My Christmas Favs from Shimansky

Where does the time go? I can't believe that it's almost Christmas - or that I'm at the age where all of my friends are getting engaged. I recently made my way to Shimansky at the V & A Waterfront to visit the Cape Town Diamond Museum. I also got to see Shimansky's workshop where I watched diamonds being cut by their eagle-eyed experts. Imagine one of them going for dinner with their friends; "How was work today, Joe?" "Oh you know, the usual, just cut some diamonds." #casual. After the tour, I went to the showroom to try on some amazing rings - what an experience! I've decided to compile a droolworthy Christmas wishlist because hey, even if I won't get a My Girl ring, I can certainly dream about it!

Millennium Diamond Earrings

The trademark design concept of the Millennium collection is a Shimansky diamond delicately set between two bands. I love the idea of applying the famous ring design to earrings. Always remember the 4 Cs: Clarity, Cut, Carat and Colour. Decide which is most important to you and then play around to find something that works for you; for example, if you're more lenient towards Clarity and Colour, you can still can get a beautiful diamond to suit a smaller budget. 

Evolym Diamond Ring

The innovative Evolym design was aptly named by writing the words, "My love" in reverse so the collection both literally and figuratively reflects your love for your partner. This is a truly unique engagement ring and what girl doesn't want something different? While the Millennium style is set between two bands, the Evolym style is set between three. It's a beautiful visual metaphor for two people being joined together by their love for one another. 

Solitaire Tanzanite Pendant

Tanzanites are actually rarer than diamonds but are sold for less. If you're looking for a bit of colour, you can't go wrong with a beautiful Shimansky Tanzanite. It also happens to be the birthstone of those born in December so if you have a special Sagittarian or Capricorn in your life, you know what to do.

My Girl Halo Microset Diamond Ring

So here's the deal, diamonds are usually cut with 57 facets to reflect light well. Mr Yair Shimansky has patented the most sparkly, square-cut masterpiece that is the My Girl diamond featuring a whopping 71 facets. You have to see one of these in person because you won't be able to take your eyes off of it. I have never seen a diamond reflect light so beautifully. This particular ring is on sale and it is ridiculously reasonable for an engagement ring, nevermind for the exclusive My Girl cut. I would die if someone gave me a My Girl ring - but I would die happy. 

Dancing Diamond Heart Pendant

Sales Exec Shaheema showed me her own Dancing Diamond necklace and I thought it was really cool. The pendants feature a dazzling diamond suspended in such a way that it looks like it's dancing. This necklace is the perfect gift that won't break the bank this festive season as Shimansky is currently offering a free chain and has the pendants on sale for Christmas. 

Be sure to check out Shimansky.com and their Festive Season Catalouge for more info!


A stay at Southern Sun The Cullinan Hotel

When Leigh van den Berg of Lipgloss is my Life emails you, you answer because she's probably going to make your week a lot more exciting. I had been laying low for a while and taken a break from blogging when Leigh asked if I'd like to join her for a "spoilicious blogger sleepover" at Southern Sun The Cullinan. Um, hell yes! I was a longtime fan of Tsogo Sun spas but I hadn't yet had the opportunity to stay over at one of their hotels so I was in.

The Cullinan is situated in Cape Town's CBD, super close to the V&A Waterfront (as you can see above from the pic of the view from my room) which makes it a prime location for tourists and domestic vacationers alike. I arrived to be greeted by supremely helpful and friendly staff. The Guest Relations Manager, Hannes walked me to my beautiful, lush suite which is larger than most of my friends' apartments. My eyes may have done a cartoony bounce thing for a second. I do love hotels, I'm a city person so robes, Wi-Fi, room service and mini bars are my vibe. While the suites are mind-blowing and include butler service, every room features luxury amenities like day-to-day complimentary Wi-Fi, ensuite bathrooms with a separate bath and shower, digital safes, minibars and tea and coffee facilities.  

