Posts tagged venice
hand printed paper from Venice

When I was in Venice last year I discovered lots of incredible paper shops selling sheets of stunning hand-printed paper. It was like heaven for me. I just appreciate the craftsmanship so much.  I found one particular shop (I am sure there were many others) that had a really good selection of handprinted and also machine printed papers. I bought a selection of both. The handprinted was a lot more expensive than the machine printed understandably so I treated myself to 2 sheets of handprinted and 4 sheets of machine printed. I am such a geek I was just so excited about them. 

It got me thinking that I would really love to be able to print out large sheets myself to use as wrapping paper or for other crafty projects. In the shops they sold notebooks, frames, pen pots absolutely all sorts covered in the beautiful papers. 

Although I don't have a screenprinting set up I do have a few different options. I think I might try doing some designs and printing them on Kraft paper on my A3 printer, but also I really want to do some linocut wrapping paper. Last weekend I went to a great little linocutting workshop and it got me really excited to have another go after my attempts last year

Maybe next month's printable will be wrapping paper too. Even just printing out A4 sheets would work great for wrapping small gifts for friends and family. Keep an eye out!

Happy Friday all, hope you have  fun and inspiring weekend! I am off to the Etsy wedding fair with my buddy who is getting married so looking forward to checking out all the goodies!

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Burano

While we were in Venice we visited the islands of Burano and Murano. Both were beautiful and it was a great day out, but the one that really stood out was Burano. The island is not big at all (you could probably walk around the whole island in about 30 minutes) but it is absolutely full of striking brightly coloured houses and quaint canals. We were there on a glorious sunny day and it was just amazing. I found it really inspiring because the colour combinations were just so bold, and every little corner made you want to take a photograph.  Burano is famous for lace, and in the olden days (not as much now) lace was a big Venetian export and this was where it was made. It was also a fishing village and the story goes that the fisherman painted their houses different bright colours so that they could spot them easily while they were out at sea. I'm not sure that is the reason anymore, it's probably more to attract tourists, but it really is lovely.

As I mentioned in this post, the concentration of tourists in Venice is pretty high, and on Burano it is even higher. It's such a tiny island and basically the vaparetto is full of people planning to wander around the brightly coloured streets.

Here are some of the photos I took. I really love how some of them came out so I think I might print and frame some and have a little set to go on the wall. They would definitely brighten up any room! 

Happy Monday!

Visiting Venice


You may have worked out from my Instagram or this blog post, that NM and I went for a week's holiday in Venice. I thought I would do a little post about our time there in case anybody is planning a trip and wants some tips and advice. 

Accommodation
We decided for this trip to rent an apartment rather than stay in a hotel. Partly because hotels in Venice are pretty expensive and partly because we love food and we wanted to be able to buy and cook our own food from the local markets. We booked an apartment from this place - it was small but very central, perfect for two people and just what we wanted. 

Food
We are total food lovers, so when we travel food plays a big part in our plans and what we do! It can be hard to find good restaurants in Venice as there are just so many geared up for tourists that don't serve anything very special or that appetising. Our general rule was if they had photographs of the food in the windows we would give it a miss. We were lucky to have a few restaurant recommendations from friends which served us well, and I would definitely recommend doing a bit of research about places to eat. The other thing we discovered early in the week was Cicchetti which is basically an Italian form of tapas. It's common for Italians to head to their favourite Bacari for Cicchetti and a glass of wine or prosecco throughout the day. When we discovered it we realised this was much more our sort of vibe rather than fancy meals out, so we would plan our days around various Cicchetti stops and on the last day decided to do a Cicchetti crawl where we visited a few great Bacari's that we had seen throughout the week. 

Here are a few of our favourite places that served Cicchetti: Cantine del vino gia schiavi, Osteria Al Squero, Al Bocon Divino, Do Spade

Some restaurants we liked were: Osteria alla Frasca, Taverna Al Remer,

The other thing we did in Venice was head to the Rialto market (which opens in the mornings) and bought fresh ingredients to make our own dinner. We got some fantastic sardines and king prawns and made a really lovely pasta dish. The seafood in Venice really is pretty spectacular, and so if you enjoy cooking and are staying in an apartment with a kitchen I would totally recommend this! 

Also GELATO - eat it, lots of it...it is amazing. (especially the pistachio flavour) - We went to: Gelateria Nico

Travelling around
On our way to Venice we were debating on whether we should buy a week's Vaparetto pass (it works out cheaper than buying a ticket each day or for each trip) - but we decided not to in the end and I'm so glad we did. Because our apartment was pretty central in the San Marco sestiere (district) we were able to easily walk to all of the 6 different districts to explore them each day. We found that we had no need to take the Vaparetto. Going everywhere on foot ended up saving us quite a bit of money. We did get a Vaparetto pass for one day and that was to go to the islands further out to the North, called Murano and Burano. It was totally worth a day trip as they are absolutely stunning islands - especially Burano which is very small but full of brightly coloured houses. 

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I would definitely recommend getting the Vaparetto for at least one of the days you are there because it is nice to see the city from the Grand Canal - even though the boats are often very crowded.

I am hoping that all the walking we did cancelled out all the eating and drinking we did. We did find we had to make stops to just sit and watch the world go by because if we walked for too long we both got tired and grumpy. ha. 

Things to do
There are lots of things to do in Venice and to be honest we didn't really do any of them. We needed a chilled week and so we decided to do Venice our way. This consisted mostly of walking around and exploring the different districts, stopping off for food and drinks when we wanted and just generally taking it easy. As I mentioned above we did go to Burano and Murano one day which was really fun. Venice is SO touristy. It kind of bothered me a lot at the beginning (even though I know, I know, I was one of the tourists) - I think because Venice is not that big the concentration of tourists is just way more intense, and everywhere you go there are people speaking different languages and taking pictures of themselves with selfie sticks. As the week went on I was more chilled about it and just embraced it though. We would often try and go off the beaten track to area's that were more residential, a lot quieter and a lot less touristy. We went to two art galleries when we were there. The Peggy Guggenheim and also the Ca'Pesaro where they had an exhibition of modern art called 'Rauchenberg to Jeff Koons'. I loved this exhibition, partly because it was full of artists that I love, but also the building was spectacular and there weren't loads of people there. I would recommend the Peggy Guggenheim too but it was much busier so it was harder to really appreciate the works of art. 

We decided not to go on a Gondola ride while we there...some people have their hearts set on it, and if that is you, I would say go for it. I enjoyed watching them go by - those Gondola men have some serious skills navigating the canals but yeah actually getting on one didn't appeal. 

Shopping
There are lots of shops selling leather made goods, glass goods, Venetian masks and things like that, and also much to my delight stationery shops selling absolutely stunning hand printed papers and things made out of those hand printed papers. haha - I am such a geek but these are the shops that got me really excited. I spent all week going into them and then at the end of the week found a shop that had a beautiful range of handprinted and machine printed paper, so I treated myself to 6 sheets. 

Venice is a truly magical city. It is just like you have seen in the films - there is a stunning view around every corner and it is unlike anywhere else in the world. It is the most touristy place I have ever been to too, but I loved exploring this city. Lots of people were surprised when we said we were going for a week, and on reflection I can see why, you could totally get a sense of what Venice is like in a few days, but we took things at a slow pace and wandered around in the sunshine and had a really lovely relaxing time. If there is anything else you want to know feel free to ask in the comments below...I might not know the answer but will do my best to help!