I promise this is not going to turn into a travel blog... for one, I don't generally travel much, aside from the past couple of months with little overnight trips to various places. But I went to Brisbane last weekend to visit my friend Faux Fuchsia, and meet up with Romy and committed blog commenter Pammie.


I have never been to Brisbane before. I've passed through the airport on my way further North to the beaches and Islands of the Barrier Reef many times, but never actually stopped. But I loved Brisbane! The best thing about meeting up with a friend that lives there, is that they show you all the good bits you might not see as a tourist, and we spent no time in the CBD as a result.


Brisbane has lots of little houses that are quintessentially Queensland to me in the inner city - lots of weatherboard, fretwork and wide verandas designed to live on. I loved this one above with its tropical palms and patina in New Farm.


And many of them have the classic Queensland style of the lattice gate to the veranda. When this is closed it provides privacy to the veranda, and the front door is left open which means the veranda space is used like an outdoor room. This one above was so sort of 50's Queensland I couldn't help but take a photo.


We stayed the first night at the Fuchsiadome, and went to all Faux Fuchsia's favourite haunts.


We visited Montrachet for lunch (so delicious and French Bistro style), and dropped in and out of shops in Fortitude Valley, Paddington and New Farm. I particularly liked Magnolia Interiors in Fortitude Valley, they bring in a lot of unique things from France that I haven't seen elsewhere in Australia, like these beautiful coloured glass planters above, Astier de Villatte porcelain below, and absolutely gorgeous Limoges hand painted china.


There are also lots of beautiful cushions, lamps and other bits and pieces. It's probably a good thing they're not in Adelaide as it would be very bad for my bank account.... Romy and I returned on Sunday morning to panic shop before we left for the airport. I bought 4 breakfast sized Limoges cups and saucers, each one different.



We also visited the Paddington Antique Market, which is in an old Silent Movie Theatre. I bought this unusual silver plate toast rack (pictured above). It's circa 1890, and faux bamboo. It also holds 8 slices of thick toast in an upright manner... so it's a family sized toast rack, and I've not seen one like it before.


We went to Unique France (antiques), where I admired this set of four matching Art Deco armchairs. They were seriously beautiful in person. I could picture them mixed in with old pieces to give a bit of visual tension to a scheme (reupholstered in something more exciting than beige microsuede). Unfortunately they're $50,000 so I left them behind...


We went to Black and Spiro to check out Anna's latest fabric range in the flesh.


I can report it's printed on an excellent quality linen, and hand screen printed in Australia.


And dinner was at the Fuchsiadome, as you can no doubt tell from the table arrangement below - who else would use a furry leopard print tablecloth? We ate one of FF's famous sand crab lasagnas. It was delicious and really, really not good for the waistline... I think given all the hills in Brisbane FF manages to work it off in a way that I wouldn't be able to in Adelaide.


The next morning was based around more cultural pursuits. We started off at GOMA on Southbank, where we saw the Cindy Sherman exhibition.


I have friends who stayed in a hotel in Verona, Italy for their honeymoon, and were dismayed to find their room full of her creepy clown series of photographs. I'm not sure there was a lot of romance with these staring down at you in bed...



But after you get past the freaky clowns, the photographs where she started using digital cameras became very interesting. She makes a lot of commentary on the selfie culture, which is ironic as she pretty much pioneered selfies - her photos all feature herself in various costume/ makeup which she also does herself.


Here's Iris Apfel and Anna Wintour, and Faux Fuchsia.



We walked along Southbank to Stokehouse for lunch on the river, which was very pleasant indeed. Delicious food, and we stuffed ourselves so full we cancelled dinner that night. Faux Fuchsia won the desert category with her choice which was so pretty.


Sunday we went to the Botanic Gardens. This is the Japanese garden. There was also a lovely salvia walk.


We saw a Bush Turkey, frequently featured in Faux Fuchsia's blog as a menacing predator in her garden.  Those things are freaky. Thank God I just have possums the size of dogs in mine.


We had a delicious lunch at the Paddington Deli, and then it was off to the airport after Mr FF detoured to drive us around some of the cultural sights of Brisbane, such as the former home of Christopher Skase in Hamilton.

It was such a fun break. We talked interiors, antiques, art, fashion, gardens, books and food all weekend. Mr FF was a very good sport driving us around, plying us with Champagne (he'd bought in a case in preparation for the 4 of us) and throwing together cheese platters at a moments notice. The Fuchsia household is as visually lovely and immaculately neat as you'd expect, and I loved Brisbane and can't wait to go back for more. Hope you're having a lovely weekend wherever you are.

52 comments:

  1. So funny about panic shopping at Magnolia Interiors....It's my shop of choice for birthday presents and the Limoges china is often the gift because who doesn't like a nice cup?
    Your faux bamboo toast rack goes beautifully with the cups.
    Always, very cheering to hear people have enjoyed their visit to Brisbane as us locals love it here.

