Handmade, Melbourne

Best Stationery Shops in Melbourne

Polaroids

When travelling, I make sure to research the best stationery shops in the cities I’m visiting. As a paper lover and stationery addict I simply can’t resist walking into a HEMA store in Amsterdam, a Paperchase outlet in London or a Papyrus boutique in New York. When it comes to stationery shops in my hometown of Melbourne there are 4 major chains dominating the marketplace – Officeworks, kikki.K, Typo and Kaisercraft. These multi-million dollar brands stock all the latest pens, notepads, greeting cards, stickers, tapes, planners and more! If however you’d like to support smaller businesses and shop locally, here’s a map of my favourite stationery shops in town…

StationeryShopMap

(Click on the map for an interactive view)

  1. Zetta Florence

Stocks a large range of papers, maps, cards, portfolios, stamps and posters, all with a feeling of nostalgia and illustrations from the bygone era of travel. Just beautiful!

197B Brunswick St, Fitzroy VIC 3065

www.zettaflorence.com.au

  1. Mag Nation

This is a very popular store right in the heart of Melbourne. Spread over two floors, there are lots of greeting card designs, gifts and of course magazines. You can watch the hustle and bustle of city life from the top floor windows overlooking Elizabeth Street.

88 Elizabeth St, Melbourne VIC 3000

www.magnation.com

  1. Paperpoint

My go-to destination for paper! It also stocks all the latest stationery designers and anything you could possibly want from the world of stamps, stickers, cards and envelopes.

259/261 Coventry St, South Melbourne VIC 3205

www.paperpoint.com.au

Paperpoint

  1. Avenue Bookstore

This delightful bookshop is always very busy on the weekend. They have a great range of books on all sorts of topics, spread across two floors. Located very close from the beautiful Albert Lake, this is my favourite bookshop in the city.

127 Dundas Pl, Albert Park VIC 3206

www.avenuebookstore.com.au

  1. Co.Co

If you’re after beautiful gifts and homewares, then look no further. While the stationery selection is a lot smaller, this shop is simply a joy to visit every time.

59/59 Bay St, Port Melbourne VIC 3207

www.cocoxo.com.au

  1. kikki.K

This Swedish brand owned by Kristina Karlsson needs no introduction. Filled with everything one could possibly want from the world of stationery, it’s no wonder how successful they have become, even opening international stores.

The Colonnade 524-564 Chapel St, South Yarra VIC 3141

www.kikki-k.com

  1. Paper Republic

This is a beautiful gift shop in the heart of Camberwell. Here you can find a lovely selection of cards, posters and children’s gifts.

638 Burke Rd, Camberwell VIC 3124

www.paperrepublic.com.au

  1. Coco and Chloe

Maling Road should be on any gift-lovers list when visiting Melbourne. While this shop is tiny it stocks some well-known international brands such as Rifle Paper Co.

120 Maling Rd, Canterbury VIC 3126

www.cocoandchloemelbourne.com.au

  1. Daiso

This Japanese chain is full of lovely stationery including envelopes, stickers, notebooks, letter-writing sets and everything for your household. Most things cost only $2.80.

66/17 Market St, Box Hill VIC 3128

www.daisostore.com.au

  1. The Paper Empire

They cater for the wedding market by supplying beautiful wedding invitations and stationery printed right in the store. Not only that, there’s a great range of top-notch washi tapes, stickers, papers, envelopes, paper clips and more! Highly recommended.

1234 High St, Armadale VIC 3143

www.thepaperempire.com.au

  1. Typo

This brand owned by Cotton On has just exploded in Australia recently and has also gone international. They sell all sorts of funky cards and gifts, mostly catering to the young and young-at-heart demographic. There’s always something new happening at Typo.

4/112 Acland St, St Kilda VIC 3182

www.cottonon.com

  1. Handworks Nouveau Paperie

This is not their only store but this one is my favourite. There’s everything you could possibly want to buy from the world of stationery and gift wares plus the shop is always decorated beautifully.

80 Church St, Brighton VIC 3186

www.handworks.com.au

HandworksCardsHandworks

  1. Page 8

With another store in the beautiful Mornington Peninsula, Page 8 has always been a favourite of mine. They sell gorgeous coffee table books as well as jewellery and cards from well-known brands.

543 Hampton St, Hampton VIC 3188

www.page8shop.com.au

  1. Boxes and Bows

This small but cosy gift shop is just beautiful and packed with excellent selections of gifts and cards. There’s a lovely range of Australian souvenirs as well as clothing to buy.

15 Waltham St, Sandringham VIC 3191

  1. Card and Caboodle

What feels like Chadstone Shopping Centre’s tiniest shop, here you can buy cards for any occasion as well as invitations, stickers, gifts and more.

Shop B136A/Chadstone S/Centre 1341 Dandenong Rd, Chadstone VIC 3148

www.cardandcaboodle.com.au

  1. The Paper Place

This shop is just lovely! They stock a great range of papers, ribbons, embellishments, cards, stickers and more. The owners are very friendly. Definitely worth a visit if you’re planning a wedding as well.

