Top trends for a wonderful winter

Source: Illawarra Mercury


Simon Combes, head chef at Addison’s Seafood Restaurant, says this winter cooking is all about embracing the cold and returning to simple, hearty meals.

Braising:Braising is nice and rich, it always makes the food richer, and it’s comforting to use lots of root vegetables, carrots, leeks and parsnips with the meat. To braise meat, sear before letting it simmer in liquid on a low heat until it becomes tender.

Secondary cuts of meat:Second-class cuts of meat, such as shoulders of lamb or beef cheeks, are being mixed with first class. A prime steak along with a braised short rib creates wintry, warming, homely cooking with a nice richness.

Old-fashioned desserts:Dessert-wise it is a lot heavier and more traditional. Creme brulees, sticky date pudding, apple crumbles, everyone finds these comforting and easy. Though this is the Illawarra, and you can never get away from sticky dates here.

Winter seafood:Fish isn’t just for spring and summer. It’s mirror dory season, all the boats are out chasing mirror dory. Just keep it really simple, grilled with a warm butter sauce and a warm salad, such as a nicoise.

Simple cooking:We’re going back to old styles of cookery, simplifying food. There’s fewer ingredients in dishes because the quality of ingredients are getting better, producers are caring more about their products, so not much else needs to added to make it taste good.


Winter fitness is all about getting back to basics and learning how to move properly, says Grant Barlow from Skybar Fitness and The Warehouse.

Body weight exercises:The market has gone away from the muscle-head mentality almost back to basics, leaning towards borderline gymnastics for strength training, with handstands and handstand push-ups coming back into play. TRX suspension training is a big influence, as is CrossFit, and Swiss ball training and cable work are huge.

Functional movement:Basic movements are coming back into practice because we definitely have a busier lifestyle – people are sitting more in chairs, working longer and in cars longer, so we’re losing our movement, so things like squats and push-ups are coming back into fashion. It’s great for older people, because it can be as simple as laying down and getting back up on your feet.

Core strength:Core strength is always important. We all want to have a flat tummy, but if you do any sort of exercise this needs to be a number one priority. Try Swiss ball work, jackknife exercises, or even just a basic plank is a great start.

Indoor bootcamps:Zumba and the like have died down now. It’s now five to 15 people in a gym working in stations bootcamp style, doing high-intensity workouts. People are looking to get more results and have realised that if you’re going to spend money, you’re better to spend it on a trainer.

Non-traditional gyms:Gyms that focus more on body weight exercise and have fewer machines are the major trend. People coming in, training in smaller groups in an environment where it’s more about training, rather than looking good.

People are being more proactive, coming in to do a 45-minute session and getting a lot more out of it than a commercial gym where they’d be waiting for a machine or talking to their friends.


Make-up artist Janet Yong shares her top five beauty trends to keep you looking glam all through the cooler months.

Dark lips:Winter is bringing a lot of beautiful shades of burgundy and grape for lips, eyes and cheeks. Line your lips first with a lip pencil in a shade that is similar to your lipstick colour. This will prevent the lipstick from bleeding. To help your lipstick last longer, first line the lips, apply lipstick, grab a powder puff with translucent powder and press onto your lips. Brush off the excess powder and reapply the liner and lipstick. Your lipstick will last for hours. Don’t forget to highlight the cupid’s bow.

1920s glamour:The Great Gatsby is so in right now. Team up those ruby lips with smoky eyes. For a darker look, use a black kohl pencil around the whole eye and smudge. If you’re after a softer look, use purples, burgundy or soft browns and greys.

Lip balms:Don’t forget to give your lips some TLC by using lip balm to ensure they don’t get chapped from the cold. My absolute favourite is Lucas’ PawPaw Ointment. This thing is just amazing and so versatile.

Soft, hydrated skin:Your skin still gets dehydrated in winter, so make sure you are still drinking plenty of water to keep hydrated. Keep your skin moisturised winter-long and don’t forget sunscreen. The sun may be hiding, but it doesn’t stop its harmful rays from getting you. Exfoliate your skin at least twice a week to remove dead skin cells. It leaves your skin feeling soft and fresh.

Glossy nails:Nail polish is such an easy accessory. Teaming up bold lips with bold nails is a great statement. I love burgundy and mulberry coloured nails.


Abbie Stewart from Moose and I in Wollongong shares her top five fashion finds that will update your wardrobe this winter.

Leather:Any leather is good leather this winter. Wear a little with a leather-sleeved jacket or a lot with full-on leather pants or a leather skirt. Team it back with a grey tee for daytime or with heels and some flowing silks for night.

Ankle boots:Just about every style of ankle boot can be found this winter season and they go well with a whole range of outfits. Team with a skater skirt or dress for a more fashion-forward look or just pop them on with your jeans for an easy ensemble.

Black and white:Monochrome is back with a vengeance. Keep this look classic by colour blocking black and white separates or mix it up with a black and white print. This trend is just beginning at the tail end of our winter season, but it will be big next spring and summer too, so pick up a few trans-seasonal pieces that will carry you through.

Floral and jungle prints:Floral is so diverse and this season there have been some great spins on the average floral prints. Look for a more subtle floral patterns and jungle and floral mixed prints. Especially on trend are these prints in pants and jeans or a blazer. These pieces are great to team with your basic tees or singlets for a fresh look. Or be really edgy by wearing them with your leather pieces.

Structure:This winter is all about structure. Think pieces that are perfectly tailored in thick and flattering materials. A structured dress for a special occasion or a tailored top will smarten up any outfit, while a tailored knee-length skirt can take you from office to evening.


A few additions to your living space will get your house ready for winter hibernation, says Birdie & Oak interior designer and co-owner Casey Dorling.

Chunky throws:A must-have is a nice, chunky, knitted throw for winter. Don’t go for synthetic fabrics, look for natural ones that will add warmth, like wool. Even cotton is great, especially with kids, because it allows you to breathe and it’s easy to clean. You can use them all around the house.

Dark colours with a bright accent:Go for really warm, muted greys and browns and charcoals with a pop of colour in either a dusky coral or chartreuse, that greeny-yellow colour. Prints are a great way to add character to a room, especially through accessories so if you have it for winter and then get over it by summer, all you have to do is change your cushions.

Scented candles:Not only do they bring ambience to a room, but they smell great, and that’s what you want on those cool winter days. You want cooking scents that evoke a sense of warmth: vanilla, caramel, nutmeg, cinnamon, even cloves.

Copper:Copper is big for winter and that comes through in accessories. It could be a light fitting, a throw cushion in a sequined copper or a side table with a metallic finish. For winter, side tables are great so you don’t have to venture too far from the couch for a cuppa.

Occasional chairs:With an occasional chair you have room to play, it’s not a big purchase like a couch, so there’s more room to have fun. Look for something in a cool fabric, something a bit different. You want something comfy, where you can sit and feel cosy, nothing too stiff or upright. On those cool nights and rainy days, they are a great little spot to sit and read a book with a hot chocolate.

Gatsby-inspired make-up is a hit this season.

Simple hearty foods are a winter staple.

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