Wanderful Guide to Mallorca: Vacaciones Con Mi Amor | Notes on A Lovers' Lifestyle in Mallorca

Notes on a lovers' lifestyle....

Oui We | Mallorca
Oui We | Mallorca

SHOP BEACH MAXI DRESSES

Movies to watch: Cloud Atlas (2012), Presence of Mind (1999), Bahia de Palma (1962), Our Girl Friday (1953), The Dutchman’s Island (2000)

Books to read: The Vacationers (Emma Straub), A Winter in Majorca (George Sand), Wild Olives: Life in Majorca with Robert Graves (William Graves), Turning Up at Dawn (Tomas Graves), The Rocks (Peter Nichols), Living in Style Mallorca (Christine von Auersperg)

Arta Airbnb | Oui We Girl
Oui We | Mallorca

SHOP MIKOH

Oui We Airbnb Arta

9 am: the sun's starting to pour through the curtains and there's 3 things on my mind: a café solo from the coffee man we've started calling "our coffee man", a sugary sweet ensaimada from the bakery one door over from him (it's similar to a beignet I suppose and a delicacy in Mallorca), and the beach, of course. After we wander along through the sleepy streets of Arta, inevitably we'll decide which beach on this island will be ours for the day.

I peer out of the window, and as expected, the sun's waves are dancing upwards and calling me out, I push open the shutters and the sounds of the village are just starting to join in on what the sun's started: the zip zip and then zooooom of our neighbors moped, the children down the alley being hustled along to school and I settle back into the thinking of "oui, si, oh yes, I could live here - like this - forever."  

Ben Alleman | Mallorca
Ben Alleman | Mallorca
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This trip is different for me, technically - we're on vacation. We drink rosé with lunch, a local red with the late afternoon tapas, and we share a bottle more at night with whatever seafood dinner we're having. One day in and we were fully settled: food + wine, morning trips to the market and seaside drives, long soaks in our oversized bathtub at night: and we've said to each other over and over "vacaciones con mi amor!

torrent de pareis

I thought quite a bit about what to share with you here, and truly, a trip to Mallorca in the off season means we had the beaches often to ourselves, we hiked Torrent de Parreis (plan a day for it) with just a few others, and our trips into the Serra de Tramuntana involved us, a few cyclists and locals, and only the occasional tour bus hair pinning up the winding roads directly at us. 

I won't give you a "must see" list - the island is a bit more than that - however here's a few things I'll add to your list if you visit: 

The Markets: Arta on Tuesdays, Sineu on Wednesdays, there on the weekend? Check around, you'll find one

The Beaches: Cala Gat at Cala Ratjada, Cala d'Or, Cala Pi, Cala Banyalbufar, Cala Deia, Sa Calobra and honestly I could go on and on (and on)

The Beach Towns & Villages: Arta (we stayed in an Airbnb that was an absolutely dream home),  Deia, Fornalutx, Pollenca, Sineu, Santanyi, Valldemossa, & Port de Soller

Rent a car, it's cheap, and you can get anywhere.

Torrent de Pareis
Oui We Sineu Mallorca
Oui We | Mallorca
orange grove resize.jpg
Oui We | Arta
Oui We | Mallorca

One day we sat on our rooftop all afternoon - at sunset I looked down into the alley ways, the smoke rising as the neighbors lit their evening fires and commented: "there is something very Jim Jarmusch about this place..." a while later I opened another jar of olives and came across this quote: "if anyone tells you there is only one way, their way, get as far way from them as possible, both physically and philosophically."

In that moment, I pulled myself closer into Ben, the sun bounced down over the hazy mountain and then fireworks lit up the sky - we found ourselves running into the plaza to see what it was all about. We trailed along to find a wedding party second lining through the village! And right there in our small town of Arta ... tears fell from my eyes, a mix of wine and wonder and because this world offers so much. Love and celebration: that stuff happens everywhere, and today it was all ours and each of these lovers sharing this little island with us.  

Oui We | ARTA
Arta Airbnb | Oui We Girl

These travel diaries are often the hardest to write, why? because they're mine... no one else to photograph or interview or get local stories from... it's just me (and Ben, usually) out there experiencing the world and hoping to share the best of what we've found and experienced (even when we're on vacation) with you. 

Gracias, always, for being here.

Wanderfully yours,

Andi

*wardrobe for this trip was provided by Ophelia Swimwear. Shop their collection at their newly launched online storefront

Date Night Magic: One Evening in Nashville, The Grand Ole Opry

We’re heading to one of those magical Music City places where legends are made. It's a storied place that's launched superstar after superstar - where music makers and music lovers travel hundreds and thousands of miles just to get their fix (because after all, isn't the sound and the stage one of the truest loves?). 