197 Blackburn Rd, Mount Waverley VIC 3149

www.paperplace.com.au

  1. Kaisercraft

Recently this brand has had a makeover and now they sell stunning gifts as well as soaps, homewares, paints, papers and everything for scrapbooking. Everything is quite affordable and Australian owned.

Shop G46/172-210 Burwood Hwy, Burwood East VIC 3151

www.kaisercraft.com.au

Entering beautifully decorated stationery shops always gives me such a thrill! I should also point out that there are some great gift shops in greater Victoria. Take a trip to the Dandenong Ranges to towns such as Olinda and Sassafras or drive down the coast to beautiful Rye and Sorrento for some great local shops. They are slightly overpriced due to the seasonally higher numbers of tourists who visit these towns but they shouldn’t be overlooked.

StationeryShop

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Latest News, Travel

My Japanese Adventure

It has long been a dream of mine to visit the “Land of the Rising Sun”. I remember always being fascinated about Japanese minimalism in relation to architecture whilst studying interior design at university. I always found Japan to be a great source of inspiration and have always been interested in their way of life and their unique culture. I have always wanted to enter a Japanese shop where everything is cute and character-driven.

A couple of months ago, right at the beginning of their cherry blossom season, I finally made it to this intriguing and fascinating island known as Japan. It was an eye-opening experience from start to finish and was the first time I ever holidayed in Asia. My sister and I spent 12 days travelling in Japan, starting in Tokyo and visiting Osaka and Kyoto.

For this post I simply want to showcase my photos to you because there are so many websites and books in the marketplace where you can gain information, make itineraries, and map out your day from morning till night (admittedly as a person who loves to plan everything out, I used a very helpful little app called Tripomatic to help me bring all my research together into one helpful daily organiser!). Of course I recommend that you do your research, by all means, but I also learned that it’s alright to simply have no plan for the day and see where life takes you. I wish we had more time to explore these three beautiful cities without time limits and without maps and itineraries as this would allow us to relax more and truly feel what it’s like to be in Japan. On my next trip there that’s what I plan to do for sure but understandably for the first trip somewhere I always seem to want to pack in as much to see and do as I possibly can!

Japan is a country which leaves visitors with their own distinct impressions, as long as you’re open to the possibility of discovering, learning and experiencing life from outside your comfort zone. Yes, there were lots of people everywhere and at times we did find ourselves on packed train carriages, feeling a little bit out of place, but even then I was eager to turn unfamiliar corners and see what’s out there. Japan really pushed my sense of adventure to the max and even though I couldn’t speak the language, its beautiful people always made me feel at ease. This trip was one of those “pinch me, am I really here?” moments and I cannot recommend Japan enough for anyone who is interested in history, architecture and religion. If you’re fortunate enough not to have any time constraints in Japan, then you’re probably the luckiest person in the world because there’s so much to see and so many places with the wow factor that will definitely leave you feeling speechless.

 

Travel

Mornington in Victoria

Over Christmas my family and I rented a small but stylish unit in Mornington to spend some quality time together. The interior spaces were ultra comfortable and every detail was perfect, from the bottle of bubbles we used to fill a pristine white bath tub to the cucumber cleansing wipes to refresh with after a one-hour drive getting there. All the rooms were decorated in a modern decor, with top-notch appliances and gadgets to fully entertain us. The artwork on the walls added a lovely playful touch and like everything else in the apartment showed off the owner’s great taste in interior design and decoration.

Mornington is the sort of quiet town by the sea that you could really fall in love with. It has exquisite little gift shops, artisan gelato stores, salons for high-tea and shopping to your heart’s content all the way along Main Street, leading down to the water. The sunsets, beach huts and sandy beaches all give the impression of a typical Australian beach vibe. Overall, we had a great time dancing on the terrace, singing Christmas carols and soaking up the atmosphere of a beautiful apartment in a gorgeous town.

Travel

Wandering through Strasbourg

As an Interior Design exchange student I didn’t have a lot of time for solo travelling during the study semester. I was on campus on most days of the week, listening to class lectures in German and English, and each day I would take the bus home with all my groceries and books, cook myself a simple dinner (usually pasta!) and do my homework or prepare for tests or assessments.

Thankfully during the semester the university would organise some really great, inexpensive day trips or overnight stays in neighbouring countries to encourage networking and broadening of our minds. It was so exciting to just forget about the overflowing workload on my desk and explore a new place, clear my head, indulge in photography, and try a new cuisine and a new culture. We’d all get on a bus and go on excursions to places such as design exhibitions in small Belgian towns, or the Vitra Design Museum in Weil am Rhein near the Swiss border with Germany or for one of our assessments we’d get involved in the design of our very own exhibition stand at the International Furniture Fair in Cologne, a short train ride away from my university in Mainz. All these experiences were amazing and gave students a deeper understanding of interior design and architecture practices in the real world.

