A Styling Day with Cointreau

I fell in love with the orange-flavoured liqueur called Cointreau on my birthday last year. I hosted a Mexican birthday shindig at my house, invited a few of my friends and made delicious margaritas. I followed a recipe online, and it included Cointreau. Needless to say, my friends came back for second, third, fourth and fifth helpings.

It was so lovely to get an invitation from the Cointreau team to help style their ambassador, Ayanda, for the day.

A Cointreau Woman, according to the Cointreau team, is determined and energetic. She is graceful and powerful. Basically she kicks butt in everything she does. When I met Ayanda, it was easy to see why she was chosen as their ambassador.

She was kind and bubbly, and ready for the challenge.

Together with blogger Ms Paula Bee, and the team at Marie Claire, we were given the fun task of styling Ayanda to be the perfect Cointreau woman.

It all went down at the V & A Waterfront. The day started with a great make-up session at Edgars at the Bobbi Brown make-up stand, where we  got to make Ayanda’s already pretty face even more beautiful. Ms Paula and I decided that we needed sparkle and focused on her beautiful eyes, insisting that there be hints of gold and shine. The Cointreau Woman stands out from the crowd right?

RGP_COINTREAU_AYANDA_559

Screen Shot 2014-12-03 at 4.18.00 PM

Selfie time because make-up and great lighting!

RGP_COINTREAU_AYANDA_927

Ayanda gets hair make-up done at Bobbi Brown

RGP_COINTREAU_AYANDA_531

Transforming Ayanda into the Cointreau Woman

We then moved to my favourite part – shopping for clothes! We went to Forever New, The Lot, Tiger of Sweden and TopShop, and although each store had it’s own unique identity, TopShop was the one that stood out for what we were trying to do.

Ayanda loved the clothes there, and her already sparkling eyes lit up even more when she tried them on. It was no surprise that the winning outfit came from there.

RGP_COINTREAU_AYANDA_654

Sharing a few laughs as we look for clothes at Forever New at the V & A. How Cointreau-perfect is that orange clutch?

RGP_COINTREAU_AYANDA_517

Loved that my fellow stylist, blogger Ms Paula Bee and I were on the same page.

RGP_COINTREAU_AYANDA_763

All-white with a pop of colour? Always yes.

To celebrate a succesful styling day, we moved on to the beautiful Grand Cafe and Beach for some lunch and a lesson in making Cointreau cocktails from Ayanda herself. So yummy! I remembered why I was such a big fan of the liqueur.

Here is the Cointreau Fizz recipe that you can try for the festive season. Your friends and family will love you. You’ll love you.

 

Screen Shot 2014-12-03 at 4.15.21 PM

RECIPE: For a refreshing cocktail with a zing of citrus, add two shots of cointrea, the juice of half a lemon or lime and ice to a tall glass.

Top with sparkling water and a wedge of lemon or line. Or personalise your drink by adding in your favourite summer fruit! ENJOY!

 

RGP_COINTREAU_AYANDA_214

Ayanda went to the Cointreau Fizz Garden Party two days later dressed in her styling’ new outfit.

Good work, team!

Screen Shot 2014-12-03 at 3.54.31 PM Screen Shot 2014-12-03 at 3.55.07 PM Screen Shot 2014-12-03 at 3.55.36 PM

*Cheers and happy summer!

Advertisements

Thank you 15 On Orange for being sickeningly gorgeous

When you look at African Pride’s 15 On Orange from the outside you feel slightly ill. It’s just beautiful. It’s a glass marvel in the centre of Cape Town that seems a little too pretty for its surroundings.

It comes as no surprise that I squealed with glee when they invited me to experience the hotel as well as the new, revamped Suntra Spa.

I silently thanked my e-mail inbox for being the window for this much-needed R & R weekend. I fantasised about wonderful hotel bathroom selfies (they have the best light), a three course meal with yummy wine and the highlight – the full body Swedish massage.

I invited my beautiful friend and housemate Mapodile on this weekend adventure. We packed our weekend bags and left our home in Woodstock many miles away, travelling 7km to town for our stay at 15 On Orange.

photo 2(1)

The pool you can swim in but it’s far nicer to take photos of it.

 

We checked in and toasted the lovely room we’d been given. Big bath. Big shower. Win. I was tempted to bath a handful of times that night but I planned the night’s events instead. We were going to eat ourselves into a non-life-threatening coma at the hotel restaurant and drink copious amounts of wine.

The we're about to eat a whole lot of food selfie

The we’re about to eat a whole lot of food selfie

We did and we did.

15 On Orange restaurant

Here is a photo of my food. I apologise for it not being artistic. I was really hungry and wanted to get on with it.

We planned to go out dancing but rolled ourselves into our room instead. Is hotel linen not the greatest thing on Helen Zille’s green earth?

We knew our massages were coming in the morning so we needed to rest up for that.

Suntra Spa is stunning. I would’ve taken a photo but I was too busy being drunk on rest and relaxation to bother. This was my first time getting a Swedish full body massage and I loved every minute (60 of them). I’d indicated on my form that I was experiencing high stress levels (I have three jobs at the moment) and needed the masseusse to fix me. She did.

This photo is from the hotel’s website.

15onorange_spa01

15 On Orange – Suntra Spa

I highly recommend it. And if you can’t, I’ll gladly take your place.

I’ll collect my coins and visit the hotel again for sure.

 

 

 

I’m attracting themed parties

I love me a good party! And my job as a Sunday Times socials writer means I get to go to a lot. There has been a steady stream of themed parties in CT recently.