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    1. I'm sure that whomever the recipient is of your birthday presents would be very pleased indeed! I so wish we had a shop like it in Adelaide... so many lovely things. And yes, a beautiful tea cup is the perfect present. I have only ever heard positive things about Brisbane, but I think that everyone tends to focus on Sydney and Melbourne, and the other capitals get a little forgotten... but it's got so much going on and I loved it.

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  2. What a lovely trip. Love love love the breakfast cups and toast rack. And those chairs are fantastic X

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    1. Weren't those chairs beautiful! I do love a bit of Art Deco mixed with Georgian antique. It was a fun weekend away xx

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  3. $50 000 for a set of 4 chairs boggles my mind. Who would buy them and would they let people sit on them?! I guess a passing billionaire may find the price point reasonable?
    Your trip looks lovely, exactly the sort of time I love to have with my friends, just eating, shopping and hanging out and of course solving the worlds problems in between that.
    Cybill

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    1. It was interesting, the dealer seemed to think he'd sell them fairly quickly as he'd had a fair bit of interest from Sydney decorators over them Cybill... I think the one thing I've come to realise in design is that there are price points that suits all sorts of people. When I've looked at fabrics that are $700/m wholesale, I've thought "who is going to pay for this??" and then think of the Packers/ Reinhart families and think well, it's pennies to them. xx

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  4. What a perfect way to explore Brisbane!

    SSG xxx

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    1. It was such a good introduction to the city SSG - so much fun too xx

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  5. Thank you for such a kind and generous post!!! I miss you guys xxxx

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    1. loved visiting you and miss our chats! Miss you too and thank you for having me again! xx

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  6. Your weekend in Brisbane looks like so much fun Heidi. Did you spend two nights there? Most of my trips to Brisbane have involved airport stopovers, although I have stayed in Brisbane a few times - the first our hire car broke down in the middle of the Story Bridge, the second involved a very Planes, Trains and Automobiles-esque experience getting from Brisbane to the Gold Coast after an overseas cruise due to missed connections and the third involved my husband having a kitchen knife confiscated from his laptop bag at the airport (don't ask!!). Your meals out look very yummy and I am in love with your new breakfast cups and toast rack. Have really enjoyed the weather today - my husband and I walked to our local cafe for a coffee and the sun was glorious. Hope you have a great week. Jo xx

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    1. Hmmm. Sounds like your trips to Brisbane have been a little cursed Jo!! I caught the red eye out on Friday morning and stayed two nights, getting home late Sunday. The food out was great, but I've had to detox this week, and am certain I put on a lot of weight over the weekend!! Wasn't it a beautiful day today (although a little chilly in the shade). Sounds like you had a lovely day too. xx

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  7. Love this post with all your beautiful pics! Wasn't it the best time! Thank you again FF and Mr FF!

    So glad you went back to Magnolia for the extra two cups! Love the old Chinese man with the fishing poles on the Limoges - will work so well with the faux bamboo silver toast rack.

    But now so sad I wasn't going to the airport with you and thus missed Mr FF's cultural tour of Brissy. Would love to have seen Christopher Skase's home. But I guess the compensation was we got to stay on in B for longer and then five heavenly days here at the Gold Coast.
    Miss you all! Pammie xx

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    1. So glad to hear you're having a lovely time on the GC Pammie! It was such a fun catch up. Yes, I agree the Chinoiserie cup and toast rack are a very fortuitous match. Clearly it was on my mind that weekend to pick up both items!

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  8. PS Since our visit to Antique Market tried googling General Pelissier. As I feared he was indeed a real French General and had a chequered history. But on the good side (?) is credited with winning the final decisive engagement against the Russians in the Crimean War in the Battle of Sebastopol. So since we always stay in Paris just off the Blvd de Sebastopol there is a kind of strange connection. But probably this isn't a good thing given his time in Algeria. Still I like the figurine, now just have to figure out where to put it. Pammie

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    1. How fascinating - he must've been important to the English for them to have made a Staffordshire figure out of him.

