Chat With Inspiring Ceramicist Anna Karountzou

Creating extraordinary and interesting work, ceramicist Anna Karountzou is proving that this ancient craft deserves to be recognised as one of today’s most exciting art forms. 

Originating from Athens, Anna crafts refined ceramic vessels and other creations that feature a raw yet graceful aesthetic, drawing inspiration from ancient cultures and the natural world. 

With a background in conserving art and antiquities, she transitioned her focus from preserving to shaping and manipulating clay, driven by a burgeoning fascination with material science.

Employing traditional methods like coiling and pinching, her distinctive handcrafted pieces are imbued with a sense of place that resonates with Anna’s connections, paying tribute to the earth while embracing a contemporary sensibility.

We recently had a chat with Anna about her unique pieces, as well as her love of Santorini and travelling the world. 

Tell us a little about your background and training in ceramics.

I have always dabbled in art. As a child, I started drawing and ended up studying conservation of antiquities and works of art at the University of Athens, a profession I followed for several years. My studies and the knowledge I gained at school were great. Through conservation, you gain an excellent understanding of works of art but at the same time, you have no freedom to create. You follow the rules, ideologically and techniques of another artist. I enjoyed it but missed the fun of creating, which came after I started ceramics classes at the Museum of Modern Ceramics.

Then I studied glazing with one of the greatest living ceramicists, Menandros Papadopoulos, and that was when I broadened my horizons considerably. When I started I pretty much followed the work pattern of the conservator, which is set in absolute detail and symmetry. Years passed and I was finally freed from the strict rules. I allowed my hands to create irregular shapes and sizes of sculptures. Now, each object has its character and its essence. 

When did you start your brand workshop and what was the idea behind it?

During quarantine, alongside my job as a conservator, I began to work more intensely with ceramics. Somewhere along the way, I decided to find a space to work and store the now countless objects I had created. I set up shop at my grandfather’s warehouse in the Drosia area of Athens and devoted myself to it. For a year I worked Monday to Friday as a conservator and on weekends, I spent 12 hours working with clay. I was lost in creating, and had so much passion for it that I wasn’t tired. I couldn’t wait for the weekends to arrive. 

I then decided to give up my job as a conservator and concentrate on ceramics. My friends urged me to start an Instagram page and I received a flurry of messages from art venues to collaborate and participated in Milan Design Week, where I met another ceramicist with whom we collaborated and housed our creations in a common space in Kolonaki. My work was going surprisingly well and one collaboration led to another. The amount of work was huge, so I had to find my own space. During one of my walks in the area, I found this abandoned basement. I renovated it all by myself, and not only did it become my workshop but my second home.

What inspires your creations?

My memories and many moments of my life inspire my creations. My summers in Santorini have also marked me. Additionally, I am inspired by rebirth, and the fact that we can create something new from our “ashes”. I experiment a lot with the same materials and “rebirth” them.

How would you describe your pieces?

Free and formless. I don’t plan anything ahead of time. Through the creation process I break the boundaries, the rules. None of my creations are symmetrical, each object I create has its entity and character. I also like that my creations are aesthetically related to Ancient Greek culture and nature. I would describe my pieces as natural, with curves referencing the female body. I also like to capture the mark of time and for my pieces to look rustic and worn. I prefer the aesthetic of natural wear and tear. But I don’t do it consciously, I start creating and it just happens organically. Unconsciously I design objects that create a feeling of nostalgia.

Who are the pieces created for?

I never think of creating for a specific audience. I create things for myself first, to express something deeper and my nostalgia is reflected through my creations.

We have seen that you love to travel, tell us about the trip that has inspired you the most.

I’ve been fortunate to visit many places that have taken my breath away. For four years I worked as a restorer and lived like a nomad. Along with my team, we visited and maintained temples and monuments all over Greece, from the north to the south. We have preserved temples in remote villages in Thrace and Macedonia, to ancient tombs and Herod’s mansion in the Peloponnese. We stayed at each place for months, became friends with the locals and really discovered their beauty. 

