If you’ve been in Sydney the past Summer you will know all about the moonlight cinemas – they’ve been popping up everywhere from Bondi Beach to Sydney harbour. As awesome as they are, they’re slowly starting to shut down as the warmer nights begin to fade away, officially closing March 31st. The only one still open is Centennial Park so get down there before it shuts, it’s a pretty amazing experience watching a movie beneath the stars!
Remember art classes at school, where you could just sit and paint for a couple of hours and feel the stresses of life fade away? Now – imagine that but with 90’s music and alcohol.
Cork and Chroma is the epitome of fun – BYO alcohol, unlimited supplies of paint and friends. Each class has a different painting to follow that you can choose when booking and the teacher guides you through mixing the right colours, application, creativity – they basically ensure you walk away with an art piece you can (potentially) hang on your wall as opposed to hidden away in the attic.
At first you sit down in the studio with your blank canvas and pencil out a stencil, then go up to get your paint. The teacher leaves you more or less to your own devices in-between teaching, and walks around chatting and offering advice as you sip on your wine and get down to painting.
90’s hits play out and you more or less retreat into your own world of painting and sipping on wine. If you’re anything like me, I’d advise not to drink too much wine because I ended up washing my paintbrush in wine and consequently drank quite a bit of paint*. But I’m sure it just contributed to my creative spirit that evening (see above – quite a lot of painting with wine too…)
At the end, everyone stands up at the front to compare and take pictures and is encouraged to chat to the others in the group and ‘tell them something nice about their painting’ which I really like. In the above picture me and Phoebe went to a ‘Pop Art Class – Paint Your Mate’ which is a great idea, though particularly as she has now left to Melbourne. Not sure how much my painting looks like her though!
Based in Surry Hills, this is the perfect way to catch up with friends, do something different and have a LOT of fun. Find them here.
* Cork and Chroma’s tagline is actually ‘Drink. Paint. Just don’t drink the paint’.
Of all of the bizarre things I’ve done in Sydney so far, I think Wall Yoga tops the list.
It’s at Elixr Gym in Bondi Junction, which is essentially the equivalent of an Indian holistic yoga retreat. They do classes all day of yoga, reformer pilates, boxing, aerobics, even meditation and I absolutely love going there. Since coming to Australia I’ve turned into one of those annoying people that really enjoy working out, because the culture here is so outdoors and healthy.
Wall Yoga is hard to put into words because it’s unlike anything I’ve ever done. On my first class, I grabbed a mat and tried to fit in with everyone picking up bizarre hammock type things, cushions, blocks and blankets.
Don, the incredibly kind, patient and lovely teacher immediately spotted me out as a wannabe wall yogi and came over to help me set up. You use the straps hanging from the wall and adjust them according to your height and flexibility to strap in various limbs and hang around from different poses.
The class is taken step by step by Don and he makes sure everyone is comfortable. We normally start off with a downward dog stretch where your legs are in the straps.
The entire class is pretty much variations of ordinary yoga poses but using the straps, and gives a ridiculously intense stretch to your body. People who think yoga doesn’t really do all that much (guilty!) – this one is definitely for you.
I won’t give it all away, but the final 15 minutes is the best. After stretching out all your body and feeling the burrrrn, you are manoeuvred into a position that basically leaves you hanging upside down.
The first time Don put me into this position I literally burst out laughing. I kept opening my eyes and looking around the room of dedicated wall-yoga-goers who were peacefully hanging upside down like sloths. It reminds me of when I used to spend hours hanging upside down from my apple tree in the garden growing up in England.
Don said ‘if you feel dizzy after two minutes, come out’. I remember laughing again because I had expected to stay like this for roughly 30 seconds! However he leaves you like that for TEN MINUTES. It’s a full on meditation session, just upside down. You feel the blood rush to your head and around your body and weirdly… really relax into it.
Afterwards you have a somewhat ‘normal’ vinyasa, only you put your head in a little hammock and get tucked up with a blanket. The only thing I can compare it to is having designated nap time in school.
Go and give it a try – you won’t regret it!
Wall Yoga is on most days at Elixr, and you can go for free with a free trial if you click here.
- awkwardly shifting around trying not to spill your $17 g&t in a club/get hit on by creeps/bump into people
- desperately trying to follow the steps in a zumba class (filled with people who seem to know all of the moves?!)
- extremely drunkenly whipping out your best moves before being told off for bashing energetically into everyone around you