We just got back from an awesome week in Brooklyn. It was basically the antithesis to our last holiday to Barbados: concrete instead of beaches, cocktails and beer instead of rum punch, brunches and Mexican and Chinese food, walking until my feet quite literally gave out…
We stayed in yet another great Airbnb rental, a stylish apartment in a modern 4th storey block right next to the Williamsburg Bridge. Here’s the link to the listing with more photos. It was the perfect size for relaxing in, with cool decor and – omg – a built-in catty roommate buddy. Fluffy giant Mitt was so sweet!
The best part about it though – perhaps even better than Mitt – were the incredible views. We had the bridge bearing down from one side and a panoramic view of Manhattan, emcompassing the Empire State Building and the Chysler Building, from the balcony. The sights were amazing at every time of day, from the golden light just after sunrise (hi jetlag) to the dusky sunset. I didn’t really think I was a views type of person – I’ve always preferred ground floor flats in London – but I really miss it.
Oh yeah, the apartment also had a rooftop terrace for extra amazingness, though we didn’t have time to use it much.
The location of the apartment was great for exploring Williamsburg and further afield. We had loads of amazing things in the neighbourhood from superb foody joints to cool bars and shops – I’ll write separately about all those next. It was only a few stops on the subway into Manhattan (mostly ahem, for fabric shopping, which I’ve written up on my sewing blog) but we also did the trip via the East River Ferry.
The boat was an awesome way to see the Manhattan riverfront from a different angle and only four bucks. We caught it downtown to DUMBO as well for another day out. More to show soon!
Lomography got in touch to offer me a review product, which I could then give away to one of you lovely readers. Rather than pick a camera I was rather more intrigued by their Smartphone Film Scanner…
This nifty gadget lets you scan 35mm films directly into your phone just using the phone’s camera, so they’re ready to share immediately. The adaptable device works with any iPhone and most Android phones, and you can scan regular 35mm, panoramic, or Lomokino films.
It’s extremely easy to use. Just feed the film into the bottom and load your phone onto the clamp at the top. Turn the dial to advance the film, snap, and repeat. There’s something quite magical about being able to view your photos this way and ‘release’ them from the negatives so quickly. It works particularly well with iOS7’s super new camera improvements.
These were taken straight off my phone with no editing:
You can also take the photos with a digital camera instead of the smartphone, for a higher res scan. These were taken with my camera through the device, again with no editing:
Competition now closed, thanks to all who entered and to Lomography for the prize
If you missed out, you can buy the scanner here!
Dalston House is a new temporary art installation by Leandro Elrich in association with the Barbican Centre. It’s right by Dalston Junction station, a short walk from my house, so my sister and I jaunted down there the other day.
The mind-bending installation is a perfect replica of a period house facade, laid out on the ground with a huge mirror set at a 45-degree angle above it. So when you view it straight on it appears that the house is standing upright on the street. Then of course you can have all sorts of fun with seemingly gravity-defying poses, all from the safety of the ground.
During the daytime of ATP when the bands weren’t on, we made the most of being on an unfamiliar stretch of the south coast and did a couple of little local trips. I’m always amazed to find places so close to home yet so startlingly different to what I’ve ever seen of the UK before. It’s a little island of surprises that I really should explore more.
On Saturday we went to Rye, which we both really loved. It’s packed with vintage shops, tea rooms and pubs and an amazing sense of history. For once I didn’t do a ton of obsessive research before arriving, but it was actually nice to wander without a set plan in place and just see what we discovered.