I strongly believe that we live in a stunning country and every trip in Greece has been inspiring, allowing me to draw elements that I incorporate into my ceramics. Each community and city has its character and natural beauty – especially when it’s near a mountain or the sea. I will certainly remember the months I lived and worked in Chania, as Crete’s a gorgeous place to visit. And I also have to mention my most recent trip to Nepal, that touched me thanks to the many spiritual and genuine people I met.

What place in Greece inspires you the most?

Santorini, my mother’s island home. Especially Oia, which is where I spent all my childhood summers. Unfortunately, the Santorini of that time has nothing to do with that of today, but I have preserved all my lovely memories from the past. The volcano, the cliffs, the rocks, the beaches, the sea – this freedom we felt when we ran around the streets and beaches are all fond memories that will remain an inspiration for my creations. I have asked wine producers for ash from the vines in Santorini to create a unique glaze on some of my ceramics and I have also incorporated fragments of volcanic rock in others. Santorini is a part of me and the creations I produce.

With a workspace in the centre of Athens, tell us a few of your favourite places in the city.

My current workshop space is a spot where from the first moment I entered the semi-basement in the heart of Kolonaki, I felt an energy that this is where I’m meant to be. I love Kolonaki, especially around my workshop because it’s quiet, the streets are lined with trees, and we are close to the beautiful Dexameni Square, with an amazing panoramic view of the hills of Athens. At the same time, I also like areas that feature the character and style of an old-school Athens, such as the neighbourhood of Petralona, where I live. I wouldn’t change it for anything.

A: 13 Deinokratous St, Kolonaki

Chat With Greece’s Talented Illustrator Little Miss Grumpy

Greek illustrator Maria Pagkalou, otherwise known as Little Miss Grumpy, has created an instantly recognisable style with her unique aesthetics and whimsical characters. 

Her work has been featured in numerous kids’ books and her client list is as impressive as her creations – including Italian brand Moleskine, the Iris Apfel x H&M collection, plus Politeia bookstore.  

Based in the centre of Athens, Little Miss Grumpy has built a huge following thanks to her colourful characters and cool quotes designed to inspire and evoke emotions.  

Having achieved national recognition, Little Miss Grumpy’s beautiful creations, including illustrations of Fredy Mercury and Maria Callas, adorn walls of homes not only in Greece but around the world.

From limited edition prints and witty bookmarks to amusing cards and chic notebooks, Pagkalou’s designs are trending as some of the coolest gifts in town – that can be found online as well as in her gorgeous flagship store in Athens’ Kolonaki neighbourhood. 

“I feel so much joy and satisfaction when a person hangs one of my pieces in their home and I hope that every time they look at it, they feel something and that something inspires them,” says Maria.  

We sat and chatted with Little Miss Grumpy in her bright and inviting store about her captivating illustrations, what inspires her designs, and more. 

When did your passion for illustrations begin?

My passion for this kind of art started from a very young age. It was always my outlet and a hobby that I loved. I studied acting but at the age of 28, I decided to make my hobby a profession. 

What’s the design process like? 

Firstly, I create the character in my mind and then on paper. I combine my research and knowledge and then wait to see each character develop over time. When I watch movies and TV series, I can see a character grow, then I form them in my mind before my version of that character comes to life on paper.  

How would you describe your work? 

I constantly meet new people who ask me what I do for a living and when I say I’m an illustrator they stare at me wondering what that means. I understand that some may think it’s not a normal job, or that it’s more of a hobby. I don’t think it’s something you can describe, it’s a form of art and my creations speak for themselves. 

What do you love most about what you do? 

I get a lot of satisfaction from creating a design that I like, and then seeing other people like it and appreciate it too.

What do you want people to feel when they see your creations?

Everything we look at leaves a mark on us. It stays inside and is externalised at a later stage. I think it’s important to look at creations and images that fill us with joy and beautiful emotions.

What does an average day look like for you?

There is no typical day, there is no routine, and there is no schedule. Luckily, I have my mum and my sister who try to put a list in place to help me with the business. I wake up late because I sleep late, and after I get up, I’ll walk my dog, and make something to eat, then I start planning my day and responding to emails and calls. Later on, I walk around the city until I find myself out with friends at night. 


