Five of my faves - Instagram Wanderlusters

From the outrageously funny to the visually sublime!...

These are my favourite Insta feeds that inspire me to just chuck it all in and GO! ..... or at least live on vicariously through others.  Read on and see if you can resist!

1)  Adrien & Andrew McDermott - @travellingbetches and her main man @heyheyandrew

As @heyheyandrew says ... "Medina, Marrakech, Morocco - Ddddddayummm, have you ever seen so many things in one picture? No, not unless it's blades of grass, or smart smarts in my head. This guy's inventory management is on another level. For some reason he seems unconcerned about theft (how would he even know??). But anyways, I need to up my sketchiness factor, I think my kind eyes are betraying Adrienne's haggling skills. If you can guess what @travelingbetches bought here, I'll give you 11 hugs. Front to front, hips touching, but no looking, you creep. Bye."
And if you have a bit more time, check out their blog = = gob-smacking sometimes, but always a major giggle-fest.  These are two USA citz who are really getting out beyond Texas.  Free spirits on the prowl.  


2)  Conde Nast Traveller Magazine - @condenasttraveller 


As @condenasttraveller says ... "The entrance to Suján Rajmahal Palace in #Jaipur, #Rajasthan's beautiful Pink City. After its spectacular spruce-up recently, this pristine palace is now the most sprightly hotel in #India."

Conde Nast Mag hits all the high spots, temperature zones and landscapes of the world.  You can create a bucket list for 2 lifetimes in 10 easy minutes of browsing.  And if you can't actually get away, you can at least, live vicariously through this feed.


3) @the_vista

@the_vista says ..."Did you know that we have a wanderlust guide to Tasmania - as well as our guides on Bondi, Byron & Bali?  Follow the link in today's bio to download any of our guides for free. We love making beautiful things for you ✨"

So guides!!  Saving you the trouble, time and expense of mistakes on holidays.  And I love that these are small, independent and thoughtfully put together.

"They're here ?? Happy cherry blossom season lovers ? Photo by Pon-ko"  


4) @eighteenthousandislands 

Chris & Merv, explore their family's heritage through their beautiful food explorations and Indonesia's eighteen thousand islands.  That's a lot of exploring and I don't think they've really scratched the surface yet.  Based in Melbourne, they have an online store too which sells the most fabulous-looking sauces like Satay and Kecap Manis.  YUMSTER! - check it!  Even better, they have the cutest little bubster (maybe more actually - can't quite figure it out) who peppers the feed with their presence.

"Morning market always bustling with energy. These offerings are the way that every Balinese starts the day. You give thanks to the gods for everything around you as well as what's to come."


"Sometimes the best food is street food! Badung market. #streetfood"


5) Katie Aun - @katiekk2

This amazing woman really gets around.  From Papua New Guinea to the Sudan, strong on portraits and fascinated by the peoples of the world, her feed touches the untouched places of the world and touches off a keen sense of wanderlust in me.

Divine inspiration for your own travel ambitions!!  Get out there!!
With a smile,

What are you really buying?

"When you buy something from an artist, you're buying more than an object.  You're buying hundreds of hours of errors and experimentation.  You're buying years of frustration and moments of pure joy.  You're not buying just one thing;  you're buying a piece of a soul ...a small piece of someone else's life."



Artisan, Artist or Craftsperson - if you are not someone who makes things with their head and their heart and their hands, then you may not have ever given all this much thought.  

But for people who strive to create art or products or goods based on an original idea that sparks up in their mind, or a long-history of traditional skills and the gradual learning and refinement of historical skills, this will all ring so true.  

For creative types and creators, my feeling is that the receptiveness to your craft never turns off.  The more you do it, the more creative you become.  Of course - it's the practice of creativity.  The more you let your mind dream up ideas and think them through, then the more these ideas bubble up and you are itching to try them all.  Every day brings a flow of impressions, colours, lines, shapes, thoughts - a multitude of moments where inspiration strikes.   


But there's a reality to working as an artisan.  We have to decide which ideas are worthy of investing our time.  Which ones do we have a significant likelihood of actually pulling off in reality?  And are we operating in a zone of commercial-reality?  Will this product ever sell and can we make it for a realistic price?  Can we access the materials that we envisage?  And do we know how to use the materials?   Or do we have start a process of experimentation - for days or weeks or months?  That can be really costly when it doesn't work out!  

It's the inspiration that keeps you going at such times.  The inspiration and the vision in your head drives it all.   

As a hatmaker, for me that motivation is all about beauty and the Cinderella moment - the moment when someone tries on the hat that you have designed and created and they see that they are transformed.  I guess it's an advanced case of the Fairy Godmother Syndrome.

We all buy on price to some degree or another - we have to of course. In a world that churns out so many products that bring no beauty and precious little function, I'm keen to support the creators!  

