Wednesday, 11 April 2012


brisbane l
Over the Easter weekend, we went up with a couple of friends to stay at their family's house in Brisbane. I'd never been to Brisbane before, so I was really looking forward to it.

A lot of people seem to have a lot of things to say about Brisbane, and it's not always so good… but no one told me how beautiful it is! I actually really loved it up there, and the two days just weren't enough. I want to go back!

We left a hot and very windy Melbourne on Easter Friday. I hate to travel with more than carry on luggage – I can't stand waiting for suitcases when there are new places to explore – and so I packed my little 1960's suit case. brisbane m All I needed was a swimsuit (I took my 1960s one), two dresses (a 1950's watercolour and a 1961 gingham), a light cardigan (handmade) and a 1960's coral scarf. I then had just enough room for those other essentials, jarmies, makeup, toiletries and so on. I wore the one pair of shoes that would see me through the weekend, so my bag was nice and light, too! brisbane k For traveling, I wore my early 1960's blue stripe sundress, with my tan platforms (they're ridiculous, they're 5 inches high but they are SO comfortable and perfect for walking around in all day) and tan belt from another skirt, and a tan flower. It's sounding a bit, well, tan, isn't it… but the caramel (is that better?!) looked really nice with the blues of my dress and suitcase. brisbane p I had double-boos in my hair, and extra wings in my eyeliner. Very important for flying, you know.

There were a few happy surprises on the weekend:

– waiting to board our flight, we saw darling Lauren (who we know from Melbourne) at the terminal… joining the queue for our flight! She even had an almost identical suitcase to me. Our seats were at opposite ends of the plane, though. I hope you had a great weekend, Lauren!

– Easter Friday was also my birthday, and my friend's family suddenly brought out a tiered cake stand after dinner, loaded with cupcakes and candles. I almost teared up while they sang me happy birthday, but the candles started burning the cake stand and I had to put them out and no one wants a salty, damp cupcake – blow blow blow.

– On the Sunday, our friend (who grew up in Brisbane) took us for a walk through New Farm Gardens and on to look at the Powerhouse… where we saw a poster for one of our favourite bands, who would be playing a free show that afternoon.

I didn't take that many photos, so I obviously need to go back asap! I was just so blown away by how different it is from Melbourne. I love that; how when you go somewhere new the air smells different, the plants look different, the birds sound different… everything is new and interesting. I felt really at home there.

