenty of fun click-clacking away in these heels. Everyone needs a pair like this in their life!


Nora Combat Boot

Territory Leather Ankle Boots $400



The Nora ankle boots are beloved by Mi Piaci women. This stunning pair combines delicate aspects of grunge while maintaining a basic form, making them the ideal style for year-round attire. We’re obsessed with the snakeskin leather boot vibe at the moment as the perfect neutral that still stands out from the crowd.


Territory Leather Ankle Boots

Territory Leather Ankle Boots $229



The ROC Territory boots are worn-in leather and have a utilitarian look. ROC Territory is the place to go if you’re looking for gothic/punky combat boots. The lace-up design lends a military vibe to the shoe, while the block heel adds height without sacrificing comfort.


Edam Combat Boot

Edam Combat Boot$349.90



Adding height without the discomfort of heels? Easy peasy with Merchant’s Edam Combat boot. The Edam ankle boot is the brand’s best-selling style. Designed with comfort and elegance in mind, the subtle grunge characteristics that will enhance everything from jackets to jeans. I bet you’ll reach for these everyday this Autumn/Winter!


Anine Bing Mid Tania Boots

Edam Combat Boot $349.90



Tania Boots by Anine Bing are revised for Autumn ’23 with a little longer, stylish and classic shaft. The warmth of the toffee suede pairs perfectly with denim, neutral trousers and print! Subtle western stitch details enhance the Mid Tania Boot’s timeless vibe. You’ll hold onto these forever.


Joy Chelsea Boot

Anine Bing Mid Tania Boots $879



The chunky platform Chelsea boot is not going anywhere. The Joy Boot by Karen Walker is an edgy twist on the classic Chelsea boot style, with its hefty high-heel sole, increased height, and stylish almond toe. It’s made of 100% croc-embossed leather with a silky leather inner. It also has an elastic gusset and a back pull tag to make it easy to put on. The stacked heel is set on a lugged rubber sole with a styled trail that combines elegance and utility.




It’s important to research and choose a reliable brand when selecting boots for the upcoming season to ensure durability and save money in the long run. Exploring new styles is exciting, but the quality of the shoes is crucial, especially in harsh weather conditions. A good quality pair of boots not only benefits the environment but also adds excitement to the daily routine, making the dreary and grey weather so much more bearable.

Easter Weekend 2023: High Tea Edition

Feeling fancy this Easter? Well, lucky for you, the team at WOMAN+ have rounded up some of the best high teas on offer across New Zealand for you to celebrate in style.

From petite sandwiches to perfectly crafted macarons, get classy with any of these options.




Cordis Hotel



This year for Easter, between 7 to 10 April, the Cordis Hotel in Auckland are doing a special high tea sitting in their Chandelier Lounge for $99 per adult, or $55 per child. 

On entry, you’ll be treated with a glass of bubbles (or a special iced chocolate for the kids), and served an array of delights from cranberry chicken tarts, smoked salmon and high tea classic egg sandwiches to savoury muffins.


DeBretts Kitchen 


Hotel DeBretts, nestled in Auckland’s CBD are well renowned for their annual Easter High Tea. 

This beautiful art deco themed hotel serves the special Easter high tea at either a $59 per person option, or a tipsy tea option at $79 per person. From smoked salmon pinwheels, to devilled eggs, hot chocolate and easter bunnies, there’s nothing not to love about this choice.


Intercontinental Wellington


Intercontinental Wellington is a hotel which exudes luxury and modern indulgence. Located in the prime location of the Wellington CBD, this high tea experience takes place in the lobby lounge. 

The Easter High Tea experience is available all across Easter weekend with their classic hand-crafted treats served with an Easter theme and twist. We’re talking petite hot cross buns, roast lamb finger sandwiches, chocolate bunnies and many more bunny themed treats. 

The base package is only $64 per person (or $35 for children under 12), which includes a glass of bubbles. It’s an absolute steal – this is one you won’t want to miss!


The George Christchurch


The George hotel is a luxury 5 star hotel which overlooks the picturesque Hagley Park and River Avalon. Situated in the most vibrant cultural precinct of Christchurch, the George is a fantastic location. 

