Gigs & Party Time, Photoshoots, POP UP SHOPS, Tannicorn Styles It

The Year I Loved & Lessons Learned: 2014

A look back at the highlights and lessons learned in 2014…


I loved working here, where I was encouraged to run free with my creativity to put together shop displays and window outfits. It felt great to work for an ethical business, with great staff, supporting locally handmade jewellery, crafts, clothing, up-cycling and vintage wares. I wish more of these shops could survive, but unfortunately like many other small creative businesses in Dunedin, The Cuckoo’s Nest had to close it’s doors for good.

LESSON LEARNED: Support your small local businesses when you can, either online, in store or at your local markets. You can meet the makers, talk about custom made and find something truly unique.



Our window display for ID Dunedin Fashion Week 2014.



Wowzers, what a full on week this was! The first day started with me running The Vintage Roundup, to celebrate the vintage clothing scene which I feel is very much part of Dunedin’s Style and identity. I then jumped straight into setting up for the Dunedin Online Pop Up Department Store, which showcases all the amazing online stores in Dunedin. Customers grabbed a glass of bubbles while browsing the goods, trying on clothes that are otherwise only seen in cyberspace. I got to photograph some FAB outfits worn to events, meet Charlotte Smith – curator of the Darnell Collection and dress up with my aunty Adair for the Saturday Show at the railway station.

LESSON LEARNED: A good amount of time spent planning helps a smooth running week, especially one of so many events! I couldn’t get by without my Reminders app on my iphone. You can write as many different lists as you like, set alarms and sync with others. Eg; I sync my shopping list with my husband so he can see what to pick up on his way home.


Dunedin Online Pop Up Shop



Friday show with my Aunty Adair at the railway station. Photo by the ODT.



Oh wow, I’m a big fan of  Foureyes a NZ street style and fashion blog and couldn’t believe it when they pulled me aside and asked to take my photo! They were down for ID Dunedin Fashion Week, checking out the fashion events and had popped into the Dunedin Online store opening. Thank-goodness I just happened to be at the right place at the right time. Full of nerves, a bit starstruck and wobbly on my new heels they still managed to get some FAB photos of my outfit.

LESSON LEARNED: Always say yes to opportunities! They are all around us all the time and you just have to grab them. Don’t let fear hold you back I could’ve said no, being a shy gal, but I challenged myself and grabbed the opportunity. I  even asked to photograph them…..Maybe the bubbly helped too.

Alex, Mino, Danny and Chin the team that is Foureyes


Street Style photo by Foureyes



Our landlord told us she was selling our very much loved sunny rental. She was kind enough to let us move out as soon as we liked, so that night I got on Trademe to look at other rentals, and to my surprise my favourite house in Dunedin was up for rent! I had previously featured a photo of the amazing 1960s home with untouched 1970s decor on my Stylist FB page when it was for sale and maybe putting it out there to the universe was enough for it to come back into my life? We rang the agent that night, got a viewing the next day and signed the day after that! It all happened very fast because we just HAD to live here. My total dream home for sure and I have to credit using ‘The Secret’.

LESSON LEARNED: I feel the law of attraction has always worked out during my life. It doesn’t always happen right away, sometimes it takes a few days, weeks, months or years. But I recommend using the secret yourself, you can start buy reading the book, or by watching the first 20 mins of the doco.

My husband Dylan and I in our kitchy kitchen at Strath Palace.


Different 70s wallpapers feature in every room.



I enter a lot of competitions, so was super stoked to win a $250 pressie card from Trademe for best #trademefashion photo. I buy, style and advertise a lot of clothes bought off Trademe on the blog, so it’s a win win.

LESSON LEARNED: You got to be in to win and what goes around comes around.

The winning photo wearing my fave Trademe purchase.


FRANKIE MAGAZINE PHOTOGRAPHED OUR HOUSE –  for their upcoming ‘Spaces’ Issue

Now this was an exciting and nerve racking email to receive! Frankie Magazine wanting to interview me, and take photos of us and our home. Eeeek. Lucky we had 2 months to prepare buying new furniture, art and homely pieces to make the house not feel so minimal, but lived in. This opportunity  finally motivated us to buy art from our favourite Wellington Artists Jinx in the Sky and Mica Still, to hang in the house and bought a Don couch which we recovered in a metallic pearl vinyl. Yus, never again do I have to spend an hour vacuuming cat fur off the furniture before guests come round! The house all came together just in time for the 8 hour shoot earlier this month. The Spaces Issue comes out in April, and I’ll be sure to share the news when it hits the shelves.

LESSONS LEARNED: Don’t wait to buy your favourite art! For years I’ve been saying ‘One day when we buy a house I can finally buy the art I want’. But you know what, I’m glad this opportunity forced us to buy art now, cuase who knows when we may buy a house. Enjoy it now!

Art by Mica Still


Art by Jinx in the Sky



I spent about a month re-learning after effects and putting together a Scholarship video entry to attend The Blogcademy class in Auckland. It was fun using my techie skills again which I had put to bed about 4-5 years ago after leaving the TV/Video industry working as a video editor. My goal this year is to grow my blog and these gals have much wisdom and experience to learn from. I was so thankful to have won the Scholarship and flew to Auckland earlier this month to attend. Now my brain is full of new ideas and motivation to make 2015 a better blog year than ever!

LESSONS LEARNED: Hunt around for Scholarship opportunities within your desired industry, there is funding out there, but you just have to look for it! I can’t possibly list everything I learnt at The Blogcademy, but you can check out their ‘About us’ video, and if it’s your cup of tea, maybe you’d like to start thinking of ideas to apply for the Scholarship this year?

The Blogcademy Auckland class of 2014 – Photos by


Woohoo, high five with headmistress Shauna for winning best selfie comp on Instagram


Gifting the headmistresses, Gala and Kat their Kabuki Doll flower crowns.



My super talented cuzzi Danielle makes custom retro, designer clothing and runs Devel Men & Women an art, design, music and fashion blog. I was lucky enough to take part in her Devel V’s Project where each month she works with a creative/personality, finds out a little more about them and their work and creates a custom garment inspired by them. For me she designed The Tannicorn Dress, which is totally me and I absolutely love! Thank-you! x

LESSONS LEARNED: Collab projects are a fun way to meet new people, gain new skills and reach a wider audience. Plus I got to see just how well Dan can sew, her attention to detail is amazing!



How can I not mention my husbands amazing pizza skills! He has mastered the craft of Neapolitan pizza over the past 3 years and has now upgraded to using a Blackstone gas fire pizza oven. Due to the temperature being much higher than a conventional oven, it gives that genuine smoky wood fired pizza taste. He spoils us with weekly margaritas and my favourite flavour is the ‘Funghi Thyme’ (a white pizza with mushrooms, parmesan and thyme).

LESSONS LEARNED: Practice makes perfect and always kiss the chef to acknowledge their hard work!




The best highlight of this year is getting pregnant! Apart from the past 9 weeks of constant nausea, missing out on my long blacks and cold beers, it’s otherwise been an exciting and totally unreal experience to grow a little human inside you. It was a challenge to get to this point, having endometriosis (among other things), but this miracle happened and we couldn’t be happier. 2015 will be a year of big change for us, which is great, bring it on!

LESSONS LEARNED: Don’t give up, keep trying, miracles can happen and Bugsy is a cool baby nickname.


Birds eye view of Bugsy saying hi.


Best of luck for you all in 2015
Tann x

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