10 things I love about Summer

Summer is well and truly here and we have 2 more months of it!

I have been working all the way through December including the Christmas break and hadn’t really celebrated summer yet until yesterday.

Yesterday I cycled to the beach and went for a swim. Seriously, the cool water made me feel so good after having worked up a sweat on my 30 minute bike ride in 30 degrees Celsius. The inner child in me was well and truly awakened in the rough surf. I might have expressed myself quite loudly in the water with screams and giggles splashing around in the waves. It was so fun.

I thought I do a post about the 10 things I love about summer.

1. Cycling to the beach – Rewarded with a cool down in the ocean.

2. Cycling in light clothing – Get the dresses & sandals out.

3. Daylight for longer – This means I can ride home after work and the sun is still shining. It’s nice to see the world after a day in the office.

4. Getting lots of vitamin D – Sun kissed hair, bronze skin & strong nails for me, what’s not to love?

5. Iced Coffee – I’m really into iced coffee at the moment..

6. Summer fruits – Pineapples, mangoes, cherries, berries NOM! Perfect produce to make delicious smoothies.

7. Easier to get out of bed – no trouble getting out of bed on a nice summer day.

8. Spending time on my rooftop – Breakfasts, lunches, dinners & drinks are getting carried upstairs to enjoy the warm weather on any occassion.

9. More cyclists around – summer seems to make people want to get onto the bike.

10. Summer cycles – Going for long bike rides. The nice weather makes me want to spend more time outside and discover new places.

What are your favourite things about summer?

Replenish at Bay Ten Espresso‚ÄŹ

I cycle past a bunch of somewhat abandoned warehouses every day on the north side just of the Sydney Harbour Bridge next to the railway. You know the kind of warehouses that make you dream about restoring them and having a home in one of them one day..
A little while back I started noticing bicycles parked in and around one of the warehouses and discovered that a cafe called Bay Ten Espresso had opened up in one of them. A bike cafe in a warehouse? I had to have my morning coffee there.
Bay-Ten-EspressoIt’s a beautiful open space, with double storey windows and exposed brick wall.
Warehouse-Lavender-BayApart from the cafe with its delicious coffee and menu, it houses The Body Mechanic, a bike workshop, bike fit and physio outfit.
The-Body-Mechanic
A one stop shop to replenish and revive. It’s also a great place to get inspired to get active (New Years resolutions anyone?).
There are little nooks where you can relax and fall in love with the industrial interior of this heritage warehouse.
Coffee-and-bikes-at-Bay-Ten-EspressoI loved the timber pallets and steel materials used in the furniture. The rustic detail is also a treat for the eye, such as the black heavy industrial lamps, the plants in hessian bags and sugar in jars.
Black-industrial-lamp-warehouse
gold-metallic-plant-vase
Bay-Ten-Espresso-Cyclist-Cafe
Find all this goodness at 10 Middlemiss Street in Lavender Bay.
Read more about the Bay Ten Espresso warehouse conversion project here

Tour de Op Shop Annandale

Last weekend I decided to op shop Annandale. I cycled to one of my old favourite shops, a second hand store called Eva’s Vintage.Eva's-Vintage-AnnandaleIt’s an adorable looking shop on a quiet residential street.

Op-Shop-AnnandaleEva’s Vintage sources beautiful vintage pieces from Europe, Japan, America & Australia. Some of the clothing date back to the 40s. It’s like stepping back in time, literally!

Vintage-dresses-SydneyThe shop looks so inviting and being in it is a journey in itself. Everything looks pretty.

Vintage-purses-SydneyThey do carry very unique clothing and a wide range of accessories, bags, purses and shoes as well.

Thrift-SydneySince it’s a bit hidden some would refer to it as Sydney’s best kept secret.

Evas-Vintage-SydneyNow that you know about the secret, I can only recommend you jump on your bicycle and pay a visit to this op shop.

Little bicycle notes

Rain-drops-city-lights

There has been so much rain in Sydney in the last couple of weeks. I have been caught in many rain storms while cycling to and from work. Now that spring is here, I hope we will get some better weather! However, there is truly nothing better than a warm shower after riding in the rain.

A few little bicycle notes:

Check out the moods of the seasons in these awesome portraits  in which bicycles are used for the eyes!

The Sydney bike festival 2014 is coming closer starting on the 15th of October. The events calendar has been published.

Interested in checking out op shops on the Sydney North Shore? Read the review here.

Are you in Sydney and free on Saturday 20th of September? Join the Ladies in Pink event. One of the speakers is Samual Johnson, who has broken the world record cycling around Australia on a unicycle! He will share the story of his sister living with cancer and how he raised 1 million dollars for cancer research. There will be other inspirational speakers and I will be there helping to serve the lovely tea infusions from IAMINFUSION.

