Tuesday, 15 July 2014

Birthday Reflections

My birthday was a few days ago. A year has passed and you can't help but re-evaluate. What's important? What's working? What's not? 

You think about the late nights when you binge watched Scandal and turned up at school with panda eyes and the wrong books. The days when you felt like you really had your shit together: sufficient sleep, a morning run, a green smoothie. 

You think about the sleepy, cuddly moments, the blissfully, euphoric ones, the times when the world closed in on you. New experiences are a total given...this is adolescence, right? Sometimes it's shiny and new, often it's just a slap in the face. I think they call that character building. 

You think about Frank Ocean and sun in your eyes. Wes Anderson and that green jacket. Too many lists, French films, frustration and an ever twitching desire to grow up, move out and prance around the world wearing a leather jacket and a blind sense of optimism. 

You realise how little you know about the world, how much privilege you live in, the things you have learnt and the many more things you have to learn. The sheer mass of everything that sucks, everything you don't understand is as frustrating as it is blinding. 

The list of things to do is still long, you still have to urge to grow up, you're still figuring it out.


Friday, 11 July 2014

Favourites 03 // Araina of Miss Tasmin

Araina is a vegan perfectionist from the itty bitty Australian island of Tasmania. She's an adventuring carpe-diemest with a love for socks and tea. Her whimsy is beautiful and her clear sense of wanderlust is something that I can definitely relate to. She reminds me of warm nights and good music. She blogs at over at Miss Tasmin.

+ Favourite tea?
I have a habit of gulping down copious amounts of one certain type of tea, then becoming sick of it and discovering a new-found love. This process repeats approximately every month or two. At this current point in my life I am loving Sleepytime Vanilla. Ahh, nothing like bringing out the inner 7-year-old and having my nightly tea to put me to sleep.

+ Favourite Sunday morning breakfast?
I'm such a sucker for porridge and/or a smoothie any morning of the week, but Sunday definitely requires me to up the ante and find every possible ingredient to be present in my breakfast creations. My current favourite porridge mixture consists of banana, medjool dates, coconut cream, goji berries, almond milk, cacao & maca powder, peanut butter, chia seeds & cinnamon.

+ Favourite time of day? 
Sunrise for sure. I'm definitely one of those people that glamorize the hell out of sunrises and sunsets, but there's something special about sunrises. I guess it comes down to the fact that a lot of the time it seems as though you're the only person in the world awake to witness that particular moment. The colours the sky turns is always so incredible and I can't help but feel that overwhelming sense of calmness and wonder at the beauty surrounding me.

+ Favourite spot in your city/town?
I love scouting out new and exciting places to adventure to around where I live. There's so many beautiful places just waiting for you to explore them if you open your eyes and look around. About a 5 minute drive from my house there's a beautiful river equipped with mini waterfalls and a swimming hole, as well as a couple different hiking trails. I've been known to walk there quite often and it's featured in my blog numerous times. There's also a really nice gorge right near the main town that's similarly beautiful.

+ Favourite place for finding inspiration?
I literally gather inspiration from anywhere and everywhere. Tumblr of course is a frequent go-to, but increasingly Instagram gets my creative juices flowing and mind ticking over ideas. Also just the world surrounding me - nature will forever be the most beautiful thing possible.

+ Favourite bands for some winter evening tunes?
I'm one of those people with an embarrassingly messy taste in music, with my listenings ranging from sweet Bon Iver to screaming The Amity Affliction. They also change on almost a minute-to-minute basis. At this current moment, songs by Tigers Jaw, Keaton Henson, Little May, Blink 182 and Neck Deep have stolen my heart.

+ Favourite day of 2014...so far? 
There are a few days in particular that spring to mind. It's kind of a tie between a day spent in Byron Bay on my recent holiday which involved swimming in the ocean and an overwhelming emotion sunset walk, and the other day when I spent a very long time sitting at a waterfall with a few good friends, then sitting at the beach at sunset. A good day for me usually always involves good company, nature and sunsets apparently.

