Emma moved to the countryside with her partner and their dog, Evie at the beginning of 2018. They were in search of a slower life and a better work/life balance, and they’ve found it. Find out more in our conversation with Emma, including why she loves our tumblers around a campfire of an evening.
Can you tell us a bit about you and your connection to the English countryside?
We live in a small town in the Calder Valley called Todmorden, located in the middle of Manchester and Leeds in the UK. Our house sits right next to a small woodland with views of green rolling hills out of our windows and walking trails right on our doorstep. I'm really into wild swimming and have several local spots just a short stroll away where I can submerge myself in cold water for a nice long swim. There's no going back for me; I'll always live in the countryside now, and if anything would move somewhere more rural.
What have you loved most about Summer this year?
Although the dry, excessively hot weather really worries me, it provided plenty of opportunities to enjoy my wild swimming obsession. I enjoyed getaways to West Wales, Brighton and East Devon where I pretty much spent the entire time swimming in the sea and in rivers. And at home I took every opportunity for an outdoor dip, heading up to my favourite spots in the hills for morning swims before work or sunset dips with friends.
You're a photographer, can you tell us what makes the perfect portrait?
I love shooting portraits with a shallow depth of field to have the subject in focus with a perfectly blurred background. Personally, I prefer shooting outdoors among nature, photographing myself or my subject surrounded by beautiful landscapes such as the dense trees of a woodland, an unruly meadow or a big flowery bush. And I always try to shoot at golden hour or just after sunset for a warm, flattering light.
What’s your favourite product from our range and what do you use it for?
I really love your enamel mugs for camping trips. My boyfriend uses them for his morning cups of tea, but I particularly love sipping wine out of them when we're huddled around a campfire in the evening. Your deep plates are also perfect for both camping and picnics. I love filling them up with a dish such as pasta or a panzanella salad - their depth makes them ideal for loading up plenty of sauce!
Are there any local eateries/small businesses you'd like to shout about?
My absolute favourite place to eat is located at the bottom of the hill I live on, just a short stroll from home. Yakumama is a really special place, housed within a beautiful historic building where they've lovingly restored the original features and added statement artwork by a local artist. The food is all vegetarian, with a menu focused around ever-changing small plates with a Latin-America flourish. Think crispy Andean potatoes in an olive sauce, the best elotes you'll ever eat and a variety of interesting and delicious salads. They also do a cracking Colombian brunch on a Sunday!
Do you have plans for more travelling this year?
I've spent this year travelling within the UK and have just returned from a road trip around West Sweden, which started with a few days in Gothenburg before driving up the coast and then inland to explore the lakes. Otherwise I do have a couple of trips abroad planned for late early autumn- I'm returning to Scandinavia in October for a couple of days in one of my favourite cities, Copenhagen. I'm also hoping to head to the Mediterranean, perhaps northern Italy, by train at the end of the month. I love going someplace in southern Europe at the end of the summer season, to get a last little hit of my favourite season without the crowds.