Wednesday, 19 July 2017

Travel Diaries: Sorrento, Italy



I thought I would finally share some snaps that weren't from my iPhone from our trip to Sorrento last May (yes I know that was 14 months ago haha, but it's nice to reminisce.

This trip was actually Sean's birthday gift from the year before that and Sorrento was his choice and he couldn't have picked a better city for us to take our first trip abroad! 

I'll share a few of the places we visited and ate but unfortunately I must have picked up a bug just before we left as I got sick the day after we arrived and Sean had the same thing a few days later so we didn't get to do as much as we hoped (like take a boat to Capri), that's a good excuse to go back though! 


We flew from Gatwick to Naples airport and had transfers included to Sorrento. The drive along the coast line is pretty beautiful though so don't be tempted to nap the whole drive haha! 

Sorrento was a lovely city to just wander around luckily, as when we weren't feeling too good we didn't want to venture far. The first thing I noticed was the size of the lemons, they were the biggest I have ever seen! I loved just taking a walk and stopping for some gelato and popping into the local stores filled with lemon goodies.  

Herculaneum

We took a guided tour to Herculaneum one morning to visit some of the ancient ruins. It was so fascinating to see how well persevered a lot of the town is! Although it is a much smaller site than Pompeii (which we didn't make it to) there was plenty to see and I would recommend going on a tour as the guide we had taught as so much about Herculaneum and it's history.

Stunning Views of Mount Vesuvius 

Views hiking up Mount Vesuvius

If you have time take a jeep trip up Mount Vesuvius and hike the last part, the views are breathtaking and you might even spy some steam escaping inside the mouth of the volcano as Mount Vesuvius is an active volcano, and over due an eruption we were told! Again we had a lovely tour guide for our trip which also including wine tasting and lunch on a vineyard on the side of Mount Vesuvius, and of course some wine made it home in my suitcase. 

Piazza Tasso

The centre of Sorrento was just a short walk from our hotel and was great spot for some people watching. You'll also find plenty of little streets off here filled with cafes and shops.

The bag that was featured in Monday's blog post was a purchase from a store called Gloves Concetta Pane and if you are looking for some affordable Italian leather goods then make sure to pop into this store, they have a huge selection of colourful bags in all different styles and their prices are a lot better than a lot of other Italian cities.

I also had my heart set on getting a pair of made to measure leather sandals. There are a few stores around Sorrento that sell them (and in Capri and Positano too) but I ended up getting a pair from La Conchiglia, where I had a hard time picking out a style but went for a classic Positano style after the sweet man that made the sandals suggested them from the pairs I narrowed my choices down to. 

Marina Grande

There isn't a single spot in Sorrento that has a bad view, you will never tire of these I promise you. The coastlines are amazing and you can take in the views of the neighbouring islands and Mount Vesuvius from one of the Marinas. Marina Piccolo is where you can catch a boat out to Capri or Ischia and Marina Grande is filled with some amazing seafood restaurants.  

Which brings me to some of the places we ate during our stay. 

I stopped in many Gelato stores on our trip but my favourite was Antica Gelateria Sorrentina, they didn't have the biggest selection of Gelato in Sorrento but every flavour I had was delicious and it was our nightly stop on our way back from dinner.

If you're looking for a good traditional Neapolitan pizza then Pizzeria Franco is where you need to head. There is nothing fancy about the set up here (you pizza is served on big metal trays and with plastic cutlery) but you get a real taste for the flavour of the pizza dough and the simple toppings. Pizza made how it should be in my opinion.

We Love Puro is a perfect place to stop for lunch and they also have some yummy gelato flavours and some giant swings you can sit on!

The picture below was the setting for our dinner at Ristorante O'Puledrone. You won't find a more romantic setting for a sunset dinner than sitting right by the ocean with views of Mount Vesuvius in front of you. This was the best meal I had on our trip hands down and one of the freshest pieces of fish I have ever tasted. Everything is caught fresh that day and you can tell. If we go back
 to Sorrento we would love to try out PortaMarina Seafood

Ristorante 'O Parrucchiano is a little hidden gem in the middle of Sorrento, from the outside this place doesn't look too special but as soon as you walk in you realise that you are in a huge green house surrounded by lemon trees and fairy lights (I have a weakness for fairy lights). This restaurant can sit a huge number of people between the green house and the gardens and if you pre-book a table they'll leave some beautiful flowers on your table! Oh and the lemon profiteroles are a must. 


We also found this orange and lemon grove right by our hotel which was such a peaceful place to walk around. 

