Wednesday, 23 July 2014

Viva Surfers Paradise with Elvis

Did you know that every year Surfers Paradise holds its very own Elvis festival? Viva Surfers Paradise is a free 10 day event that was held from the 11 to the 20 July this year and my friend Nikki and decided to go on a road trip on the last Saturday of the event to check it out for ourselves.

It was a gorgeous day and the vintage cars were on display on the foreshore in all their shiny chromed up goodness. We spent some time admiring the cars and checking out the wares for sale including the tiki stand which we both just had to buy our own little dancing hula girls to put on the dashboard of our cars. There were vintage clothing stalls as well as the usual kitsch with Elvis souvenirs galore. Every where you looked there were Elvis impersonators - all of different body types, ages and bling levels.

In the main tent were Elvis tribute artists competing for the title showcasing the best representation of Elvis himself. This was over three days and we witnessed a few of the performers on this the last day.

We were having a ball and decided to go for a quick walk around to see what else there was in the area and came across a cool little lane way where I spotted a vintage clothing store.  I can't ever go past a store with vintage! As we were walking we were admiring a painted mandala on the wall inside a hair salon called Chameleon New Age Salon. The lovely owner Bronwyn invited us in to take a photo and we discussed mandalas, tattoos and henna. Next was the vintage store: Arkive Vintage. I would highly recommend you check it out as it is easy to see they are very fussy on their choices and also that they include vintage that is on trend. Their range of mens wear is awesome - seriously.  As we spoke to the lovely girl inside she recommended we visit the cafe next door Black Coffee Lyrics. It didn't take much to persuade us so we decided a coffee and a hot chocolate was a good idea. We then added a little treat to share - why not? Great atmosphere and great service. Who could ask for more?

Several Elvis Presley tribute artists had recommended we stay for the night performance starring Chris Connor. We hadn't planned to stay late but as so many people had told us it was a good idea we decided to stick around until the 7pm show.

We had dinner at Govindas where they kindly let me charge my phone while we ate. I needed my phone if we were going to see the greatest Elvis performer in the world!

We headed to the Viva Marquee and found our seats. We were a little early but most seats were already taken so we got there just at the right time.  Nikki snuck up the front a couple of times to take some photos ( including the two of Chris Connor above) and I also did a few times to video on my phone. I was happy to be up there when 'Elvis' was handing out scarves out the end. The atmosphere was amazing, the music superb and yes Chris really did look and sound like Elvis! I think Nikki and I are Elvis fans for life now after the performance and I was so happy we stuck around for it. You can watch my video with some snippets of the performance below. But you really need to get to a performance yourself.

I look forward to going again next year. But this time I want to go to renew my vows with Troy. Yep you can get married by Elvis and I plan on making the most of it!

Monday, 21 July 2014

Gritty Grunge

Model: Lilli
Tshirt + Flannie: Dark Horse Wanderer
Jeans + Shoes: Thrifted

The last of our 90s grunge inspired series shot in the abandoned factory. 

If you like these shots you may want to check out the rest in the series Local Urbex , The Factory and Modern Cleopatra 

Friday, 18 July 2014

In the Studio with Tara Lyons of Feather + Arrow

I drive down the long driveway past the farm fields and are greeted as I arrive by not only the lovely Tara and her smile but a posy of colourful fresh flowers from the garden.

Lead inside the home to the sunroom I can instantly see Taras boho touches in every little nook. I am instantly impressed and feel like a kid in a candy shop. So many interesting things to look at and as we talk I keep being distracted by something new I spot. 

In the sunroom I see a wooden cart that Tara explains her partner made for her and she put her own signature finishing touches to including some leather.  The inscription on the side said 'Feather + Arrow' but then it is explained to me there is also something on the other side ' Picker Partners'.

"We love going to garage sales, markets, op shops etc and finding things we can do up hence the 'Picking Partners' inscription" she explains. The cart comes in handy for carrying her goods to the market which she does on a regular basis.

Tara tells me she first starting sewing her own clothes as a teenager after growing up seeing her mother always make their clothes. Relying on her own style and instinct she doesn't use a pattern, instead creates new outfits as she goes. With the birth of her first child she was busy making children's clothing from recycled fabrics including chenille, when her daughter came along she expanded to more girls dresses using vintage and recycled fabrics. Any kind of fabric she could get her hands on would be made into a new creation. Gradually she expanded to ladies clothing and over time she explored more and more creative options which lead to Feather + Arrow. Now specialising in using leather work in jewellery as well as her own unique dream catchers.

"Our dream would be to also have a hobby farm where we can grow our own veges and flowers, and we would love some llamas too!" Tara says then adds that she was looking at having a cart that could go out the front of the property with home grown flowers and vegetables.

Some fun questions I asked Tara:

What would be your spirit animal?

I would have a horse as from a very young age I have been drawn to them and feel a deep connection when I gaze into their eyes.

If you had to live in either a gypsy wagon or a teepee for the rest of your life which would you choose and why?

Definitely a gypsy wagon, to have my home on wheels to explore far and wide places from the beach to the hills and everywhere in between.

If you could live anywhere in the world where would you live?

Australia is my first love, we live in such a beautiful country of vast nature and peace. My second choice would be Mexico for the colourful people, culture, and places and let's not forget they have midday siesta!

If you could live in any era for the rest of time what would you choose?

The 60's! Kombi's, daisy chains, Woodstock, leather and fringing.

If you could have any skill that you don't currently have what would it be?

Riding a horse bareback. I imagine it to be such a free feeling and a beautiful way to connect with such a strong, powerful yet gentle creature.

How would you describe your personal style?

I'm a free spirit, gypsy, bohemian, beach, country girl. There are no limits to my style.  

Favourite quote?

Feel love, Be love, Breathe love and Just Be
What inspires you?

Nature we are all connected, and people who go for their dreams

I notice Tara radiates a glow and I ask her what her secret is. She humbly explains that she doesn't drink or smoke but that she doesn't always eat that healthy and that she especially enjoys chocolate. I also get the impression that she is a very positive person and ponder if that also perhaps her secret is that she is following her dreams and creative passions.

Tara is very kindly giving away to one of our readers one of her amazing Feather + Arrow hand made leather necklaces valued at $35.

To enter just visit our Facebook page and look for the giveaway tab or enter here

Like Taras style?