Andi & Ben at the Grand Ole Opry | Oui We Girl

It was a cold evening in a sleepy Tennessee town, November 28, 1925, when across the AM air waves a radio announcer introduced Uncle Jimmy Thompson as the first performer on a new show “The WSM Barn Dance.” It was the show that made country music famous.... 

Yes. It's the Grand Ole Opry.

About two years ago Ben & I had one of our first Nashville dates: a cocktail hour in the backstage dressing rooms of the Grand Ole Opry. It was MAGIC! This weekend we had our second Opry date night, this time at the Ryman, the famous former home and winter residence of the Opry, for the full show experience!

I'm asked regularly: 

What should I do in Nashville if I'm a lover of style

or

I can only make it to one venue where should I go? 

My people,  ya know and I've shared a post about that.

I'm asked what should I do if I've only got a weekend, and I've got a post about that too (and lots more in my book). There's truly so many ways to enjoy the city! Today I'm giving you a peek inside one of the best date nights I've had, and one of the most dazzling places in Nashville.

Foo Fighters Set list | Oui We Girl
The Black Crowes Guitar | Oui We Girl

Go On Tour

We started our evening early to get a little Opry history lesson. To experience it all there are three tour options available: Daytime Tour, Post-Show Tour and the ultimate VIP Tour, where you’ll get to be on stage as the red curtain goes up before being escorted to your seats. (BRILLIANT.)

We checked out famous set lists and guitars and perhaps my favorite part was seeing designer to the rhinestone cowboy stars, Nudie Cohn's embroidered and embellished suits up close and personal. Nudie was the tailor to everyone from Johnny Cash and Graham Parsons to Dolly Parton and Elvis.

Nudie Cohn Suit | Oui We Girl

It's Wine Time

After the tour we stepped into Cafe Lula - named for the secretary turned manager of the Ryman - Lula C. Naff. Lula was hired in 1904, eventually going into the booking business on her own and finally taking her business savvy skills into the top position at the Ryman before her retirement in 1955. 

We sampled several small plates, and I'd go back for the Smoked Gouda Chips alone. Try them. You'll love 'em. 

Dinner at Cafe Lula | Oui We Girl
Tour of the Grand Ole Opry | Oui We Girl
Tickets for Two Grand Ole Opry | Oui We Girl

Magic in the Music

To me, the beauty in any given Opry night is seeing country music’s newest stars, superstars, and legends take to the stage one after the next. The Opry showcases all types of music under the country music umbrella: hit country, classic country, bluegrass, gospel, Western swing, and more. In addition to having welcomed to the Opry stage virtually every top artist in the genre, the show also introduces special guests every single week. 

On our night we experienced a special moment as Rory Feek, who recently lost his wife (and musical partner) to cancer, was joined by his two daughters on stage to sing a tribute song to her. We sang along to a quirky and hilarious version of "Let It Snow" by Opry members since '82 - the Riders in the Sky. We reminisced to childhood days as Restless Heart played their #1 hits from the 80's.

The show, btw is live broadcast (just as it's always been) on 650 AM WSM (plus online, on Sirius and on the Opry app too) and it was a treat to see the behind the scenes moments involved in the making of the radio show. 

Perhaps the highlight of the evening was the surprise collaboration as Jason Isbell joined his wife Amanda Shires on stage (a serious talent and star in her own right!) to play guitar alongside her headlining performance.

Jason Isbell & Amanda Shires | Oui We

Ben & I left the night with a new appreciation for country music, and finding ourselves fans to several artists that were totally brand new to us. It was also a magnificent reminder of the starshine that is the musical community that Nashville is made of. 


Interested in Planning Your Own Opry Date Night?

The Opry highlights country talent past and present, including the likes of Minnie Pearl, Loretta Lynn, Dolly Parton, Little Big Town, Carrie Underwood, Darius Rucker, Brad Paisley and countless others. The Grand Ole Opry hosts a rotating cast of talent at its live shows every Friday and Saturday year round. Additionally, Tuesday shows run from February to October and Wednesday shows from June through August. 

During the winter months each year, the Opry moves back to its most famous former home, the Ryman Auditorium. Cafe Lula is open daily 9 a.m. - 5 p.m. and later on show nights. 

Opry tickets, show information and tour details are available here


 

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*this post was sponsored by the Grand Ole Opry; thank you to the Opry team for a brilliant evening. opinions as always, are mine. 

Wanderful Interview: Michaela d'Artois | Vérité Woman

The Wanderful Girl

The “Wanderful Girl” is a modern bohemian. She’s a nomadic bon vivant collecting perspective and style inspiration around the globe. - from "Wanderful: The Modern Bohemian's Guide to Traveling in Style."

