TIED UP TO THE PAPERBAG WAIST TREND

If you follow my Instagram you may have noticed this summer I am obsessing over the paperbag waist trend! After screening all the brands and online retailers I love, this summer I went back, yet again, to Opus. I’ve been so happy with their winter knits and jackets and this summer they’re serving my style again!

  nicole ballardini - paperbag waist - summer trend - opus fashion   nicole ballardini - paperbag waist - summer trend - opus fashion  

In case you don’t know what a paperbag waist is (although I am sure you know) it looks like a ruffled waist, creating a bottom volume on shorts, pants or skirts. This summer it became one of my staples to interchange from denim, during my easy days spent in the new garden but also love dressing it up with a blazer when I have appointments in the city.

Both of these two outfits, I created in collaboration with Opus, are so comfortable! At the same time they look stylish, chic and I am sure you can spot the high quality materials. It’s a good alternative to jeans, adding the right twist and giving a special touch.   nicole ballardini - paperbag waist - summer trend - opus fashion  

Two elements I always look in my outfits are comfort and strong details. The paperbag waist can give you a very basic look but if you style it up, at the same time you don’t need much to make the whole outfit look chic. I never combine a paperbag waist with dramatic tops or the whole outfit would look too busy. Instead, the best is to balance it with a simple, plain top tucked in.

You will see me wearing these pieces on high rotation this summer!

Look1:

Shorts | Top | Bag

Look2:

Pants | Top | Bag

  Created in collaboration with Opus. Story, styling, creative direction and photography my own.

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IS THE STRAW BAG TREND MAKING US FORGET OF DESIGNER?

Hello girls! We are back blogging and you can expect loads of shopping posts coming to this space again! Since the beginning of the new year we neglected the blog a bit to start my new youtube channel. We needed this period to fully dedicate to a new channel but I admit I started to miss blogging! Now we created a dozen on videos and we know what kind of content works for us, so we are ready to be back here too! If you haven’t visited my new youtube channel yet, look for Nicole Ballardini or click here, we have new videos coming every Sunday evening. But now, let’s talk straw bags!

straw bag - basket bag -

If you ask me what is the key for my “summer ready” outfit I would definitely say a straw bag! So, the answer is yes!!

My collection varies between straw bags, baskets and even beaded totes.. I just can’t stop adding on it! Circular, square or bucket shape doesn’t make exceptions. There are so many to choose from that the urge of owning all the straw bag shapes is just too appealing! Big advantage? They come with a little price point.. so, for once, a handbag addiction doesn’t break the bank!

straw bag - leopard print

We saw this trend already last spring/summer and I am happy that is still blooming strong this year. Forget a straw bag just for beach vacations or pic-nic in the park – it’s literally the most versatile type of bag I own and it’s a trend that’s definitely becoming a wardrobe staple for summer.

The fun part of shopping a straw bag is the countless versions you can find available. Starting from just 20€ you can find one which looks designer! Depending on what I pair mine with, it takes me from meetings to the beach and again to summer evenings out.

straw bag - topshop

You can really keep up with all the ones trending while staying on budget at the same time!

I am more one for the understated styles, but this doesn’t mean I won’t fall for a pompom or a tassel detail this summer 😉 Which one are your favourites?? It’s so hard to just pick one!!

Check out my favourite straw bag selection below:

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{TRAVEL} MARRAKECH: MY TOP TRAVEL TIPS

I’ve had this Marrakech post drafted since we got back the past December. Then the Christmas holidays arrived in a blink, a busy start of the new year and few weeks passed by already since we got back. But I really wanted to share this post with you, so here we are!

While I do like the idea of snuggling up with a blanket, sitting in front our big living room window with Emma watching snow flakes falling down, I always prefer feeling the warmth of the sun on my body. I am Italian and for a sun loving person like myself, it feels like the days go by too slowly in winter. So the past December, I decided to escape the Dutch cold weather and spend a week in Marrakech with my little family of three.

I must admit, it wasn’t the most kid-friendly city we could have picked but it was on my top list of places to visit and just four hours flight away from Amsterdam. Luckily Emma is a girl who tends to adjust to everything really and we made an easy daily itinerary of places she could enjoy as well.

