Raglan biz chasing pet food market
The doggedness of two Raglan friends - plus a supportive community - helped launch a posh pet brand
Naturalist Sheila Natusch celebrated on screen
New Zealand naturalist, writer and illustrator Sheila Natusch brought science to the people. A film about her life captures her love of the natural world and her unconventional and indomitable spirit…
Water Cooler: Fat Yoga and the royal treatment
This week in the Water Cooler: we discover Fat Yoga, delve into rain science, get the royal treatment with Victoria and find a must-see exhibition.
Screen Sirens podcast: Top of the Lake
Are we living in a television golden age? The Screen Sirens discuss why award-winning Kiwi writer and director Jane Campion now prefers to work on TV these days. They then give the low down on the second season of Top of the Lake.
Video: Watch Ben Foster create his faceted sculptures
Between the mountains and the sea, sculptor Ben Foster and environmentalist Sabrina Luecht have found the best of nests.
Water Cooler: NZ's best chocolates
This week in the water cooler: We announce NZ's best chocolates, meet a very special creche at Ararimu School and wage a war on stickered fruit.
The 7 common reasons why a septic tank fails
It’s estimated that more than 40,000 of the 270,000 or so on-site domestic wastewater systems in NZ are at risk of failing.
Video: Watch Amelia Ferrier transform a cake into a work of art
Cakes are a blank canvas for a talented baker and author of Melie's Kitchen.
Alice Englert talks about her mum Jane Campion
Actress Alice Englert wasn’t fazed baring her soul on camera for her mother Jane Campion’s latest series.
Make this cute garden tool belt
Jane Wrigglesworth’s spring craft project is an easy fabric tool belt for storing trowels, secateurs and other garden tools.
10 things you may not know about building a log home
You might think hunting lodge, you might think it’s too much wood for one home, but the modern log house is a strong statement in clean, green, renewable, hand-crafted building work.
Water Cooler: Poetry Day
Today in the water cooler: We get experimental with marshmallow, test our Downward-Facing Dog pose on a yoga app, and celebrate National Poetry Day.
Screen Sirens: Keeping up with Keaton
The Screen Sirens weigh up how the new film Hampstead compares to Diane Keaton's other movies.
Dr Libby talks weight loss and low energy availability
The weight-loss equation of calories in/calories out is not only dated, it can also be harmful
The Burt Munro of the skies
A New Zealand pilot is channeling Burt Munro racing a Soviet World War II era fighter plane in Reno next month.
10 timeless makeup and beauty secrets
You can’t actually age backwards, but you can look like it. Take these few make-up tips for keeping your face as ageless as your spirit.
Podcast: The Off-Topic Book Club
The Off-Topic Book Club review Into the Water, the latest thriller from Paula Hawkins, author of the bestseller, The Girl on the Train.
'Lessons we learned building a cob house'
Buying a bush block, building a cob house, and starting a natural soap business takes huge amounts of energy, enthusiasm and commitment, but this family are thriving on the challenge of being as clean and green as possible in everything they do.
Knit this cute fox scarf
Fur coats are frowned upon, but what about a fox scarf – a knitted one that is? Jane Wrigglesworth’s winter knitting project is a scarf shaped like a fox.
Water Cooler: Celebrating science, dry July & French spirit
This week in the water cooler we: celebrate clever New Zealand scientists at the KiwiNet awards and take our horses to the dentist (yikes).
Video: Hitching a ride on a rubbish truck
thisNZlife’s Emma Rawson and Sarah van Boheemen from Love Food Hate Waste hitch a ride on an Auckland Council food waste collection truck and see, firsthand, how much food New Zealanders throw away.
Water Cooler: A rising country star and first aid for dummies
This week in the water cooler: we're exploring a great body of work at the Auckland Art Gallery, learning the CPR basics on a St John first aid course and listening to some sweet country sounds from rising star Cam Luxton.
