Gingham dress - Girlglobalising

Photos by Dom John

The gingham trend has been raging on for a while – it’s now basically inescapable for summer. I was pretty set on this being another trend that I give a miss (in the same way I’ve avoided ruffles and big floaty sleeves like the plague). I’ve been making an effort to change my style to something a bit more grown up in the last few months, although my boss would probably disagree since I still turn up to work in jeans and a t-shirt everyday, and gingham didn’t seem to fit into that.

Then I spotted this dress in UO that couldn’t be more gingham if it tried. The ruched top half only seems to make it look more gingham! But with a weekend in Barcelona, hopefully a few days in Cornwall and a whole blissful week in Majorca coming up, it seemed like the perfect holiday dress. I wore it a lot in said weekend in Barcelona (check out the post here), the elasticated top half is perfect for not bothering with a bra (keeps everything where it should be!), the midi length makes it perfect for cities and the light floaty material makes it great for beaches and heat too.

I’m officially a gingham convert. I’m also clutching a Lime flavoured Calippo in these photos, and I’m starting a petition to bring them to the UK. SO GOOD! Let me know if you’re with me…

xx

Dress – Urban Outfitters | Sunglasses – Rayban | Sandals – Forever 21

Gingham - Girlglobalising

Bag – Mango (old) | Sandals – Forever 21

Barcelona - Girlglobalising

Barcelona - Girlglobalising

Barcelona - Girlglobalising

Considering how much I love Barcelona, I’ve never actually made a city guide for the wonderful place. Back in 2014 I spent a few weeks there on a work placement and during that time I really got to grips with the city. There’s so much to fill your time with and coupled with an amazing laid back atmosphere it really is the perfect city break destination.

And I do 100% see Barcelona as a city destination rather than a beach destination. Yes, it’s right on the beach and that only adds more value to the place, but it’s definitely not somewhere I would go for a beach holiday.

Barcelona - Girlglobalising

Barcelona - Girlglobalising

Where to stay: 

I’ve stayed in a few places in Barcelona, first the H10 hotel just off Plaça Catalunya, which is a very nice hotel, but worth noting that while it has a very lovely roof terrace it doesn’t have a swimming pool.

On this most recent trip we stayed in the Sunotel in L’Eixample which was also a very good option. It has a nice little pool on the roof and is perfectly positioned for exploring the city.

I have also stayed in an apartment in the Gracia neighbourhood, which is well known for being one of the nicest neighbourhoods in Barcelona. Have a look on Airbnb and I’m sure you’ll find a gem. Maybe even try and time it with the Festa de Gracia in August and it’ll really add to your Catalonian experience.

Barcelona - Girlglobalising

Barcelona - Girlglobalising

What to do:

There’s so much to do in Barcelona! We were only there for two days, so minus time for sleeping it was about 24 hours of exploring the city. I would recommend wandering around the Gothic Quarter and El Born areas. These are essentially the old town and are full of winding narrow streets with cobble stones and beautiful buildings to admire. You’ll also find the cathedral here and the Picasso museum which is a really great little museum and a haven from the heat. From here you could head over the La Boqueria, the infamous market on Las Ramblas. Yes it’s very touristy, but it’s also still frequented by locals and well worth a quick visit.

Barcelona is famous for it’s Guadi architecture and by all means visit one of the Guadi houses, they’re very interesting but my favourite bit of Guadi’s handiwork is Park Guell. In the north of the city looking out over the rooftops you’ll find the park of all parks. The curving tiled seat, the pillars and domed roof, the mosaic lizard are all features as well as the amazing view all the way down to the sea. It does cost to get in now, but I think it’s only about 6 euros, or you can go early in the morning (before 8am) for free and you also won’t have to battle all the other tourists.

The olympic swimming pool on Montjuic is my favourite pool ever. It’s about 6 euros to get in but that ticket will last you all day if you fancy it. It’s not chlorinated water and it’s frequented mainly by locals so not completely packed out, even on a Saturday afternoon. It looks a little run down, but don’t let that put you off. The water is clean and fresh, plus you get one of the best views across the city from there.

