Tuesday, 22 May 2018

Meet model and advocate Stefania Ferrario

It's hard to believe model Stefania Ferrario started out as one of our local creative talents. Her modelling portfolio alone is a long list of  high profile brands including Sportsgirl, Target, BerleiMelbourne Fashion Week and Myer as the face of their latest beauty campaign. She has modelled along side Dita Von Teese for her Dita's self titled lingere label.

Stefania is clearly making waves in the world of modelling since starting out at the age of 16 and is known for her signature blonde pixie, stunning features and hanging out with Dita Von Teese. Yet Stefania is not just a pretty face, she has a strong voice and is not afraid to use it as an advocate for diversity in the modelling industry. Asking the question as to why models are being labelled 'plus size' when they are well within the size of the average woman. 

She is the woman behind social media movement #droptheplus which she first posted about in 2015 and ever since, caught global attention from media outlets such as and elle magazine. She is a social media influencer with over 40,000 followers on facebook and 623k followers on Instagram and the hashtag (#droptheplus) has been mentioned over 20,000 times on Instagram and counting. 

Photography: Peta Lioulios Styling: Sofia Polak (me) MUA: Erin Pittard

There is no doubt through this movement, Stefania has inspired thousands of young aspiring models to follow their dreams without the expectation of changing who they are to fit into a certain stereotype. Aside from the #droptheplus movement I was curious to ask this boss babe a little more about her modelling career.

SP: You’re modelling career has taken great flight and is going strong. Tell us how you started out in the industry and what was it about modelling that inspired you to pursue it as a career?

SF: I’ve always loved to perform and be in front of the camera. I decided to really go for it when I was 16, I paid a photographer to take a series of pictures of me that I used to start a portfolio. I began approaching other photographers, makeup artists, hairstylists etc to collaborate in making images. I did this for about four years before I landed my big break. It took a long time of pushing myself and also getting pushed back. I like to say “where there’s a will there’s a way” though!

SP: What has surprised you about the modelling industry?

That I can actually model at the size I am, about four sizes larger than your regular model. It’s also nice to see that there is change in regards to age diversity too. I think the industry is slowly but surely moving in a positive direction.

Photography: Peta Lioulios Styling: Sofia Polak (me) MUA: Erin Pittard

SF: As a model with a signed agent, how much control do you have over your own brand?

I am lucky that I can still do my hair as I want (I still have to tell them and consult them before any drastic changes of course). I also still organise my own shoots for fun and I do them in the vibe and style I am after. I think that if my agency started really trying to control my brand to an uncomfortable point, I would have to break ties.

SP: What has been a recent ‘pinch me’ moment?

SF: Hmmm probably having dinner with Dita Von Teese, and really getting to know her before our lingerie shoot earlier this month.

SP: You have caused a much needed disruption to the modelling industry with the movement #droptheplus. Tell us a bit more about it and how it come about?

It came about very accidentally, I just put a post up with some of my feelings towards the industry, in particular it’s need to call models over sample size “plus size”. Plus size is used to describe models even if they are smaller than the average woman. It just makes no sense. It’s misleading and gives the implication that unless you’re size 2 you are just “an other”. The hashtag just went viral and grew a life of its own, the rest is history!

Photography: Peta Lioulios Styling: Sofia Polak (me) MUA: Erin Pittard

SP: What excites you about being an advocate for models around the world who might feel pigeon-holed by the label ‘plus size model’

I just want to remind them that they are equal to any other model, our size doesn’t dictate our worth.

Q7: What is next for you?  Any exciting projects in the works?

I am giving a talk on mental health at the YMCA youth summit this month, mental health is close to my heart to I am really looking forward to it.

Q8:  What advice would you give to young women who are pursuing a modelling career?

Go for it! Approach agencies, ask or arrange a photographer to help you start a portfolio. I don’t think that anything should hold you back, age, size whatever, make it work in your favour! Everyone needs a role model in life and who’s to say that you won’t be theirs? Modelling and photos can really have an impact on an individual and the public. We all need someone we can relate to so just do it!!  Don’t let anyone tell you otherwise!

Photography: Peta Lioulios Styling: Sofia Polak (me) MUA: Erin Pittard

Q9: What is your business mantra?

Let the brand and image you create be a real reflection of who you truly are.

