Whether it’s your friend’s 30++ birthday, engagement or housewarming, you want to give something that’s really wanted. You could give yet another lovely candle (same as everyone else) or GroupTogether for one gift she’ll treasure. GroupTogether makes collecting the money from the gang a breeze, even creating a group card with everyone’s pic and messages. The only thing left to do is to go shopping! Why not make a day of it somewhere spesh.
We asked those in the know for their tips and thought we’d share. Grab your bestie and away you go. FYI: None of these businesses are affiliated with us. We asked our network for tips and went for a day trip. Hope you like them too.
Head up Barrenjoey Road, first stop ..
Shopping first (to earn lunch)
Mark Tuckey – Newport
No dillying. No dallying. There’s lots more to see and eat. Next stop, the favourite ..
Manyara Home – Newport
|image: Manyara Home|
Beautifully curated, there’s furniture, accessories, bed linen, light jewellery, lighting (chandeliers and pendant shades) in neutrals from places far and exotic. Perfect for a beachy eclectic feel. You’ll need to group together to fund some of the special pieces but worth it! Enjoy.
Rust – Avalon
Heavenly store for lovers of vintage furniture. Guaranteed to make your brand new renovation look lived in and loved. Unlike so many shops filled with “faux” antiques, these pieces feel real and lovingly selected. Each piece looks like it has a story to tell. The helpful owners will even hire out some pieces for parties. Check out the ice cream stall! Julie sat in the chairs below and gave them the thumbs up for comfort (I’m generally the more princess of the two of us, but she’s definitely the Princess from Princess and the Pea). But, back on task…
Mamapapa – Avalon
For kids’ clothes and accoutrements, this charming store hidden away down an alleyway stocks the owners line Mamapapa, along with brands such as Album di Famiglia Store, Atelier Atsuyo et Akiko, Jess Brown Design, Numéro 74, and Muskhane. The clothes are mostly natural fibres and neutral colours, giving them an organic feel. Perfect to create a hamper for a baby shower or just buy a gift voucher and let your friend choose. This is the stuff you’d want to dress didums in if you had your “drathers”.
Note: Closed on Mondays
Table Tonic – Avalon
Directly across from MamaPapa is this tiny store selling Moroccan leather poufs, blankets with giant pom poms, Tunisian towels, Uashmama paper bags and exoticly embroidered clutches and other tactile gifts and pretty things. There’s a more comprehensive range on online but for those who like to feel before they buy, here it is.
Beechwood Furniture – Avalon. Beachy, Nantucket-esque furny and homewares along with some charmingly quirky bits for kids. Mad about these felt animal heads which double as hooks. Our kind of taxidermy.
Just in, the new range of Samantha Robinson ceramics – the perfect thing to replace the tea set your friend received for her wedding which is now ready for Vinnies.
Armchair Collective – Mona Vale: yum food and homewares. Armchair sells one-of-a-kind restored designer armchairs, colourful cushions, custom lamp shades and all things interior. The food is cafe style – gourmet salads and fish n chips and the decor is beachy and bright.
Bronze Kiosk – Mona Vale: on the beach cafe with beautiful food, stylishly presented. Think grilled haloumi, spiced sweet potato & chickpea salad (vegetarian and gluten free). The locals love the coffee too.
Little Paper Lane – Mona Vale: charming stationery.
Pinko Pinko – Avalon: hip fashion rather than gifts. Labels like Free People, Arnhem, Amuse Society, Camilla.
bassike – Avalon: If you don’t have a local Bassike store, visit this one for sure. Expensive but super hip T’s and err..basics.
Love Loans + Linen – Palm Beach: nice smelling things & gifts
Kristy Lee Interiors – Manly, outdoor and indoor furniture. Butterfly chairs and other rattan, wicker, inlaid stone pieces.
Honeybee Homewares – Fairlight: Homewares and fashion, french country. Stocking labels like American Vintage, Virginie Castaway, Lee Mathews, Nell, & St James. Featuring Cottons & Linen, French Fabrics.
Little Paper Lane – 5/1 Waratah Street, Mona Vale. 8407 9204
But man cannot live on shopping alone. One must nurture the soul with good food as well. So, herein lies the significant problem… so many yumlicious options, so little time. Here’s a short list…
The Boathouse, Palm Beach – Contemp, Sydney food – fresh + chic. Heavenly waterfront.
Sister restaurant to equally gorgeous restaurant at Balmoral. Sit with a glass of wine, gaze out to sea and pretend this is your real life. Admire the healthy quinoa, avocado, carrot and labne salad and then order the fish and chips, coffee and cake. Go with someone chubby and feel lean.
(warning: closed Good Friday and Easter Monday)
Yoda, Avalon – South East Asian – delectable, fresh and fragrant.
Cheap and cheery, quirky but very knowledgable staff. Awesome food.
Beachwood – 10/ 57 Avalon Parade, Avalon Beach, 9918 7162
Love loans + linen – 2, 1065 Barrenjoey Rd, Palm Beach. 9974 5541
The Boathouse, Palm Beach – Barrenjoey Boathouse, Gov. Phillip Park
Teacher survey reveals the gifts they want (& don’t want)
According to a survey conducted by Australian company GroupTogether.com, 74.4% of teachers prefer a group gift voucher with a lovely message