Abbie Loves

Fashion / Travel / Lifestyle


Black ankle boots

Ahhh, black ankle boots. The search for the perfect pair of black boots has honestly been an on-going task for like, ever. My whole adult life I think. I am always looking to bag a bargain but sometimes – and especially with boots – this just ain’t possible. When I arrived in Sydney I couldn’t help but notice how many Tony Bianco boutiques there were dotted about. Each time I passed one I drooled. Whether it was their stunning slides or an edgy pair of boots I just wanted my own piece of the brand. And this week, I finally caved! I have had my eye on the Haines Boots for about 7 months and decided it was now or never. A really appropriate purchase considering I am off travelling in 3 months but who cares, I can honestly say I feel complete. 


https://www.pinterest.com.au/atanner23/this-week-i-am-loving/



SHOP MY FAVOURITES



Tied shirts

For as long as I can remember I have always been a fan of a cute tied shirt. I would usually wear it with high waisted jeans or a leather mini skirt but my latest style hack is wearing them over a floaty dress. It just adds a 90s vibe to any outfit whilst helping show off my waist with the whole tight and the flowy feel. Plus, it’s super comfy and super easy.





SHOP MY FAVOURITES






Maxi Length

Whether it’s dresses or skirts, if it’s maxi length then I am all over it. I am just obsessed with pairing them with oversized sweater, white trainers and a biker jacket – it’s become my new go-to uniform.





SHOP SOME OF MY FAVOURITES



Rocket boy Pizza

So since the move with the boyf the most horrendous thing has happened. I CAN’T GET MACDONALDS DELIVERED TO ME ANYMORE. I know, I know, awful isn’t it. I mean in all fairness my nights out are definitely on the decline in light of trying to save but still it’s a tragedy! Luckily there was a silver lining in the shape of PIZZA! Rocket Boy is quite the pizza place and there is one at the top of my road (still get it via uber eats, obvs) so excuse me whilst I go smother myself in their Smashing Pumpkin Pizza. What diet...?





Image credit - All from Pinterest

moving to Sydney


It’s been nearly a year – what!

Last December I moved from London to Sydney, I can’t believe it’s been nearly a year since I left the UK. BOY, what year it’s been.

It’s been eventful to say the least; full of some mega highs and a few occasional lows, not much surprise considering I literally uprooted my London life (which I loved BTW) and moved to the other side of the world. But, I would not have changed this whole experience for all anything. I have experienced new work situations, made great friends, continued my favourite friendships, been able to live in another country, increased my independence and most importantly, finally bagged the love of my life. It’s been a pretty busy year!


moving to Sydney



If there is anyone thinking of changing things up, then I say, DO IT. 
The saying, ‘in the end you’ll only regret the chances you didn’t take,’ is honestly so true.



moving to Sydney


So, whilst I am now on the final leg of my Aussie adventure – 3 months to go to be precise – I wanted to share a little bit of what I know now. A few pearls of wisdom that would have been helpful had I known them before the move, but in hindsight, it’s all one big learning curve and not knowing them has only enhanced my journey now, ya get me?

1. Sponsorship laws have changed a lot, so do you research!

There are lists that depict what careers are possible to be covered by sponsorship and what careers aren’t. You also need 5 years’ experience in one career (this career must be on the list) – my CV is a tad topsy turvy having worked in sales, marketing, editorial and PR so I didn’t have the 5 years solid back-to-back experience that was needed. I probably could have fudged it but that means a lot of favour-hunting from past employers and lying on such an important document which just didn't didn’t sit well with me.

2. Defacto is an option

This is where you can go on your significant other’s sponsorship. But, at a cost! A whole 8k. And it can still get turned down. You have to have a lot of paper work to prove your couple status and it can be a bit of a rigmarole. One of them being 6 months proof of living together. At the time of having to talk ‘future’, my BF and I didn’t have the appropriate docs to enter for defacto and decided to use that 8k to fuel our wanderlust.