Sustainable sewing in a solar-powered campervan
Sarah Lancaster is a maker on a mission to encourage sustainability - one hand-made tote at a time. Through her business, Sew Love, she’s teaching basic tailoring skills such as hemming, mending and patchwork.
Make your own willow bird feeder
Learn the art of basic willow weaving and give your local birds a tasty treat with our beginner's project.
An illustrated life
Native birds and high fashion might be odd bedfellows but not in the hillside home of a German expat and A New Zealand designer.
Water cooler: In praise of persimmons
This week in the water cooler: We wage a fruit war with Lynda Hallinan over persimmons explore a handy travel photo app, and mow our support for Emirates Team New Zealand.
Novelist Tanya Moir's double life
Our heroine casts a dashing figure as she marches across the Banks Peninsula. And like all good dramatic characters, her past holds a compelling secret.
Water cooler: long weekend movies and wild Waikato roads
This week in the water cooler: we review McLaren and Wonder Woman, avoid some nasty slips in the Waikato and put porridge to the test.
Water cooler: How to find a missing cat (we hope)
This week in the water cooler, we're using our CSI skills to search for a missing cat, eating all of the pies and are singing in the rain.
Former America's Cup sailor floats new business
A three-time America’s Cup winning team member is back on a boat but in a wooden dinghy.
Anthony Byrt and the conversation of art
Journalist and art critic Anthony Byrt is doing his bit to make the world – and Northland – a better place.
Bird brains and darling dahlias
This week in the water cooler: Nadene has a flower flight of fancy, Kate is on a carrot crusade and Emma is squawking to save the birds.
Artisan willow weaver encourages community spirit
This old craft is still immensely popular, and encourages a true community spirit on a Golden Bay lifestyle block.
Water cooler: Lazy granola and models on horseback
This week in the water cooler, we explore the Resene Architecture and Design Film Festival, are on the lookout for the harlequin ladybird and make lazy granola.
The Off-Topic Book Club review Gastrophysics
The Off-Topic Book Club has plenty of food for thought when exploring the science of eating in the non-fiction book Gastrophysics by Oxford University's Charles Spence.
For crying out loud! NZ's town crier shortage
New Zealand towns and cities are crying out for more town criers. Two sisters are ringing the bell for a proud (and loud) institution.
How to build a Norwegian Round Stack
Norwegian rounds are a space-saving wood stacking technique that will keep your wood dry
Water cooler: podcast labyrinths and a harbour boardwalk
This week in the water cooler: Cheree gets lost in the maze of S Town, Emma strolls along the prom, Milla gets kinetic and Nadene has a full plate.
VW Super Beetle resurrected from a hay shed
A not-so-common species of beetle has been adored, stored and restored
7 types of natural home
Old methods of using local natural materials is still some of the greenest building options around.
What type of heating suits your home?
There are more options than ever for heating your home, but how do you work out which one will work in your space?
Water Cooler: Back on Topp
In the water cooler this week: Cheree's explores her old stomping ground, Emma is in Denial and Yolanta campaigns to see New Zealand back on Topp.
We try riding an electric bike through Auckland
Electric bikes are popular in Asia and Europe, but will they catch on in Auckland? We see what the buzz is about.
How your kitchen can go pro
If you think selling food you’ve made in your home kitchen can’t be done legally, you could be in for a delicious surprise. We meet some small-time home-based business people with a passion for food who show how they work within the rules.
6 inspiring man caves and she sheds
We’ve all heard of ‘man caves’, but there are so many inspiring garden buildings, including the ‘she shed’. Check out these beautiful projects from NZ and around the world, most made on a small budget and out of recycled materials.
Water cooler: lettuce soup and pumpkin growing tips
It's a garden harvest special in this week's water cooler as we share tips for growing pumpkins, harvesting fruit and transforming mature lettuce into a delicious soup.
Water cooler: Going green and a poor little paw paw
In the water cooler this week: Emma has a double take at Twin Peaks, Nadene isn't peachy about the weather and Kate and Tracey go green.