From apple and cinnamon scones, to chocolate chai macarons and beef sliders; this tea has a number of incredible snack options. This Easter high tea runs for the duration of the Easter weekend and is located in the 50 Bistro. Prices are $50.50 for each adult, or $33.50 for children 12 and under. 


Novotel New Plymouth


This high tea is for the chocoholics. The special Easter high tea runs for one day only on Sunday 9 April between 11:30 to 4:30 pm. 

Dilmah teas are on offer, served with your classic quiches, egg and chive sandwiches, salmon buns, and sausage rolls. For the sweet options, all options are chocolate and easter themed – with the chocolate hot cross buns stealing the show. 

Adult prices are $49 per person, with kids at $29. A family friendly, and more relaxed option, I couldn’t think of a better way to spend Easter sunday.




No matter where in New Zealand you are, we hope we’ve given you the inspo to eat your hot cross buns in style this Easter! If you’re after more Easter treats, read our article on where to get the best hot cross buns in New Zealand here.




Is Your Makeup Sliding Off? Top 5 Primers for Oily Skin

In a world where glass skin is everything, dewy skin products and hydrating makeup items have taken over the shelves of department stores everywhere. 

One problem, where have all the matte products gone? 

Combination and oily skin types have taken the backseat for a while, and it’s time for a change. With cloud skin makeup trends and matte makeup slowly returning, let’s discuss the top 5 best primers for shine-free, long-lasting, stunningly matte skin.  


Glow Recipe Strawberry BHA Pore-Smooth Treatment

Glow Recipe Strawberry BHA Pore-Smooth Treatment $78 NZD



Glow Recipe recently released their Strawberry BHA Pore-Smooth Treatment. It is a one-and-done skincare primer that will help regulate oil production from the inside out and keeps your skin mattified and ready for a long day. 

While encapsulated BHA and strawberry enzymes smooth uneven texture over time, plant-derived pore-minimising strawberry leaf extract absorbs any excess oil that targets the appearance of large pores. Additionally, tapioca and rice keep the oils at bay without clogging the skin, creating a smooth and blurred surface for your foundation. 

Texture-wise, it has a cooling sensation that feels invisible when blended into the complexion. Plus, the Glow Recipe Strawberry BHA Pore-Smooth Treatment is silicone free! Overall, we recommend the Strawberry BHA Pore-Smooth Treatment for those with combination or mildly oily skin.


Milk Makeup Pore Eclipse Primer

Milk Makeup Pore Eclipse Primer $67 NZD



The Milk Makeup Pore Eclipse Primer is one of the best things to happen in the makeup world! If you have oily skin that cannot seem to hold onto foundation, you must give it a go. 

The ingredients include AHAs, peptides and antioxidants for a lovely balance of skincare and makeup. Over time, you should notice smaller appearing pores, brighter skin and less oil production. Remember, just because you have oily skin, it doesn’t mean you should avoid hydrating it. Peptides and antioxidants will keep the skin happy and mitigate excess oil production for a healthy complexion. 

As for its priming abilities, the Pore Eclipse feels like you have used a magic eraser on the skin. Instantly, you will notice a mattified complexion that feels quite dry to the touch. As such, we recommend this primer for those with very oily skin. 


Urban Decay All-Nighter Glow

Urban Decay All-Nighter Glow $79 NZD



The Urban Decay All-Nighter Glow is one of the most underrated primers for combination oily skin types. Despite its name, this is not a primer for dewy and shiny skin. Instead, it creates a sticky surface for your makeup to latch onto and stay on for hours and hours. 

Hyaluronic acid and agave extract help boost the skin without shrivelling it dry. This way, your skin produces less oil throughout the day to compensate. It turns out, reverse psychology works really well for combatting excessively oily skin! 

Press into the skin and wait a few minutes for the stickiness to activate before applying your foundation. We have found that using a sponge is better suited for this primer as you don’t want to move this product around too much once applied. 


Smashbox Photo Finish Control Mattifying Primer

Smashbox Photo Finish Control Mattifying Primer $82 NZD




The Smashbox Photo Finish Control Mattifying Primer is for heavy-duty oil control. We recommend trying the other options if you have sensitive skin as this primer contains salicylic acid. On the other hand, if your skin agrees with salicylic acid and you already use it in your skincare regime, this primer is the one for you. 