We managed to fit a lot in. On Friday, after dinner, we had cocktails in the outdoor pool (yep, this far into Autumn, it was so warm and perfect!) and while I always try so hard to be dainty in the pool, I always, always fail. I had my hair done, full makeup on and absolutely intended to stay perched in the corner with my fresh fruit drink, but when my friend suggested we attach one of the noodles to the jet to make a big hose I thought it was an excellent idea… of course we all got drenched and so I had bad hair all weekend. Boo. Worth it, though! brisbane b brisbane n brisbane d brisbane o brisbane c brisbane a brisbane j Saturday, our first full day, we went for a walk through Paddington, found somewhere to have breakfast – and, of course, being form Melbourne I am very much a coffee snob, but we found a great coffee! Paddington is really beautiful, all colourful Queenslander houses and palm trees and lush plants and rolling hills. It also has some amazing looking vintage and second hand shops, some of which were closed because of the holidays, but we had no time to look in at any of them anyway. Next time! We then headed off to Southbank and the GOMA, I got excited about an Ibis (first time I'd seen one, turns out they're everywhere) (I still think they are fancy), found that the GOMA would be open on Sunday after all, and so zipped off to leafy Cloudland in the Valley for a lunchtime drink. It was really quiet so we could sit in one of the booths, but I wonder what it is like in the evening? I then joined my girlfriend and her friends for one of their friend's (keeping up?) Hen's parties. We had lunch, went back to Pip's gorgeous apartment to get ready (and I got to pat Pip's cute kitty, Heide) and then went on to Jess's beautiful Queenslander that had been divided up into apartments. Seriously, I want to live in one of these. Dream houses. I would have loved to take photos but I didn't want to be the new girl that takes photos instead of talking to anyone! And everyone was so lovely. The party had a David Bowie theme, and I am now in some Facebook pics wearing a blindfold and generally getting into the swing of things… we finished the night off at a bar in the West End. Thanks everyone for having me and making me feel so welcome! Have a beautiful wedding, Pip! brisbane h brisbane f brisbane g brisbane e brisbane i brisbane-water-qag On Sunday we hopped out of bed bright and early and headed off to New Farm Gardens and the Powerhouse, where I took yet more photos of those Ibis [edit: I really shouldn't type things up in text edit if I'm not going to turn off the damn auto correct!] birds, embarrassing my far more cultured, bird-wise friends. We then headed back to the GOMA, where we spent several hours and it still felt like we barely scratched the surface. After a healthy lunch of macaroons and hot chocolate (um) we had a look at the Modern Woman exhibition at the QAG (very good, relentlessly depressing) and finally decided that sitting down would be a very good idea. We headed back to New Farm, looking for a nice-looking cafe we'd passed earlier, but it had closed for the day… so, off to the Powerhouse for some live music! We were wondering if we were being a bit stalky as we'd seen this band just a few weeks ago, and decided that we probably were but could live with it. The Powerhouse is great. They do consistently good gin and tonics, and I should know because I had about five. They also do amazingly good coffee, which we definitely needed after the show (it went on for way longer than we expected but it was sooo good) and were then meant to catch the ferry (if we could find it) to meet up with some friends for dinner. Sadly, we were told that the ferry wasn't running because of the holidays, so our super wonderful friends came to pick us up (thanks so much, guys) from the gardens, and walked us past the dock for the ferry – just in time to wave at the one we were meant to catch; they were running after all. Yet another thing we'll have to do when we return!

It was then a blur of packing, dinner, and a dash to the airport – and a freezing cold Melbourne welcoming us home. I can't wait to go back! Big thanks to Greg for looking after Babycat (he even made us a video of how she was doing!) while we were gone :) Brisbane <3

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Peachy Keen said...

Looks like such a beautiful place. I also love your outfits!


Adele said...

I went to Brisbane last year, and being a Sydneysider, I was shocked and amazed at how helpful and kind everyone is! I was lugging around a huge suitcase at the train station, while we were waiting for the next train, and the lady in one of the stores offered to look after my bag behind the counter so I could walk around freely. I nearly cried! Would never happen in Sydney.

Just as a note, they are called Ibis, not Isis. :)

look see said...

Looks like a great trip - my brother & sister both live in Brisvegas but I haven't spent nearly enough time there. Might have to plan a mid-winter escape for when the Tasmanian weather gets too chilly!

Miss Tallulah Porkchop said...

Love this post. I'm originally from Nth Qld and I agree that Queensland couldnt be more different from Victoria.

I can't believe you pack so little and look so great. I loathe packing for going away and always choose the stupidest things. I want your suitcase!

Happy birthday, dolly. 29?


esme and the lane way said...

Peachy Keen: thanks, Jade!

Adele: I found that too! And thanks for the typo heads up, oops! ;)

look see: I would if I could, do it! Warm without the harsh sun... heaven.

Colourful Buttons said...

Thanks for sharing such a great post. Love your outfits.


Gisela said...

How do you always find these gorgeous outfits? I am soooo jealous!! :-). Everytime I am going to a second-hand shop. I never ever find the "good" stuff!!! Is it because I am living in Germany or do you have any special online shops - just for a small hint! :-)
Gisela xox

Tors said...

I really enjoyed Brisbane, although it's now been years since I was there and, like you, didn't spend nearly as much time there as I would have liked. It sounds like you had an amazing weekend. Happy belated birthday!

Valerie Enríquez said...

What an incredible post! I don't know where to begin. First off, happy belated birthday! I also love love your vintage swimsuit and travelling case. If I wasn't so weak in the arms, I would also use a vintage case. All of your dresses look so beautiful as well x

Green Tea and Cupcakes said...

Brizvegas gets a hard time but I love it here. Im so glad that you enjoyed your stay.

Rianna said...

