Valentine’s Day is just around the corner. As always Etsy provides some adorable and alternative options that not only support talented makers but stand out from the crowd of typical gifts for your valentine.
Here’s just a small collection of super cute pink wall art finds all available on Etsy.
// Penguin and Heart Balloon Wall Art by studioQgallery
// Bicycle Photograph by AmyTylerPhotography
// Je t’aime Heart Print by Sweet Peony Press
// Pink Magnolia Photograph by LilyShihPhoto
// XO Typography Art Print by alphonnsine
// London Portobello Road Pink Car Photo by TarynStMichele
What surprise have your organised for your Valentine?????
After publishing this post about my love for Atlantis Books in Oia, Santorini I got to thinking about other bookshops around the world I would love to visit. And so, I have put together a list of my top choices…for your reading pleasure!
// SHAKESPEARE & COMPANY – PARIS, FRANCE
Paris was the very first European city I visited (after landing into London from Australia) on my very first holiday in Europe and so it will always hold a special place in my heart. But in such a beautiful and famous city with so many sites to see, it can be easy to make the same mistake I did and miss this bohemian refuge on the Left Bank. But at least we have a good excuse (like I need one?! In the words of Audrey Hepburn – Paris is always a good idea, right!) to return.
Shakespeare & Company is undoubtedly the most famous English-language bookshop in Paris, and quite possibly the world. This quirky, ramshackle independent bookshop is stuffed with books on crowded and crooked shelves in the shadow of Notre Dame. Original founder George Whitman once described it as a ‘social utopia masquerading as a bookshop’ – what more motivation do you need to visit this little gem!
// KEIBUNSHA BOOKS – KYOTO, JAPAN
Kyoto has long been on my wish list of places to visit and when I finally do make it there, I’ll be making a beeline to this all-in-one bookshop, art gallery and gift shop. Famous for its unique and thoughtfully curated collection, hand selected by trusted staff I can’t wait to roam aimlessly through the series of three rooms, also enjoying the shop’s welcoming aesthetic with rich lighting and dark wood paneling. I will probably also stock up on gifts for myself and my family and friends from Keibunsha’s selection of japanese art, stationary and vintage items.
// CAFEBREIA EL PENDULO – MEXICO CITY
There is nothing better than when a bookshop is combined with a successful cafe and Cafebreia is one of those examples. And on weekends their breakfast in served with a side of live classical music. This bookshop also hosts open architecture and real green trees. Being located in one of the world’s largest cities, I can imagine that Cafebreia is a welcoming escape from the heat, and I can see myself kicking back with a coffee in one hand, book in the other in the shade of a tree, happily whiling away the afternoon while my husband has a siesta in the hotel.
// BOEKHANDEL DOMINCANEN – MAASTRICHT
If there is one place in the world to come to worship words, literature and books its Boekhandel Domincanen. This 1,1000 square metre gothic space was originally a Dominican church built in the 13th century which underwent a radical refurb in 2006. With a in-house cafe (more coffee + books!) Boekhandel Domincanen also holds several literary events every year, really making it a temple of books.
// EL ATENEO GRAND SPLENDID – BUENOS AIRES
Picture a beautiful old theatre complete with painted heigh ceilings, ornate carvings, balconies and private boxes. A large stage and heavy rich stage curtains. Now picture the seating area filled with rows and rows of books, the stage area fitted out with a cafe and the private boxes turned into reading rooms and you have the El Ateneo Grand Splendid, one of the best known books stores in Argentina.
// SCARTHIN BOOKS – DERBYSHIRE
Perhaps this hidden quirky bookshop is a surprise inclusion on this list, but for me, it ticks off so many items on my ‘bookshop favs list’. A bookshop that sells both new and second hand books and has done so since the mid 70’s – tick! An in-house vegetarian cafe with many vegan options – two BIG ticks! All in a beautiful setting – another tick! I can just picture myself ducking into this hidden little shop to escape the famous English drizzle and warm up with a nice cup of hot tea and english scones before roaming the huge selection and purchasing some of my favourites titles.