Tell us about some of your career highlights.

The first collaboration I ever did was with the Moleskine company from Milan. We designed limited-edition notebooks together, which was very special to me.  

Another unforgettable moment in my career was a collaboration with H&M x Iris Apfel, which was amazing.

Each of my collaborations excites me – from the smallest to the largest, but one of my all-time favourites is with Athens’ famous bookstore Politeia. I took it upon myself to create 30 bookmarks (it’s now reached 100) featuring famous authors to be given away for free with every book purchase. I feel that I’ve managed to enter so many homes and I’m happy people have embraced them. I feel they have connected my work to something as beautiful as reading a book.

Do you find it easy to switch off from work?

I can never entirely disconnect from work. I have never been able to do it even on vacation and I don’t listen when people tell me to stop working for a while; I just can’t. Fortunately, I always have my mother and my sister by my side. They help me significantly, as they support me and help solve any issues that arise.

How do you spend your weekends? 

I’m very fortunate that I spend every day like it’s the weekend! I don’t work specific hours, so I walk around the centre of Athens every day like it’s a small celebration, which ends with a late-night drink at a bar. However, my ideal Saturday would be to get home from the shop, paint, and then arrange a gathering with friends on my balcony late in the afternoon, to drink, eat, play Monopoly and laugh!

And on a Sunday?

Sundays are for sleeping, snuggling and dreaming. 

One of your favourite spots in Athens to grab a drink with friends?

I must say I am a homebody, as I love the feeling of warmth and I like to drink for hours on the terrace and talk until the early hours of the morning. But now that I moved from Kifissia to the centre of Athens, I also enjoy being out. Most of the evenings you will find me at the Sousourada cocktail bar on Mavromichali in Exarcheia. And of course, the most entertaining evenings full of fun and dancing are spent at Agios Bar on Didotou and Ippokratous.  

Any new restaurant you’ve recently tried and want to go back to again?

I would choose Sousourada again and again – mainly for the delicious sea bass!

Have you booked your summer holiday yet? 

Of course, not – I am always last minute. So much so that I often can’t find accommodation and end up staying with friends. I spend most of my summers with family in Karystos, on the island of Evia and this year I also hope to get to the Amalfi. 

Finally, can you share any exciting new projects you are working on?

I’ve undertaken a project with Brainfood Publications about women in mythology and ancient tragedy. I found it challenging because mythological characters like Electra and Medea are not imprinted as people in our minds but as ideas and meanings. I tried to spread my fantasy and integrate my knowledge from my theatre studies to create a wonderful and inspirational journey for them.

I’m also excited to start my collaboration with well-known Greek songwriter Pan Pan. We both aim to create a visual expression of his top hit song of the year “Anisopedi Disco”. I’m thrilled with this as I always need to work with people who have a passion for what they do. My wish is to always surround myself with people who inspire me and fill my soul.

Shop: Ιppokratous 40, Kolonaki 

Featured Image by Yanis Angel | @yanisangelaph


Timeless Silk Accessories Made in Northern Greece

Emmanuelle Silk is a refined Greek brand based in Komotini, Northern Greece.

Each unique piece is created for women who discreetly want to make an elegant difference, by wearing silk accessories designed to add a hint of contemporary sophistication to any outfit.

We recently had a chat with the founder Emmanouella Kouroudi about her designs and the influence her hometown, as well as worldwide travels have on her creations. 

Emmanuella, you are a well-travelled woman who has achieved a lot in such a short time, please tell us a bit about yourself.

I was born and raised in Komotini and upon completing my studies at the Department of Physics at the University of Crete, I moved back to Komotini where I started working in our family business, the Thrakika Ekkokistiria – Cotton Ginning Mill in Greece. In 2015, I also founded my collection of silk accessories, “Emmanuellesilk”. Job aside, I’m keen on exercising daily and I’m also an avid traveller- I love to explore new places and immerse myself in different cultures.

What does your typical workday look like?