Q10: What is your life mantra?

Follow your wildest dreams!

Photography: Peta Lioulios Styling: Sofia Polak (me) MUA: Erin Pittard

It was such a pleasure to chat to Stefania. I have been lucky to have worked with her on a few styling projects and she is magic in front of the camera.

SP xox

Photography by Peta Lioulios
Styling: Sofia Polak (me)
MUA: Erin Pittard


Friday, 18 May 2018

Bare and Facing the Facts at the Wellness Empowerment Collective

I have always had tiny little veins around my mouth. Last week I got so bothered by them, that I decided to something about it so I booked myself in at Wellness Empowerment Collective in Lyneham.

The Wellness Empowerment Collective is a place where you can get a wholistic look at what is happening with you. If you're stressed you can float in a floatation tank, if you need some muscle relief try cryotherapy OR if you're need to brighten your face you can get a facial. Everyone needs to put as side some time for themselves, even if its a facial or massage.

As I discussed my concerns with nurse practitioner, Elissa O'Keef, she told me that even though I had capillaries that were visible, it might not be worth treating them. I asked her to tell me more...

That's the thing, after considering my options, I thought it wasn't worth coming back every 6 months to possibly get them treated again. Because the probability of them coming back was likely. I thought  about it and realised they didn't bother me THAT much. It would bother me if I had to keep coming back every 6 months to get them zapped (again and again).

So Elissa suggested laser rejuvenation and a peel. I was up for that and I was in need of a little boost.  A little cell renewal would be the next best thing. Coming into Autumn/Winter this treatment would be good idea and bring boost new cells.

I was really impressed that I wasn't sold on a treatment that didn't suit my needs. I felt like I was heard. I was coming in for a capillary treatment (which would of been high maintenance and time consuming). I walked out of there with bright glowing skin! Even better!

I felt pretty special - Elissa using the K Laser, the ONLY one of its kind in Australia (made in Italy).

My skin really needed that, I think it is really important to treat your face and décolletage to a little lurve. 

My skin felt hydrated and for the next few days my BB cream glided on like a dream. I will definitely go back. I loved that it was a breeze to get a park, plus it was FREE.

If you would like to learn more about Wellness Empowerment or book some time out for you visit.


Tuesday, 15 May 2018

You've got $100 left before pay day

You've got $100 left before pay day so why not treat yourself to a little last minute buy. Check out our picks from the Canberra Outlet Centre! They have great brands at great prices perfect for a little treat before pay day.


Sunday, 13 May 2018

Get front row ready for #MBFWA

Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week is here! And even though the days are finally cold enough to be dusting off out our favourite winter coats we can’t help but get excited about the prospect of stalking fresh new looks for #SS19.

This year Camilla and Marc opened the 5 day showcase to celebrate 15 years in the fashion industry. Other favourites showcasing their latest collections will be Alex Perry who has been seen on the countless celebrities in LA, Alice McCall, athleisure wear geniuses P.E Nation, Maticevski, Dion Lee, Thurley,  Michael Lo Sordo and many more.

We are so excited to be heading to Sydney and covering some of the shows for the week as well as the weekend edition. We'll be reporting on our fave looks from the runway and of course will be stalking some serious street style!

In the lead up to #MBFWA and in my search for finding the perfect outfit for the weekend edition show I got inspired to put some looks together worthy of the front row.

The general rule is to wear the designer you are going to see but I think the most important thing is to have fun with your look and dare to try something new. Not sure where to start? Check out three easy styling tips you can try for your self.

Focus on a statement piece
Choosing a statement garment and styling the rest of your outfit to complement it, is a great way to try something new without having to buy a whole new head-to-toe outfit.

I chose this amazing embroidered leather jacket as it's an easy way to make a statement without having to put too much effort into the rest of your look. I paired it with an all black ensemble to make the embroidery stand out even more but you can literally throw it over your fave jeans, white tee and a pair of heels and still be front-row-ready. 

Dress for day-to-night
Dressing for day-to-night can be tricky but pretty easy to master once you get the hang of it and essential for attending fashion week, as shows run during the day and evening and then of course there's the after parties. My favourite pick for dressing day-to-night is lace. It's appropriate to wear during the day but will  will give you a touch of glamour for any evening event. 