Today's featured girl personifies the digital Glenda the good witch, with a little femme fatale twist. Her online publication covers everything from new age philosophies and stylish wanderings to stories about how women and girls can (and are changing) the world. She dives into the taboo on occasion and shares regular stories about how to heal yourself naturally ... and everything she does is with a serious cool girl vibe. After re-reading her interview as I prepared to post this I was seriously in tears.... I absolute adore her and everything thing she stands for. Besides, from one witchy woman romance lover to another, she's clearly a Oui We soul sista. 

p.s. if you really want to do Cyber Monday right - shop artists, designers and magic makers: AND if you really want to do a travel wardrobe right, everything in Michaela's collection is perfection. 

Michaela for Oui We

Interview: Michaela d'Artois

Andi for Oui We: We’ve been inspired by the mantra of Vérité (WELCOME HOME, FREE THINKING WOMAN. EMPOWER YOUR STYLE & LIBERATE YOUR MIND. #FEMMESOFVERITE) since the first moment we were introduced to you through our mutual friend (and serious babe Allister Ann).

Vérité’s philosophy of empowering women and creating community has been your core mission before the women’s movement took center stage this year, tell us about the background of the publication, and how it all came to be.

Michaela: I think I was just sensing a movement was upon us when I started Vérité in 2015. I mean I didn’t invent the women’s movement by any means but I really wanted to open a conversation to girls about empowering each other to pursue any kind of lifestyle they wanted! It all started when I was working in house at a magazine and realized we weren’t giving girls the right materials to educate, and empower their life choices. We were only feeding the feeling of inadequacy. So I flipped open my laptop, bought a web domain and got to work. It’s still very much a work in progress, but I’m learning things right alongside our readers!

Michaela for Oui We

AE: You’re the creative director, writer, photographer and often the star of Vérité features too - how do you do it all?

MD: Well, I have some really wonderful contributors and endless amounts of support from my loved ones who I couldn’t do it without. We launched a shopping portion to the site last January so that’s been a whole other beast to tame but I really enjoy doing this and I feel very privileged that all the tasks on my to-do list are things I am really passionate about! But speaking of to-do lists, I wouldn’t be able to do it without those either — they keep me sane and accountable!

AE: After spending these past 2 years traveling America for Wanderful, our 2018 will be dedicated to exploring international destinations - and you’ve covered sooo many, let’s talk about your life as a traveler. I want all your recommendations!

Michaela for Oui We

MD: Oooh, this is my favorite topic to cover. I love being able to give people recommendations more than anything! My mom is actually an international flight attendant so I sort of had this nomad blood in me from the very beginning — our whole family is like this. I’ve gone months living out of my duffle bag. It is really important to me to feel a sense of freedom in my work and my life, and travel has been my best form of education! My recommendation to be able to live a travel based life is to say “yes!” - move the life stuff around and make time for it. This is the advice I give all my girlfriends: you will never regret taking that trip, maybe spending a bit of that savings to go, but you will definitely regret not going.

My best destination recs would be Morocco, and the Amalfi Coast. Morocco really fed my soul with their food, colors, and textiles. I felt like I had made that place up in my head! Amalfi is a classic, plus I fell in love there so it’s really dear to my heart!

AMALFI-COAST.jpg

AE: What was the earliest trip that inspired you?

MD: When I was little we used to go to Mexico every winter (I grew up in Canada so it was a natural migration). Much like Morocco, the festiveness of the culture really stuck with me. Also this is where I cultivated a strong connection to the ocean. It was this lush, exotic place with amazingly welcoming people that really stuck with me and to this day.

AE: What cheats do you have for looking good while spending days traveling?

MD: Don’t set people’s expectations high to begin with? Just kidding! Like I said I travel really light no matter how long I’m gone (I only just recently invested in luggage with wheels). I hate checking a bag, and you never know what kind of train, bumpy plane, or boat you might have to toss your bag on to! To do so, I’ve created sort of a capsule wardrobe that can go from day to night, and place to place, this wardrobe is essentially what the Vérité shop is made up of! Aside from my day-to-day shoes (slip ons are best for travel days and TSA), I only bring one pair of Prada heels that I always know will be comfortable and look chic! And I forego products except an SPF, night cream, and sea salt spray (I like to see what local specialty products I can stock up on). Oh, and I almost only wear black — that way everything always matches!

Michaela for Oui We in Joshua Tree.jpg

AE: Tell us about a person you met on your travels that you know you’ll never forget?