I live in Bris :) Next time you come up, we can arrange a little vintage fashionista tea party in Paddington :)
I love these comments: Adele - my partner has lived in Sydney for the entirity of our relationship and moves here in June, and through my own experiences in Sydney and his here, we've compared notes on how different the two places are. But I must admit...Ibis scare the hell out of me!! They always have ;)

markedbeautyblog said...

I'm so glad that you had a great time! I live in Brisbane and think it is absolutely wonderful!

Sharleena xx

LandGirl1980 said...

I do love a gal who can pack! I quite like organising a capsule wardrobe an just making do :)

HAPPY (belated) BIRTHDAY!!!!!!!

Maite said...

Beautiful place, and photos, and dresses hahahahaha

Sophie said...

Oh, that sounds like such a lovely weekend! I'm a fellow Melburnian who's never seen Brisbane, but you've inspired me to try and get there soon. I so love your travel case - I have a few battered old ones that I use as storage but nothing as chic as that! Happy belated birthday too, by the way! xx

Katherine said...

Pack light AND stylish! You do it so well.


Teresa said...

Firstly… HAPPY BIRTHDAY lovely lady! :D

I can't believe no one told you Brisbane is beautiful! Even though I complained endlessly about the heat and humidity (only during summer) while I lived there, it's such a pretty and lovely city.

You packed so much into your few days there but still managed to see several of my favourite things in Brisbane. New Farm park (I used to live in New Farm) is wonderful and I really like the GoMA. They always have great exhibitions on.

I'm so impressed by how light you can pack. I hate carryon too so always try not too… sometimes more successfully than others!

Pull Your Socks Up! said...

Oh I love the GOMA gif Esme and I'm so glad you enjoyed your visit:)). It's actually the first dry Easter we've had in years - honestly!! You must have brought the beautiful weather with you. I can really notice the difference in the light between your Brissie and Melbs pics - you must have an awesome camera and skillz! Love your suitcase and your going away outfit:)) xoxo

CherryMakeUp said...

When I was in Australia, my favorite City was Brisbane!!!

I really miss you lovely people from Australia....I hope I will have the chance to visit your country again!

Alli said...

So glad to hear that you had a great time here in Brisbane (I'm a Brissy gal). Everyone thinks its still just a big country town, but it has really grown in the past few years. Hope you had a great birthday. :)

Kelly-Marie said...

Oh such lovely photo's. A couple of my Australian friends ( who I met in London) have gone back to live there. I want to visit so bad. Happy Belated Birthday too, it sounds like you had a lovely time.

kaarlijnx-x said...

I like this post. The pictures are so beautiful and your dress is amazing!

Valerie Brown said...

Happy belated Birthday!

I loved the mini trip to Brisbane! Australia has been on my "list" for so long - I just wish it was closer to Canada!! (Well, maybe I really wish Canada was closer to Australia weatherwise!).

Also - keep taking pics of the birds - I love Ibis and would also be the funny lady taking pics of them!!

Q's Daydream said...

happy belated birthday!!! Sounds like a wonderful weekend :D

Ly said...

You look so beautiful in all the pictures. The suitcase shots are my fav :) I've never been to Australia but would love to travel there one be honest I would love to travel everywhere haha.

Lynn said...

Sounds like a great time was had by all! Glad you had fun and safe travel as well. Love your bright, airy and scenic pictures!


Jessica Cangiano said...

First off, happiest belated birthday wishes, dear gal! Here's to a year ahead that sparkles and shimmers with everything - and more - that your heart desires.

These holiday images have such a warm, dreamy, and entirely pretty feel to them. I've never been to Australia myself, but if I should ever get the chance, you've more than convinced me that Melbourne is a city that needs to be seen in person.

Oodles of hugs,
♥ Jessica

AngeliqueDama said...

Oh, lucky you! Brisbane<3
I'm in love with your red 60's swimsuit:)

vintage_kitten said...

Such beautiful photos.Love your dresses.very pretty.

esme and the lane way said...

Miss Tallulah Porkchop: thanks! Grand ol' 31 years of age!