Accessorising with mettalic or luxe accents is crucial to getting this look right as well as picking a pair of dressy heels. Don't forget to throw a bold lipstick and glowy highlighter in your bag to change up your makeup look.

Is a great way to mix up your look. Given its Autumn you should be all over the layering trend. My number 1 tip for getting this look right is to try layering different textures. For this look I chose to layer this gorgeous berry faux fur coat over a spring dress and take it back into Autumn with a pair of velvet over the knee boots. The key is balance, so start of by layering a few key pieces and if it doesn't look right take something off and try adding accessories instead.

Remember it is ok to dress up or go a little extra for fashion week as you will be alongside other people who love fashion and style as much as you do and are there to well ogle fashion all week long. 

So have fun, try something new and be a little daring! 

Can you tell I'm excited ;)
Will we see you at #MBFWA?

SP xox

Words and styling @sofiapolak

Photography by @wearefoundau

All 3 looks are from TKmaxx\Canberra Outlet

This post a collaboration with Canberra Outlet. If you would like to collaborate contact 


Friday, 11 May 2018

Turn left onto milky lane

Image - Milky Lane FB

Heading to Sydney for the weekend? Our editor Maryanne gives you the down low on the Sydney’s burger joint Milky Lane.

Mily Lane (ML) has hosted the likes of Ed Sheeran, Post Malone and Will Sparks - so you better believe it’s good! As a humble restaurant that started in Bondi, it has now expanded all of Australia and is continuously growing. It’s the perfect venue for lunch, dinner or drinks!

Picture this: hip hop beats blasting through the speakers, colours adorning every surface top, friendly wait staff and the most mouth watering dishes you had ever laid your eyes upon.

In essence the place is jumping, the food is popping and the walls are eye catching. More importantly because of a wall dedicated to the Male Icons of Hip Hop History. In keeping with the theme, the menu is named after some of them.


Lil Weezy
Wagyu beef pattie, American cheddar, pickles, mustard, cheesy gravy & ML ketchup
This is your standard, go to beef burger. For those dining here for the first time, it’s a great burger to ease you into ML’s deliciousness. Don’t be fooled by the simplicity of the ingredients, it creates a delicious blend of flavours.  It’s a classic just like Lil Wayne’s tunes.

Milky Lane
Wagyu beef pattie, American cheddar, lettuce, tomato, pickles, Milky Lane special sauce & ML ketchup
Now you can’t go to Milky Lane, without trying the burger which was named after the restaurant? The extra ingredients, including the special sauce really takes this burger to the next level from your standard beef burger without it being too overly adventurous.

Big Poppa
Wagyu beef pattie, texan rub smoked beef brisket, maple smoked bacon, mac & cheese pattie, American cheddar, onions rings, pickles, bbq sauce, mustard, Milky Lane special sauce & ML ketchup
Named after the song by The Notorious B.I.G, the bar is already set pretty high. A meat lovers dream! To say it simply - the burger is monstrous. Anyone who is up for a challenge, this one is for you. I surprisingly did not feel sickly full afterwards, I thoroughly enjoyed and savoured every bite. Would definitely eat it again!


Mac & Cheese Croquettes
Bacon & four cheese macaroni with Milky Lane dipping sauce
Everyone loves Mac & Cheese, that’s a fact that you and I can’t deny. These are soft, tasty and compliment the dipping sauce perfectly.

*Special* Chips with Parmesan cheese
These should be a menu staple. Shoe string fries, generously salted and then drizzled in cheese. The fact that they’re thinly cut, makes it a perfect side to the large burgers. Alas, they are now off the menu. Excuse me whilst I go file a motion to rectify this travesty.

Thick shakes

If you know me, you know this is a staple. Chocolate is the OG thick shake/milkshake flavour but I’ve surprisingly had my share of watered down/dull flavoured drinks. This does not disappoint. Thick as can be, creamy consistency and rich in chocolate.

Salted Caramel
This is literally one of the best flavours ever created. So when I see this flavour anywhere, I order it - no hesitation, no questions. It’s safe to say that I’ve had my fair share of salted caramel thick shakes in my young life. Order it and you’ll see why you need to try it here.