3. Have a student loan? Make sure you tell them you’re off.

Still not sure on this one tbh. I went to university and was paying my monthly bit back in the UK but stupidly forgot to tell them I was off for a year or, perhaps forever. My mum has had a couple of letters and I have tried to get in touch with them to be like ‘sorryyyyy!’ but The Student Loans Company are the most impossible people to get hold of so, I guess you could say it has kind of gone out my head again. I’ll be back next year and I’ll start paying it again – I promise!

4. Save, save, save

One thing I was told but not really prepared for was how expensive everything is here. EVERYTHING. It’s actually something I still struggle to get my head around. From drinks in a bar to your favourite shampoo brand, it’s all pricey AF. Supermarkets will blow your mind, even the meat and fish feel so expensive compared to the UK. You also need a certain amount on your bank account to enter the country on a working holiday Visa – I think it amounts to about 3k GBP. You are unlikely to get checked at the airport but, if you do, they will ask for proof of your bank balance to prove you can fund your travels until you find a job. We printed off bank statements so we could prove everything sat in our UK accounts, to show that we were able to live off of that and have money to transfer into our Aussie accounts when we ready to set them up.

5. Australia’s banking is the nuts

After we had recovered from the jet-lag we headed straight to the bank to set up our current accounts. We went with Commonwealth, its banking app is unreal and tbh, I’ll deffo miss it when I come back to the UK. Don’t know why it’s so good, it just is.

6. Australia’s supermarkets are not the nuts

OMG, honestly, the UK doesn’t know they are born in terms of food shopping. Our supermarkets kind of work on a tier level – M&S and Waitrose if ya feeling fancy or Asda and Lidl if it’s payday week. Not to mention Tesco, Sainsbury’s, Co-op – the list goes on! Supermarkets here are crap. It’s as simple as that. They do have a lidl but that’s about as good as it gets. Oh, and one of their main supermarkets is called Woolworths – weird. It sells food and not the pick ‘n’ mix that you used to get with your mum on the Saturday shop to your local high-street.

7. Australia’s transport system is shocking

Ok, so I am trying not to be a Debbie downer here but I have to be honest, public transport is not good in Oz. Primarily the buses. Their trains are OK, but their buses are enough to force you into an early grave. They never turn up and if they do they are early or late, making the timetables totally obsolete. It’s really quite stressful, my blood boils just writing this! I can’t work out if it’s because I moved from London where buses, trains and tubes just go, and go often. Getting used to it has definitely been a frustratingly low point of this whole move. Never again shall I moan about TFL or a tube strike.

8. Traffic crossings here are crazy!

I can’t tell you how much time I have spent stood waiting for the little green man to wave me across the road safely. The traffic crossings in Sydney take forever, it’s great for a quick Instagram scroll, not so great if your bus has (by some miracle) turned up at the bus stop across the road.

9. Coffee is great here

I knew Aussies loved their coffee but boy do they know what a decent cup of proper coffee tastes like. I swear every cafe I visit it gets better. I constantly find myself saying ‘this place does great coffee’, to every single coffee shop I have been in!

10. Viewing houses here is weird – very American!

No such thing as a private viewing here! Nope, you book a slot and turn up to a queue of people all hoping to bag the perfect apartment. It’s cut throat. If you like the place your viewing then be prepared to sell yourself, you have to write up a little bio about why you would be a great fit. It’s hilarious really. The classic old line of, ‘hardworking professionals who enjoy dinner with friends and quiet chilled evenings in’ will be used over and over again. Also, hardly any of the houses here come furnished. So it’s all well and good getting your deposit together but you have to kit out the entire gaff too. Money, money, money!

11. If you don’t have a job in the CBD then you can basically kiss goodbye to a city lifestyle

I never worked in the CBD (Central Business District) my first job was in Bondi Junction and my next (and current) was in Alexandria. My two close pals Gabs and Yols both work in the city so still get a busy buzz that I sometimes find myself missing. Whenever I go into the city, because I don't know it at all, I am completely lost, and it’s not even that big!

