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The Goss: Simple by design

Only two weeks after giving birth to her second child at 47, Collette Dinnigan flew to Melbourne to launch a range and a store, prompting plenty of mums to ask: how the bleep does she do it?

But the veteran fashion designer admits she craves a simpler existence.

Now juggling two children – Estella, 8, and her ‘‘hungry little man’’, five-week-old Hunter Desmond – Dinnigan, who is married to Bradley Cocks, says she dreams of moving to the country.

‘‘Ahhh, that’s the big picture,’’ she says. ‘‘There’s a very nice calmness. I crave a simple life. It’s not the craft of it I want to switch off from but all the other things around it.

‘‘I find it hard to switch off. I do dream of a really simple life – not one I run away from, but a life with family and good core values. Maybe move somewhere where you don’t have a profile – that would be nice.’’

Dinnigan, who escapes with her family to their country property on the south coast every few weeks, says the surroundings are blissful. ‘‘We have a big vegie garden and go down every six weeks to plant beetroots and leek and whatever we eat. We go fishing, we get whiting and have our own salad; it’s so healthy and simple. It’s better than running around in cars and when you’re there with the land you slow down automatically, and Brad goes surfing with Estella. It works. That’s what makes you think, ‘I want to build a house which is all ecological and self-sufficient.’’’


For now, life consists of feeding Hunter every few hours, keeping Estella amused and handling her eponymous label. ‘‘I think I’m so very happy and blessed, it’s a miracle. It was a very fast birth. It was natural and he’s fantastic.’’

As for take two of parenting? ‘‘This time around I want to appreciate every moment ... Life is so much more demanding than when I had Estella, with emails while you’re trying to focus on family. When I had Estella I would sit in bed drawing and read a few things  – now I spend my entire time keeping up with 200 emails a day and between London and New York, whether it’s approving colours and print designs. Who else is going to do it?’’

At Christmas things will slow down, with grandparents meeting the newest member of the clan. Both Dinnigan’s dad from New Zealand and her hubby’s parents from Canada are heading to the country property for Christmas.

Roxy on the spice trail

Now she has started her own celebrity management division, Sydney PR dynamo Roxy Jacenko has wasted no time hitting the campaign trail, jetting to London with her new charge MelB, whose musical Viva Forever! premiered at the Piccadilly Theatre in the West End on Tuesday night.

Leaving her young daughter Pixie-Rose and husband Oliver Curtis at their Woollahra home, Jacenko was front and centre at the opening of the Spice Girls musical, which has been savaged by some critics, who say the big-budget show is ‘‘a prize Christmas turkey’’.

But that hasn’t dulled the experience for Jacenko, who tells S she mistook esteemed actor Michael Caine for a doorman.

‘‘I thought he was a most charming doorman at the ambassador room during the intermission and we chatted at length about the weather, my frock and hair and I couldn’t understand how one could be so charming when on the job – only to walk away and Mel to go, ‘You do know who that was, don’t you?’’’ Jacenko relayed to S before boarding her plane home.

‘‘David and Victoria [Beckham’s] security looked like something off a Dolce & Gabbana campaign,’’ she says. ‘‘It was a once-in-a-lifetime experience, really. Surreal, thinking I was sitting with [the Spice Girls] after being the girl who lined up outside the State Theatre in Sydney when they arrived for their movie premiere all those years ago.’’

Sally puts family first

Lovely to see Sally Obermeder’s festive season is full of cheer this year after a harrowing 12 months that saw her battle stage-three breast cancer and undergo a double mastectomy.

The Seven star, who returns to work in the new year, posed at Vaucluse House for a family portrait with husband Marcus and daughter Annabelle, snapped by Rose Bay photographer Dan Blumenthal.

Apart from returning to television, Obermeder has a new website, swiish, and was, when S caught up with her, meeting her literary agent to talk about her upcoming book, which will be out for Mother’s Day.