I will be exploring the op shops in a new neighbourhood this weekend. Stay tuned for an update.

Have a great weekend everyone!

Tour de Op Shop – North Sydney, Neutral Bay & Mosman

I was really excited last weekend exploring the North side of the Sydney Harbour bridge. There are some real cool op shops.Vinnies-Op-Shop-North-SydneyFirst stop was Vinnies op shop North Sydney. This is a big shop. You need a good hour to get through it all.Vinnies-North-Sydney-clothesThey sell clothes, as in many many clothes and at the back there is a big hall full of furniture. If you are after a sofa or dinner table, you will find it at the North Sydney op shop. Vinnies-North-Sydney-furniture

Second stop was Vinnies Neutral Bay.¬†The shop isn’t big.

Vinnies-Neutral-Bay-accessoriesThey sell clothes, accessories and some furniture.Vinnies-Neutral-Bay-ClothingI tried on some pretty dresses and noticed a Mimco brooch, but I didn’t find anything I wanted.¬†Mimco-diamond-broochLast stop was Vinnies Mosman. While I was parking my bicycle, I noticed the Singer sewing machine in the window. This made me even more excited to go in and have a look at everything.Vinnies-Singer-sewing-machineThe Vinnies Mosman shop is simple looking and not very big. However, right next to the entrance there is a long rack of dresses and that was all I was after!

Vinnies-Mosman-dressesThey are mainly selling clothes, shoes, accessories, bags and¬†some bric a brac. I noticed a range of great designer brands. Diane von Furstenberg, Calvin Klein, SABA & Cue to name a few.Vinnies-Mosman-ClothingI was thrilled to find this navy blue Cue dress. It’s super comfortable and it has pockets, but it’s still suitable to wear in¬†the office.

Navy-blue-Cue-dress_pockets

If you are interested to go to these op shops, click on the stores I have included in this post, it will take you to the store locations.

I have included a map below as well. If you click that you can see the exact route I did!

Op shop North Sydney map

The main road between Neutral Bay and Mosman is Military Road. I don’t recommend riding your bike on Military Road. There is no dedicated bike path and traffic is quite full on. It felt dangerous. Go through the back streets for a safe & sane ride.

I cross the bridge almost daily to get to work, but I usually don’t make it past my office. It was great to see what op shops the area has to offer!

Op shopped outfits

I shared some of my favourite op shopped outfits last week on instagram as part of National Op Shop week. Below I have put them all together with the brands and the names of the Op Shops.Sandro-Ferrone-dressThis is a Sandro Ferrone dress, made in Italy. I found it in the Wayside Op Shop in Potts Point. The sunnies are from the Red Cross in Paddington.

Easy-Steps-shoesThe nude shoes are from Easy Steps and I bought them at the North Sydney Vinnies.

Nine-West-Blue-Suede-heelsThe blue suede high heels I also bought at the North Sydney Vinnies. The brand is Nine West.

Marcs-denim-blazerThe denim blazer is from Marcs and I bought it at the Waverley Vinnies. This outfit got the most likes on my instagram :)

Sheike-little-black-dressThis little black dress is from Sheike. I bought it in the Bondi Vinnies. The heels are from Mollini and I got them at the Wayside Op Shop.

Pi&Xiu-Silk-Sealife-dressThis Pi&Xiu dress is also from the Wayside Op Shop. The fabric is 100% silk. I can’t find anything about the¬†brand on Google, but it was love at first sight when I spotted this dress! Who can ignore a¬†dress that has got jellyfish & seahorses printed on it?

Nicole-Miller-vintage-dressI was thrilled to find this floral dress at the Wayside Op Shop. It was designed in the 70s by Nicole Miller for P.J. Walsh. The actual reason I bought it was¬†because I didn’t want to leave a $10 vintage dress hanging in the shop and now it’s one of my favourite dresses.

Tribute to my bicycle for getting me around Sydney to all the Op Shops!

Little Bicycle Notes

Finally Friday!

I won’t lie, I’m tired.

This week has been particularly busy, because of  National Op Shop Week. I have been sharing some of my favourite op shopped outfits on my instagram.  Stay tuned for a review on it.

We have also been getting a lot of rain here in Sydney. Cycling through the rain is for some reason quite an exhausting practice, so I’m glad that tomorrow is Saturday and I can have a sleep in!

For now, here are some links for your weekend reading.

Dear coffee drinking bicycle fanatics, I think we need this!

Dear cake lovers, how do cup cakes, ice cream & muffins sound to pretty up your bicycle? Check out these adorable sweet bicycle accessories!

Dear design fanatics, 11 must see creative bicycle parking.

Dear healthy snack lovers, have you tried making these tasty healthy walnut & date balls? They will not disappoint.

Tomorrow I will be doing another Tour de Op Shop and celebrating the last day of National Op Shop Week. Let’s hope the sun will come out!

