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JOURNEY 53 - S/S 2020

Handpainted by Kylie whilst in isolation with her family in country Victoria, this collection has been inspired by the renewal and strength that comes as the smallest of buds start to grow and flourish.

As the imperfections of the year had us bunker down, we've found comfort in the little things  ~ the things closest to us ~ our homes, our gardens, the simple joys of finding stillness even though restless inside.


Hand-sculpted in Melbourne by our favourites
Flock Curiosity Assembly.

Bold. Light. Playful, and Unique... Sound like you?


On this blog, you'll find recipes, tutorials, tips, downloads and more from Obus lovers across Australia.
It's time to sit back, relax and enjoy!



As we head into the warmer months, creative and blogger, Connie, shares her favourite veggies to plant this summer and how you can get started in the garden!

How did you get started in permaculture?

I’ve always been interested in permaculture and the idea of learning from nature and applying nature’s wisdom in creating a more sustainable way of living. Last year, I decided to undergo formal training and completed my PDC and got my Permaculture Design Certificate which is an internationally recognised certificate that allows you to work as a permaculturist or teach permaculture!

Can you recommend some good resources for anyone wanting to start their own permaculture journey?

A wonderful movie that recently came out which shares plenty of permaculture principles in an accessible format is The Big Little Farm.

Retrosuburbia is also a recent book that was published by David Holmgren, one of the co-originators of permaculture. 

For formal training, look for a PDC near you! The Permaculture design system originated in Australia actually so we probably have a great number of opportunities to pursue this here locally!

Connie Caro in her dog with her dog

What are the essentials to be planting this Summer?

Here are some essentials and easy to grow things to try out:
  • beans: super fun to grow - there are climbing varieties which will need vertical support as well as bush varieties which well, grow in a bush!

  • beetroot: grow these from seeds (though I‚Äôve also grown from seedlings and they were fine). Enjoy the greens whilst they‚Äôre growing then harvest the root once big enough!

  • capsicum: pick up a seedling or two for all your summer pizzas and more. You can grow these in large pots too.

  • corn: sweet corn is super easy to grow and grows really fast! Plant your corn crop together in a group to aid in pollination - do NOT plant all your corn seedlings separate and in different spots or you may not get corn.

  • chilli: try jalape√Īo for your pizzas! Or the many other varieties out there which I haven‚Äôt tried because I can‚Äôt do much above a jalape√Īo! You can grow these in large pots too.

  • cucumber: grows as a vine, have ready something to support it!

  • eggplant: pick up a seedling or two to save time germinating them. You can grow these in large pots too.

  • potato: plant in a separate, dedicated patch or potato bag (will share a tutorial soon!). Harvest when the plant dies down in autumn.

  • pumpkin: super easy to grow but warning, pumpkin plants grow large and can take up metres and metres worth of space so only grow this if you have lots of space.

  • silverbeet / rainbow chard: one of the easiest greens to grow.

  • spring onion: plant the ends/roots from a grocery store bunch and watch them grow new shoots. So easy.

  • strawberries: any and all varieties! You can never have enough strawberry plants. Buy these as seedlings not seeds as strawberries are commonly propagated and planted as runners (which are baby seedlings that grow from the mother plant). Exception: alpine strawberries don‚Äôt produce runners!

  • summer herbs: try sweet basil, oregano, thyme, rosemary, mint, lemon balm - so many options!

  • tomatoes: try cherry tomatoes, they‚Äôre prolific and grow like a vine.

  • watermelon: try sugar baby watermelon - they‚Äôre a mini watermelon variety that are good for single servings.

Sounds delicious! Speaking of food, which three empowering females you would love to share a meal with and why?

Michelle Obama - I read her book Becoming and was so inspired by her story and all the amazing work she does for the community. She’s an inspiration to so many.

Jacinda Ardern - she is such an empathetic prime minister and her leadership and being able to balance being prime minister as well as her family commitments has been super inspiring.

Millie from Gardening Australia - I love her segments on TV and are always inspired by her creative upcycles & garden projects. She inspires me to get things done in our garden.

What brings you joy-big or small?

  1. Growing food and sharing it with loved ones! 
  2. The smell of fresh air! 
  3. Spending time with my partner Tom & papillon Toro :) 

Connie Cao in her garden with her dog Toro.


Connie Cao is a Melbourne based travel, lifestyle, home & sustainable living blogger, influencer, photographer & creative. Born and raised in Melbourne Australia, with a Chinese heritage, Connie has always been fascinated with art, nature and the beauty of both these things.

