Almost 2 weeks ago now, I spent one night and one day (well, more like half a day) in Stratford-Upon-Avon with my mum and sister. The predominant reason that we visited this quaint little town was to watch Macbeth at the Royal Shakespeare Theatre. But being the geeky Shakespeare lover that I am, I obviously took advantage of being in his birthplace and spent some time being a tourist and more money than I’d like to admit in gift shops.
Before I get on to chatting about what I got up to, I want to briefly talk about the play because it was incredible. It was by far the best Shakespeare production I’ve ever seen (and I’ve seen a fair few) and felt even more extraordinary it being in the Royal Shakespeare Theatre itself. This production of Macbeth was reimagined as a psychological thriller which, this being one of my favourite genres of film, I obviously loved. Although it was a twist on the original play, the important themes were still there and Shakespeare’s exploration of gender expectations was highlighted, which I really enjoyed as I used Macbeth as part of a gender-focussed literary analysis last year for my EPQ during my A-Levels. I think the play is touring and being in shown in cinemas so if you do have chance to see it, I would definitely recommend doing so!
Because of bad traffic and a late check-in time, watching Macbeth, along with a meal at Zizi, was all our first day in Stratford-Upon-Avon consisted of. However, our second day in the town was lovely and sunny and felt like the first day of spring, so we took full advantage of that and explored the centre of the town a little bit more. Our day started back at the Royal Shakespeare Theatre as we wanted to visit the gift shop which had been closed by the time the play had finished the previous night. I spent an embarrassing amount of time in this gift shop, so much so that my mum and sister left me there after getting bored of me moaning about the lack of Othello merchandise (that’s probably the uncoolest thing I’ve ever said). I ended up picking up a Shakespeare themed tote bag (as pictured below), bookmark and badge along with a book called New Boy by Tracy Chevalier, which is part of the Hogarth Shakespeare Series and is a re-writing of Othello, something that I am particularly excited to read and will definitely share my thoughts on once I have read it.
We then headed over to Shakespeare’s Birthplace, which also had a super interesting museum on Shakespeare’s life and his works. Although the tickets are a little overpriced, I’d definitely recommend visiting. There were actors reading extracts from his plays and sonnets aloud in the garden, that I felt really justified the ticket price for me, especially because they were reading out my favourite sonnet (which is “My mistress’ eyes are nothing like the sun” if you’re interested, although you’re probably not!) And, yes, there was another gift shop, which I of course spent too long looking around, even though they stocked pretty much the same things as the theatre did, in hope of something Othello-themed but with no luck- I didn’t realise how underrated this play is until after this visit and now I’m determined to change that by mentioning it as many times as possible in this blog post!
We spent the remainder of the day looking around Stratford-Upon-Avon and shopping and even picked up some vegan fudge from Rolly’s Fudge that I was particularly pleased with (it was delicious). I’d definitely recommending visiting Stratford-Upon-Avon if you get a chance to, especially if you’re interested in literature or history. Although there isn’t a crazy amount of stuff to do there as far as I know, so I felt like we stayed there for long enough even if our visit was brief.
I’m going to talk briefly about my outfit, seeing as most of the photos in this post consist of me showing it off in various scenic spots, and because it’s the most summery outfit I’ve worn all year. I love this lemon yellow cami top that I got from the Alexa Chung X Marks and Spencer collection a few years ago for around £3.99 in the sale (I actually own it in three colours because of this price point). Its always a staple in my wardrobe when summer comes around and I especially love it over a white t-shirt, as I’ve styled it here. Paired with a pair of light-wash jeans and no layers other than a blazer (!!!), I think this makes for the perfect spring outfit and one I’m sure I’ll be replicating throughout spring and summer. Also, these sunglasses were an absolute steal from Primark at £2!
T-Shirt: Urban Outfitters (similar here)
Cami: Alexa Chung X Marks & Spencer
Blazer: Pull & Bear (similar here)
Sunglasses: Primark (should still be in stock in store but for an online alternative, see here)