In the morning I head over to the office where I deal with all my work for Thracian Ginning, make appointments with partners and clients, and talk to the whole Emmanuellesilk team that I manage. My collaborations for Emmanuellesilk are based on daily communication with the team, as most of my partners are based in different locations. Some afternoons you will also find me at our store in the centre of Komotini, where we sell our silk accessories.

What was your inspiration for Emmanuelle Silk?

The idea was born in the summer of 2015. It combined my love of fashion with my family’s business experience and the “inheritance” of Metaxourgia Tsiakiri SA, which passed into my hands. All these gave life to my vision, to produce and create fine silk accessories for women who want to make a difference elegantly and discreetly.

How did you feel the first time you held an Emmanuelle Silk creation? 

Seeing one of your creations come to life is a matter of great pride –  each accessory we make has its own story and is unique. 

Tell us about the importance of silk in the area of East Macedonia and Thrace.

During the period of the Ottoman Empire, Soufli was a strong economic, political and cultural centre. Its rapid development is attributed to sericulture, which has been the economic lifeblood of the region for many decades. After the treaties of 1922-23 Eastern Thrace and Romilia came under the ownership of the newly established Turkish state. Thus, Soufli lost most of its acres, which were vast meadows, the exclusive food of the silkworm. In addition, sericulture and the silk trade came under the Greek legal and fiscal regime. This resulted in a gradual decline in production and exports to European countries. The discovery and spread of artificial silk fibre permanently and irreversibly interrupted the course of sericulture.

In 1993, the production of cocoons amounted to 5,000 kg from 800,000 kg in 1908. Despite this, Thrace persists and tries, participating in programs, working groups, and creating partnerships with institutions and the state, so that Greek Thracian silk can once again acquire its place on the world map.

How have your travels influenced your designs and brand aesthetics?

Every trip is a new experience. You get to meet new people, see different cultures and taste new flavours. By doing so, you realise that luxury has more to do with what radiates from within than the money you have. 

A silk scarf has always been the ambassador of feminine elegance. With the passage of time and changes in fashion trends, the scarf gained ground and has turned into a timeless accessory for all women, of all ages and styles.

I think the silk scarf reflects the personality of every woman who wears it. There is no correct and elegant way to wear it, as long as it makes you feel good! A turban on the head, a knot around the neck, and a simple throw around the shoulders – it defines different personalities and styles.

Does living in Komotini inspire you in any way?

In Komotini lies my main source of inspiration- my family and my friends.

If a friend from abroad were to visit Komotini, where would you take them?

I believe the best way to get to know a place is through the eyes of a person who lives there. So, when my friends visit, I don’t do anything different from what I do in my everyday life. You start with a nice Greek coffee and brunch in the town square, eat food by the sea of ​​Arogi or Maroneia, take a walk in the city park and go out for a drink at the local hangouts with countless students, ending up with bougatsa in the early hours of the morning. If you are a nature lover, the options are also endless. I also love a beautiful hike in the Rodopi mountains, followed by food and wine in a traditional tavern.

Images Courtesy of Emmanuellesilk

Unique Greek Christmas Gifts

Bring a touch of Greek charm to your loved ones this Christmas with our hand-picked selection of gifts.

The clock is ticking but you still have a little more time before Santa beats you to it—and to help, we’ve put together the absolute best treats for all tastes, ages and interests.

These made-in-Greece brands create unique items we love giving and receiving – and no doubt you will also find the perfect piece (or two) here for family, friends, or yourself! 

For everyone…

11 Modern Muses

Greek brand 11 Morden Muses has beautiful minimal calendars, scented candles and art prints that you will fall in love with. Perfect for gifting this season, their new planner aspires to keep your creative fire alive throughout the new year and will help you stay organised and grateful for each new day.

Naked Summers

Visual artist Christina Mandilari paints with a special technique on both fabrics and ceramics, which remind us of warm, carefree, “naked” summers. Mandilar’s gorgeous creations include plates, painted vases, woven pillows, paintings and posters. Ideal gifts for those who can never get enough of the wonderful Greek summer.