There is so many things we didn't get to do on our trip like go for a swim in this stunning looking lagoon, a boat trip to Capri, a tour of Pompeii and exploring more of the Amalfi Coast so we would love to head back to this part of Italy in the future. We did make it out to Positano for a morning and I will share that in another post soon! 

I hope you enjoyed reading about my recommendations for Sorrento and if you have any questions I'll try and answer them. I'd love to know if you have been and have any other places we should head to if we go back again, leave a comment below if you do :) 



Monday, 17 July 2017

A Perfectly Pink Sewing Project

Handmade Dress // Dune Sandals // Primark Sunglasses // Baublebar Bracelet //
DKNY Watch // Baublebar Rings // Bag from Sorrento (similar) // Pinku iPhone Case

If you were stopping by my blog 3 years ago you may remember I went to a sewing class here in Suffolk because I wanted to learn a new skill. Will two years later I decided to go back to Spinney Brook Workbox and try my hand at something a little more complex! 

I had seen this blog post over on Gal Meets Glam earlier last year and fell in love with Julia's dress, but unfortunately it had sold out. So when my sister told me she wanted to go back and learn some dress making skills I already knew in my head what I wanted to create! I found the pattern in a local sewing shop and the fabric (which sadly does wrinkle quite easily) on Etsy, after hours of hunting for the perfect size check.

This time we went for two days of sewing with Elizabeth and my dress came home almost complete, I just had to sew the buttons on. This dress was not the easiest to make and there is no way I could have made it on my own, but I learnt so many sewing skills from pattern cutting to button holes and collars. My favourite thing about the dress (and a requirement when I was looking for patterns) is that it has pockets. 

As we didn't go for our sewing class until the end of September I have been eagerly awaiting this summer to roll around so I could start wearing this dress non stop. I am so happy with how it turned out and pretty proud that I managed to make something wearable. My next project to tackle on my own is a simple skirt so hopefully I will find that easy! 

If you are looking for a sewing class in Suffolk then you should contact Elizabeth at Spinney Brook, she has bunch of project classes if you don't have an idea in mind and just want to learn to sew or she is more than happy to help you with your own project, perfect for beginners or someone who wants to try out something a little more adventurous!  

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Friday, 14 July 2017

Stacey's Smiles

 First bunch of peonies of the season. 

My room has constantly been filled with blooms recently. 

Perfectly Pink Peonies. 

I ran my first 5K at the weekend in the most beautiful setting.

Blooms for the new garden.

It has felt so good to be back blogging this week and I have some more posts lined up that will be going live over the next few weeks. Hopefully once I am all moved into my new place I'll be able to get back to blogging more regularly again, well I'll be aiming for at least posting one week in every month to start with! 
Also if you're wondering why I seem to have splatters of paint on me in my picture from the 5K it's because it was a colour run and we had a different colour paint thrown at us at each KM marker, It was actually really fun and as much as I still don't like running for now I would do it again. 


Wednesday, 12 July 2017

Navy Rose Midi Dress



Happy Wednesday! So I am back with a new outfit post and this is a look I wore last month on Father's Day. If you've been a long time reader of my blog you'll already know I have a thing about midi skirts, in fact anything midi length is a hit in my closet because my of height. This dress was a sale purchase from Nordstrom last year and is sold out now but I've linked some more floral & midi dresses below some of which you might see appearing on the blog later this summer.  

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Tuesday, 11 July 2017

Back To Blogging


 I am so sorry I have been MIA on the blog for 2 months now, I honestly didn't realise it had been that long until I logged into my blog to start writing this post. Life has just completely taken over and things have not been going to plan! I have felt so exhausted I just haven't really been inspired to blog recently or actually do a lot of things I should have been doing, the only thing I have wanted to do is curl up and sleep.
So I decided to take a last minute day off from work and have an entire day just to myself where I have done nothing except the things I wanted to. I slept in and it felt so good to know there was not one thing I had to get done today when I woke up. I ended up catching up on some TV shows, going for a walk with a friend on her lunch break and I even felt inspired to start writing some blog posts. 
I grabbed some pink lemonade and cherries and headed outside with my laptop to work on a couple of outfit posts and some long over due travel posts (from Sorrento & Athens). These posts will be all be going up slowly on the blog over the next few weeks so stayed tuned.
Can we also talk about this awesome round beach blanket that is only $8. I haven't had time to make it to the beach with it yet so I decided to enjoy it out in the garden instead! It's super lightweight so is perfect for throwing in your beach bag and also means it dries out quickly if there is a little rain shower (yes I'm talking to you UK weather as it's raining right now).
There's a new outfit post going live tomorrow!