We also recommend this product for men looking for an easy oil-controlling solution that doesn’t look or feel like makeup. The Photo Finish Control Mattifying Primer has an impossibly thin consistency that disappears into the skin as you apply it. As you pat and blend, you will notice an immediate difference in the look of your skin. Any appearance of oil or shine will be picked up and absorbed away. 

This Smashbox primer is also excellent for spot priming in particularly oily areas. After your skincare routine, apply in the t zone, inner cheeks or chin and leave the rest of your face for a balanced and well-protected barrier before you apply your makeup! 


arbonne Makeup Primer

arbonne Makeup Primer $71 NZD


We thought to include the arbonne Makeup Primer for those who prioritise pore blurring over oil control. Don’t get us wrong; this primer has formidable oil-controlling abilities. However, the arbonne Makeup Primer is much better at counteracting the appearance of large pores, and this is a feature of the skin that often goes hand-in-hand with oily or combo skin types. 

Unlike the rest of the lineup, the arbonne Makeup Primer has a thicker consistency and a slightly slippery feel. Despite this factor, you can be rest assured that your foundation will not ball up or pill on the skin. Rather, the thicker texture envelops the skin in a smoothening blanket and keeps the oil from penetrating the surface. Just give the primer a few minutes to settle into the skin before applying anything on top. 

We recommend this primer for those who only wear makeup for special occasions. While dimethicone is a wonder for texture, it isn’t the best ingredient to use on the skin daily. 




New Zealand’s Top Wedding Photographers

Wedding photographers are so much more than just vendors. You can expect a lifelong connection with your photographer, just as they will remember capturing your sweet day forever. Wedding photographers and videographers have valuable experience that makes them absolutely worth the investment. While it can be tempting to take onboard a cousin’s friend who may have a flash camera, you want to feel confident that your day will be documented beautifully as your photos will be with you for a lifetime. Photographers are there to comprehend lighting, posing, composition, and editing, among other things – they are the artists making art for your big day. 

You can trust that every special moment will be captured, making you feel at ease in front of the camera and putting to rest all nerves that were festering! Going with a photographer that has an impressive portfolio gives you the assurance that your wedding photos will have a consistency that only the best know how to achieve, brilliantly. As a wedding florist, I feel I have the inside scoop on the photographers who are doing incredible work. Below are my current favourite kiwi wedding photographers (though this is always changing!). Whenever I see one of these weddings on my feed, I feel such infectious joy for the couples.


Sapphire Studios




Everyone’s favourite photography team at the moment is Sapphire Studios. Killing the game with their passion for photography, projects, and creativity. Their work focuses on bringing vitality to creating real and appealing visual narratives. I have such a soft spot for analog shooting combined with digital, and Sapphire does just that. While located in Auckland, Sapphire loves capturing moments all throughout New Zealand.


Danelle Bohane




Danelle has twelve years of experience and over 300 weddings under her belt. Her work is a tribute to making everlasting photos that capture the undivided connection between two souls and those around them. Capturing love, raw emotion and infinite beauty, Danelle’s photography will bring you tears of sweet joy each time you look back on your day.


Kate Roberge Photography




Kate describes herself as a cat mum, a lover of breakfast, fashion and film. She’s an INCREDIBLE wedding, elopement and editorial photographer based in Queenstown. “Nothing inspires or excites me more than the beautiful connection and story two people can create together.” While scrolling through my already heavily wedding-themed Instagram feed, Kate’s stunning imagery constantly pops up, and you can best believe I always stop to double tap.


Amanda Thomas




Your wedding day should be full of joy, emotion, and laughter. Amanda has a naturally fun and relaxed approach to wedding photography, ensuring her clients simply have fun behind the camera over their day.  Amanda is incredible at capturing emotion and every single special moment. With a tonne of experience behind her and some stunning weddings, you can feel assured in her skilful hands.


Ryan Watts




Ryan’s work is a tribute to storytelling and timeless photography. With an emphasis on natural and relaxed captures, Ryan is on the hunt for the moments that matter and will consistently surprise you with the hidden moments you didn’t know were there. From the early morning coffees to the visitors ripping up the dance floor, the quiet times of introspection and the moments of outright laughter, Ryan likes to tell the narrative so the stories of your day will always live on. 