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    2. Well the Brits also fought and lost quite a lot of men in the Crimean War so I guess they were pleased that it finally ended - and maybe celebrated Pelissier for this reason.
      So do you think it really is Staffordshire? Or faux? But a strange one to do a faux? Not a generally well known figure in the last 60 or so years I think.
      You did so well with your finds in Brisbane! Loved them all! Pammie

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  9. FF is a great ambassador for Brisbane bc I want to go to all her restaurants and try the food but especially her own crab lasagne and cheesecake. I like you have only been through the city and never in it but it does look great and probably overlooked. Monocle named it as one of those cities that artists could actually create art without being in the wilderness. Sounds like a perfect weekend exploring somewhere new but heard of before and great chat!! xx

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    1. The restaurants were fab! Really enjoyed them, and the sand crab lasagna! You know, I was talking to Mr AV about how I often get comments from people living in the less prominent capitals when I've written a post about their city, saying how much they enjoy reading something positive and how much they like living there. I really think the whole Sydney is best mentality permeates everything in this country. Don't get me wrong, I love visiting Sydney, but the other states and cities have their own distinct personality/ culture/ feel and have so many great parts to them. It's a very peculiarly Aussie thing to have this obsession with big is best, city wise. xx

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  10. What a delight! I've been guilty of panic shopping - a lot. Example: in cab on way to Heathrow, I announced that we had to turn around and go to Liberty because I had changed my mind about a belt I'd been dithering over. I guess Himself was feeling particularly saintly, because we went back into town, and with cab waiting on Regent Street, I galloped through the store and grabbed my belt. Back in the cab, Himself asked if this detour meant I wasn't going to look at scarves in the airport. What an optimist.

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    1. I cannot believe you managed to panic shop by detouring past Liberty on your way to the airport!! That's so funny! And yes, agree with you that airport scarf shopping is a good pass time to while away the hour or so until the flight - what was your husband thinking?! x

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  11. A fabulous weekend with fabulous ladies! I luffed reading this :) x

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    1. It was good fun. I was all talked out by Sunday night xx

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  12. What an absolutely fun weekend, it looks like the FF family are expert at hosting guests, how lovely! You were treated to the sand crab lasagna, I've always thought that sounded delicious. Brisbane looks really beautiful, I'm so intrigued by the various areas of Australia and the regional differences. Your antique picks are so perfect, that family sized toast rack will come in handy when feeding your kids their breakfast. Thanks for sharing your wonderful weekend with such interesting and fun women. XOX

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    1. They are consummate professionals at hosting guests Dani, and yes the lasagna was delicious - it was my first seafood lasagna too, not sure why I haven't had one before in all the lasagnas I've eaten. We have vast regional and cultural differences in Australia due to climate and the way/ time in which they were originally settled, which means each capital city has a very different feel from the other xx

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  13. What a lovely weekend away - nothing better than a weekend of chatting and eating and pottering with friends. Brisbane is definitely on the list.

    I can't abide cold or even mildly neglected toast that spends more than a second out of the toaster and hasn't met butter - so to me a toast rack is rather redundant!

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    1. You see, I don't like toast when it's sat on the plate and steamed underneath and gone soggy! There's a tipping point for me where it is crisp, but still warm, and therefore perfect. Definitely give Brisbane a go - the Southbank precinct is really wonderful, and I so enjoyed the trip there. x

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    2. Toast! So controversial. I should say I could easily have bought your rack on looks rather than function. Very pretty x

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  14. Time spent with girlfriends is so good for the soul. Add in great food, shopping and champagne and it's divine. Sounds like a fabulous weekend.

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    1. It was a lot of fun Nanette, and good to stage a break from family/ routine/ chaos and have a lot of uninterrupted conversations on our interests and life x

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  15. oh what a lovely report on your visit. how lucky for all of you! i can't stop thinking about the faux bamboo toast holder. omg, i've never seen one like that, what a great find. xo

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    1. I had never seen one like that either Janet! I literally pounced on it and made a deal with the dealer on the spot. I'd prior to that been browsing one of his cabinets, and contemplating various bits and pieces, but this was a no brainer to me. Such a clever design! x

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  16. What a fab bloggy feast this is! Brisbane with Faux Fuchsia & Pack Drill Pammie in Fortitude Valley only lacks GSL Resolution. Tell FF she rocks the Hopscotch Herringbone but is that really Anna with Iris? Only the bob looks Wintoury.

    I suspect those Bush Turkeys are Mrs Danverian directed.

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    1. Those Bush Turkeys look pretty awful. Not sure if they taste any good either as a redeeming feature as they are protected!
      Yes that was Anna and Iris. It was all just Cindy, so I guess she wasn't able to do such a successful Anna for you. She was also Madonna in one, and we spent a lot of time trying to work out who else she was in others as they all looked vaguely familiar (but annoyingly all untitled)

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  17. Heidi
    Can you visit the Dressmaker Costume Exhibition at Ayers House and give us one of your fabulously, informative insights please on both the exhibition and the architecture?
    TIA
    Melody x

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    1. Wasn't aware it was on Melody - I will have to try to get into town to see it. I went to the Miss Fisher one earlier this year which was fab, so will try to find a free morning to see this one. x

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  18. How wonderful it all sounds and so special that you could all share this fun. I have no doubt that FF did the most immaculate planning and it's always wonderful to see a city with someone who lives there. Such a fun and delightful post Heidi! xx

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    1. It was a fun weekend Jenny, and FF was the consummate hostess as you can well imagine x

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  19. Wow, sounds like you had a wonderful trip!! Gorgeous photos - Brisbane looks amazing. I love the Limoges teacups and the toast rack (never seen anything like it!), also love the leopard print table cloth at the Fuchsiadome!

