Wednesday, September 2, 2015

Photo Diary: A Trip to Brighton With Etsy

Brighton Pastel Doors

SO, as you may have spotted over on Instagram or Twitter (or I might even have told you here? My memory's mush), myself and a bunch of my favourite blogging ladies - Kate, Hannah, Liv, Dunya, Lucy, Carrie and Kristabel - headed down to Brighton a couple of weeks ago to visit some of the many sellers Etsy works with and get to know them a little better/see behind the scenes. Today I present to you a photo diary from our whirlwind 48 hours. 

- WARNING: lengthy post ahead; cup of tea highly recommended -
Aerial view of London Hoxton Holburn Hotel London 3

Me and Kate travelled the day before, so that we had ample time to get ourselves down to London from the land of haggis and kilts, and stayed at the Hoxton Holburn hotel, which just so happens to be one of my favourite hotels in London. From the mahoosive mirror (very handy for outfit photos, or so you'll soon find out) to the big, beautiful bed to the lovely restaurant downstairs, it's got it all. 

Hoxton Holburn Hotel London 4

Hoxton Holburn Hotel London 2 Hoxton Holburn Hotel London
H&M slogan tee | TOPSHOP belted trousers

After checking in and having a little mooch around (code for 'massive cup of tea in bed'), we headed along to visit the lovely Nat and Sarah at Etsy HQ which, as you can imagine, was filled to the brim with amazing trinkets and treasures. Are you ready? Feast your eyes on THIS:

Etsy HQ offices London 1 Etsy HQ offices London

Lovely, innit? And yes, that is indeed clouds on the ceiling. After that, me and Kate headed back to Hubbard and Bell for some grub and a chat before heading up to bed for an early night before the big trip to B-Town the next day. You can't hold us down.

SILO brighton

After catching up with all the lavly ladies at Victoria station, we hip-hop-hibbity-hopped on the train to Brighton and then continued to chat very, very loudly. Which I think all the other passengers really enjoyed. As soon as we arrived in The Land of Pastel Doors, we headed straight to Silo, which is somewhere I'd been meaning to visit since hearing about their compost machine and zero waste policy from my brother. The menu is really unique and, um, verging on off-putting at times (do I fancy the sound of curd? I just don't know) but when it actually comes out it all works incredibly well together so just take the plunge and order something if you're not sure and I guarantee it'll delight your taste buds and leave you feeling all healthy and self-righteous. Make sure you try the Kombucha green tea while you're at it!

Etsy Brighton Sellers Workshop 1
Oh hey there!You guessed it, after Silo we headed along to get our craft on at the Lick Warehouse, where Claire Knill had set up this amazing temporary workspace filled with mini-studios and workshops for the Etsy sellers for the day. And then? Then we got our craft awwwwn.

Sidenote: Lick also run Lick yoga, band nights and Lick School here so keep an eye our for those if you live in Brighton!

Etsy Brighton Sellers Workshop 2 Etsy Brighton Sellers Workshop Etsy Brighton Sellers Workshop 5
Etsy Brighton Sellers Workshop 4
And there's the lovely Etsy bunch there! (I do apologise to poor Toby for only having a snap where his head is blurred)

As you can see in the first photo, we made dresses out of petals with Georgie St Clair (such a nice thing to do when you want to switch off and take some time out from the stresses and joys of adulthood) and then got crafty with Karli from Designosaur (check them out for some seriously cool dino-inspired jewelz) and got down to making some dinosaur necklaces and bracelets. I had on the most ridiculous false nails so it took me ten times longer than everybody else to make mine.. I'm not going to ask outright for a medal but if you want to send me one then that's fine. After that we had time to wander and watch each of the sellers at work; from Toby at I Like Cats, whose shop is filled with - you guessed it - cats cats and more cats, and features some of the most amazing hand-painted cards and prints you'll ever see (check out his desk above with the furby and Spice Girls pics, nostalgia in a photo), to Sarah at Rock Cakes with her beautiful precious metal jewellery (and some really sweet badges), to Jam and Ali at Hello Dodo, who do some really lovely hand-pulled prints and stationary (me and Hannah had a pop at making our own and, I have to say, so much fun), to Kate at OhSomeday, who makes really unique silver and brass jewellery - check out this constellation necklace, to Claire and her wonderful world of laser-cut jewellery at Cat-a-Cake Creations, to Ellen at B Millinery who makes some freakin' fab retro inspired hats and headpieces.

