Time to sit on the plane and finally write my blog; itâs been a good 6 weeks and so much has happened. We finally did our annual winter walk, actually in the spring, but felt like deepest darkest winter still. The Box Hill hike was great fun although the 4 hills we climbed were pretty intense *leg burn.
I had a great Easter hanging around East London with friends and popping down to Brighton for a night to see Claire.
The salonâs been full on, our instagram take-over has been great fun and the team have really embraced it; weâve given away a few cut and colours now. Follow us on @karinejacksonsalon, to see what weâre up to.
Debbie G hosted a salon training session in precision cutting, as always a huge success.
I was also in full swing organising my shoot which is now complete and Iâm very excited (more of that in a moment) and Iâve hosted my first ever Presidentâs Network event, which was a huge success at the stunning Skylon restaurant. We had the Live Lounge with special guest host Andrew Barton; the food was excellent and Alan Arscot played a great DJ set. Lots of chat, I felt the industry was really putting the world to right.
Australia this time has been absolutely brilliant if busy beyond belief even for me. I feel like I was there for a month even though it was only a week. I think I averaged 4 hours sleep a night…
We landed at Sydney airport on the Saturday evening and an hour later I was meeting up with my brother and his wife and to my surprise they had arranged for my friend Karen and her partner to be there. It was a great evening, we all went to The Winery in Surrey Hills and Margo was another surprise guest, but it didnât end there – Cara and her friends also popped along so it was great for Sophia and Errol to meet some of my friends and family.
Sophia had won the competition to come with me and assist on this shoot. Not sure Sophia was ready for how intense this trip was going to be. (Sleeping was reserved for the 24-hour flight.)
3:30am finish (yes, even on the other side of the planet the off switch doesnât workâ¦)
The next day it was all systems go – up early for a quick recovery swim at Bronte beach and then lunch with Uncle Rob,. my godfather, cousin and 2 beautiful new 2nd cousins, June who is only 3 weeks old and soooo lovely and Flo who has just turned 1 (of course with our track record of girls in the family we continue with 2 more!) My uncle cooked up a storm or so he would have us believe (we know it was catered really!). It was a great lunch on his back veranda looking down towards Coogee, catching up and planning Christmas.
I had to dash back to the hotel to meet Sophia and be at Errolâs for 5pm, a little off schedule, ooops! I didnât get to Errolâs until 5:45 and it was straight over to Luna Park for the Australian Hair fashion awards hosted by the Journal magazine.
Jamaal and David Mannah have really turned these awards into something special.
Congratulations to all the winners, especially Damien Renaldo, Australian Hairdresser of the year, Melissa Nixon, super stylist and stylist of my shoots for the last 2 years – well done so deserved and proud.
Uros Mikic won menâs and the film created by Nic Parkinson and Ben Russell for getting into the Australian F.A.M.E team – brilliantly well done.
I presented the session stylist of the year award; congratulations to Richard Kavanagh on winning this category.
The after party was great fun catching up with everyone although it did feel like I was in London hanging out with Luke Benson, Elenora Dean, Errol Douglas MBE, Ben Russell and Sophia.
Now I should have stopped there but the after after party was calling. Yes I know, when will I learn!!
It was an early start again the next day, I was meeting Tatum my niece who had been asked to assist Errol for @theopenmic event at Wild Hair in Milson Point Sydney.
I love how small our world is sometimes, Jade my friend’s daughter from Wollongong had messaged a week before we arrived in Sydney to say she was doing a show for hairdressers coming from abroad; was it me? At this point it wasnât, but literally 1 hour later Errol calls to ask if Tatum and Sophia could assist him on a show – still the penny hasnât dropped. I arrange this and then realised this must be the show Jade is modelling for. As Iâm thinking it Errol calls back and said âyou wonât believe who the model isâ, âJade!â I say – Iâd shown him pictures of her only the week before…
I meet the girls at the central station. I must get my swim in everyday so we headed straight to Bondi beach. I love this beach: the waves, the sand is soft and white and the sound of tourists excitedly chatting away.
We didnât have long as I also wanted to get some lunch at the Opera Bar, itâs one of my favourite places to sit, and so cool as you eat and take in Sydney with the Opera House right beside you.
