Sunday, 24 June 2012

Italian Wedding in Petritoli

Where? Palazzo Mannocchi, Petritoli.
Exactly? Le Marche region, Italy, nearest airport - Ancona.
When? June 2012.
Why? The wedding of my old school friend Sui Chung to his beautiful bride Liz Mundy.
Companions? 80 guests plus Miss and Mr Style Traveller.
Special Thanks to wedding photographer Steve Shipman for letting me use some of his beautiful images, credited with an SS in the caption.

A Summer Wedding in Italy
I was lucky enough to be invited out to Italy for a week, for the wedding of my old school friend Sui.  Held at the stunning 17th century Palazzo Mannochi in the tiny town of Petritoli, 80 guests and I had helped Sui and Liz celebrate their big day. 

The rolling hills of Le Marche, Italy.
I wore a Pinko emerald dress for the big day

Petritoli is a picture perfect Italian town situated high on a hilltop, with a quaint town square, clock tower, 3 restaurants and even fewer shops! Framed by the azure Adriatic coastline to the east and surrounded by lush green countryside, it was the perfect setting for an Italian summer wedding. 

The view from my bedroom window in the Palazzo

The Big Day
Frescoed ceiling in the Theatre
After a leisurely few days lounging, sunbathing and eating as much delicious local Italian food as possible, the big day arrived. We all enjoyed a lazy Saturday morning breakfast followed by a dip in the pool, got ready (see what to wear to a summer wedding) and then made our way through the old town to the wedding venue. Accompanied by a string quartet, in the baroque surroundings of the town theatre, the ceremony was utterly romantic.

View from the top tiers. SS
Liz looked like a fairytale princess in a stunning ivory wedding dress! SS

Time to celebrate....
After the ceremony we all moved to the old town square for an al fresco wedding breakfast. 

Wine and champagne flowed all day and evening
The local residents get in on the action! SS
The fish course arrived in pretty little glass pots
Anti-Pasti    ss
The grooms speech was eloquent and hilarious!
After dinner...
As the sun set over Petritoli, dinner was followed by the speeches...the cutting of the cake....the throwing of the bouquet and of course......

time to party..                                                                   ss

Sui and Liz throwing some shapes on the dancefloor. SS

Italian Wedding - What to Wear When You're There

What to wear for a summer wedding in Italy...

Tips on dressing for a summer wedding abroad 
Deciding what to wear to a wedding abroad is tricky, here are a few tips and pointers to get you started!

For the girls...
First thing to do is check the weather? If it's going to be hot, stick to natural fibres like cotton and silk.  Light and bright colours always look better in a hot climate. Save the black dress for the evening, it's not often you have license to go bold and bright in the day.
Flats or heels? Things to bear in mind; will there be cobbles on the streets? walking on the beach? or is it a long distance from church to venue? A good option is a wedge heel. It gives you height and stability and is much easier  for walking on cobbles, grass or sand. Also don't be put off by flats, they can look really chic with maxi's or feminine dresses. Pick a metallic or jewelled pair if you want to dress things up a bit.

Me (in Pinko dress) and Mr Style Traveller (in Topman suit)
Cover Ups? A light cover up is essential in the evening or if you need to go into air conditioned rooms. Pashminas (don't cringe) are actually really practical and can be worn as scarves or shawls and fold up small into your bag too. To avoid frumpsville go for a clashing colour or a print. A pale coloured biker jacket can add edge to your outfit or cropped jackets and blazers are a good staple occasion piece. Trousers? Printed, palazzo and matching suit sets are very on trend this season.

The view from the clock tower
Sophie the bridesmaid in an olive green dress
Liz's hair looked beautiful with tiny flowers woven through the ringlets

Daytime wedding outfit..
Clockwise from left to right: Chiffon dress - Pinko, Blush sole 15 - Dolce and Gabanna,  jungle red semi-matte lipstick - Nars, Grow Luscious mascara - Revlon, Sandals - Ancient Greek Sandals at, Deco clutch - Lara Bohinc, Cats eye sunglasses - Vogue,  Necklace - St Erasmus.

Evening party outfit....
Clockwise from left to right: Perspex necklace - Oasis, Neon lace dress - Christopher Kane, Espadrille wedge shoes - Office, Deco clutch - Lara Bohinc, Touche Eclat - YSL, Fire and Ice lipstick - Revlon, Friendship bracelet - Links of London.