*Special* Milky Lane Ferrero Rocher Egg
Milky Lane’s desserts have always been spectacular, creative and extravagant! Lovers of Ferrero Rocher, (or any chocolate for that matter) would of had the experience of dipping their spoon inside a large egg, and indulging in a creamy, blissful heaven.

What I would LOVE to see Milky Lane Bondi do is feature a wall of the Female Icons of Hip Hop and Rap!

Good luck choosing while you are there!


Location: 141 Curlewis St, Bondi Beach NSW 2026

Words and Photography by Maryanne Irhia


Thursday, 10 May 2018

Who What Wear - Coachella Fashion Fever

If you haven’t heard of Coachella by now, it’s safe to say that you don’t have Instagram… Or Google… Or the internet at all for that matter! But just in case, I will give you a little bit of a background on it.
Coachella is one of the biggest music festivals around the globe that creates hype through its celebrity attendance and influencer mentions. It is more than just a music festival, it is a celebration of art. From the music, to the scenic location, the food, the sculptures, the makeup, and the incredible fashion, this event sees creatives from right around the world come together in celebration of style. 
It is held across three days for two weekends of April at the Empire Polo Club, Indio, California, and each year it gets bigger and bigger. In 2016 the attendance cap for Coachella was increased to 126, 000 people per weekend. It sees some of the biggest music artists in the world perform there, with The Weekend, Beyonce, and Eminem headlining in 2018. With celebrities like Kylie Jenner, Rhianna, Justin Bieber, Reese Witherspoon, Gigi Hadid and so many more attending, you can imagine the stress I went through trying to find the perfect outfit, for not just one, but THREE DAYS!
My first point of call is always Instagram. I spent hours and hours scrolling through pictures of last year’s festival, to see what the influencers and celebrities wore. I also looked at pictures from some other music festivals that have been held more recently, such as, Falls Festival in Australia, to see what the current trends were. After that I started the very long process of both online and store shopping. After what seemed like forever, I finally had coordinated three different outfits. 


My first outfit was built around this black kimono from Showpo. I played with various accessories and ended up pairing a maroon hat and quirky black neck scarf with the outfit. The black bralette allowed me to still show a little bit of skin, since my arms were covered. 
This day’s attire was focused around the butterfly top, which I found on a peculiar website I kept it simple with the accessories by instead focusing on the hair and the makeup instead. Glitter, glitter, glitter! 
My final outfit for Coachella 2018, was all about the scarf. This piece was also picked up from Showpo, and I chose to make it the statement piece of the day. I found some quirky studded cross earrings from a boutique store in Venice Beach, which bought the outfit all together.
From coloured hair, to eccentric makeup, studded everything and a lot of glitter, there were thousands of girls living their best unicorn selves across the three days. 
Here are some of my other favourite looks from the festival.  

Did this give you FOMO? Yep, me too, I can’t wait to go relive the experience all over again. I’ve already started saving inspiration pictures for next year’s Coachella.  

The lineup is announced early January each year, just after New Year’s Eve, followed by the release of tickets just a few days afterwards. Stay tuned for Coachella.

BL xox

Words by Bethany Larsen

Tuesday, 8 May 2018

Holy crap! Our favourite looks from the Met Gala

This year's met gala was everything we had hoped it would be. It featured all the drama, couture and elaborate head wear we were expecting.

The theme Heavenly bodies: Fashion and the Catholic Imagination brought out the risqué and unique interpretations of religious symbolism. 

We were waiting anxiously for the celebrity divas who never disappoint and always stand out on the Met red carpet including Beyonce, Sarah Jessica Parker, Madonna, Blake Lively and of course Rihanna and were surprised by a few other contenders and new comers.

We loved so many of the looks but edited them down to our Top 5.

1. Blake Lively in Versace
Need we say more! She dressed for the theme perfectly but still managed to represent her own style aesthetic and for that we give her our top pick. In fact we probably wouldn't question her choice of couture with our without the elaborate theme.

2. Rihanna in Maison Margiela by John Galliano
This crystal encrusted pope inspired outfit can only be pulled off by queen-of-the-met-gala Rihanna. We love the modern take and the amazing detail.

3. Diane Kruger in Prabal Gurung
We just love the drama! It is after all the Met Gala. The powder blue was a stand out and the contrast between the soft detail and the front and the oversized ruffles and train was Met red carpet perfection. Also loving the Phillip Treacy veil.