What will you be up to this weekend?

X

Tour de Op Shop – Bondi & Waverley

A little while ago, we did a Tour de Op Shop to Bondi and Waverley in Sydney.

Salvos-Bondi-Junction

The first stop was the Salvos in Bondi Junction on 20 Spring Street. The store looks quite dark from the outside, but once you are in and your eyes adjust to the dim light, it’s hard to leave.¬†All sorts of goodness nicely organised in sections, with a range of clothes, home wares and toys.

Salvos-Op-Shop-Bondi-Junction

We then cycled to the Vinnies in Bondi Beach on 60 Hall Street. I love the extensive clothing assortment they have. It’s nicely organised by colour.

Vinnies-Bondi

Apart from clothes the things they have most of are shoes, accessories and bags. Everything is quite trendy. Just what you would expect from this famous beach town :)

Vinnies-Bondi-Sydney

I’m glad my friend suggested to check out the ‘Chapel by The Sea’ on 95 Roscou Street.¬†This is a beautiful little shop.¬†It¬†has very unique pieces, predominantly amazing designer clothes including vintage!¬†

Etienne-Cohen

Above is a picture of Etienne, who runs the Op Shop on Saturdays and her amazing artwork. She is assisted by the lovely Biance, pictured below. They are so fun and friendly and were super helpful in giving styling advise. You can tell they love what they do.Chapel-by-the-SeaSales from the Op Shops provide meals, showers, staff and continuing programs at Norman Andrews House. This allows for guilt free shopping! If you are in Bondi Beach, please make sure you pay a visit and say hello to the ladies.

Chapel-by-the-Sea-Op-ShopThe last stop was the Vinnies in Waverley on 255 Bronte Road.

tea-cup-Vinnies

In my opinion this vinnies store is the most organised Vinnies store I have come across so far. It’s very neat and a pleasure to be in.

Vinnies-Waverley

They do have many many clothes, a large furniture section and a separate room full of kitchen ware. If you are into cute tea cups, you will have a great selection to choose from.

Like the Vinnies in Bondi Beach, this Vinnies has got many trendy clothes and items.

Vinnies-Waverley-Bronte

Are you interested in doing this tour? Click on the map below for directions!

Bondi

Walnut and date healthy snack

Walnut-Date-Healthy-snack

Even though I eat fairly healthy meals every day, I eat¬†many sugary snacks, uncontrollably. I love chocolate and I enjoy pretty much every type of candy that’s out there. I will never hold myself back on ‘tasting’ anything that’s made out of sugar.

I don’t mind snacking, as I do think I burn a lot of calories on my daily bicycle commutes, but¬†I have decided exploring some healthy snack recipes to replace the sugary ones.

The photo above is of a Walnut & Date healthy snack I made. They don’t¬†contain sugar or dairy. It’s super easy and quick to make (about 30 minutes) and healthy too for some guilt free snacking. I have included the recipe below.

Ingredients:

  • 2 cups walnut
  • 2 cups pitted dates
  • 1 cup cocoa powder
  • 2 tbs coconut oil
  • 1 cup dessicated coconut

Directions:

  • Process the walnuts in a food processor, chop until crumbly.
  • Add dates, cocoa powder and coconut oil. Process until a unified batter is formed.
  • Roll between your hands to form small balls.
  • Roll each ball in the dessicated coconut.
  • Set them in the fridge for about 2 hours.

That’s it.¬†Enjoy this healthy and delicious snack!

Paramount Coffee Project

Recently I checked out the Paramount Coffee Project in Surry Hills, as I heard that Tokyo Bikes had moved there. I always enjoy visiting places where they value coffee and bicycles at the same time!

Coffee-and-bikesIt’s a beautiful open and airy space with high ceilings and windows.

Paramount-Coffee-ProjectI love the simple furnishing with wooden finishes and tall vases with plant branch things in them.

Paramount-Coffee-Project-Surry-Hills

One big highlight is that they sell cronuts too! I couldn’t resist and ordered a freshly baked chocolate crumble cronut.

Chocolate-crumble-cronut

Tokyo Bikes is located at the back of the space. Men’s & ladies’ bikes in a variety of colours are neatly positioned for display. There is a big mirror in the corner to check yourself out while choosing your bicycle ;)

Tokyo-Bikes-Surry-Hills-Sydney

They sell bicycle accessories too. Anything from baskets to helmets, from bells to drink holders. They are so pretty yet practical. Even if you are not planning to buy anything, it’s hard to leave empty handed.

Bicycle-Accessories-Tokyo-BikesDownstairs it houses the Golden Age Cinema and a bar. There are movies showing six nights a week, so even by night this place is worthwhile visiting!

Golden-Age-Cinema-Sydney

You can find all this goodness at 80 Commonwealth Street in Surry Hills.

Hope you enjoy it too!