When we first started traveling, I figured there would be places we like more than others. While that has become the case, I still find it hard to rank our trips in order or to say I have an absolute favorite. The truth is that we learn different things from each country we visit and we come away with unique memories that can't be compared to the last.
Our choice for a small town break from Budapest was charming Szentendre, or St. Andrew. The town is an easy 40-minute train ride along the Danube from Budapest’s central Batthyány tér metro station. The portion of the journey within the administrative bounds of Budapest was covered by our tourist transit pass and we only had to pay a small additional supplement fee to finish the journey on the commuter section of the line.
Our Airbnb in Buda was only a 10-minute walk to Budapest’s renowned Chain Bridge; we got lots of use out of the bridge as we crisscrossed from Buda to Pest and back all weekend. St. Stephen's Basilica, a commanding Catholic church completed just 112 years ago, is just over the bridge on the Pest side. Check out the 360-degree views from the top of the tower and be sure to walk around to the beautifully curved back of the church.
Budapest is one of those cities that people almost never disparage. In fact, most people that have visited Budapest have only good things to say and it regularly appears on “favorite European cities” lists. And what’s not to like? It’s cheap, has surprisingly good food, is dynamic, cosmopolitan, energetic, has beautiful architecture, is full of interesting history, and just has such a variety of things to see and do.
Today I am ever so happy to announce I'll be teaching a hand lettering workshop at the Creating For Good Creative Conference on the 7th of May in London! If you haven't heard of Creating For Good, let me just fill you in because you need to know about these amazing ladies. The London-based collective has come together as a creative force to use their skills to improve the lives of the less fortunate.
Over the past few months I have had the pleasure of teaming up with Mahabis to collaborate on some social content creation through photography and video. Let me just tell you—collaboration aside—these slippers are seriously amazing. I've had my eye on them for quite some time. They are perfect for my lifestyle of working from home and the occasional errand running during the week. If you have yet to hear about Mahabis the shortest and easiest explanation is that they are slippers with detachable outer soles. When you are walking around the house enjoying a cozy day in, keep the sole off—but as soon as need to walk the dog or head out, snap on these well designed soles and you have yourself a pair of versatile shoes. I also love that by having these two options, you can change the slippers look from comfy to sleek.
We’ve made a habit lately of taking day trips to smaller, less visited towns when visiting larger, more popular cities. Part of our motivation is that city breaks sometimes don’t feel like breaks—when you already live in a large, bustling city, sometimes what you really want from a weekend away is a bit of tranquility in the countryside. Hence our half-day trip to Knaresborough!
York, Maine is a very special place to us, so it seemed a no-brainer to visit the city from which it took its name, especially when it’s only a two-hour train ride from London! We stayed at the Jorvik Hotel, a quirky, cozy, and modern spot named for the Viking version of the city’s name in the 9th century. York’s history goes back much further, having been founded by the Romans almost 2,000 years ago. Remnants of the city’s long and varied history dot the place and make it quite an enjoyable place for a visit.
Throughout our years of traveling, we have had the pleasure of enjoying some delicious meals in locations all over Europe. Sometimes this means grabbing a quick bite to eat somewhere easy but we try more often than not to go to unique spots. When we are researching and planning a trip, as food lovers, we are always looking to find interesting places to add to our experience. Even better is getting recommendations from locals or stumbling upon a place ourselves while we are wandering through the old crooked streets.
Candles are an easy piece to add to your home to cozy in up in the colder months but they also are perfect for spring and summer. With the windows slightly cracked open now and the fresh air coming in, I love lighting candles this time of year to help bring new vibes into our home. For this edition of The Handmade List I've gathered some of my favorite soy candles—as well as some I'm hoping to try soon! I tend to lean towards earthy scents but I also love ones that have a warmth to them.
This year, one of my goals was to find ways to make handmade design more accessible to everyone. Handmade design has a place in my heart and soul. It's the side of design that I love to be a part of and creating in. The quality of it offers brands and people really unique pieces to help build their look. I find it captivating and am pulled towards its unique ability to draw the eye in. One thing that can be tricky with handmade design though, is its price—and that has aways bothered me.