MD: That’s a loaded question! I actually met my boyfriend on a blind date in the JFK airport to go to Italy together. Yes, we are both total crazy people. Luckily for us it worked out, and I wouldn’t be able to forget him if I tried because two years later we live together in LA.

AE: What’s one clothing item you always take with you on your travels?

MD: Those trusty Prada shoes. They have a chunky heel so I’ve done everything in them, including bike around cobblestone streets!

AE: Favorite souvenir?

MD: Boyfriend? Haha… I think probably my photos.

AE: You write odes to self love, share insta tarot readings & offer a guide to feng shui-ing your bedroom - we’re obsessed with allll of this — how did you get started on this path to mysticism, and even mysticism with a romantic twist?

MD: Actually I’ve always been pretty witchy. Probably another family heirloom. I’ve always turned to my pantry before the Doctor to cure something, or find a remedy, and it extends into my views on spirituality as well. I guess it’s just part of my philosophical journey to attaching meaning to life. There are elements all around us that I don’t think you can write off as “hippie shit,” it’s just way too real! Our periods being synched to the moon for example! I’ve always felt a crazy attachment to the moon to the point of worship, now it all makes sense! Things like Tarot, and mysticism are just ways to connect back to these ancient rituals and learn from those who studied spirituality before us.

In our content it’s just another way for us to open the conversation and say “Hey, maybe what your parents believed in isn’t right for you and that’s ok” In regards to the self love part: who is better to worship than yourself? We focus so much of our time as mankind dedicating to these higher powers, we forget how amazing we are, and it makes us feel insignificant when we can’t part the sea with our bare hands! As for the romantic twist — I can literally romanticize anything… I cry in Subaru commercials.

AE: For someone interested in becoming more involved in a mystical life, how do you suggest they begin?

MD: I’m definitely not an expert but I think giving yourself space to feel out what’s right for you is the best place to start. I wasn’t raised with one set religion so I feel like I had the freedom for a young age to figure out what felt right for me. Mine all kind of started with these moon bathing ceremonies that I do on my own every full moon. It’s just time for me to take some quiet moments, take note of what I’m grateful for, and say thank you. Then I realized this was my version of worship and it grew from there based in the natural world. This all led to me creating tiny altars around my house that are dedicated to nature and the divine feminine (possibly one in the same) — I put crystals, little notes, and fresh flowers on them.

Once I realized how much magic the world can give us, I researched deeper and found Aromatherapy, Ayurvedic Medicine, and Meditation — all practices rooted in Earth. Okay… I need to stop myself now I’m starting to sound like I drink my own pee! Just like any kind of belief, it’s not right for everyone and no, I can’t tell you that Tarot works but those cards have always set me on the right path!

AE: We’ve just returned from Mallorca, and you have a swimsuit named after the island(!) - tell us about the Vérité collection.

MD: Stop, you should have packed me in your suitcase! Yes, we do have The Mallorca Bikini! The collection is essentially just my wardrobe, online, for sale. I was always getting asked how I travelled so light, or how I always had such a strong sense of personal style, and the secret’s in simplicity. So I put it online! Everything right now is under $100, and they are just good staples. I wanted our shoppers to know it’s not necessarily about buying the most expensive thing, or shopping every trend every season but just having curated basics that could literally take us everywhere!

Michaela for Oui We

AE: The line seems to have a bit of a rebellious vibe, tell us something bad you did growing up that your parents never caught you doing?

MD: I mean they probably already know this by now but I used to have a fake ID that said I was 26 when I was like 16 that I would use to go clubbing. When boys would hit on me I would be like, “I’m almost 30, I could be your mom!” and show them my ID.

AE: What’s on your favorites list:

The book on your nightstand: The Prophet by Kahlil Gibran, it’s my favorite book and my mom  just gifted me a beautiful copy so I’ve been re-reading it.

Camera you shoot blog or insta photos with: Fujifilm X30 or iPhone 8

The app you can’t live without: The Podcasts app!

An object or charm you keep with you? A ring that’s been passed down to me

A film quote that inspires you? “When we talked, I talked about me, you talked about you, when we should have talked about each other” from Godard’s Breathless.

The drink you order when on a date? / when out with your girlfriends? An extra dirty martini with extra olives. 

Michaela for Oui We

AE: Lastly: tell us about a moment you knew that magic was real.

MD: I think when the things I had daydreamed about when I was little started to come to life — but I think these days we call that Manifesting.

AE: Anything else you want to share?!

MD: This is literally the most fun interview I’ve ever done!


Well girl, we totally feel the same way! xo!

Shop the Vérité collection here.

Follow Michaela & Vérité Woman on instagram. 

Get Michaela's style here.


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