Is there anything better than enjoying a warm, strong tea by the fire at Christmas? Whatever image this short description created for you comes to life through the notes of Rhoeco’s Christmas blend tea, a small business that produces beverages inspired by Greek nature. And what’s even more ideal is that they come beautifully packaged in pots that can be reused.

Contrust Collective

Even though this concept store is small, there is lots to see. Owned and operated by a group of five local designers and artisans, it features lovely neutral ceramics, jewellery, and bags made of cork, leather, and canvas. It’s the prints, though, that truly catch the eye here; some of them are prints or sort of pop-up books featuring Greek cities that are vividly coloured and abstract.

For foodies


Savour delicious, nutritious dishes and enjoy a healthy diet, the Mediterranean way! An easy-to-follow, step-by-step guide is the perfect gift for those wishing to cook traditional, delicious and nutritious dishes that have stood the test of time. The Art of Greek Cooking has a recipe to satisfy everyone. You can discover this and plenty more cookbook choices in English at the famous bookstore Politeia, at the centre of Athens.

Olive Wood Land Shop

Buying kitchen accessories made of authentic olive wood is a quality and timeless choice. You can either visit this unique store in the historic centre of Athens in Monastiraki, just a few hundred meters from the Acropolis, which specialises in creating products from the olive wood, of your choice, or head to their online shop.

For kids…

Wandering Workshop

If you are looking for original stylish wooden toys that can stimulate children’s imagination and enhance their creativity then look no further than the online store Wandering Workshop. “Our toys wander carefreely between the earth, sea and sky, inviting children to invent the play,” say the creators’ Hose Navaro and Athina Doukaki.

Greek Games 

Discover the magic word of Greek games-literally, with a series of games, posters, card posts, t-shirts and more fun items. These products entertain children (adults as well) and at the same time, provide knowledge of Greek mythology and history, with an artistic twist. It’s the lovechild of Effie Karagouni and Christos Papachristou, two creators with a passion and respect for the arts, museums, the history of Greece and above all, with deep love and caring for children and their education.

5 Greek Fashion Brands to Shop for Winter 23  

With the festive season getting closer and closer, now’s the time to start working on your new winter wardrobe. 

It’s entirely possible to look warm and stylish at the same time, which is where reliable closet staples – boots, coats, turtle necks, knit dresses (and more) – are essential.

And to make it even easier to choose what you want to add to your winter closet, we’ve rounded up some of our favourite Greek fashion brands – so you can shop ahead for this busy holiday season!


Greek fashion brand PHILOSOPHY is chosen by women who seek freedom and a unique style when it comes to their looks. Abstract lines, monochromes, neutral shades, and unique textures are seen throughout all designs, which are both timeless and contemporary. Their current winter collection also has splashes of orange, green and fuchsia – for those who want to wear some brights on gloomy days. 


This minimalist brand creates clothes that not only make you feel great but also comfortable when you put on an outfit. Their AW23 collection is full of earthy tones and textures that are soft and chic. NAMASTE’s aesthetic escapes seasonal fashion trends and focuses more on a timeless design, so you can wear their pieces for years to come. And you can also add some of their jewellery pieces to finish off your look! 

Project Soma

This contemporary label was founded in 2019 by Greek celebrities Mary Synatsakis and Athina Oikonomakou. The two popular influencers combined their creative powers to establish a fresh modern brand with a touch of boho. All pieces are carefully sewn and manufactured in Greece, and the new winter collection is filled with earthy and pastel colours, as well as floral patterns, that add a touch of romance and elegance to any look. 


The brand’s passion is to create unique clothes that can be worn both day and night. Always choosing exquisite fabrics, Chatòn is known for its feminine dresses and stunning colour palette. Creating fine pieces that flatter all body types, their winter collection includes stunning coats and oversized blazers that can be worn from a day in the office to a night out for dinner.


Designed and made in Athens, this well-known local brand has created unique winter pieces that make for the perfect weekend wear this season. Featuring simple lines and natural raw materials, you can find high-quality basics that can be worn casually, or dressed up for a more special occasion. 

Main Image by Project Soma

Chat With Greece’s Leading Hair Stylist Ilias Karahalios 

Ilias Karahalios is one of Greece’s leading and most sought-after hair experts.