Bayly & Moore




A love story in itself, Soph and Si are the dynamic duo who have been shooting together since the day they met. Fast forward, Bayly & Moore have found a love of storytelling through their wedding photography and have never looked back. Creating beautiful imagery across stunning scenes across New Zealand, these guys are the real deal.


Ash Muir 




Ash has been a wedding photographer for eight years and is based in Hamilton,  though she travels extensively for her events. Ash Muir is passionate about bringing your special day to life and makes strong connections with her brides and grooms prior to and during their big day. She captures every unique angle and does so seamlessly. 

New Zealand is so lucky to have such beautiful venues and vendors to make all your wedding fantasies come to life. Not to mention the pure talent from all the teams above that will capture all the beauty entailed. Stay tuned as we continue covering NZ’s top wedding florists, spaces and bridal designers here at Woman+. In the meantime, Check out Nosy Parker for some sweet wedding photography inspiration.




New Zealand’s Top Wedding Florists

It’s a big statement, but I stand by it: your flowers will be one of the most exciting aspects of your wedding day. While you can readily design a menu concept and a colour scheme for invites, you never know how your flowers will look on the big day, which is both thrilling and nerve-racking! As a wedding florist myself and being there with brides from the first consult to the big day, you want to feel confident that your florist knows you and your vision. Don’t leave it to chance! I highly urge you to choose a fantastic florist whose work you like and can see yourself in their portfolio, and you’ll be in for one of the finest surprises of your life.

Whether you’re eloping with a simple bouquet and boutonniere or spending half your wedding budget on flowers, this list is a goldmine. I have had the honour of working with a number of these teams and I can hand on heart say, you will be amazed at what they can do. They are absolutely New Zealand’s finest. The florists below cover everything from quirky to flamboyant, romantic to creative. At the very least, following these accounts before your big day will immediately make your Instagram feed so beautiful. 


Michele Coomey




I’m happiest when I have an armful of flowers and a wedding to plan! Michele Coomey has been the woman to watch for the past number of years in the floral scene. With over 20 years of experience and hundreds of jobs under her belt, it’s no surprise that Michele is featured in this lineup. All of Michele’s work is inspired by nature. Her designs have meaning and purpose. Not simply following trends but rather capturing the personal style and integrating it with the location to create a mood and a visually stimulating floral experience for every event.

While based in Auckland, Michele takes weddings and events all the way from Northland to Bluff.


Blush Flowers




For drama, elegance and lush beauty, think Blush Flowers. Kelly and her team have brought so many bridal dreams to life and made quite the noise internationally, with Blush’s work featured on Pinterest boards worldwide. While they are the best of the best at soft pink and peachy palettes, jaws will drop once they sprinkle their colour magic into the mix.


Isadia




A personal favourite of mine is Isadia. Isabel and Lydia joined forces back in 2020 to create a fresh space of flower expertise and creativity. Isadia’s style is organic and intuitive. They are inspired by nature and capture the beauty of each season by following the distinctive shapes of the flowers and plants they create with. When it comes to their scented, fine art displays, every event is a work of art. Don’t believe me? These photos say it all.


Rose Tinted Flowers




Another personal favourite for me is Rose Tinted Flowers. For the wild and unruly bride, meet Rose Tinted Flowers. Born with a love of wild beauty Rose Tinted has curated countless weddings around Auckland and the upper North Island, designing everything from personal to lavish installations. Whether you need grand, lavish, refined or intimate, their whimsical yet contemporary florals are show-stopping.


Floral Stylist Co




Floral Stylist Co. is New Zealand’s innovative floristry response. Sue Cameron, the owner and creative director of Floral Stylist Co., sees floristry as an art form. Sue’s amazing team is composed of flower lovers, creatives, stylists, and event coordinators. Sue approaches each brief holistically, considering the colour palette and the event venue, all while ensuring perfection is delivered.


Ruth Fiona




Ruth Fiona’s inspiration comes from nature in its finest form. To produce effortlessly gorgeous flowers for spectacular weddings and events, her creative creations are driven by an aesthetic balance of adventurous colours and sumptuous textures.