+ Favourite verb?

+ Favourite life-affirming thing to do?
Spending time in nature will forever be my favourite life-affirming thing to do, as is probably evident by now through my nature-themed answers. There's something about it that I can never quite fully express in words, but always leaves me at total peace within myself.

+ Favourite thing....at this very moment? 
At this very current moment, I am drinking freshly made cucumber, celery, carrot and ginger juice, munching on dark vegan chocolate, listening to Such Great Heights by Iron & Wine and watching the sun go down, and this moment is my favourite thing. 

Do I spend too much time looking at Araina's instagram? Probably. Why? Because I like the way she really takes her life in her bare hands. I like the way she has a back to basics approach to living. I like the way she talks, as if she's just opened her eyes to the world. She's just an all round wonderful kinda gal, my lovelies. I pinky promise. Head on over to Miss Tasmin. 
Bella x

PS. This is the last 'Favourites' post! I hope you enjoyed the series!  

Monday, 7 July 2014

Favourites 02 // Rachel of Lucid Stars

Rachel has an eloquence and a wittiness that isn't particularly common among 15 year olds (man, I would know!). She's an Aussie gal with a love for chocolate milk and Liam Neeson films. She blogs over at Lucid Stars, which she started in late 2012. Did I mention she's a writer too? A really damn good one at that.  Her answers to my questions are as interesting and beautifully worded as expected.

Favourite book? 
If You Could See Me Now by Cecelia Ahern. It holds sentimentality for when I was 11 and went on vacation - I randomly purchased this book at the boat dock. It turned out to be an engaging read, just as serene as my holiday. It's also the book that sparked my passion for recreational writing. Though to be honest, I usually end up claiming most books are the 'BEST BOOK EVER!' after I've conquered reading them. (Am I the only one who does that?)

Favourite part of the human body?
The entire face - there's no way I could pick just one part. Each and every person has an individual face with their own set of facial features, to form their own unique identity. I believe eyes are the window to the soul. I think lips are portrayed beautifully, especially when one smiles in a carefree, hearty manner. 

Favourite pick-me-up? 
When I'm at home, a swift dial to my best friend does me infinite good. Otherwise, I try to see every situation in a more positive light and end up laughing it off anyway. I have no shame in admitting that comfort food also does the trick. Be proud to pull out that ice cream, girls!

Favourite way of capturing moments (ie: camera, writing about it etc)?
I generally adore taking photos of any adventures I embark on. I also love capturing the experience through words as well as on camera. However, the best way is to simply live the moment out. Let that memory be ingrained in your mind for wishful days to come, so you'll be motivated to make even more.

Favourite pre-bed ritual?
To dance around till I tire myself out. Jokes aside, I usually fancy a bedtime snack before I slip into the covers. Then I make sure to take great pride in progressing through my current book. A rewarding hot shower can be a fantastic way to unwind, too.

Favourite site on the entire internet?
Probably Youtube! (Besides Blogger, of course.) Lots of golden videos and music on there, to keep me entertained for hours on end. There's also pep talk material on there to keep me in check. Inspiration can also be derived from Youtube - with easy food recipes, DIYs and astounding stylings galore. The versatility of its visual media is astounding.

Favourite month of the year?
October, my birthday month! Not to mention - the epitome of spring. I tend to enjoy any month though, that is celebratory and has something to offer. 

Favourite object in the room you're currently sitting in? 
As I type this, I'm gradually sinking into my lush, sepia sofa. (Oh, the glamorous confessions of a blogger.) It's ridiculously comfortable, and has provided contentment day by day.

Favourite tunes for before bed?
Anything soothing. I always love some good, gentle Bombay Bicycle Club tunes. Lately I've been really into some mellow acoustic artists - James Vincent McMorrow, Spazzkid, GOVS, Wafia, Youth Lagoon and Tycho all send me into slumber. To keep up with my everlasting expansion of music, I have a comprehensive playlist of late night lullabies handy. Praise Spotify for ever existing!