Day by the beach in Porto San Giorgio...
Clockwise from left to right: Blue bikini - Melissa Odabash at, Cotton sun dress - LemLem at, Cats eye sunglasses - Vogue, Friendship bracelets - Daisy Jewellery, Nutridefense hair protector - Kerastase, Metallic beach bag - Zara, Sandals - Ancient Greek Sandals at

Necklace - St Erasmus
And the boys....

The suit? Linen or light weight cotton blazers and suits will be much more comfortable than a black heavy suit. Navy and blues look great too, see above.
If a suit is too formal for the occasion opt for a white shirt and chinos. Alternatively if you want to make a statement and feel you can carry it off, white, beige or neutral suits look great in the summer. Go for a  more classic 'man from Del Monte' look and steer clear of the 80's Miami Vice look, no coloured shirts please.
Shoes? Cloth shoes like Tom's, boating shoes and loafers are ideal for beach weddings. Other wise normal dress shoes are fine, maybe opt for a brown or navy coloured pair.
And finally don't stress it too much, what's important is that you feel comfortable and confident! 

Little Joe looks very handsome in his linen two piece suit! Cuuutte!!!


Italian Wedding - Day at Porto San Giorgio

Day by the beach
On the last day of the wedding we decided to top up our tans with a day by the beach. Porto San Giorgio is not the nearest beach to Petritoli, it's about half an hours drive away, but it has a good choice of shops, bars and cafes. 

On the main promonade is the Coba Suite Restaurant. Coba is a chic bar/restaurant with its own lounging and day bed area on the beach. If you're going to head to Porto San Giorgio, Coba is the perfect haunt for sipping cocktails while listening to chill out tunes. Bliss! 

Bye Bye Petritoli!


Petritoli - Italy Map

View Petritoli - Italy in a larger map

Saturday, 9 June 2012

Cornwall - St Ives

What to Wear and Where to Stay

St Ives beach

Where? St Ives, Cornwall, UK.
Exactly? Beachspoke, Black Moon Apartment.
When? May 2012.
Why? Romantic UK weekend break.
Best time to go? Summer for the surfing and the beaches. But St Ives offers plenty to entertain you in the winter months too, like long beach walks, The Tate Gallery and great restaurants. And if the weather is bad outside you have the perfect excuse to curl up, stay indoors and enjoy the chic interior at Black Moon.

Beachspoke Black Moon - where we stayed.

What to Wear When You're There

The dress code in St Ives is very laid back and casual. The best bit of advise I can give you is to layer your clothing. The weather is changeable, sunshine one minute can turn into a thunderstorm and rain the next. This is England after all. Pack waterproofs and hiking boots for coastal walks and bikinis (if you're felling optimistic) plus hoodies for a day at the beach.

Me wearing Moncler jacket and River Island trousers

What to Wear - Day in St Ives
Clockwise from left to right: Breton sweater - APC at net-a-porter, Stripe shirt (over the sweater) - Topshop, Sunglasses - Rayban, Tie-dye jeans - Asos, Bag - Mulberry, Python loafers - Sambag, Watch - GC watches, Friendship bracelet - Daisy Jewellery

Where to stay?

1 Sea View Place
St Ives
Cornwall TR26 1PS

We stayed at Beachspoke - Black Moon, the perfect place for a romantic getaway. Black Moon is an immaculate holiday apartment with incredible sea views. The entire back wall of the living room is a concertina, glass-door which opens out directly onto the beach. It's a beautifully appointed open-plan space with king-size bed, living room, kitchenette and an original smugglers cave downstairs, with rugs and candles (whatever you might need that for?!?). Seductive lighting, an Apple entertainment system and rain showers complete the luxury boutique feel. The decor is an eclectic mix of modern modular sofas, sleek granite surfaces, asian wooden carved panels, guilt mirrors and candelabras, think boudoir meets modern living. Location wise its perfect too, with the hub of St Ives less than a minutes walk away and the beach on your back door step, literally!

The spectacular view
Erotic Indian carvings in the bedroom
The Kitchen

Cosy capsule sofas and candelabras
Breakfast for two on Beachspoke's Cornish pottery
The view from Black Moon's balcony