With over 30 years of experience, he has opened three salons across Athens and works closely with some of the country’s top fashion designers, makeup artists, models, and celebrities- creating eye-catching and chic looks that are seen on the runway, in magazines, television and red-carpet appearances.  

Having a visionary flair and natural talent for styling, cutting and colouring tresses, it’s hard to believe that Ilias was, in fact, working as a mechanical engineer in his 20s, before deciding to follow his true passion (and in his mother’s footsteps) of becoming a hairstylist.    

We recently had a chat with Ilias at his salon in Kifissia, and asked him about the latest hair trends, how to keep hair healthy, and his incredible work in fashion. 

What do you love most about your work? 

The greatest reward for me is seeing our clients’ faces light up when they view the final result. I love seeing my clients happy, smiling, and leaving the salon with confidence as they bounce their hair around.  

Tell us about your work within the fashion industry. 

From when I started hairdressing, I liked everything to do with fashion. It started with beauty contests, which were very popular at the time. It was actually in 1997 and I was a member of the team that was working on hair for Miss Greece. Then when I opened my salon, I started collaborating with Greek modelling agencies and doing hair for both Greek and international models.

What are a few stand-out events you’ve worked on? 

There have been so many, including a big fashion show at Zappeion for leading Greek fashion designer Vassilis Zoulias, and two months ago we were part of an amazing fashion event that was held at the swimming pool of the Olympic stadium, that was for MI-RŌ.  

Tell us more about your hair salon Ilias & Staff, which is conveniently located around 3 spots in Athens.

We have salons in Kifissia, Glyfada and Nea Filothei and are very well known for our colour techniques. But in saying that, we are also able to provide the whole package – including haircuts, blow-dry, styling, manicures, pedicures, tanning, and makeup. We try to offer our clients all they need for both hair and beauty.  

What is your favorite haircut right now? 

Fashion changes so quickly, and I like to experiment. At the moment I have a lot of young girls coming in and asking for a butterfly haircut.

What are the top colour trends? 

Ginger is something that is coming more and more into fashion, and there is also a trend for blonde that has intensity at the front – to emphasize the frame of the face.

What’s trending for men? 

I think we’re going to see more of the French haircut for guys-  a grown-out natural/untailored look. 

When it comes to blow-dries are ladies going for waves or a straight look? 

Hair with volume, giving it a real red carpet/Hollywood feel is very much the look right now. 

What are your top 3 tips for maintaining healthy hair? 

Trim to get rid of the dead ends. After a good haircut, conditioning and moisturising the hair with a mask once a week is great. And remember to be very gentle when combing your hair.

Finally, when you aren’t at the salon, where will we find you relaxing? 

Every week or at least every couple, I like trying a different restaurant. It might be a good Italian place where the chef is well-known, or a new place that has just opened. 

Ultimate Travel Capsule Wardrobe for Autumn ’23

Exuding elegance and ease – these new-season pieces can effortlessly take you from day to night. 

Whether you’ve planned an entire week of visiting amazing museums and eating at some of the Greek capital’s hottest new restaurants, or heading up North to experience Thessaloniki’s impressive attractions and lively bars – we’ve put together a versatile autumn travel capsule wardrobe to cover your entire stay!

From classics – including a trench coat and boots to this year’s must-have leather skirt and Mary Janes – our editors’ picks are both practical and stylish. 

Long Sleeve Top

Looking for the perfect layering essential to add to any fall outfit? Basic long-sleeve tops have you covered! Go for either white or grey, as these neutrals can be worn with everything else in your luggage – and never date. 


No wardrobe (closet or suitcase) is ever complete without a pair of jeans. Whether you prefer a high-waist, straight-leg, or boot-cut version, you can never go wrong when paired with chic sneakers during the day and fancier shoes for a night out.

White Shirt

Roll up the sleeves, pop the collar, or button it all up—no matter which way you like wearing it, a crisp white shirt is another essential layer that adds instant style to everyday jeans or trousers. 