Favourite thing....at this very moment?
Robert DeLong's live rendition of his renowned song, Happy, for Triple J's Like a Version. Witnessing him demonstrate mad talent all by himself, whilst also being insanely passionate takes the term 'one-man band' to a whole new level. Hint: modified Wii remotes and Xbox controllers. I recommend you invest a few minutes to immerse yourself in the future of his music. You won't regret it!

I found Rachel's blog on a whim and probably spent a good hour scrolling through, exploring the loveliness of her words, her ideas. She was a real inspiration to bring my blog beyond simple documentation, to a place of genuine creativity...and to be honest, that's when blogging really got fun. Check out Lucid Stars here


PS. The photos in this post are from this post of Rachel's. I just love that jacket. 

Friday, 4 July 2014

Favourites 01 // Holly of The Persephone Complex

Holly Cassell is a 23-year-old photographer, artist and blogger. She blogs over at The Persephone Complex. Her art is dynamic and wonderful, much of it is based around female sexuality and body image, thus making it all the more swell. She eats men for breakfast and Skittles for dinner. She is pretty damn rad. When she agreed to answer my little 'Favourites' questions, I was ecstatic. Why? Because she's just the kind of person you want to know more about. 

Favourite children's book?
Hmmm. I would have to say the Annotated Brothers Grimm, even though that's probably the most pretentious answer I could give.

Favourite not-outta-a-bottle-scent? 
Woodchips and sawdust. Don't know why but it's always made me salivate.

Favourite historical era? 
Either 1950's Hollywood, or Dickensian London.

Favourite word? 

Favourite photoshoot you've done?
I couldn't possibly pick a favourite as every single one is still so exciting for me. In a way my whole life is a photoshoot. I'm never without my camera and it's giving me back issues, to be honest.

Favourite lipstick colour? 
Ruby Woo, by Mac. It's the perfect matte, retro red.

Favourite zine? 
I have a soft spot for Girls Get Busy Zine.

Favourite compliment you've received? 
I'm a strange person in that I sometimes find being complimented a really awkward, unpleasant experience. The exception to this is when people compliment my butt. I aspire to a big, fabulous booty.

Favourite pick-me-up film? 
Gosh, I have loads. I need a lot of picking up. Maybe Legally Blonde, Clueless, or Bridesmaids.

Favourite thing...at this very moment?
My juicer. I adore that thing.

Now that you have been introduced to the lovely world of Holly Cassell, you are free to send her cookies, love letters via carrier pigeon, freaky mix tapes, a shitload of comments etc. Real talk though, you should really go check out The Persephone Complex. The photos in this post are taken from her Clockwork Lolita photoshoot, which is my favourite photoshoot of Holly's. 

Stay wonderful, 
Bella x

PS. Wanna share this interview? You can reblog it from here

Tuesday, 1 July 2014

Dear World 03 // A Novel Made Resourceful

Oh, what have I been doing? For the most part, watching copious amounts of Orange is the New Black and eating brownies. I've finished both seasons and I don't quite know what to do myself. I've fit in a little bit of other stuff as well, like exploring my city, which is really damn beautiful around this time of year. My friend and I went to this gorgeous little spot on Sydney harbour and it was magical. There was this feeling of whimsy throughout the whole experience, we climbed down the little old ladder, we sat on the rocks eating biscuits and because we're idiots who didn't bring enough jumpers, we shivered in the cold.

I've been listening to shitons of Chet Faker, drinking chai-green tea which is liquid of the gods and lusting over Stutterheim raincoats, thus reinforcing my view that Swedish design always wins. Speaking of which, I should really put 'trip to ikea' on my to do list because that place is utter heaven. 

I've got some exciting things coming up over here at Sincerely, Isabella. Something that will involve, Holly, Ariana and Rachel. Another thing that will involve getting your nanna on, a post embracing your inner hippie and all kinds of cool stuff. Stay tuned, folks! 