One of these was the Jardin Majorelle together with the Yves Saint Laurent museum – dedicated to his work. It’s been very inspiring to see his work since the very beginning. The entire collection includes thousands of articles of clothing and 15,000 haute couture accessories and drawings. Also you will not be disappointed with the architecture of the museum, the beautiful garden and a cute little cafe.

  marrakech - jardin majorelle - nickyinsideout - nicole ballardini - yves saint laurent museum   marrakech - jardin majorelle - nickyinsideout - nicole ballardini - architecture   marrakech - jardin majorelle - nickyinsideout - nicole ballardini -   marrakech - jardin majorelle - nickyinsideout - nicole ballardini - baum und pferdgarten - vintage dior bag - hermes sandals  

The old town of Marrakech, known as the Medina was my most and least favourite part of all! One of the first things we did was visiting the Souk – yes, everything about the souk is overwhelming, but I totally loved it! At the same time I hated doing it with a child.. Without Emma I would have totally loved wandering more and getting lost between all the city alleyways. But Emma had to sit on the stroller the whole time and she’s already growing tired of it, so it wasn’t so much fun for her I am afraid. But we had no choice for her safety. It’s easy to get lost, streets are very narrow and a lot of cars drive at a quite high speed. I admit I wanted to scream at one point but at the same time I was totally fascinated by the colours and the great vibe of the medina. Within all this, we managed to buy quite a few beautiful little pieces at the Souks, although our house is influenced by a Scandinavian vibe, they really fit! I left my heart with some beautiful rugs and lamps, but really, the whole research and negotiation would have been to heavy for Emma.

  marrakech - travel tips - souk - maroccan style lamps - nickyinsideout - nicole ballardini   marrakech - travel tips - souk - nickyinsideout - nicole ballardini  

The great thing is, it’s very easy to escape the overwhelming traffic and business of the Medina and within few minutes walk finding yourself in the breathtaking Le Jardin Secret. Gardens are divided into Islamic and Exotic ones with plants from different continents. It is a very relaxing and peaceful place. Make sure to include the tower in your visit because it offers an amazing view of Marrakesh.

Another amazing place we visited was the Bahia Palace – bahia means beautiful and surely it was. I was so amazed by every little detail in the palace; oh I just love the Morrocon style. Bahia Palace is huge and has a gorgeous garden with palm trees. Definitely worth the visit!

  marrakech - travel tips - bahia palace - nickyinsideout - nicole ballardini   marrakech - travel tips - nickyinsideout - nicole ballardini - bahia palace - medina   marrakech - travel tips - nickyinsideout - nicole ballardini - bahia palace  

Close to Bahia Palace we visited another beautiful spot, the Dar Si Said Museum. The architecture and decoration are just a beautiful example of Moroccan history. It´s a lovely place where you can see the architectural elements of mosaics which are very impressive and magnificent fountains. Also you cannot find many people there so it is a good place to visit if you want to avoid the usual crowds.

We spent the first two days in a beautiful Riad, Les Jardins de la Medina, and it could not have been any better. The style of interior has a French colonial touch and it is absolutely gorgeous with an amazing garden and pool. The location of the hotel is very close to central and the restaurant is simply delicious. We then moved to a more kids’ friendly hotel called Ibero Star and it was perfect for Emma to be able to run around the huge garden and pools.

  marrakech - travel tips - nickyinsideout - nicole ballardini - riad - jardin de la medina   marrakech - travel tips - nickyinsideout - nicole ballardini - riad - jardin de la medina   marrakech - travel tips - nickyinsideout - nicole ballardini - riad - jardin de la medina  

Finally, my very favourite day was spent at The Selman. They invited me to spend the day there, we had a lovely lunch in their garden restaurant and it’s truly one of the most beautiful hotel I have ever been (Menno being an interior and hospitality architect we do normally hang out in very beautiful hotels) but The Selman was one of the best! It´s just a magnificent place to have lunch overlooking perfectly curated gardens. The atmosphere couldn’t have been lovelier and food and wine delicious, plus the service of the hotel is excellent. The interiors are complete with fine antiques, plush upholstery and an impressive art collection. They have the cutest nursery so Emma could enjoy some painting while we had a glass of wine by the pool. Finally, they breed beautiful horses and Emma surely had a blast visiting them! It was an amazing end of our week in Marrakech.

  marrakech - travel tips - nickyinsideout - nicole ballardini - selman   marrakech - travel tips - nickyinsideout - nicole ballardini - selman   marrakech - travel tips - nickyinsideout - nicole ballardini - selman   marrakech - travel tips - nickyinsideout - nicole ballardini - selman  

Marrakech has so much to offer and I think I became obsessed with the beautiful architecture, colours and little cute spots. Here you can find the link to all the outfits I wore during the week (tips to pack without overpacking). I am going to be back as soon as Emma will be a bit older or sooner for a girls weekend escape! I just can’t wait!!

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