the Chelsea goblets in the Umbrian countryside



Exploring the Umbrian countryside and trying to visit each and every medieval hilltop village along the way.


We found a stone house on Airbnb to call home for the week, right outside the hilltop town of Perugia. We were positioned within 40 minutes to many of the villages around Umbria, making each morning adventure a unique everytime.

Umbria is the green belt of Italy - full of farm lands, vineyards and rolling countryside with small towns throughout. While you spend a great deal of time in the car, driving to and from towns, there is also a lot of uphill waking through villages to even things out.

Perugia was full of gems, and at the time, the Umbria's Jazz festival as well. We walked the streets, stopping in a Pasticceria Sandri and enjoyed an Aperitif in the piazza before heading to Osteria a Priori for an early dinner. This osteria doubles as a wine store and their wine list was as extensive as it was great.

Back at the house, we get ready for a digestivo in the newest goblets, Topaz (blue) and Topaz (light) who make for a great set.


Spello and Assisi were the two stand out villages we visited. Both beautiful and so unique in atmosphere. Spello, another hilltop town, sits just south of Perugia and is a very steep walk up once you find parking just below the town. Once you make it up, you'll enjoy some of the most outrageously beautiful views of the countryside from the curved alleyways and cobblestone streets.

After walking through many alleys, we stop in Bar Giardino for a coffee alongside a selection of local cheeses. We later find ourselves eating, again, this time at Il Trombone. Most notable there are the views peering out onto the lucious rolling countryside below.

Another town worth a mention, Assisi, is where the Basilica of St. Francis is - and birthplace of St. Francis. The ratio of pedestrians to nuns is almost equal, which creates the loveliest atmosphere in the air. We walk through the basilica and wander further up hill until we arrive at Ghiotto Ristorante, our favorite meal of the trip.

We spend one afternoon at Reschio (right), a boutique hotel on the Umbria/ Tuscany border. Stop in for lunch and wander through the property to see some of the most beautiful antiques and objects. It is a stunning castle dating back to the 9th-11th centuries, and owned and designed by Count Benedikt Bolza and wife Donna Nencia.


While most of our time was spent in Umbria, we drive a bit West to Tuscany to meet with a family weaving business that has been around since the 1800's. We are developing new table linens with them and wanted to understand their process prior to designing the new pieces.

We find their factory to be extremely impressive, equipped with a few machines which have been around for more than 200 years and still well in operation.

They specialize in high quality linen and wool for both table and bed linens. They start their process from the very beginning, spinning their own yarns to create a luxurious soft thread. They then use those threads to weave (typically 59"W) fabrics which they then cut and sew into tablecloths, napkins, placemats as well as bed linens. The wools are so soft they were easily mistaken for cashmere.

We were drawn to the manufacturer's woven striped linens, which they have so far created about 24 colors in. We are very much looking forward to developing something special with them soon :)

Alas, we leave you with the new tumbler, Como. Como is a hand-blown glass tumbler, made in Murano, made with transparent murine and a scalloped royal blue rim. Como screams summer in Italia to us and we had to bring him along for the ride.


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