My favourites from Life Instyle Sydney 2016

Now that almost everything I loved at Life Instyle is in-store and ready to purchase I thought I’d put together a guide to my favourites from this year’s Sydney show. What did you love?#4X Life Instyle best of 2016#2X Life Instyle best of 2016#1X Life Instyle best of 2016#3X Life Instyle best of 2016

A family trip to bliss

Lord Howe Island - photography by CATHERINEGRACE copyright 2016

During the first week of March my whole family (parents, siblings, wives, husbands and children) packed up (lightly!) and headed over to Lord Howe Island. Just 2 hours from Sydney, off the east coast of NSW, Lord Howe Island is truly a little piece of paradise. The water is crystal clear, nobody uses locks on their doors and turtles swim just meters from the shore. The weather is just gorgeous; everyday sits around 25-26 degrees Celsius during the day and 21-22 degrees at night.Lord Howe Island - photography by CATHERINEGRACE copyright 2016Lord Howe Island - photography by CATHERINEGRACE copyright 2016Lord Howe Island - photography by CATHERINEGRACE copyright 2016Lord Howe Island - photography by CATHERINEGRACE copyright 2016Lord Howe Island - photography by CATHERINEGRACE copyright 2016Lord Howe Island - photography by CATHERINEGRACE copyright 2016Lord Howe Island - photography by CATHERINEGRACE copyright 2016Lord Howe Island - photography by CATHERINEGRACE copyright 2016

DO:

  • Travel light – you can only take 14kg of luggage on the small Qantas plane that takes you to the island. See my packing post for all I needed for a great stay.
  • Send over all heavy items, especially alcohol, by post prior to your stay. The Island encourages visitors to have BBQs (with excellent, clean BBQs available all over the island at no charge) and food & drink is quite expensive on the island so simply pack a box or two of alcohol and other non-perishables and send care of the post office with instructions as to when you are arriving and where you are staying. The friendly Lord Howe locals will make sure it gets to you.
  • Try the muffins at The Anchorage – they are simply delish. In fact everything at The Anchorage is really tasty and the coffee is great too. The staff bake their own bread every morning and it is well worth a wander down each morning.
  • Stay on Ned’s Beach Road – it means you are walking distance to The Lagoon, Ned’s Beach & Old Settlement Beach (the best places for snorkelling) as well as The Anchorage for morning coffee.

DON’T

  • Worry if you forget your snorkel. The Island has lots of places to hire snorkel gear, including via an honesty box on Ned’s Beach.
  • Forget some Mortein plug-ins. There can be a few mosquitos at dusk and overnight and the anti-mosquito paraphernalia is expensive on the island.
  • Expect to be connected to the rest of the world during your stay. There is no mobile connection and limited wifi on the island. We spent the week completely unplugged and kept all our mobile devices on airplane mode for the entire week and it was bliss.

Lord Howe Island - photography by CATHERINEGRACE copyright 2016Lord Howe Island - photography by CATHERINEGRACE copyright 2016Lord Howe Island - photography by CATHERINEGRACE copyright 2016

Using the 5, 4, 3, 2, 1 packing method with a bump

A little while ago I stumbled across A Pair & a Spare‘s genius article, How to Pack: The 5, 4, 3, 2, 1 Guide (definitely worth a read if you are packing with a weight limit). With our Lord Howe Island trip upon us, a 14kg weight limit each (which must include our snorkel) and a growing baby bump to accommodate, I put the 5, 4, 3, 2, 1 guide to the test. P.S. it passes with flying colours!

All pieces are non-maternity but bump-friendly (early second trimester, I’ll be just on four months pregnant while we are away). The entire capsule wardrobe, plus essential toiletries, a little make up (tinted moisturiser, concealer & mascara), suncream and a large contingent of mosquito repelling paraphernalia (plug-ins, outdoor spray, industrial strength insect repellent and Stingose®) as Lord Howe is known for its high mosquito population at dusk, fit into a standard carry on bag. We will hire flippers for snorkelling on the island. Thanks Geneva, I am normally a chronic over-packer and your guide has totally changed the way I approach packing.

So, what’s in my suitcase?
Catherine - Lord Howe IslandAnd for those who want the details

TOPS
Cecilie Copenhagen V neck and high neck long sleeve cotton tops – easy, breezy cotton and the a-line shape makes it perfect throughout pregnancy | Skin & Threads long sleeve linen jumper – a light layer to add in the evening | Two simple tees in soft cotton that can double as a PJ top or work out tee

BOTTOMS
Leather shorts (these are Uniform Studios from a few seasons ago) – easy wipe off when you have a toddler in tow | Cecilie Copenhagen cotton shorts – mix with the matching Cecilie Copenhagen top for a top to toe look or a pair back with a simple tee | Jac & Jack silk drawstring pant with elasticised cuffs – keep those mozzies out during the evening and soft enough to wear to bed | The Upside long yoga pants – for a little beachside yoga or a long afternoon walk

DRESSES
Three easy dresses to take you from beach to bar (I’m taking the Assembly Label distance dress, a very old beach throw over from Scanlan Theodore and a super fine cotton tunic that I just toss over my swimmers).Lord howe island #3SHOES
Havaianas for the beach | Sneakers for walking | Jason Polan for Soludos wink espadrilles for everywhere else

BAGS
I love my State of Escape bag for the beach (in fact I’ve snuck in a new black purchase for myself, from Bassike, so the husband will take my old white one) and it will double as our carry on bag for the short plane trip. P.S. I’m lusting over the new khaki too | I’m also taking my mini cross over tote from Scanlan Theodore (new season colours out now) for hands free walks up for a morning coffeeBump friendly packing 4SWIMWEAR
I’m totally crushing on everything Marysia at the moment. The soft fabric is very forgiving and in a slightly larger size than usual has plenty of room for a growing belly

HATS
A leather cap for walking | And a wide brim beauty for lounging. I’ve chosen a Nerida Winter straw wide brim that squashes down easily for packingLord howe island #2ONE OF EACH
Something to read | Sunglasses of course – these are Guys & Dolls in blush from Pared eyewear | Zadig & Voltaire super light cotton scarf – to keep the evening chill at bay | A light turkish towel – takes up barely any suitcase room | bkr water bottle | Camera to snap the memories – while I’m a DSLR obsessive I must admit I am quite taken by the new Olympus Pen F for travelling light | Don’t forget the snorkel and goggles

And you are packed!

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