We caught a ferry across to Milson Point where I was supposed to drop the girls off. I had it all planned – I was going to go sit in the park, read my book, Frankenstein by Mary Shelley (such a great book, so well written and by a women in 1817 as well) but best laid plans and all that, when I got to Jayne and Garyâs amazing salon (all the windows open up to a view of Sydney Harbour, the bridge and the Opera House) they asked if i could also present a model.
Iâm glad I did, it was great fun with Luke, Elenora, Errol and myself represented the UK while Jayne Wild, Phillip Barwick and Benny Togini were the aussie contingent. With not a lot of time (as it was impromptu my model arrived 2 hours after everyone else) I set to work to create an amazing blonde afro; it was a fun atmosphere even though we were all a little wrecked from the awards the night before (especially Errol, less said about that the bette,r good job he had 2 assistants.)I love that my niece and Jadeâs worlds have crossed over with mine. You can see on Facebook live the evening @theopenmic.
I think I would be too distracted if I actually worked there, itâs so stunning! The weather was amazing and the sunset out of this world: a bush fire had been blazing in the west of Sydney and you could really see it at sunset so I was pleased to learn afterwards that no one was hurt and it’s out now.
It was a long journey back to Wollongong that evening and after midnight before we got back. Tatum and I went straight to bed.
Finally I got to see my family the next day and it was 3 full on days hanging with the kids, getting my swim in every morning, seeing my Nana, doing 9 haircuts along with a cut and colour on my Mum. I also had to fit in running around for my shoot getting supplies, securing models.
I had a night out with my friends and Linda my sister, Linda and I continued when we got home that evening, we hadnât had time to catch up yet this was our moment and that good old off switch was stuck again.
Sophia came down to Wollongong for our family dinner âfish nightâ, Dad, Yeoie and Rhian (my niece and goddaughter) had caught the fish that day and it was so fresh and delicious.
My time with my family over it was a 5am start; good old Mum drove me to the airport. See you at Christmas
Melbourne here we come…
On landing we went straight to the studio to meet with Andrew OâToole our photographer to finalise the shoot and colour and prep models.
It was great to be there 2 days before we shot, Iâd never done this before, I had time to prep properly and get the final pieces we needed, We had time for a look round the shops and found the most amazing wig shop, itâs been there for 60 years and the original owner still works there – at 89 he had so many stories to tell, heâs worked with BeyoncÃ©, Bon Jovi and so many more. We were in there for ages and Margo left with a yellow wig on; he dared us to wear it out and we could keep it. If youâre ever in Melbourne go to @creativewigs
We had a dinner and catch up with some iconic hairdressers: Frank Apostolopoulos, Eugene Souleiman, Ben Russell; itâs great having debates about our industry. Margo was blown away with the company she was with and I love talking with my peers.
The shoot day had arrived; I feel it went really well – a very long 14 hour day but a stunning 8 looks to launch later this year. I canât tell you any more at this point, only that I love all 8 images. Itâs a great team we work with Nichola Hands from Organic Colour Systems, @Margoaston on the make up, @Melnixon on the clothes, our super star photographer @andrewotoolestudios and of course my dear friend @Erroldouglas creative directing.
On a massive high from the day and totally exhausted what do we do but have a massive night out in Melbourne… Not su
re where that second wind came from, we started with dinner and drinks on the roof of a cool restaurant and bar @NakedforSatin (highly recommend it, the barramundi fish was out of this world, as was the service ) then we went from bar to bar, met lots of people including, later on, some of the staff from Naked for Satin, had a dance and watched in amazement a kebab shop man hair dry (yes with a hairdryer) the coals and meat – I would never go near a kebab and that sealed it for me.
A rare day off before heading back and Margo and I had a great day walking around Melbourne. I went a bit mad and have a whole new wardrobe, the designers were brilliant, one guy, Jude, was so interesting and he made all the clothes in the store in Fitzroy. I highly recommend a good shop in this area: Brunswick St. Johnston St Gertrude St.
Our last day in Melbourne and I met up with a friend I hadnât seen in 25 years. I only had an hour to spare but it was great to see Michelle and hopefully we can catch up for longer next year. I love how you can just pick back up with people and be so comfortable after such a long time.
Iâm back in sunny London now – I canât believe itâs sunny at last! At time of writing anyway…