12. Sydney gets cold

OK so this would be one of the most important ones. Sydney has seasons, Sydney has a winter! I actually had no idea, how naive am I. It can get really cold during the months of June and August, granted it’s a snippet compared to the UK but I just wasn’t prepared for it. None of the houses here have radiators so you can kiss goodbye to snuggly evenings in front of the TV. You’ll be more likely huddled around a blow heater in about a million layers.

13. Cost of living is high

Any sought after city of course the rental prices are going to be expensive. It’s a catch 22 really. You pay more to live more central where you’ll find the rent crazy, but in doing so, you’ll find it easier and cheaper to get about. I moved to a house share with my BF a couple of months back and we pay super cheap rent (great for saving!) BUT, I live far away from work, night out options, the shops – BUT, the most gorgeous beach is at the end of my road. It’s a tough one, I guess just what works for you at the time! I would just really recommend you do you research on each of the suburbs of Sydney before you choose.

14. Get a TFN number

This is a Tax File Number and something you need to legally be able to work in Australia. You can apply online and it's a super easy process. Find out more here. 


15. It's all about brunch

Sydney knows how to do brunch. There some really cool places to enjoy your fave avo on toast combo and the likelihood of it being delicious is pretty high. You can also get your boozy brunch fix here too, in fact I wrote an article for House of Coco about my top 3 favourites. 


16. Laws are tight when it comes to drinking

Choose your venues wisely because with some bars and clubs you won't be able to get in after 1pm due to Sydney's lock out laws. House parties, beach BBQs and day drinking is more the vibe here. The city is dead at night, so don't expect to move to Sydney for its banging nightlife. This was one of the reasons we decided to make the move out of London, we needed a break and Sydney definitely enabled us calm our tits on the going-out front. Just what the doctor ordered. Don't get me wrong, there are some absolutely gorgeous and very fun bars about, you just have to know where to look. 

17. Health

You definitely feel more inclined to move your body here, being active is the name of the game and it makes for such an amazing lifestyle. Whether you're a spin class fanatic, yoga monster or just love a stroll amongst nature, Sydney really does have it all. Also on the topic of health; depending on what job you get and whether they offer private healthcare, you'll need to sign up for a Medicare card - Australia's version of the NHS.


18. The fashion

Sydney - whilst it has some beautiful boutiques - does feel a little bit behind on the style front. I really miss seeing real individual style that adorns the streets of the UK; a walk down Oxford Street or a pub crawl through Hackney was all I needed to get some new outfit inspo. As you explore and live in Sydney longer, you'll find each of the suburbs has it own vibe on the fashion front. Predominately active wear rules here, which I have definitely succumbed too. It's a no-think easy win!


19. Facebook groups

As soon as you step off the plane you MUST join a FB group called 'Irish Around Sydney'. It's  a super helpful group for all ex-pats and you can post all sorts, from rooms to rent to questions about gigs or where to get your hair done, it's just a bunch of people (60k people in fact) in the same boat. It's also very very funny, some of the posts will definitely give you a giggle.


20. It's easy to escape the city

Sydney is beautiful and most weekends in the height of summer can feel like a holiday, but there are so many other places to escape to outside the city. Camping weekends away are a big deal here and so worth doing. Hiring a car is easy and not that expensive and within 2 hours you can head up the coast exploring some of the other stunning beaches Australia has to offer. Whether you pitch up a tent or rent a cheap airbnb there are so many places to discover - Australia is HUGE!


