Wednesday, 26 August 2015


I'm back!

Sorry about the delay in writing this post. When I was in Barcelona I was having too good a time to post, then when I got back the jet lag set in. I still feel a bit upside down to be honest, waking up at 3 am in spite of sleep or work or exercise or any of the things that usually reset my body clock.

Anyway Barcelona! What a vibrant lovely cosmopolitan city. I'd been there once before and had a totally different experience, being robbed, getting sick and being annoyed with the endless drinking of one of my travelling companions...ah well, lessons learnt. This time I saw the lovely side of this city and found that time sped by far too quickly.

I took DD with me. We stayed in an apartment on the Passieg de Gracia, one of the two main streets of Barcelona that lead down to the sea. The other is La Rambla where the action never stops. We avoided it except for the fresh produce market which is an experience in itself. Lunch on that day was a delectable picnic with locaI wine on the balcony. After hours of sightseeing it was always a treat to get back to de Gracia and unlock the big wooden door to the street, go through the foyer, catch the wrought iron elevator to the apartment and relax!  BTW This was the least expensive but also the best accommodation we had in the three countries we visited.

The view from the balcony..

We were a couple of blocks from the marvellous Casa Batllo designed by Gaudi

La Pedrera with it's ice cream shaped turrets, also designed by Gaudi, was a couple of blocks in the other direction.

I got to tour both buildings and see the inside and learn a bit more about Gaudi's philosophy and vision. I thought he was just an eccentric who did not like straight lines but in reality his structures are ingenious and energy friendly and human friendly and inside have lovely spaces. He was ahead of his time, for sure.

In the area there were designer shops full of new Autumn fashions all having end of summer sales. 
DD made a beeline straight to Spanish brands Desidual and Zara and had a brilliant time. Her mission was to shop and shop she did. A top or two may have fallen in my shopping basket  :) as well as lovely leather sandals. We also had a great time shopping in 'Mango' which is sort of like our Portmans.

About 15 minutes walk away was the old medieval sector called the Bari Gotic. The Bari Gotic is wonderful to explore, with narrow winding alleys, little shops, tapas bars, medieval churches and a number of art museums. We went to the Picasso Museum. Wonderful! It was especially good to see many of his early works.

In regards to all the designer shop windows I couldn't help noticing the new fashions for the northern fall seem to be centred around black, with reds and cream with touches of lace or fake fur.

I suspect black is the new black! This being Spain there was a bit of colour and bling thrown in. I really like the look and came away inspired.


Max Mara


Can't remember but took this shot in a hurry because DD wants me to copy the lace over floral idea

The new and the old sit well together in Barcelona

I love looking at well designed clothes for design lines and special touches but where'e the fabric?

I did a bit of googling and found out that there were fabric shops to be found on Passieg de Roger de Lluria. 

The biggest one was two story with a big selection called Ribes & Cassals link to search for fabric shops on Roger de Lluria There was also a good smaller fabric store next door called Teixits Dona. The was another shop on the same street (don't know the name) a block further south with a good range of knits and quilting cottons.

My goodies, a black and white rayon and a digital print poly 

DD's choices, a silky paisley remnant for a summer top and floral cotton for a retro dress.

Barcelona was full of art, food, shopping, warm weather and I got to do a bit of photography. I wish we were there longer. I would have liked to explore more. As for shopping, I think I've done my quota for the rest of the year. Seriously. I had a wish list and I filled it.

While there I picked up these, so cheap compared to the price we pay for them in Australia.

Spanish instructions will make about the same sense to me as Burda does in english.

Now all I have to do is get over my jet lag and start sewing all the ideas I came up with while overseas. I made rough sketches during my lightbulb moments so I wouldn't forget.

I could go on but I'll sign off here.
Back to reality,



  1. I adore Barcelona!! When you get back there, you should look up Paco Peralta. He's a couturier and a good friend, and a delight to spend an afternoon with!

  2. What a grand trip! and how nice you and DD got to go together. Ashley and I went to Europe in February for years, supposedly for my birthday, but really because we loved the cold weather and smaller crowds of winter. What wonderful memories such times make...Barcelona! what a treat...can't wait to see what you make with the fabric and ideas with which you returned. Oh, and welcome back!

  3. Oh you clearly had a fabulous time! lovely fabrics.

  4. So glad you and your daughter had such a wonderful trip and Barcelona looks amazing, one day.

  5. I love Barcelona - a favourite city. Sounds like a great time... shopping, fabric, eating, drinking and time with DD!

  6. You have found some beautiful fabrics in Barcelona, and it looks like you saw the best of the Gaudi city. I am making notes from this post - just in case in get lucky next year, and we head to Spain. No so far from Ireland, is it? he he

  7. Thanks everyone.
    Ann I forgot about Paco Peralta being based there.
    Coco I would have preferred to go out of peak season but it was the only time DD could get off.
    Sharon start planning and go, life is too short not to see fabulous paces..
    Patricia we never made it to La Sagrada Familia, or The Miro Museum :( I'll have to g back!
    p.s. Spain is where sun the starved British and Irish go for some warmth and sunshine
    Everyone else, I only bought summer fabrics and it's still winter here! I'll start sewing soon though.

  8. We enjoy Barcelona and will return soon. What was the name of your hotel?

    1. Hi RanchHouse, you can see the apartments we stayed at here. There are several in the same building.
      I have no affiliation, just had a great time.