I began to eagerly plan my own solo trips once the semester ended. I had an insane amount of wanderlust and yearned to see more and more countries around me. So I bought a train ticket from the station, organised a hotel for two nights and ended up in the most picture-perfect French city known as Strasbourg.

Buildings

Much to my dismay, not everything went smoothly. For starters it was raining and it was a Saturday morning in winter and that made getting out of bed hard and getting to the train station even harder as buses were scarce. Somehow I managed though and a few train changes later I was no longer in Germany, but now in France.

Tourist Area

Strasbourg was a very empty city that February. I had seen images of its main square so alive during Christmas time and I’d also seen the flowers blooming in gorgeous half-timbered cottage windows in summer, but unfortunately that winter it was just that little bit quieter and colder! If it hadn’t been for the university program organising a tour to Strasbourg that I missed due to my study load, I probably would never have even thought of visiting this magnificently enchanting city but I was really eager to see what my classmates got to experience. Sometimes that’s all the inspiration we need to see a new place!

Strasbourg

Strasbourg is the capital of the Alsace region in France and lies near the border with Germany. It is home to the European Parliament with its ultra modern façade, and was once also home to Johannes Gutenberg, the inventor of movable type printing, who was ironically born in Mainz! An entire square called Place Gutenberg is dedicated to him and a statue stands there in his honour. The elaborate gothic red sandstone Strasbourg Cathedral is located at the heart of the city and is one of the main attractions for visitors. My favourite place to explore was Petite-France, where the river Ill splits up into a number of canals and stunning half-timbered medieval houses provide the most romantic of backdrops. Strasbourg was indeed the most brilliant of destinations for a weekend away and in my opinion it’s a little gem of a city that needs to be seen in all its glory, no matter the season.

Gorgeous Buildings

Half-Timbered Buildings

Travel

Dandenong Ranges in Victoria

Some of my best childhood memories come from the scenic mountainous part of Victoria known as the Dandenong Ranges. We used to go for long walks in the forest with my family, climb up steps for breathtaking views and look for hidden natural discoveries at every turn. When I got too tired to walk my dad would carry me on his back until I was able to explore on my own feet again. Ironically, the name of the place where we would often have picnics together later became known to me as my favourite TV show – One Tree Hill.

Last week we ventured into the Dandenongs (35 km east of Melbourne) for a few hours to relax and unwind over the weekend. Everything from the quirky gift shops to the quaint courtyards, picture-perfect buildings and breathtaking greenery made this trip very special. Don’t expect to be seated at Miss Marple’s glorious Tea Rooms as soon as you enter though! This charming little establishment is always over-populated and bookings are essential. Next door you’ll find one of the best Tea Shops with a great range of teas, sweets and teapots.

We spent a mild summer’s afternoon exploring the National Rhododendron Gardens, had lunch while kookaburra’s looked down at us from overhanging branches and discovered stunning vistas, framed by floating white clouds. That day was absolutely perfect. If you’re after a place to have dinner, try the Cuckoo for a truly Bavarian experience. It’s not light on the hip-pocket but there is a great amount of choice when it comes to food!

The Dandenongs are a brilliant place for city-folk to relax, unwind and recharge their batteries. All tourists to Victoria should visit the charming towns of Sassafras, Olinda and Mt. Dandenong for top quality shopping, a charming village  vibe and fresh air combined with scenery that is hard to beat. In winter it also snows there!

Australia, Melbourne, Travel

Melbourne’s Docklands

One of my favourite places in Melbourne is the beautiful area known as the Docklands. To be completed in 2020, this waterfront paradise is filled with many exciting shops (known as Harbour Town), interesting sculptural public art, fine dining restaurants, extremely modern architecture and beautiful views of the city.

A trip to the Docklands would be incomplete without seeing the recently constructed Melbourne Star Observation Wheel. This giant engineering masterpiece definitely has some resemblance to the London Eye, but it is smaller in size and with less carriages. Everything one desires can be found in the nearby Costco and if you prefer somewhere a little bit more peaceful you can take a walk down to the water and see statues of Kylie Minogue and Dame Edna among others, and see our take on Hollywood’s Walk of Fame featuring Australian entertainers. The mosaic of Aussie personalities is really amazing.

Tourists and visitors to Melbourne’s Docklands will not be disappointed. The best part is that you can catch the free City Circle Tram right into the heart of the Docklands and explore the area on foot from there!

 

London, Travel

Harrods Department Store, London

I’ve been back in Melbourne for almost 3 weeks now and can definitely sense that time goes much faster here than it did in the UK. I don’t know what it is about the southern hemisphere but I truly get the sense that the earth just revolves around faster in this part of the world.

I’ve been going through my travel photos again and came across a series of photographs taken in Harrods last month. I’ve decided to share them with you here so that you can see the splendour, grandness and luxuriousness of this world-renowned department store for yourself. If you’re ever in London a trip to Harrods is a must!