Gisela: I get most of my vintage stuff from etsy! I love online shopping :) vintage in op shops here is extremely rare :)

Valerie Enríquez: thanks! The case is really light so it worked out really well!

Green Tea and Cupcakes: it does, doesn't it? And it really doesn't seem like it deserves it. Especially when it's not as though other Aus cities are havens of all that is fair and good.

Rianna: that would be wonderful! I seriously can't wait to go back again, so maybe it'll be sooner rather than later? :D

markedbeautyblog: maybe when I am back up there you can come to the blog meetup? :)

LandGirl1980: me too! And no decisions in the morning, because you have to wear what you have! Most efficient :D

Teresa: oh, New Farm looked like an amazing place to live! IS cafe Pablo any good? That was where we tried to go but it was shut. Aha, and Park, not Gardens! We were talking about Botanical Gardens when we were there and I must have got a bit confused with the names. It was so lovely – and there were parking spaces, even on a beautiful Easter Sunday..! Incredible! And I'd hate to pack carry on only for colder weather, that might be a challenge too far hehe...

Pull Your Socks Up!: thanks! I LOVED it! Oh, the light is just so different, in Melbourne everything is bleached out all the time but in Brisbane the colours were still vibrant and... oh, much nicer than Victoria. :< Hope the weather is still good for you up there! :D

Alli: thanks! I can't see why Brisbane still gets the country town thing. It's so good there!

Kelly-Marie: oh, do it! Aus feels so far away but it is worth the (horribly expenses, unfortunately!) trip! It's kind of the same to Europe and then BAM totally different at the same time. Interesting place. <3 And I've got to get back to London..!

kaarlijnx-x: thanks!

Sonya Harris said...

I live in Brisbane and I LOVE it. It's such an underrated city. Glad to hear you had a lovely time. X

Meg Eileen Carroll said...

only been to brisbane once, and it was quite picturesque. I wish I could pack as sensibly, one little suitcase for a weekend, madness! loving the tan/caramels with the blues.

KittyMeow said...

I've only been to QLD for work and it was fun! I too noticed the excess amount of exotic birds. It was quite pretty.

I must say, I think I NEED one of those little suitcases. Right now.

Andi B. Goode said...

Looks like you had a wonderful trip! I would love to go to Brisbane one day - I need to travel inside Australia more. And happy belated birthday :D
-Andi x

Mabel said...

I can't believe that's all you packed! I'm actually starting my vacation tomorrow and I'm so excited! I'm going to the beach for 2 days and I'm sure I'm going to pack all of my clothes and at least 4 bathing suits lol. It sounds like you had such a nice trip! Getting out of town is the best :)

Oh, and happy birthday!

Mabel Time

Vivian said...

Happy Birthday :) Looks like you had a lovely weekend, Brisbane sounds like fun, my fascination with Australia grows ;) Lovely suitcase btw, I have one vintage suitcase, I got it from my grandfather :)

RaspberryBlonde said...

great suitcase! And I love your handbag: the colour is divine and the leather looks so rich.

Sleekit said...

Happy Belated Birthday to ya!

You make a very stylish traveler, love your aqua case, so chic!

Sleekit x

Nettie said...

I love how you packed so little and managed to look so great!! And your traveling clothes are a lot nicer than mine, too!

Would you mind sharing some info on your purse? I love the shape and style of it.

amicaduo said...

Looks like a great time was had in lovely Brisbane. Great pics and fabulous style

Amica Duo
Jazz Cocktail Duo in Brisbane

Lou said...

Your suitcase for light travel is so gorgeous, I'm out scouring vintage stores today to find my very own!
That blue colour is exactly what I'm after too!

Lou xx

Taylor said...

I'm currently on exchange at the university of Manchester and this post made me miss home like crazy!! Can't wait to get back to all my favourite places in a couple of months. Thanks for the post!


Keeley said...

I was born in Brisbane and now live in Canada, I go there from time to time to see my family. It's nice to see people enjoying themselves in my hometown because of the people I meet who have been to Aus, nobody gives Brissie a second thought!

And just a p.s, I have been an admirer of your blog for quite a while and just wanted to say hello :)

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