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Shitika Anand is a freelance journalist, based in Sydney, who is addicted to coffee, vintage boutiques, bright-glitzy earrings and British stand-up comedy. Her bank account weeps every time she walks out of a shoe shop, but her shoe rack throws a 'welcome home' party for the new member. Her undying love for words is obvious when she narrates her entire life story to a stranger on the train. Which is partly the reason she's resorted to writing. When not blogging, she can be found in a corner of her nearest bookshop, hiding under a monstrous pile of international fashion magazines. You can read more of her work on her personal site, Sweet Dreams in my world.

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11 steps to a perfect DIY manicure

Clean, groomed and tidy nails define a modern and independent woman. But a weekly visit to the beauty salon for pampering can be both time consuming and costly. So to get the effect from your own living room, here's our simple step by step guide to the perfect DIY manicure.

Sydney cafe scene: Gertrude & Alice

Named after Gertrude Stein and Alice Tolkas, Gertrude & Alice is a haven for book lovers and foodies alike. A relaxed hybrid of bookstore and cafe, it wins for its ambiance and creativity above all else. Read the full review after the break.

5 perfume ads that worked and why

What are the ingredients that compose a successful perfume advertisement? One would say a breathtaking scenic location, while another would put forward an argument that a good TV commercial needs a well-narrated story. Some want the highest-grossing Hollywood celebrity in the finest gowns, but others are happy to look at a half-naked male body swinging to Lana del Ray’s voice by the pool. If you…

5 shades of red lipstick to leave on your wine glass

There’s little more sensuous and powerful than leaving lipstick stains on a glass of wine. And of all the lipstick colours, it's red that stands out the most. With red you can't hide, be it a summery watermelon or a fiery crimson. Here are 5 of the best red lipstick colours to leave behind on your wine glass as a token or your presence - along with picture inspiration to go with them.

Chanel’s new vintage: Haute Couture

Weeks ago, when images of the invite for Chanel’s Haute Couture show in at Paris fashion week circled the Internet, it was evident that Karl Lagerfeld would be revisiting the past for this collection. The hand-sketched invite with the words, ‘New Vintage’ printed across it enticed intrigue. No one knew whether an era would inspire him, or a particular silhouette. But this morning, as the…

How to smell your best: your summer perfume picks without the cliches

How often do you stop and wonder, “what do I want to smell like today?” Do you want to smell like the ocean or freshly cut grass? Floral or fruity? Different occasions call for different ways of awakening the senses. From flaneuring like a tourist in your own city to heading out on a date on a balmy night, we look at the best scents for the scenarios of summer.

Hairstyle how to: the ’60s ponytail

We've seen elements of the swinging sixties take up a comfortable spot in the fashion closet, but so too does the decade’s resonance continue to echo in the hair and beauty department. Elegant and classic, yet with a relaxed vibe that means it can be worn day or night, the 1960s low ponytail is one that's easy enough to master. Find out how after the break.

Makeup how to: Lanvin’s dramatic cat eyes

Adding to the celebratory feel of Alber Elbaz’s 10th anniversary as the creative director of Lanvin, the fashion house didn’t leave a stone unturned in coordinating every aspect for its fall / winter 2012 show in Paris. Without taking much attention away from the feminine silhouettes in optimistic fabrics, the make-up for the show posed to be head-turn worthy sans domination. Head make-up artist, Pat…

Sydney bar scene: The Baxter Inn

Nestled off an unmarked alleyway in the heart of Sydney’s CBD, The Baxter Inn is like a warm hug on a chilly day. The jazz age vibe bounces off the brick walls and flows through the speakers - but with over 300 varieties of whiskeys available, there's more to captivate your attention that the music. Read on for the full review.

Hair how to: Gucci’s half-up twist

Complementing the flow of fabrics on the runway, Gucci's half-up and half-down hairstyle was dreamy enough to be tagged as one for all-year round. Effortless yet brimming with an understated romance, it's also one you can very easily re-create - just follow the steps after the break.

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