My Aussie Experience – by Patti Houston

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 view of the sydney operal house from the stairs below

And what an experience it was! Our basic itinerary was to fly in to Sydney, drive down the coast to Melbourne (where Jordan is living) and do day trips from there. Jordan and Rachel were able to get some time off work and flew up to Sydney to meet us. We spent a few days there before heading out on our road trip. And of course I had my camera in hand the entire way. For those who have been to Australia I’m sure you can agree that Sydney is Australia’s version of Toronto and Melbourne is more like Vancouver.

Of course we saw most of the iconic tourist stops while in Sydney; The Opera House, Sydney Harbour Bridge, The Rock, Bondi Beach, Manly Beach and Pitt Street. It’s such a bustling busy city with incredible views and endless inspiration. Some of my favourites were:


Uashmama – Purses, bags, totes, etc all made from recycled paper. The colours and textures were amazing. The store was beautifully merchandised too. Visit the Canadian website for info about how to get these amazing products locally!

The Museum of Contemporary Art – Endless inspiration in this well appointed gallery. Wandering for hours is not unheard of. Rick was very patient while we extended our gallery experience.


Pitt Street was amazing and had the biggest Cos store I have ever seen. Paddington Market was incredible – filled with amazing artisans. There was no shortage of design inspiration. One of the most interesting stores was Matt Blatt. Modern yet an eclectic mix.


The drive down the coast was so beautiful. The highlights were definitely an amazing little beach town called Tathra. That’s where I saw kangaroos for the first time. While there we visited Jess’s family that live nearby in Bega. (I offered her grandmother a job. She’s the most stylish senior I have ever met)



Melbourne was like going home except we couldn’t have been further from Vancouver. There is such an incredible food scene. Each district seemed to have its own vibe. It’s hard to say which was my favourite. However, Fitzroy tugged at my heart. From food to shopping there was no shortage of interesting places. Lots of pop up shops featuring local designer. Some of my favourites were,

 Life with Bird A husband and wife duo creating unique and wonderful clothing.

 Nique clothing You have to go to experience these stores.

 Zomp Shoes Those who know me are aware that I have a bit of shoe passion. Happy dancing at Zomp!

NGV – National Gallery of Victory I loved this gallery. I was so inspired by so many artists.


There is such a wonderful juxtaposition of new and old. Lots of contemporary high-rises yet so much of the original architecture has been restored. There are adorable little houses adorned with filigree details on the front porches. I wonder where the influence is from?


Our road trips were equally a inspiring. There were a couple of stops that stood out more than others. One was The 12 apostles on the Great Ocean Road and the other was The Blowholes in Kiami. Both were spectacular. All in all it was a 10 out of 10 holiday. The highlight was spending 3 weeks of quality time with Jordan and her friend Rachel. There’s nothing like family time! And it’s great to be home. I LOVE Vancouver!

 Please visit my flickr page to see more of my images from our trip

Patti Houston – Flüff Designs

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