With a passion for nature and a drive to make things with her hands. Ruth creates delicate and voluminous work that emphasises natural aesthetics in flower arrangements and styling. I am such a huge fan of Ruth’s no foam or chemicals approach and her love of supporting local growers for greenery and florals. 


The Flower Room




Sarah Gutschlag, the Flower Room’s founder and senior floral creative, and the Flower Room team have been creating exquisite flowers for spectacular weddings in the Queenstown region for over 23 years. Their appreciation of the Central Otago scenery and the wonderful seasons is easy to notice. Their style is simple but elegant, and brilliantly blends colour, texture into pure magic. 




Astrology Fix: Pisces Season

Pisces season; the season of turmoil, increased emotional intuition and self-reflection. 

Pisces season is my favourite astrological season, being my home sun sign. As a self proclaimed astrology queen, I had to discuss the vibe of this season. It started when the sun entered the mystical water sign of Pisces on February 19th, and will end on exit on or around March 20. 

Pisces is the last sign of the zodiac, making it intrinsically more intuitive and empathetic than the other signs of the zodiac. It also embodies the lessons and characteristics of all 11 signs which come before it.



The sign of Pisces is ruled by the planet of Neptune. This means that by its very nature, Pisces is compassionate, emotional, intuitive, deeply feeling and slightly psychic. Neptune is the planet of inspiration and ideas, and Pisces is the ruler of wisdom. As a mutable sign, it’s known to be flexible and adaptable and hold a willingness to learn. So far, Pisces season 2023 has had me called to focus on my own self-reflective, healing personality. Being part way through Pisces season, I have felt far more emotional and dreamy than I have in the last 6 months, and extremely in tune with the energy around me and how I’m making people feel.

What sets apart Pisces season in 2023 is that Saturn is also in Pisces (something that hasn’t happened since 1996). As a Pisces who was born in 1996, this is a pretty rare orbit. Saturn is the planet of karma and restriction, whilst the sign of Pisces is inherently generous and compassionate. This transit means that in general, what’s an emotional and intuitive time may actually be a resurgence of past storylines and unfinished business coming back around. Moreover, this will impact everybody because it calls to action that new lessons need to be learned, and to stop perceiving things to be a certain way but move past this to actually put things into action.

This Saturn orbit is extra spicy because it will be reunited with Neptune. Both planets haven’t been in Pisces together since 1847-1849. Neptune made its way to Pisces again in 2012, and will remain there until 2026. Similarly, Saturn once in Pisces will remain in Pisces until 2026. The effect of this is that the planet of inspiration will be put through the ringer of restriction and boundaries. It’ll be important to focus on your own mechanisms to deal with stress, overwhelming factors and anxiety.


While Pisces season will impact all signs in different ways, the mutable signs of the Zodiac being Pisces, Gemini, Virgo and Sagittarius will be the most impacted. 

For Pisces, although it’s an exciting time being the birth month, this comes with its own anxieties and stress. This may call to reflect on the direction of your life, but this reflection will also be accompanied by a fresh burst of energy and a new perspective. 

For Gemini and Virgo, this could manifest as more challenging and call you to reflect on a crisis or force you to deal with a situation that’s been ignored. 

For Sagittarius, this time is important to focus more on responsibility for yourself and tend to deeper parts of your home and personal life. 

Whatever Pisces season has in store for you – you can get through it!




A Look into the History of International Women’s Day

International Women’s Month (celebrated in March) and International Women’s Day (celebrated on the 8th of March) is an important global holiday marking the progress of women’s rights. It serves as a pertinent turning point in women’s rights and suffrage movements, bringing attention to various issues that women have faced over time (such as gender equality, fair workplace rights) and currently face (reproductive rights and so on).

Why March? The earliest mentions of International Women’s Day traces back to a common story told in New York City in 1857 on March 8. Female textile workers marched out in a protest against sweatshop working conditions and a demand for women’s suffrage as the working conditions toward women were extremely unfair. This was the first organised strike by working women in the Lower East Side of New York, and was an inspiring story of unionism. Unfortunately, there is little historical evidence confirming this story, despite its wide circulation.