Barcelona - Girlglobalising

Barcelona - Girlglobalising

Where to eat and shop: 

In Barcelona I find it quite hard to find anything other than tapas on the menu. The advice I will give you is to head out of the city center, and definitely away from Las Ramblas, to find a smaller family run restaurant where you’re guaranteed to find a more authentic meal. A lovely place to visit is El Nacional, which is quite central and it’s description of a ‘food court’ doesn’t do it any favours, but trust me it’s well worth a visit. Previously it was a car park, but it’s been transformed into the most amazing building. You will have to queue but you can get a drink from the bar while you do so. For something a little different I have heard that Mosquito is good for Asian inspired tapas.

For brunch and lunch there are a few good recommendations in Brunch and Cake and Flax & Kale. For great coffee head to Satan’s Coffee Corner and Nomad Coffee Lab. And basically anywhere in El Ravel, which is the student area and basically over run with hipsters now.

I have heard really great things about the El Poble-Sec and Sant Antoni neighbourhoods. They are emerging as more affordable places for professionals, so currently they are a great mix of coffee shops, boutiques as well as family run places and old Barcelonians.

Barcelona - Girlglobalising

Barcelona - Girlglobalising

Lyme Regis - Girlglobalising

Here we are, back again with another very delayed post. My motivation to do anything other than come home from work and wait impatiently for Love Island has gone seriously amiss. It’s really no wonder that time is just flashing by when all I seem to do with my days is turn up for work, wander home, maybe pop to the gym and then sit in front of the now infamous reality program.

It’s made me really think how much time we spend watching other people live their lives. I know I’m guilty of letting one too many hours float by whilst watching stupid videos on youtube.

A few weeks ago, having had work on that really sunny Saturday while everyone else was out basking in it, I decided I had to make the most of Sunday if it was to be my only chance that week.

After attempting to get out of the house at a reasonably early time to beat the rush to the seaside (11am counts as reasonably early, right?) we headed down south to Lyme Regis. This beautiful small town on the Jurassic coast was absolutely heaving with people who all clearly had the same idea. And after the palaver of trying to find a parking space – a drama involving a near miss crash and a race to another town to get cash for the charity car park we eventually managed to find, we began the stroll back down to the beach.

Lyme Regis - Girlglobalising

As you can see, it was a pretty glorious day. We settled down with a Cornish pasty on the sand and Dom went for a quick dip in the sea. Although don’t be fooled by the sunshine like he was, it’s certainly still chilly in there!

Afterwards we wandered along to the breakwater and small harbour, admiring the boats in all their colours, shapes and sizes.

Lyme Regis - Girlglobalising

Of course no trip to the seaside is complete without an ice cream that then melts in the sun so you have to eat it really fast. If you happen to be in Lyme Regis then I highly recommend the gelato stand on Marine Parade – I wish I could remember what it’s called because it was damn good gelato.

Make sure you wander back up through the little town, there’s plenty of little shops, including sweet shops making Devonshire fudge. A delightful little place, perfect for a short day or afternoon trip. Afterwards Dom and I raced back to Bristol to get to the Lido before it closed but unfortunately didn’t make it in time. Sitting in a bath tub of cold water to cool yourself down is just not the same as an open air swimming pool.

Lyme Regis - Girlglobalising

I’m determined to have more days like this and really make the most of summer. Low-key day trips and afternoons enjoying the outside. I know I’m certainly too tied to my phone and computer for most of the week and it’s time to pack it all away. Savouring days like this one in Lyme Regis will only help in making sunny days in the office a bit more bearable anyway.

xx

It’s been a fair while since I have a) posted anything on here and b) shared a few of my favourite inspirations. Today’s post is looking at a few more of my favourite bloggers – one’s I recommend you check out if you need a bit of inspiration. I shared a post similar to this a long long time ago, so long ago that I’m not even going to link to it! But since then I have also shared my favourite travel Instagrammers and favourite Instagrammers in general.