4. Rosie Huntington in Ralph Lauren
Rosie payed homage to her Victoria Secret angel days in this angelic interpretation including an actual halo. We adore how glamorous her whole look is, cape and all.

5. Zendaya in Versace
Queen! Zendaya has been slaying the Met Gala red carpet in the last few years and this year was no different. Her Joan of Arch inspired look gets our vote and we just love how she can literally pull off any hair style known to man. We are keeping a very close eye on this style icon in the making.

SP xox

Images from Getty Images


Axis Hairdressing is giving back this Mothers Day

Mother’s Day is a day that brings joy to so many and an opportunity to spoil all the special mums from our community. It’s also a chance to acknowledge that some mothers may be in need of a little more spoiling than others. 

This year one of Canberra’s premier salons Axis Hairdressing have teamed up with a handful of other local businesses to put together a special event for a group of mother’s who are doing it tough and are long overdue for a day of pampering and good old fashion TLC. 

Axis Hairdressing for 2018 - Courtney Cravin-Mills

When I was asked to be involved in this event by Director and Business Manager Nicole Dwight, who I have previously collaborated with on many many styling projects, I jumped at the chance! And will be providing my styling services as part of the event.
Ahead of Mother’s Day coming up this weekend, I caught up with Nicole so she could share a little bit more about the event.

SP: Tell us about the exciting event you are organising to celebrate Mother’s Day this year?
ND: Axis Hairdressing is partnering with Mix 106.3 Breakfast show to give back to 10 of Canberra’s most deserving women. We are opening the salon exclusively for a day of hair, treats and relaxation.

SP: It is so wonderful to see one of Canberra’s most loved and respected salons provide their VIP service to mothers who are doing it tough. What was the inspiration behind hosting the event?
ND: At Axis we have always believed that all women have the right to look and feel good about themselves. Whilst many of us consider having our hair done a necessity, sadly for many women it is a luxury they cannot afford time wise or financially. We want to reach a few of these women. 

SP: Will you be looking at hosting more events involving the Canberra community?
ND: The Canberra Community has been supportive of us for the past 20+ years and we are very grateful for that. We are looking forward to hosting similar events in the near future.
ND: When will this event take place and will it be open to the public?
The salon will be open for these ladies on Monday 14th May and although it will be a closed event, Mix 106.3 and Axis Hairdressing will be sharing the events of the day via our social media channels.
Axis Hairdressing | 131/24 Lonsdale St, Braddon ACT 2612

We would like to acknowledge the generous support of Canberra Outlet Centre, Moxom and Whitney, Elk and Pea, Doughnut Department, Sofia Polak and Matrix Australia. 
SP xo

Photography by Jez Rozdarz

Monday, 7 May 2018

Lipstick - Lip Colour Must Haves For Autumn

Looking for your perfect Autumn lip colour shade?! I have chosen one for each personality, from the classic girl to the extra girl. Lipstick is an easy way to change up your look without breaking the bank. You choose what shade you want to splurge on. I always like to spend big on the colours I use over and over. That's shades of nude and red; for the colours in between like: plum, purple and brown they are the shades I buy in the more affordable price range.

This season try a vampy purple or a new, nude shade to switch up your colour pallet. I have picked and tried 4 lipsticks from matte to longwearing to show you what they look like, transition with these shades first.
1. Nude - Sportsgirl, MATTE - Wonderland
For the classic girl who wants to switch her nude shade.
2. Brown - Models Prefer, CREAMY - 0115
For the girl next door who wants to look effortless.
3. Rouge - Boujois, LONG WEARING - No. 11
For the sassy girl who wants to give some attitude.
4. Plum - Sephora, CREAMY - Crush R23
For the classic girl who wants to share her mystery.

Would you try any of these shades?


Saturday, 5 May 2018

Style Stalker - The Grounds

The Grounds in Alexandria, Sydney is one of my favorite food haunts. It’s the place I go to gorge on nutella filled donuts, good coffee and amazing food in general.

It’s also a great place to style stalk. While catching up with a friend visiting from NYC I spent a few hours on the grounds essentially people watching and capturing the great style around me.

Well dressed and friendly people are in abundance here, I was in heaven.

Style has no boundary, it has no age! 

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