So that's my little snippet of things I didn't know and wasn't prepared for before the big move. The good, the bad and the ugly. But the fact of the matter is this, if you're thinking of moving or chasing a dream, whether it's Sydney or Paris, DO IT!





kini swimwear

What do you write about when you feel like you don’t have much to say? Maybe a life update? A little ramble about what’s been going on with me? Soz if it’s boring but there’s not much happening ATM, what with saving for our travels and a cold winter in Sydney, it’s all been very slow down under. But, I fancy a chat so here goes, one life update coming right up.

kini swimwear

OK, so ya’ll know that myself and the BF are saving hard in order to fund our 4 month trip - I touched on it in a previous post, HERE. We leave Sydney near the end of December and head to Sri Lanka for Christmas and New Year, then a possible Maldives trip followed by India and East Africa – it’s all very exciting and absolutely worth the quieter nights, saving can become quite addictive! Not only do we need a wedge for our tropical adventures but we also need a cash safety net for when we get back to the UK; we might get back jobless and be sofa surfers for a few months, but, we’ll be tanned - hooray. Weirdly that doesn’t freak me out (the jobless and homeless part, not the tanned part – obvs that won’t freak me out!). I am so excited about the fact that we will be so free for those few months, it’s quite exhilarating giving up your job and stability to go and experience new places, I did it with the Australia move and I’m sure as hell so excited for the next chapter.

I am working in the International Sales team at Seafolly HQ and couldn’t have had a better company to work for to see out my final 6 months in Sydney. Why, you ask? Erm, SAMPLE SALE! I am going to be head-to-toe Seafolly this entire trip #NotSpon. The team have been pretty awesome too – so thank you universe for letting me ride out my Aussie escapade with one of the most iconic Australian brands going.

Hmm what else… apart from brunch dates and coastal walks with the girls it’s all been very chill in my neck of the woods. Sunday just gone saw the first day of spring so countdown is on until lighter evenings and full blown tan time. I tried some of my old swimwear on ready to get my summer groove on and feel motivated for the beach countdown, and whilst I had my booty in my fave leopard print one-piece, I thought I’d capture the moment. This Kini swim suit has been a staple in my swimwear collection and still very much a favourite for those beach days. It’s a tad showy offy (bum!) but you know, so what, I feel kinda great in it plus, it totally works with denim shorts for any beach to bar situations, which I hope to have plenty of! So even though I am not brimming with content, there’s still some super exciting stuff in the pipeline, and you got to see me in my favourite swim suit! Summer’s coming and I am very excited at the prospect of having 7 months in the sun! Or maybe more, who knows where the plans will take us...

kini swimwear

kini swimwear


Have any of you ever been to Sri Lanka? It’s our first stop on the travel itinerary and I’d love to hear any of your top tips. We are there for a month and very keen to explore. Hit me up on social or comment here with any Sri Lanka recommendations!




Double denim is a tricky beast but get it right and it's an absolute outfit winner; in my books anyway. If you're intimidated to pull off the tricky trend, don't be! Here are a few tips that I turn to when try to rock a double denim outfit...

The look works when the wash is different - don't go too matchy matchy.

Add an element of distress, a pair of frayed hem jeans injects a certain kind of coolness to the look, a little rip here or there just works.

Keep the denim element to your clothes only, unless you want to be 'extra extra' then why not whack on a denim scrunchie and finish off with a denim jacket - quadruple denim! 

Double denim looks great dressed up. Elevate your ensemble and style it out with some statement earrings or a cool tuxedo jacket. All you need now is the prosecco!

I love a fitted jean with an oversized shirt; super flattering and great for any size. Easy peasy.




SHOP THE LOOK


street style

Image Credits L - R: Style Du Monde / Fashion Me Now / Collage Vintage

When it comes to prints, ya’ll know I am a big fan. For me, camo, stripes and animal print act as neutrals, and whether worn clashed together or as a statement piece, they are always my go-to. I live in my vintage camo print shaket, consistently rely on my Breton tees and swear by my leopard print ankle boots - absolute wardrobe staples mate. I have put together a few of my fave pieces for this week's shopping picks, and when in doubt, wear any of it with denim. Happy Shopping!



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