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    1. It is so FF that tablecloth would tell you where it was immediately! It was such a fun weekend Louise, and so nice to visit a new destination and be so pleasantly surprised at it all x

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  20. Is there anything more fun than spending time with like-minded people and doing all the enjoyable things you mention here in your blog? So pleased you have a group of local(ish) blogger friends to enjoy time with. Brisbane looks to be a lovely part of the country. Did you know there is a town a few miles outside of San Francisco called Brisbane. I had the hardest time pronouncing it when I first arrived in California as the locals sound it out as Bris-bain to rhyme with rain.

    Would love a cup of morning tea or coffee in your new cups and a slice of perfectly presented toast in your charming old toast rack. It reminds me of a bamboo bangle and ring I own which I purchased many years ago from Tiffany's (no longer in production sadly).

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    1. I've always said Bris-BAIN until being corrected by Aussies joining me for pints on ANZAC day last year.

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    2. That's very funny CD - here in Australia we have English place names which may, or may not be pronounced in an English manner. Here in Adelaide Malvern (a suburb) is pronounced Mal - ven. In Melbourne the suburb is pronounced Mol- ven (which is the English pronunciation). Yet generally Adelaide place names are pronounced in the English manner, so it can be a little confusing to all!
      I do love all that bamboo that Tiffany's used to do, such a shame they retired it all!!

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  21. Yes, we like to say BIN on the end : it is Bris-BIN, Mel-BIN. Aussies are rather good at cutting out huge swathes of letters!!!

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  22. Just think your post is fantastic and when presented together with FF's, is sure to get the tourist offices of Hong Kong, Singapre, South Pacific islands etc fighting each other to be the first to sponsor you 4 on your next trip away. Really a good use of their (social media) advertising dollars.
    Love Sydney where we live but think every capital city in Australia offers so much. Having said that have for work been in regional and rural areas frequently and think what you find in these areas is also wonderful, Den xx

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    1. Well I can only hope Den! Anyone that wants to send me on a free trip to blog about it feel free!! I'm glad you enjoyed the recap though, and agree with you - I love Sydney too, and strangely I don't think I've ever blogged about it? I guess I just think everyone knows it... should probably rectify that next time I go! xx

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  23. Wonderful post - made me quite nostalgic as it caused so many happy flashbacks. Also loved shots of old Brisbane houses - much earlier nostalgia there. As a child I lived in a house like those.
    Still haven't managed to get home yet. After staying on in Brisbane with cousins who took us on more lovely garden visits, spent five blissful days on Gold Coast and have now arrived in a fever house in Sydney. DIL and youngest really sick - so far A and older C are fine. How long before we succumb I wonder? Visited Frida Kahlo today at NSW Gallery and also the Archibald. At the moment sitting at a table in midst of glitter works being created by C and her friend. Will be staying for a few days to babysit - but looking forward now to getting home. Miss you all! Pammie

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    1. Hope you stay well P, and glad to hear you've been having such a wonderful time away. You'll have escaped the last of the Canberra Winter by the time you return home with any luck x

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  24. Love seeing the fuchsiadome through your eyes! I am so jealous! It all looks so fabulous! I knew I liked Mr. FF. A case of champagne for four is just right in my book. Also adore the little toast rack and the teacups! The big question: will they now sit atop a furry leopard tablecloth in Adelaide? Or will you leave that to the proFFesionals?

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    1. Mr FF is great fun! He plied me with champagne all weekend, and talked French antiques with me.

      I'm not so sure about a leopard tablecloth in Adelaide though. Mr AV raised his eyebrows a bit at my most recent purchase of a leopard coat. It seems my touch of leopard that I have favoured in the past (shoes only up until now) may have tipped into Jackie Collins territory for him?! x

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  25. so glad to hear you loved brissie. we locals do too! hubby went outside last night to take out some rubbish and was severely startled by a big possum running out from under our front porch and up the nearest tree. so like FF, we have possums, turkeys, pythons now and then plus a myriad of other creatures. brisbane is such fun:)

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  26. Oh what a wonderful trip down memory lane! My family home (parents still there) is almost right behind the Paddo deli (there is actually a secret path from the back of the deli!) and I have always luffed the house with the flag on Latrobe Tce! I definitely miss big wide verandas living in Melbourne; they are certainly well used up north!

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Architect & Interior Designer. Mother of three. A sometimes Cook, Baker, Reader, Gardener, Fashion Lover, Renovator, Writer of random things in South Australia email me on anadelaidevilla@bigpond.com
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