Etsy Brighton Sellers Workshop 3

After that we got stuck into some delicious fro-yo; it'd be rude not to, being in the Lick Warehouses and all. I unfortunately got carried away and forgot that it wasn't an all you can eat competition and left with a very swollen belly. It really was such a lovely, inspiring afternoon getting to see each individual seller do their thing. Please do make sure and check out the sellers linked above, every one of them stocks the most amazingly sassy and unique products that you wouldn't find anywhere on the high street, maybe even keep a couple tucked away in your bookmarks for Christmas (sorry to mention the C-word, I'll go now).

The Artist Residence Hotel Brighton The Artist Residence Hotel Brighton 7 The Artist Residence Hotel Brighton 3 The Artist's Residence hotel Brighton review

After an afternoon of eatin' and craftin', we headed back to The Artist Residence which is, in a word, uh-mazin'. It's all recently been done up; each and every room is different, with many being hand-painted by local artists. Mine is the colourful, psychedelic one at the top (Jimi Hendrix not included).

The Artist Residence Hotel Brighton 5 The Artist Residence Hotel Brighton 4

After admiring each others rooms, we headed back to our rooms for some chill time before cocktails and tea, where I may or may not have gotten carried away watched The Simpsons. I definitely did.

The Artist Residence Hotel Brighton 6 Brighton Beach at night New Club Gluten Free Meal Brighton

After a cocktail in the cosy cocktail shack (top photo), we headed along the beach front - look how NICE it is at night, Brighton I love you - to The New Club for dinner, which has the most amazing Brooklyn-esque interiors and the FOOD, oh the food. Tom, the chef, was very understanding of my, um, disability (fine, gluten allergy) and made me an off-menu starter and main, both of which were b-e-a-utiful. Anything with pistachio and fish in gets a thumbs up from me. If you're planning on heading their yourself (which I'd recommend you do fo' sho) and can digest gluten like a normal person then I'd try their Dirty Burger, which has been cooking up a storm in reviews.

Artist Residence hotel Brighton breakfast review

The next morning we got up bright and early (ish) and headed down for breakfast. Again, Artist's Residence served up some major interior inspo. Once we were washed and dressed and had downed sufficient amounts of tea (me), we headed along Brighton beach towards Dowse, a little boutique which stocks a whole lot of Etsy goodies.

Brighton Beach front 2 Brighton Beach front  1

No, I don't know these people. Yes, I took a photo of them anyway. Does this make me a pervert? A pervert for a good photo opportunity, maybe.

Brighton Shop Brighton Shop 1

Dowse in all its finest!

Brighton Town Bunting Brighton Snooper's Paradise Photo Booth Brighton Lanes Graffitti Vegan takeaway Brighton

After that we just had a little wander through Brighton, admiring the bunting and graffiti in equal measures (the graffiti above is actually some of my favourite I've ever seen, so good) and then headed along to Eat Naked where the most amazing packed lunch was waiting for us. Can you believe those beautiful sons of bitches above are all vegan and gluten/dairy free? Madness. It's the perfect place to pick up lunch on the go if you have intolerances or just like good old healthy munch! Seriously, seriously tasty stuff.

And sadly that brings us to the end of our Brighton trip! I hope you guys enjoyed it and picked up some recommendations (and didn't run out of tea halfway through), and thank you so much again to Etsy for organising such an inspiring, sea-front fun fest with all my favourite ladies.