The recent #4thStreetParty had a great 50’s theme. I went all out and won Best Dressed.

4th Street Party4th Street Party4th Street Party

WINNING!

And the 70′ Hussle Party recently was also loads of fun. I still say I look like a normal Capetonian in 2014, which means I nailed it.

The HussleThe Hussle

Have you been to a really great themed party?

The Crop Top Diaries: I guess it’s time to get healthy

I’m in my mid-20’s now and with that “I’m a quarter way to a century” realisation, a few things need to change. Most notably, how I treat my body.

I’ve always been fortunate enough to be a tall, fairly lean person. Growing up I was happy to play any and every kind of sport, except squash eeuw, just to avoid being home to clean and wash dishes. Sport was a place of escape – from chores and making tea for my mom. I played hockey, which I was fairly good at. I was in the U12A hockey team and highly respected. Then I turned 13 and realised I had little to no hockey talent, which is just a meaner way to say there were hundreds of girls who were just better at it than me.

I continued to play, languishing in the C-teams, basking in the sunshine of mediocrity and “playing for fun, not the result.” I turned to books, and became a competent library monitor. Later on in my teens someone recognised that I was super tall and suggested that netball needed to happen. And it did. Problem was I was awkward tall and not ruthess netball player, slayer of goal attacks tall. I again became a consistent contributor to C and D teams, playing as Goal Defence. I was using the skills God gave me (blocking balls from short girls, with the ease and disdain of swatting flies). I was in my element.

So playing sport every week, and being, you know, a growing teenager, meant I had some semblance of fitness. Couple that with a strong metabolism and a naturally long body, and life was a breeze.

In varsity, I joined the campus gym and walked everywhere (thank you Grahamstown), so even though my diet was poor (thank you box wine and dubious res meals) I was able to still keep at it.

When I started working at 22, living alone and enjoying the finer beverages in life, I realised my body couldn’t cope with all the good times I was inviting it to. I was driving everywhere, avoiding all physical activity, preferring to play with Woolies Tin Roof Ice-Cream and curries instead of spin classes and yoga.

Now I’m here, at a crossroads. I’ve decided to join *bites fist* the gym. And you may think, urgh, look at her. How fleeting and New Year’s Resoultion but 4 months too late this all is, but I’m serious now. I want to wear crop tops goddamit, and of course look after my health and heart etc. I want to have some kind of endurance so that when Im in a situation where endurance is needed (lacklustre Comrades Marathon dreams and a zombie apocalyse – shoutout to Zombieland), I’m prepared.

And cute boys who are able to carry you up stairs without breaking a sweat when you’ve fallen asleep on the couch also reside at the gym, so there’s that fun element.

All I want is a positive story to tell.

Join me on my journey. I’m tomorrow’s future, so I guess I should start making plans to make it there in one piece.

You're looking at Tomorrow's Future here

You’re looking at Tomorrow’s Future here

PS: The Crop Top Diaries – a way to keep myself on track and be held accountable. If you see me falling off the horse, feel free to call me out on it, or just bring wine and ice-cream to analyse where I went wrong.

Party pooped

I’m not old. I’m one of those young people who think they’re cool enough to label themselves an “old soul” yes, but for the most part, I’m a regular 23 year old just trying to do better than peers. I’m an ex-Rhodes student too (affectionately known as a “Rhodent”), meaning I was groomed to handle an overdose of a good time. When I tell people I used to go to Rhodes they immediately say, “Oh, you Rhodents know how to have a good time!” The pressure to deliver is too much.

When I left varsity and started working, I found it increasingly harder to party and go clubbing. Did I party myself into the ground during my time at university? Before I moved here, Cape Town was always this mystical place that I visited once a year, during the festive season. It never let me down. I was in awe of the sheer amount of fun things one could do here. When I made the decision to relocate, I knew I’d never be bored. I have friends here who also had a similar mind set, friends who like to party and found pleasure in watching the city at night from a nightclub on the 31st floor of a building somewhere. There was a point however where I just stopped ‘going out’ in CT. I went to dinner with mates or watched a movie or two, sure, but there was no real desire to Charlie Sheen this town. I could blame exhaustion, or the old knees not being what they used to be, but I can honestly say boredom and a general laziness to socialize are to blame.

Nightclubs are such an interesting place to observe people and human behaviour. A lot of people make a conscious decision to use this space to try and meet new people over music that is louder than a Graeme Swann LBW appeal. Chances are the only thing one leaves with at the end of the night is hair that smells like an ashtray from Mad Men and Savanna breath. Am I too young to feel like this? Or is this called maturity and growth? Maybe we need to run workshops for young people who have just entered the working world and have lost the energy to be social butterflies.

This past weekend I went to a birthday party at a great nightclub. It was the first time I had been out in several months. The great thing was this club was for over 23’s so at least the born-frees wouldn’t be free enough to get in. That helped. After an hour or two of drinking, dancing and merriment, fatigue set in. I faded faster than Asafa Powell in the 100m final. I almost felt like dropping to the ground and asking God to revive me. You know that moment when you stop dancing with your body and start dancing with your head only? That’s the moment I knew my night was over.

I can’t wait for my mid-life crisis to hit me later on in life so I can go to clubs again.

I could be Zahara’s body double

Two weeks ago I visited a school in Mitchell’s Plain for work, and because of my camera and large afro, the kids mistook me for South Africa’s biggest artist right now: Zahara. I didn’t correct them. I may need to swap my camera for a guitar next time and tour SA as Zahara Lite. Click the link below to see my adoring young fans. I live for them.

I could be Zahara’s body double