Most importantly though, Obermeder is determined to enjoy her family. ‘‘I was reading emails until 2am the other morning and I said to my hubby, ‘Stop. This is not what I want to be doing!’ I’m being careful to not slip back into old working habits and want to make sure I achieve balance in enjoying my life.’’

Well-groomed Hamish

Awwww ... he may have won a Gold Logie but S hears Hamish Blake’s performance at his wedding to  Zoe Foster last Tuesday would have won him a trophy in the romance stakes.

The funnyman of radio and Nine’s Hamish & Andy’s Gap Year set  hearts aflutter with his surprises for Foster at their top-secret wedding day.

The couple – who escaped overseas following the nuptials – have an exclusive magazine deal, rumoured to be in the six digits, with coverage in Monday’s Woman’s Day, which will show off the sensitive side to the popular  star.

One guest said the intimate ceremony was  beautiful and would leave women all over Australia melting.
The couple, who began dating after co-writing a dating guide called Textbook Romance, announced their  news on Twitter on Friday from their secret overseas destination. Foster tweeted: ‘‘I didn’t know heartpounding, feet-off-the-ground joy til I snuck off on Tuesday to marry my beautiful Hame ... And now, viva la funnymoon!’’
 Blake said: ‘‘If you heard a ‘‘whoop for joy’’ on Tuesday, it was me; I married my girl! I’m the happiest guy. She seems happy too (phew). #honeymooning.’’

Their management told S: ‘‘The event was a private ceremony attended only by immediate family and a handful of witnesses. They are extremely happy, thank everyone for their well wishes, and are now using a well-earned honeymoon overseas to recover from all the cake they ate.’’

Blake has  redeemed himself in the romance department after cheekily proposing with a rock, literally, at the end of last year.

Foster joked at the time she would be taking her wedding-dress cues from My Big Fat Gypsy Wedding. But there were no Christmas tree gowns in sight, according to the guest, who said the antique-style dress was  pretty, soft and feminine. The couture gown is believed to have been made by Paddington designer Steven Khalil,  the designer du jour for local celebrity brides.

Khalil designed Kate Ritchie’s wedding gown as well as Logie frocks for Rebecca Gibney and Sophie Falkiner. He is  believed to be working for more  celebrity brides in the new year including Rachael Finch, Zoe Balbi and Rebecca Breeds.

Foster released her fourth book, a beauty guide titled Amazing Face, last year, as well as her third work of fiction, The Younger Man, earlier this year.

Catalina is all about cool

Watch out, Bondi Icebergs, a new cool-cat party is coming to town.

New Year’s Day at Icebergs has become an institution for vacuous models, Bondi wankers, party-going celebs, nightclub identities and an army of bikini-clad wannabes. Last year’s party guests included Brian McFadden (pictured, with Vogue Williams), John Ibrahim, Charlotte Dawson, Bambi Northwood-Blyth and Dan Single (pictured), Tyson Beckford, Pip Edwards and Hayden Quinn.

But now after a two-year hiatus from the party he started more than a decade ago – with mates Maurice Terzini and Angus McDonald – Sneaky Sound System’s Daimon Downey is pumped to start a rival bash: the inaugural Catalina party. And there’s sure to be a migration of A-listers.

‘‘We were talking last Thursday to Kate, the daughter of the Catalina empire, and I just started jumping up and down and a marriage between Kate [McMahon], myself and [business partner] Tim [Holmes a Court] was made! I believe it’s one of the greatest venues in Sydney,’’ Downey says. ‘‘I’ve been sitting on my hands for two years and I love throwing a party and then this venue came up, I’m pumped!’’

Downey, who owns Double Bay bistro and cocktail bar Pelicano with Holmes a Court, is going for an electro-Jamaica vibe, circa 1987 theme.

The venue for 300 is already sold out. ‘‘Wonderful canapes, French Champagne, cocktails all day long, amazing music,’’ Downey says. ‘‘It’ll be beautiful and old school.’’