For more information about gardening, permaculture and how to grow some of the above summer veggies, visit her blog over at Connie & Luna.

Instagram: @connieandluna

Connie wears Obus Small Wonders Maxi Dress. Images courtesy of Connie Cao.





Meet Nonny B (aka Nynno), an artist and photographer who we're grateful to be able to collaborate with here at Obus.

With a penchant for exploring global culture through the arts, she gains inspiration and insight from the world’s vibrant subcultures. We caught up with Nonny to see how she's maintained her sense of creativity during lockdown and share her latest single, 'Defeat'.

. . . . .

Earlier this year you shot our OLANA x OBUS collaboration - which seems like a lifetime ago now - tell us what it’s like to work with other creatives?

As a freelance photographer, time in between people-based shoots can be a bit isolating. So working with other creatives is a great opportunity to connect with like-minded people and get inspired.

The OLANA x OBUS collaboration was a great one to be part of because there were so many parts to it; Olana had his process for creating his masterpieces, Team Obus had their method of taking that work and making it wearable, then I took that work and helped to create some imagery.

Where do you get your inspiration for singing, songwriting and photography?

From everything and everywhere. I like to observe the world around me, whether that’s through documentary, music, my culture, personal life or the accounts of those closest to me.

With music, I like to let ideas swirl around in my head, sometimes I’ll reflect on my own experiences or give other people’s stories alternate endings. In the future, I’m hoping I can learn to challenge myself more by writing lyrics that are so outrageously far from myself and my personality, like a personal ghostwriting exercise.

Photography tends to be a bit more collaborative, so I often bear in mind the aim of the shoot and the skills of the people I’m working on the project with. I also try to see if there’s an opportunity with every shoot, to create something that challenges me technically and well as creatively.


Thanks for sharing your new single ‚ÄėDEFEAT' with us via IGTV [Watch here], tell us what it's about?

It’s mostly about walking away from the irreconcilable differences in a relationship. It speaks on the desire to allow for vulnerability but also reflects on the importances of knowing and respecting your personal boundaries.


How have you been keeping your momentum going during the Melbourne lockdown?

I’ve enjoyed certain aspects of isolation - having time to reflect, take in art and media, go on walks and create.

I’ve tried to embrace relaxation but I also have a slight fear of developing mental atrophy from extensive periods of inactivity [haha]. Ultimately I’ve maintained momentum by trying to keep balance in mind - making sure I’m productive with my time but also resting when I need to. You have to be kind but also honest with yourself.


What are you looking forward to the most this Summer?

Beers in the park. And hugging friends and family.


Nynno Bel-Air Melbourne-based photographer, specialising in fashion, portraiture and social content.

She is also a creative singer and songwriter who is quickly becoming known for her broody brand of R&B. With verses that are paradoxical, her music delivery decidedly relatable themes in a casually esoteric yet playful way reminiscent of the soulful divas she's inspired by.

Get in touch via her website or follow her on Spotify.

Instagram: @nynnobelair

Website: Get in touch via her website or follow her on Spotify.

Nynno wears Obus Aster Wrap Dress. Image + Video courtesy of Nynno Bel-Air.



How long has it been since we were collectively sent home from the office? Who can remember when the individual days of the week merged into one featureless, never-ending Tuesday so soon after WFH became the status quo. But if it was say, February-ish, it’s been half a year since our kitchen tables became family desk-islands, the passenger seat of the car a conference room for calls that could not be set to a soundtrack of children fighting and on desperate days, the bathroom a break-out space for scrolling Instagram in silence for the few minutes before you were sought out by someone needing a snack, pencil sharpener, band-aid, charger etc.. Etc., etc., etc., literally all the etcs.. 

As noted at the time, one of the few upsides to a global pandemic was getting to give up proper workwear, anything dry-clean-only and agony around the waist by 11.30a.m, which is to say the majority of workwear if you’re a woman. 

There were hashtags, memes, there were newspaper stories about the splendour of nine-to-five sweatpants. And of course, to begin with it was pure joy. But then, at some point, so much fleece began to feel less like a personal choice and more like the inmate uniform of a low-security work prison. We began to long for anything with a waist, a dart, a cuff. And although some of us have, in recent weeks, been allowed to re-enter society/our offices, for others WFH is looking a lot like a sentence without a known release date.