Four bloggers to follow - Girlglobalising

Four bloggers to follow - Girlglobalising

Fashion Me Now

I have only recently started reading Lucy’s blog, but quickly fallen in love with her writing, her personal style and her fab trips abroad. It’s the kind of easy going style that is both at home in a city and a beach – the kind of style I wish I could pull off but somehow just can’t manage it with the same finesse. It’s nice to see someone incredibly natural, complete with salty, beachy hair, unpainted nails and a very fresh face. Her recent trip to Mexico has inspired a lot of travel ideas of my own.

Four bloggers to follow - Girlglobalising

Four bloggers to follow - Girlglobalising

Alice Catherine

Again a new comer for me, although I’m sure she’s been blogging for some time. Alice creates amazing fashion posts with such a great vintage, nostalgic feel to them. She inspired me to go rummaging in a few vintage shops again, and also introduced me to Sezane, the uber cool french brand where I now want a whole new wardrobe from.

Four bloggers to follow - Girlglobalising

Four bloggers to follow - Girlglobalising

The Londoner

Rose from The Londoner is someone who manages to embrace every single season so whole-heartedly. Look back at her posts from New England, US in the Autumn (or Fall) of last year to see what I mean by this. Rose’s writing style is almost fictional, she takes you on every moment of her trip, along with excellent recommendations. It’s also incredibly up to date, and by that I mean there is hardly any delay in her blog posts. If you look at her Instagram and see that she’s exploring Greece, then you can bet that the first blog post will be up in a matter of days.

Four bloggers to follow - Girlglobalising

Four bloggers to follow - Girlglobalising

Hand Luggage Only

These boys are really the ultimate travel bloggers. They seem to be flying off to a new destination every single week. The envy I have of their lifestyle is unreal! But they also provide such comprehensive information and inspiration on each destination, and in such an unpretentious way. They are what travel blogging is all about.

Let me know what blogs you’ve been following recently, there’s always so many more and there’s space for everyone out there.

All photos from linked sites. 

Life lately - Girlglobalising

May, like every other month this year, has whizzed by. Although it means we’re one step closer to summer, it also means that time is just flying by without us really taking stock of it. Here are some things I’ve been up to over the last few weeks.

I finally made a trip to Mon Pote, a beautiful homeware store in Bedminster, Bristol. I found this shop on Instagram, which I highly recommend you follow for all the interiors inspiration. I popped in one afternoon for a little mooch around. Although I didn’t buy anything on this occasion I may well be heading back for an adorable cactus vase.

Life lately - Girlglobalising

We had a short stay in the Lake District at the start of the month. The weather was a bit all over the place, but we had one or two lovely days spent wandering through fields and up mountains in the sunshine. Lake Ullswater is pictured above, and dotted around the lake are various different towns and villages. A bit more exploration is needed I think, considering we only had a few days and there’s so many beautiful places to see up there.

Life lately - Girlglobalising

Life lately - Girlglobalising

The day after we got back from the Lake District we headed down to Thekla in Bristol for a Dan Croll gig. A few years ago we only caught the end of his set at Citadel festival, so it was amazing to see the whole thing. Definitely check him out on Spotify if you haven’t heard him before. He was supported by Wilsen, who I’d never heard of but is another insanely talented musician – with incredible whistling skills!

Life Lately - Girlglobalising

We’ve spent a few lovely days wandering around Clifton in the sunshine. Bristol is a place that is really made for summer. The city comes alive in the warmer months and throughout the summer there’s pretty much an event or festival happening every weekend. This year I’m looking forward to the Harbourside festival, Pride and maybe catching a bit of the Bristol Summer Series from the other side of the river. That’s a top tip for anyone else who missed out on tickets. You can’t see anything, but you can hear it all from south of the river.

Life Lately - Girlglobalising

Life Lately - Girlglobalising

And finally we spent a weekend in Oxfordshire. There was a pub lunch, dogs walks, a wander around Oxford, a bbq. Really everything that comes with summer all rolled into one weekend.

Life Lately - Girlglobalising

On a more poignant note, I absolutely loved the One Love Manchester concert on Sunday. I was very moved by it and thought it was a truly lovely way to combat such terrible atrocities happening in the world right now.