Back to my day at Southern Sun The Cullinan. After Hannes set my bags down, I took a treat from the table in my lounge which had been set up with fruits, wine and chocolates and then headed to another room that had been arranged as a spa for myself and my fellow blogger babes Leigh, Brigitte and Karisa. The fun begun with champagne, macarons and mani-pedis provided by the ladies from Mangwanani Boutique Spa. We enjoyed a lovely pampering session which left us reluctant to part with our comfy gowns. We then went down to the Star Bar and Terrace which is located next to the hotel's beautiful pool. We toasted our yummy cocktails, had a few laughs and enjoyed fresh seafood platters. Well, the girls enjoyed the seafood and I enjoyed the alcohol XD

We took a rest in our rooms before dinner at the Peach Tree buffet where the dinner staff brûlée your crème brûlée in front of you. That dessert was delicious. The evening didn't end there, we went back to the Star Bar and partied into the early hours of the morning before eventually ending up in Karisa's suite dancing like maniacs. I could easily live in one of the suites, in fact, my bed was such a dream that the girls had trouble getting me out of it the next morning. I could have easily slept the day away. 

Thank you to the girls and to the team at Southern Sun The Cullinan for a stay to remember. I highly recommend this hotel, do check it out if you're looking for a great place to stay in Cape Town.          


When pale girls tan: TanOrganic

Summer is enjoying its swan song right now so I thought I'd talk about how to keep a little bit of it with you. I'm super pale and I really like my default skin. I also, however, like trying new things and I have never tried fake tan. I know, what? I was curious so I thought I'd give it a whirl and change up my look.

As I've said, I enjoy being pale so I wasn't looking to go full Oopma Loompa, I doubt anyone is but regardless, I wanted something subtle - a little radiant pick-me-up. I tried out the TanOrganic Tan Trilogy Try-Me kit which includes an exfoliating glove to ready your skin or erase your previous tan, a mitt to apply your new one, self tan spray and moisturising oil to lock in the tan when you're done.

You can gradually build up your tan and re-apply it as you see fit but being a novice I stuck to the "less is more" notion and I think it served me well. I think it's also better to apply a new layer every evening if you're looking to get a more sunkissed look. Using the kit was super easy and quick, though I did mess up a patch on the back of my leg which I rectified the next day XD

It takes eight hours to really develop and while I was quite dark at first, after my shower in the morning I was content. I loved the natural fade and the fact that I couldn't really smell much. I'm quite familiar with that fake tan smell from my years at fashion school, I remember one particular moment when someone yelled, "Oh my god, who is wearing fake tan? I can smell it!".

TanOrganic is also cruelty-free and lacks all that icky paraben business with 99.6% natural ingredients. I mashed up some pics I took before and after application to give you a good idea of how it came out. If you're interested you can shop the products online at http://www.tanorganic.co.za/ Xx.


Henriette Botha A/W 2015

Charming young South African jewellery designer, Henriette Botha, unveiled her new fall collection this week. Instead of opting for the darker colours so associated with fall, her collection SOUTH brings us just the right amount of bright that we crave when the days are grey. Inspired by Brazilian prints, Mexican attitude and Sicilian vibrance, this mix of cultural influences was evident in her use of textures and juxtaposition. Henriette's knotting, beadwork, chains and tassels combine to create bold statement accessories but she didn't forget about the gals who love their delicate bracelets and earrings. With a CV including a stint at Balmain, this girl is pretty impressive. I'm glad we didn't lose her to Paris! Shop the line at www.henriettebotha.com.



I love taking photographs and like most people these days, I think it's important to document everything; a snapshot of what our life is like right now, what our latest fervent obsessions are and what our environment looks like. Things change so quickly and feelings fade much too fast. A photo transports us the same way a song or a fragrance does and all of sudden we're in touch with something so familiar that was once forgotten. We wonder how and when things got hazy. Given enough time, even the frivolous becomes symbolic. That cheap necklace we wore during the two years we were caught between laughter and heartache or our fascination with changing our hair as much as we changed our minds.

This is what my world looks like at the moment. Soft kimonos over everything, beautiful treasures from India, pretty packaging and hair experiments. I'm heavy into the 90s and it's funny how much cleaner and streamlined trends are the second time around. The kinks are all worked out and there's no clumsy evolution to navigate through. I'll do things like take a look at freshtrends.com and dream of sporting a nose ring just as I did as a 90s kid but this time around, I'll settle for an ear cuff. I'm craving a weekend of online shopping and relaxing in baths with incense smoking nearby. Cheers to everything that's happening in my, and your world right now. Xx

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