December 1991. Image by © David Roth/Corbis


Although it’s difficult to pinpoint the exact moment in which the movement was catapulted, numerous things for women’s rights happened. In the 1890’s, New Zealand was the first country to give women the right to vote in parliamentary elections. This inspired the universal female suffrage movement and garnered significant international attention and support. 

The true origin of choosing March 8 allegedly comes from the Second Internationalist Socialist Women’s Conference in 1910. Here, activists gathered, including an incredibly well-known German activist named Clara Zetkin who was part of a Socialist Women’s group wanted a date to help solidify the rights of women and chose this date to honour a worker’s strike in Russia. 

By the 1970’s, feminism globally was a supported movement, and the united nations were looking to formally sponsor an annual celebration of International Women’s Day and amplify the dissemination of information around women’s rights and history. In the 1980’s, President Jimmy Carter of the United States issued a presidential proclamation declaring the week of March 8th to be Women’s history week. Shortly thereafter, Congress declared March as National Women’s history month in perpetuity – meaning that March was now the month marked in honouring the role of American women in history. This became the global date to celebrate the achievements of women over time strengthened by the ratification of this by the United Nations.


Although the rights of women have significantly evolved over time, there are still a number of countries with harsh sanctions against women. In western and fully developed countries, the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development have put out a study solidifying that as of 2022, despite now being a major presence in the paid labour force in all regions of the world, there is a significant gap between average wages of women and men. Evidence suggests that in western countries the compensation for a particular type of job is related to gender rather than education, experience or expertise. 

So this International Women’s Month, as we celebrate the women who have fought tirelessly and courageously for equality. It’s an opportunity to celebrate the women who have helped in the early days of rights, but also for the continuous call to change demanded by evolving circumstances over time (i.e., the need to still focus on gender inequality in the workplace). 

Show your support on social media for the cause by sharing posts and having an open dialogue about women’s causes, advocate for gender equality in your workplace, and even head out for a coffee date with the ladies in your office!



Our Favourite Wedding Venues in New Zealand: The Indoor Edit

Following the love of our outdoor wedding edit, we thought it would be great to delve into New Zealand’s best indoor wedding venues – churches, wineries and homesteads galore! If you’re a newlywed planning a ceremony, we invite you to consider these gorgeous indoor spots. 

Indoor wedding venues might be the greatest option for your event if you want peace of mind and comfort, knowing that your big day will not be ruined by inclement weather, insects or pricey tent rentals. Working within the walls of these stunning spaces gives plenty of freedom to decorate the location without fear of rain spoiling your wedding décor, and remember; you can always bring the outside in.

If you love the idea of interior spaces for your vows, you’re certainly spending the majority of your free time on Instagram looking for the best bridal inspiration to integrate into your own big day, and where better to start than with your wedding venue? Here is a list of our top wedding venues across the country to begin your search with.


Auckland

Glasshouse, Morningside

Glasshouse Auckland wedding venue


Glasshouse, with its idyllic flora and industrial contemporary environment, provides a one-of-a-kind place with little hassle. Glasshouse is a sophisticated, distinctive and an iconic spot that can accommodate large groups of people. You can host a seated dinner for up to 180 people and a cocktail party for up to 350 people. The glass roof embodies indoor/outdoor movement and enables all weather and seasonal activities. Right next door is the Morningside Tavern which is a favourite for drinks before and after your event to create more flow and ease on the night.


The Convent Hotel / Ada

ada auckland convent


A perfectly modern but gothic, gloomy and sombre setting to prepare for your wedding day. If you want to create a really boutique and one-of-a-kind party, booking the entire hotel gives you exclusive access to the exquisite Ada restaurant. The space photographs amazingly and your guests will get to enjoy impeccable food and the privacy of the special and intimate space.


The Hotel Britomart

hotel britomart patio


I adore The Hotel Britomart’s small wedding options. Perfect for couples who want an urban city wedding with access to privacy and beauty. The magnificent rooms with patios overlooking the cityscape fit with all the small touches to bring your intimate wedding to life. The Papuke room will be a blank canvas for your full creative freedom, fit with exposed masonry and historical features. The Hotel also offers its Library as a small lounge-style venue, ideal for a private dinner and cocktail celebration.