As a writer, I have served 15 years already and¬†like¬†anyone who was already doing it,¬†I¬†have learned¬†the ins and outs of¬†not¬†leaving the house.¬†I know when and what to eat¬†‚Äď a¬†proper lunch at lunchtime, not a day-long degustation of¬†crumpets,¬†seaweed crackers,¬†cooking chocolate and the¬†leftover¬†contents of a¬†children‚Äôs¬†party bag.¬†I know¬†the¬†vital¬†importance of¬†a¬†morning shower, vs.¬†a¬†bit of a wash.¬†I know that when the suggestion is¬†first put,¬†a¬†day-time social event seems like a¬†treat and that, on the day, you¬†will not have time¬†and¬†feel¬†terrible for¬†cancelling¬†and even worse if you¬†don‚Äôt.

As choices, they may seem unrelated but actually they are all made in service of the same goal: keeping your mood up, the hardest and most important part of WFH. Since fashion is the best mood-keeper-up there is, here is what I have learned about dressing for a kitchen desk. 

I mean, you can. When you do not go out, use public transport or move amongst people all day, your tee will probably still be good at the end of the day. But what you wear today the way is the only way you know it’s not yesterday, and once you have crossed the two-day threshold, it feels like, why not try for a third? And then it’s Thursday so why not see out the week in this tee? Actually, it’s become so soft, why not sleep in it Thursday night? Because it will be the beginning of an inexorable sartorial slide and, when you try to take it off at the weekend, the fabric will have fused to your underarms and require removal by a medical professional. 

If you’re actively trying to get depressed, then definitely, cut back on real washes and just dry-shampoo until your hair is a single clump of matter. But if you’re looking to stay out of an emotional trough, wash your hair more often. It’s the quickest, cheapest form of self-care and even if it adds a little bit of time to your morning routine, you make it back on not having to go anywhere ever. 

Whereas once, there was such a thing as a coloured load and a white load, you might have noticed that lately, you’re doing more, a single grey wash. For some reason, wearing colour or a print when you are home alone feels unnecessary and effortful, but pulling on something bright is no more work than pulling on something in a sludgy-grey-brown and if it’s just for you, there’s no better reason to wear it. 

Of all the constricting items given up in these times, bras were supposedly the first to go. Like wine and Netflix, bralessness is tempting but ultimately, an unwise choice for day. Not because a woman should wear a bra or because being naked under your shirt feels weird on a Zoom call and, depending on the lighting, may be discernible to everyone else on it. Only because, Liz-Lemoning your bra out one sleeve before pouring yourself a silo of pinot is your chief reward for a day’s graft. Also if your office is also your sofa, underwire or the absence of it is the best demarcation between day and night. Spanx at home, of course not. Heels, why would you? Pants, up to you. But bra? Absolutely. 

As discussed,¬†treat to begin with¬†but¬†ultimately¬†all-day-sweatpants are¬†deleterious to¬†wellbeing.¬†Athleisure¬†is¬†a tempting alternative¬†but like actual workwear,¬†it hurts by¬†lunchtime ‚Äď tight at the waist¬†and¬†weirdly hot behind the knees.¬†The trick is to wear something¬†comfortable but not¬†100 per cent comfortable during the day and¬†when it‚Äôs time to punch out,¬†change into¬†the truly, deliciously comfortable¬†sweatpants that by now,¬†you¬†have totally earned.¬†



Meg Mason began her career at the Financial Times and The Times of London. Her work has since appeared in The Sunday Times, The Sydney Morning Herald and The Sunday Telegraph. She has written humour for The New Yorker and Sunday STYLE, monthly columns for GQ and InsideOut and is now a regular contributor to Vogue, ELLE and marie claire. Her first book Say It Again in a Nice Voice (HarperCollins) was published in 2012. Her second, You Be Mother (HarperCollins) was published in 2017. She lives in Sydney with her husband and two daughters.


Spiky, sharp, intriguingly dark and tender, full of pathos, fury and wit, Sorrow and Bliss, the latest book by Meg Mason is a dazzling, distinctive novel from a boldly talented writer. For fans of Sally Rooney, Taffy Brodesser-Akner and Fleabag. 


To celebrate those rare friends which light up our world despite seeing
us through our darkest moments ~ we’ve joined publisher Harper Collins Australia to give two book lovers a chance to WIN: 
1 x SORROW AND BLISS Book by Meg Mason
1 x $250 OBUS Online Gift Card
Enter via Instagram



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