I went to stay with Poppy at Durham University over the weekend. It’s hard to believe that it’s almost the end of the Lent term already. On one hand it seems like she’s always been there, so settled is she; on the other, it only seems two minutes since I tearfully kissed her goodbye last September. I went by train and got there in time for Saturday brunch.
We walked along the river to Flat White Kitchen, a fabulous bistro that always has a queue of people waiting outside. It is easy to see why. The food is divine and the decor is cool- rustic tables, strings of fairy lights and lots of plants. And although it looks like Tequilla Sunrise, my drink was orange, ginger and carrot juice.
We looked round the shops during the afternoon, then walked back to Poppy’s college to freshen up and change ready for dinner. We had a reservation at Bills, one of Poppy’s favourite restaurants. If you don’t know it, it’s a small chain with stylish decor and THE best sweet potato fries. We’ve visited five, each in a different city. It was so lovely to sit and chat with Poppy. We’re in touch via texts everyday and we FaceTime regularly, but nothing beats face-to-face, one-to-one time.
For Sunday brunch, we went to Flat White Kitchen’s little sister, Flat White Café It’s equally charming with a cute alfresco area at the front which is where we sat. I couldn’t resist another orange, carrot and ginger juice.
We walked it off with a lengthy stroll. Durham’s a beautiful city, made all the prettier by daffodils, crocuses and a bit of spring sunshine. We always walk miles-it’s easy to navigate and the riverside is simply beautiful. As cities go, it’s small so it’s easy to feel at home. It’s genteel, laid-back and very photogenic.
We had a final pit stop at The Riverside Kitchen. This is another gorgeous place which looks out onto the River Wear. We highly recommend the scones.
Walking Around Durham
It’s clear to see that we did a LOT of eating, drinking and walking. I draw the line at elasticated waistbands; comfortable footwear however, is essential. Two years ago, I invested in a pair of (£195) gold metallic leather trainers. I wore them so much that they wore out. The cost per wear must have been pence. I’ve been keen to replace them with something similar but at a lower price point because we’re saving for our wedding.
I wanted leather. A lot of mid-priced trainers look fabulous, but are synthetic, while those that are made of leather aren’t always as aesthetically pleasing. So when Lotus asked if I’d like to road-test some trainers from the new Stressless by Lotus Collection, I was intrigued. I knew, that like all Lotus footwear, they’d be comfortable, but would they be stylish enough? Absolutely.
Stressless by Lotus: About The Range
I’m wearing the Venice lace-up trainer. The pink leather upper, gold trim and leopard printed panels tick all the style boxes. They have foam insoles with shock-absorbing properties and pressure point support, courtesy of a foam insole. In addition, an ergonomic in-sock adapts to the shape of the foot for extra support and stability. And, it’s breathable. There are several different styles within this range if pink or leopard print aren’t for you.
My Stressless by Lotus trainers had a thorough test-drive in ￼Durham. We walked along the river, around the city-centre and back three times. That’s a lot of steps. From the moment I put them on they were supremely comfortable. They’re very lightweight and didn’t need any wearing in. They’re flexible and soft, yet very supportive. Possibly the comfiest footwear I’ve ever worn.
Notes and Outfit details
This post is part of a paid partnership with Lotus Shoes. All of my opinions are 100% honest and all content is my own.
Venice Stressless Trainers: Lotus, current (SS20), gifted.
Metallic raffia and cork crossbody bag, Hotter, current (SS20)￼￼, gifted.
Pink tweed coat: Next last season (AW19). See my blog post about it here.
Lift, Slim and Shape jeans Next, current (SS20).
Bobble sweater: Next, 2018
Pink and blue sequin top: Boden, (SS19). Available in clearance at the time of writing. See it with the co-ordinating skirt here.