// LIVRARIA IELLO – PORTO, PORTUGAL
Quite possibly the most beautiful bookshop in the world, the purpose built Livraria Iello has been selling books since 1881. Featuring neo gothic architecture, a wood panelled ceiling, stain glass windows and a sweeping staircase known as ‘the staircase to heaven’ this bookshop is worth visiting for its beauty alone, while also being home to hundreds of beautiful books.
Have you visited any of these bookshops? Or have you visited some gems that I should add to my list. I would love to hear from you =)
UNDER MY ETSY CHRISTMAS TREE
Between launching my store and doing my Christmas shopping, I’ve been spending ALOT of time on Etsy lately. And although there are really so many talented creators on the platform and so many beautiful products, sometimes it’s not so easy to find what you are looking for.
But in my recent adventures around the marketplace I have found as many (if not more) things I would like for myself as those I would like to give to someone else!
So here are just some of the things I would love to find under my Etsy Christmas tree. It might be too late for you to get these under the tree in time for Christmas morning, but perhaps you’ll find something for yourself 🙂
// Purple Montmarte Illustration by Tubidu
// Baby it’s cold outside Throw Cushion by Zana Products
// Bookstore Book Lovers Scented Soy Candle by Frostbeard
// Stay Close Print by KelliMurrayArt
// Nestor the Long Eared Christmas Donkey by TwoSadDonkeys
// Small Feather Necklace by NUTAK
// An Unexpected Vistor by Hannakin
// Morning Stars Manson Jar Chandelier by BootsNGus
Monday Musings – THINGS THAT CAUGHT MY ATTENTION LAST WEEK
// A TOUCH OF COLOUR – COLLECTIVE HUB’S ARTICLE ON THE RISE OF ADULT COLOURING.
This article, interestingly enough, co-incided with my first ventures into this new hobby that is said to stimulate relaxing ‘alpha’ brain waves
// HARRY POTTER AND THE CURSED CHILD – THE OFFICIAL EIGHTH HARRY POTTER STORY AND THE FIRST TO BE PRESENTED ON STAGE.
I love the Harry Potter books, I love the Harry Potter films, I love the theatre….then why aren’t I more excited about this????
IMAGE: HARRY POTTER THE PLAY
// NEW EMOJI – MASHABLE’S COMPLETE GUIDE
Personally, I don’t know how I ever lived with the popping cork bottle, cheese, middle finger or unicorn emoji!
IMAGE: BOB AL-GREENE/MASHABLE
What about you? What caught your attention last week? I’d love to hear your thoughts and musings.
Book stores are also some of my favourite places to explore when in a new place, especially second hand book stores. I have never met a bookstore I didn’t like, I always find them welcoming and comforting no matter how many times I visit. Its like I can feel the history and the stories leaping out of the old books and creating an atmosphere of wonder.
But it was not my love of book stores that first attracted me to Atlantis Books, hidden between the chic boutiques and tourist shops of Oia. It was the handwritten ‘FREE PUPPY EXHIBITION’ sign out the front :
– 4 legs each – different colours – one tail each – small teeth: not dangerous
….how could I resist! And so I descended the spiral staircase of the restored sea captains house to be greeted by an exhausted mum and her litter of adorable pups. After receiving probably more than my fair share of free puppy cuddles, I turned to discover an authentic gem tucked away under the cobblestoned streets of Oia.
With the history of the Atlantis literally inscribed on the walls (and roof) you immediately feel at home and welcome in this rustic little underground book shop. As cats snooze on the shelves between books in a multitude of languages and quirky installations hang from the ceiling, the Atlantis is a place you want to move into. And after reading (off the wall) that they throw parties on their roof which enjoys spectacular views of Oia’s famous sunsets, I just might!
Find them here – http://atlantisbooks.org (and check out their Tedx talk – it will inspire you and melt your heart!)