Bella x 

Sunday, 29 June 2014

Fiction 02 // Sunday Morning

A paper bag filled with raspberries. They were fresh, from the market. My fingers ran over them. slowly and I popped one into my mouth and then another and then another. Patient, full of self-restraint - neither word has ever been used to describe me. 

I sat under the bench, the one under the big old oak tree and I ate my raspberries. They were fine, if you were wondering, but hardly worth the $10 I'd paid for them. In the corner of my eye I saw someone watching me. A guy, early twenties, drawing. Drawing me. His eyes darted from his page to my face. When I caught his eye, his face read something like 'yes, I truly am the next Picasso.' I rolled my eyes, it was too early on a Sunday morning for romance. The morning light was too pretty too focus on other people. Sunday morning - a time for the inanimate. Light, taste, feel, smell. Not a time for the complexity of human emotion. 

The boy got up. Shit. He walked over to my little bench. Observations: cheap cologne, blue eyes, arrogance. He handed me a piece of paper. It was me...but then it really wasn't. My cheekbones were more defines, my freckles cut out. We hadn't even talked yet and blind idealisation had already begun.

I drowned in small talk for a few minutes. His name was Johnathan. More observations: lack of ambition, uninspiring, unsure, stupid, and again...arrogant. And then the predetermined question; 'do you want to go get coffee?' 

I stood up. The heat of the sun became more prominent on my back. A soft breeze blew through the trees. 'Not particularly, kiddo.' I said, unfolding his palm and placing his shitstorm of a drawing back inside. 

I walked off and smiled to myself. I'd already been having a wonderful date...with myself. Validation is warm happy place, and the x that marks the spot is inside you...not others. I went back to that market, put my hand in the lentils and bought another bag of raspberries. I lied. They were totally worth the $10. 

Bella xx 

Saturday, 21 June 2014


The internet is a fun happy place! Right? RIGHT. You probably spend too much time on the thing, so do I. We're all addicts to the world wide web. So, on that note..I thought I'd round up some of my favourite things I've found on our beloved intertubes of late.

This song. This is such a beautiful/haunting/really damn good cover. Listen and then listen some more.

I don't quite understand how anything can be this pretty. I would like to climb into the diluted, watercolour world found in this photo shoot...and afterwards I'd like to make that cake.

The Rookie eye candy tag has been as beautiful as ever these past few weeks but a shoot I've liked particularly is the one that both delightfully and accurately depicts the good ol' teenage slumber party.

Lucid Stars has been my #1 internet hangout this week. Written by the wonderful Rachel, the blog is chocker-block full of wise words, charming writing and general good vibes. Visiting Lucid Stars is much like the warm hug you need.... right now. So head on over!

Bella xx

PS. Alright I just watched Tick It Where It Hurts and it was phenomenal. Bertie captured human emotion and pain to such an extent I can barely comprehend it. I am entirely in awe and impressed and ahhh go watch it.

Wednesday, 18 June 2014

Dear World 02 // Oblivion is Calling Out Your Name

I am at this odd place at the moment that I can only describe as 'somewhere in the middle.' 
of happiness and unhappiness, of places, of destinations, of mind sets. It's uncertain and odd and I can't work it out. 

I saw Bastille on Saturday. It was fun, it was really, really fun and the post concert buzz has lingered leaving me listening to 'Oblivion' over and over again. 

The place I am at the moment, in terms of mindset and the general 'vibe' of my life is confusing to me. It's sleepy, warm around the edges but icier in the centre. It's fuelled by earl grey, filled by obsession, freckles, rosy cheeks. Unmotivated but hopeful. The soundtrack is Bon Iver. It's odd the way periods in our lives have certain themes, certain moods. We could totally sort our entire lives into a series of music videos. 

Little Things
Chef - seriously fantastic film + Olive tapenade + Better yet...tapenade with sourdough + Knee socks + Yummy Smelling Body Butters + Crisp winter light + Life Skills 301 + British cooking shows 

How have you been, lovelies?
Bella xx