4 beautiful NZ barn houses
Converting a barn into a home can create a distinctive living space, but it involves a unique set of building challenges.
Bespoke handwoven textiles on a World War One loom
A creative couple has spun a niche business by fusing old-world hand-weaving and modern design.
George Clarke on Kiwi DIY and the power of tiny houses
Amazing Spaces host George Clarke is in New Zealand to build a tiny house with Mitre 10. He weighs in on two innovative tiny homes recently featured on thisNZlife.
Yes, this cow is made of cake
Kim Donker has turned a baking hobby into a thriving home business. She shares tips for getting started without breaking the bank.
How to host a country wedding
If you’re a romantic at heart, turning your land into a wedding venue might be an opportunity to earn some extra cash.
Growing creative minds in a converted boatshed
Friends told Peter and Ellen Jarratt they were reckless, crazy and throwing it all away when they upped sticks to follow their hearts. But they did it anyway.
10 great ideas from a top New Zealand barn
A small obsession with old barns played a big part in the design of this award-winning home. Follow Tane's tips to get the look.
Incredible images of whales stranded on Farewell Spit
At Farewell Spit NZ Life & Leisure staff Cheree Morrison and Jane Ussher saw nature at its most beautiful and most cruel.
4 great ways to frame a country view
Getting the best windows to frame farm views is a crucial part of the design of a country home.
Pining for Norfolk chutney
This week in the water cooler: The office reaps the rewards of Lynley's chutney, Nadene's geese are all grown up, and Rebecca is steps ahead of the rest of us.
Water cooler: cheese and quokkas
This week in the water cooler: we make our own cheese, share our award-season movie picks and try out icing therapy.
Martinborough firm riding Mexican wave
Surf-loving foodies Jason and Melissa Philips downsized and relocated to the Wairarapa to give their hand-rolled burrito business the best chance of catching a big break.
Kohu Road founder's career path to the sweet life
It’s been a flavourful career for Kohu Road founder Greg Hall. There’s a pinch of everything in his recipe for success – and the outcome is simply delicious.
Entrepreneur finds success testing the waters
A Christchurch paddleboard entrepreneur is riding a steady wave of growth.
15 tips for designing a great country home
Today’s needs, tomorrow’s changes and even resale appeal need to be taken into account when designing the rooms in your home.
Make your own 'Chick Inn' coop sign
Follow these step-by-step instructions to create a Chick Inn Coop Sign, as seen on the cover the Summer bumper issue of NZ Lifestyle Block.
Podcast: Screen Sirens review La La Land
La La Land is nominated for seven Golden Globe Awards. The Screen Sirens find out what all the fuss is about.
Water cooler: how to cook shellfish
In the final water cooler of 2016: Anna Tait-Jamieson shares her shellfish secrets, Cheree has her eye on the prize and Kate is all tied up in knots.
Incredibly practical Christmas gift ideas
Running out of present ideas for the practical person in your life? NZ Lifestyle Block editor Nadene Hall's gift list might provide inspiration.
Off-Topic Book Club: Mount!
The Off-Topic Book Club share a laugh while reviewing Jilly Cooper's saucy new novel Mount!
6 books for Christmas reading
Find a sunny spot and curl up with one of our picks for great Christmas reads this season.
Splashing beauties and buzzing bees
Splashing beauties, buzzing bumbles and sleeping dogs and a Pinnacles performance - what we are talking about in the water cooler this week.
Make your own natural cleaning products
These tips will help you to reduce the amount of packaging you use, and get you into DIY cleaning products.
Podcast: Off-Topic Book Club
This month the Off-Topic Book Club do a podcast about a case made famous by a podcast when they review Adnan's Story by Rabia Chaudry.
Make your own pizza oven this summer, and learn to cook in it
Step away from your screens and eat under the stars with NZ Life & Leisure’s new outdoor cooking and DIY book: In Your Backyard: FOOD & FIRE, on sale now.
