I must thank you all. Without your custom I don’t get to travel and I don’t get to purchase fabrics and eat Italian food over lunch whilst discussing textiles.

That being said, most of our income these days does not come from our newsletter readers but our wedding customers, those that visit the Studio to see our full range and fulfilling orders for other companies seeking private label product. The production we do for the website is still important to us but perhaps less fruitful as in the years gone by. Many of you got out of bow ties after Covid and have never gone back. I have been a bit the same and on my trip to Italy I took but one bow tie and wore instead kerchiefs every day. They are versatile and easy to get on and get off. They also have amazing utility in the sense that they keep you warm, they can be worn as a bandana to cover the head, they can cover the face in high wind and snow, they are a great way to dress your neck between your two lapels. But enough about that. I want to give you a small vignette of my tour of Italy.

I have a friend of mine who helps me navigate the looms when I am in Lake Como. His name is Carlo. He and I have a lot of fun together and I consider his family and friends an extension of my own family and friends, a second life if you will, that I enter when I visit Italy.

He and I were discussing the prospect of heading to Savile Row in London to try and drum up some business but he also countered that we could take a day trip to Venice to visit a museum housed in the old Palazzo Mocinego.

I am so glad we chose his option. To see Venice in winter was magic. Firstly, it was filled with Venetians and not tourists, or if they were there, they were minimal and the ability to negotiate Venice was easy and effortlessly charming. You meander over one bridge, down a narrow passage, turn a corner, onto the next bridge. What a city! I had done Venice twice before and it was absolutely fantastic on both occasions but chaotic, hot and in many respects uncomfortable.

We visited the Palazzo Mocinego which is dedicated to displaying textiles and perfumes, both modern art textiles and a history of dress and fabrics from the high watermark of Venetian culture during the 15 and 16 hundreds. And then the perfumes, both the Murano glass they were stored in and a history of the trade routes and ingredients that were collected by Venetians from those routes to make the perfumes. If you are ever in Venice make sure you visit it. It was a great experience.

Onwards we went for lunch at the famous Harry’s Bar. We dined in the same space where everyone from Ernest Hemingway to Pablo Picasso dined. It is a very find space to be in and there is some comfort in knowing that the world continues to change and evolve but Harry’s Bar is still the same, offering great food and great drinks at unaffordable eye watering prices…

After lunch we had a wonderful private tour of Venice learning about everything from financing both sides of the crusades to the roots of the Carnivale. I loved it. Soaked it all in. Went home content. That was just one day.

Again, indirectly you all paid for that experience. I thank you. I got a quote to travel next year from my travel agent and it was like I was back in Harry’s … I will struggle to get back their next year…. Unless of course you all decide to spread the word and shop the website every week until Christmas…

More to come. This week we will sell down the website except for black silks so stay close to the website this week.

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