Hamilton

The Narrows Landing Conservatory

the narrows landing


The Narrows Landing, located in Tamahere, is just 10 minutes from Hamilton. It’s a New Zealand wedding venue that specialises in providing personalised festivities. For another indoor fix, the Conservatory is a stunning and exciting option. The space can accommodate over 130 guests and the venue offers a variety of packages to suit your special day. The Narrows Landing is a welcoming and open environment that infuses rustic charm into a venue rich with natural light, making for a truly spectacular wedding day.


Tauranga

Black Walnut Venue

black walnut glasshouse venue


Black Walnut Venue is a boutique space in Pahoia, in Bay of Plenty. Set on 5 acres of land amongst black walnut trees and a kiwifruit orchard, it’s the perfect amalgamation of ‘modern meets garden.’ Providing a glasshouse as well as a black barn, your ceremony and reception can be curated in a myriad of ways, accommodating up to 130 people. 



Taupo

Kinloch Manor

kinlock manor


Surrounded by golden bluffs and sparkling waters, you can exchange vows at the beyond-beautiful Kinloch Manor. You and your guest will enjoy breathtaking views of the estate. The central manor is spacious and perfect for a reception with friends and family, dining in elegant splendour beneath glorious blue skies that seem to stretch on forever.


Christchurch

The Little Chapel 

the little chapel christchurch


Behold Christchurch’s loveliest wedding venue. The Little Chapel is a quaint chapel built in the nineteenth century but just recently opened for wedding ceremonies. Though small, the chapel still fits 70 people. The organisers at this church are heavily community focused and have preached that 100% of your wedding costs are donated to charity, benefiting children and families in Christchurch.

Queenstown

Kamana Lakehouse

kamana lakehouse view


Kamana Lakehouse is Queenstown’s highest-altitude lodging events venue that literally stands above the rest. As you gaze out over Queenstown, your special day will ooze with luxury. Just a quick 20-minute drive from Queenstown airport, it’s equipped with a bar, restaurant and reception spaces.


Peregrine Winery

peregrine winery


Peregrine has been a family-owned company and a favourite event venue in Queenstown since 1998. They approach farming and vineyard management holistically, which translates beautifully into curating one-of-a-kind weddings. From their rustic woolshed to their architecturally recognised “wing,” Peregrine will have you covered, rain or shine. You will fall in love immediately.  


To complement your special day, check out how we would scent-scape your special occasion with the most romantic wedding fragrance duos here!




All the Tips and Tricks to Make Your Wine Last

Every wine drinker will have experienced the dilemma of craving a glass of vino but not wanting to see the bottom of the bottle. It’s a special kind of heart pang when you let a good drop go to waste. 

Fortunately, we have some simple tips and tricks to help you prolong the life of your favourite wines, beginning with understanding why wine goes bad in the first place. Wine needs a careful balance of oxygen exposure throughout the fermentation process. Once opened, too much exposure will convert your wine into vinegar!

From times to temperature, here’s everything you need to know about storing and keeping wine.

Confetti with wine glasses clinking



How Long Will Wine Keep?

Red and white wines can be stored unopened for up to a year. For that bottle of champagne or sparkling wine, only about six months (keep this in mind when putting a bottle aside to save for a special occasion). But once you pop that bottle, its shelf life drastically changes. Because there are acids in white wines, this helps the bottles stay fresh for around three to four days. Red wines should be finished in one day or two. Champagne and sparkling wine will only keep in the fridge for one day.

To savour your wine for a full week, the trick is to remove as much air as possible. Tools like these vacuum pumps below give the bottle a seal so tight it’s tricked into thinking it’s back to square one. While it does hinder the taste slightly, which isn’t ideal, it can add a few days to the life of your wine.


How to Tell if Your Wine Is Bad

First, examine the colour. Red wines may darken to brown and brick tones, while white wines will typically deepen and become yellow. If you want to brave it (though old wine is not unsafe to drink!) Red wines that have gone “off” will have flattened tastes and aromas, replacing its bright flavours with nutty, sherry-like characteristics. Whites will have a sour, vinegary flavour.


pouring red wine