So to those who can and do buy any product of original creation or hand-made effort - no matter what it is - I hope you recognise the full breadth of what you are really supporting.  And thank you from one of the creators! 



Indian Summer

Indian Summer (noun):  a period of unusually dry, warm weather occuring in late autumn.  Many people think that the term relates to the grand Asian subcontinent, but this is not so.  Instead, the term began to be used when European settlers first came across the phenomenon in North America.  The exact origin of the term remains unclear, but perhaps it relates to the time of the year that the Native Americans set prairie fires, harvested their crops or ended their raids on European settlements.  
Regardless, with the Indian summer phenomenon on glorious display in Sydney, I'm in the mood for the tribal inspiration of the proud Cherokee, Sioux, Blackfoot, Algonquin and all the Native American peoples.
With a smile,

It's all about me, me, me.....


I'm finding it hard to take blogging seriously & I can't help but think of a great T-shirt I once saw walking the streets....and it said "No one cares about your blog".  Brutal but funny and probably pretty accurate.   And yet, I was recently asked these questions in an interview by lovely Brittany May for her Fierce Females Blog, so welcome to Blog Post #3.  I am shamelessly ripping her off and....

It's all about me.........

1)   What is it that empowers you most?

It’s the inspiration of beautiful images, music and views. It’s people doing beautiful, giving things all over the world and the companionship of people across nations and cultures. We are all human; there are more similarities than differences and I find that quite inspirational.

2)   What is it that you love most about yourself?

That’s a tough question. I find it easier to talk about what I don’t like and what I would like to improve (my memory and spoken language skills). I think maybe what I like most about myself is that I like most people and generally find interesting and positive things in them.

3)   What makes you feel most beautiful?

I like the feeling of being strong and energetic and healthy which I get when I stick to a regular exercise routine. I was never a sporty child or teen and it was only in my mid 20’s that I really started to exercise. It took me a long time to realise that while I didn’t like doing the exercise, that I liked how it made me feel afterwards and on a day-to-day basis.

4)    Who is your biggest role model and why?

I don’t know that I have a role model. I don’t think I know anyone or have seen anyone who is doing and living the way I want to live (not that I’ve achieved nirvana yet, but I’m working towards it).

5)   Who are your favourite cultural heroines and why?

All those women all over the world who live quiet lives, with no hope of escaping the drudgery and menial tasks that they need to do every day in order to support their families and in the hope of building a better future for their children.

6)   If you could pick one fictional female character to be for a day who would it be and why?

One of those Bond girls, but not the ones that die and not Moneypenny. One of those ones who gets the Bond – don’t care which one – they’re all worthy.

7)   What is your biggest life goal?

To establish and develop my own brand as a profitable and growing business. I would like to effectively marry the creative side of my personality and the need for business discipline and success, to be able to independently look after myself, those I care about and those who deserve a break.

8)   What is your biggest accomplishment?

Completing my MBA (Masters of Business Administration).

9)   What is your favourite quote?

If you will forgive me – it’s not a quick quote. I can’t think of a quick snappy quote – most of them sound like they are off the back of a bathroom calendar. So….it’s a poem by Percy Bysshe Shelley called “Ozymandius” and it goes like this  (feel free to sing along).......

I met a traveller from an antique land
Who said: "Two vast and trunkless legs of stone
Stand in the desert. Near them, on the sand,
Half sunk, a shattered visage lies, whose frown,
And wrinkled lip, and sneer of cold command,
Tell that its sculptor well those passions read
Which yet survive, stamped on these lifeless things,
The hand that mocked them and the heart that fed:
And on the pedestal these words appear:
'My name is Ozymandias, king of kings:
Look on my works, ye Mighty, and despair!'
Nothing beside remains. Round the decay
Of that colossal wreck, boundless and bare
The lone and level sands stretch far away.[4]

I love it, because it puts everything in perspective.

10)   If you could tell your 12 year old self one thing what would it be?

Just go for it. Don’t be scared. Or if you are scared, just do it anyway. Get out of school, but know that you will need to continue your education and learning for your whole life, dump the small-minded careers advice you (kind of) got and go for it doing what you are good at and what you love. It is possible to make a living doing all sorts of fabulous jobs that don’t exist in your hometown. There is a huge world out there full of wonderful people who can help. Find your community by being positive and happy and let yourself enjoy thriving within it.

11)   What does feminism mean to you?

It doesn’t mean man-hating. It means freedom and not being blocked in your ambitions, achievements and sucking the marrow out of life. Sometimes I even find it hard to realise when I am being blocked by others, because cultural and societal limitations that are placed on and around woman are so long-standing and can be quite insidious and sometimes they can seem quite well-meaning.

It’s good to hear the opinions of others, the comedy of Caitlin Moran (British comedian) and nothing replaces the wise counsel of close girlfriends!

So to conclude - enough about me.  Let's talk about you.  What do you think of me?