Water Cooler: Goats, glass and salmoriglio
This week in the water cooler: we sing the praises of stained glass, wax lyrical about goats and make delicious yet unpronounceable sauces.
Water Cooler: Billy Elliot,and "the best biscuits ever"
This week in the water cooler we dance up a storm, battle over cheese and bake the "best biscuits ever”
The Girl on the Train and a girl's crafty secret
This week in the water cooler: we review The Girl on the Train, discover a girl's crafty secret store and have birds on the brain.
Water cooler: a flying fox, fashion film and Onggojip
In this weeks water cooler, we dream of flying through the jungle and high-fashion couture, make coconut yoghurt and test restaurants with unpronounceable names.
Water cooler gadget special... and chocolate
In the water cooler this week: Miranda discovers a super product, Nadene gets worms, Cheree becomes hot and steamy and Anna cracks the mystery gadget.
Cool walks with the kids and lamb update
This week in the water cooler: Rebecca discovers a cool walk for the kids - and we check in on Serita the lamb.
What makes a leader?
What does it take to captain a rugby team through to win two successive World Cups? A new documentary tries to capture the man behind the hype
Business bubbling along in the Catlins
A bubbly soapmaker has turned her favourite hobby into a cottage industry on her Otago small block.
Paws for thought on poetry day
When was the last time you read a poem? Try something new for poetry day Friday (26 August). You might get to pat a puppy...
Watercooler: going crackers, wayward fruit & kids apps
This week in the water cooler, we savour the new season grapefruit, say hello to Talking Tom and make the best crackers EVER
Thinking inside the box
This shipping container uses every square inch to nurture the future of country kids, and the adults too.
Refugee Olympians and Whanganui wonders
This week in the water cooler: we sing the praises of the refugee Olympic team, discover a historic gem in Whanganui and have a light bulb moment.
Our reviewer found this book life-changing
Book reviewer Miranda Spary sees the world differently after reading The Reader on the 6.27 by Jean-Paul Didierlaurent.
Podcast: The Couple Next Door
In this episode the book club lives up to its name - talking about everything from 50 Shades of Grey to sleeping in the same bed as James Bond while reviewing The Couple Next Door.
Make a NZ neck gecko scarf
This neck gecko scarf is made from reflective wool and is a good project for beginner knitters.
'How I quit plastic'
Urban eco warrior Jessica Rose suggests some easy lifestyle changes to make for Plastic-Free July.
Podcast: Love & Friendship
The Screen Sirens enter the ring for a Jane Austen rumble when reviewing this adaptation of the Austen novella Lady Susan.
We try... racing a WRX
Cheree Morrison puts pedal to the metal on the Highlands Motorsport Park course in Cromwell.
Trend spotting: the future of skincare
From weird face masks to smart skin patches, there are plenty of beauty trends to help you face the future.
Water Cooler: How to cut into a pumpkin
Busy bees, balls of bliss and a country bumpkin and her pumpkins - things that got us talking this week.
How to ride an ATV on hilly ground
Riding an ATV is a learned skill and if you don’t do it properly you can easily be badly hurt.
Curious cows and squishy persimmons
A jet-setter's secret weapon and why Morrinsville is the place to be - things that got the thisNZlife office talking this week.
The best in tech
Cultural wonders, spectacular solar footage and a pawsome way to hook up - Frances Jones premieres what's hot in tech at the moment.
Inside the world of rugby romance literature
A romance writer adds rugby to the traditional plot mix and finds an avid and growing audience - who are currently exploring New Zealand.
DIY: Make your own soap
Making your own soap is easy, affordable, doesn’t require any special equipment and is quite addictive.
Listen: The Girl on the Train book club podcast
The NZ Life & Leisure team had a lively chat about the twists and turns of this best-selling thriller over wine and cheese in our new podcast The Off-topic Book Club.
Soul searching with Hollie Smith
A number one album isn't enough to make a living in the music industry. Soul and jazz singer Hollie Smith's new album has topped the charts but she's still cleaning houses to make ends meet.
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