We aren’t talking about the ones you workout in – we mean these chic vegan leather leggings you can wear to brunch, a day of sightseeing, or a late-night dinner. Pair them with your basic long-sleeve top, blazer, sneakers – and you are set to go! 

Riding Boots

Boots are perfect when travelling, as they offer comfort and versatility. And we can’t go past these timeless black riding boots that can be worn with ease – adding extra warmth and polish to any outfit. 

Denim Shirt

This relaxed shirt has become a staple in everyone’s wardrobe as it’s the perfect transitional piece. And don’t think twice about wearing denim on denim- as the fashion world’s obsession with denim is at an all-time high. 

Lifestyle Sneakers

Every traveller needs a cool pair of sneakers that are practical, comfortable and chic. Paired with leggings or jeans – they can be worn on your way to the airport, for long days of sightseeing, and any casual outing.


Another must in our mix of travel staples is the classic blazer, which has become our ultimate layering tool. Throw it over anything and you will look sharp and sophisticated in a matter of seconds.


Versatile and flattering, a turtleneck is a must-have addition this time of year as not only does it keep you warm- but you can also easily dress it up, or style it casually for everyday wear.

Trench Coat

A classic trench instantly elevates any look and this water-repellent trench is ideal for those rainy days. Pop it on and stylishly make your way around town, ticking off all the must-visit spots on your list!

Leather Skirt

Easily wearable throughout your entire travels, a leather skirt adds a touch of luxury to your capsule wardrobe. We love pairing ours with a feminine shirt and ballet flats.

Mary Jane Flats

Blending comfort and style – Mary Janes are an eternal classic that you can wear sitting on a plane, walking around a busy departure lounge, or while enjoying an aperitivo with uninterrupted views of the Acropolis.

Main Image Courtesy of Zara 

Nara Camicie, Bringing Italian Designs to Athens Each Season

Italian fashion brand Nara Camicie is known for designing classic, high-quality shirts that are perfect to wear both day and night.

Paired easily with casual jeans for weekend brunching, or worn with a pencil skirt for a night out in the town- each elegant and stylish shirt is made using fine fabrics that last for many seasons.

Having introduced Athenians to Nara Camicie in 1988, since then the Patouras family has opened 6 stores throughout Athens and expanded its range to include other in-demand pieces including jackets, trousers, dresses, skirts and accessories.

We recently had a chat with Sales Manager Stefania Patouras, about the brand’s popularity in Greece, their new Autumn/Winter collection, as well as some of her favourite places to eat and drink in her home city of Athens.  

What made your family decide to bring Nara Camicie to Greece?

Nara has a long-standing presence in Greece, as it was my father’s vision that prompted him 37 years ago to believe in the idea of a one-product specialty store. In the case of Nara, this item happens to be the classic women’s and men’s shirts.

How would you describe Nara Camicie’s designs? 

The brand’s philosophy is to create comfortable, everyday modern shirts that can be worn during all moments of life- and which combined with other pieces, bring out an individual’s personality. Each season more than 200 exciting styles enrich our collections, following both fashion trends and timeless classic elegance.

Why do you think Nara has become so popular in Athens?

Our clients know that they can pop into any Nara store whether it’s in Kifissia, Kolonaki, Glyfada, or Piraeus and we will happily help them pick out pieces for their wardrobe that they can wear for years to come. What they love most, is that our collection can be worn throughout the day at work and it can also take them into the evening- whether it be on a date, or catching up with friends- knowing they will feel comfortable and confident with what they are wearing. 

What are some classic pieces for both women and men that you think should be a staple in everyone’s wardrobe? 

A simple white cotton shirt is an absolute must for every season! I also think a classic tailored jacket that can be worn casually with jeans and dressed up with a pair of nice pants or a dress is something everyone should invest in.  

What colours and designs are in for Fall/Winter ’23?

Bright pinks, blues and purples are dominating our collection this season, as is the always classic black and whites. Red is also very much a hot theme for 2023, as well as bell-bottom pants and double-breasted jackets. 

What are some of your favourite pieces from Nara Camicie’s collection? 

I’ve been living in our comfortable, white linen shirt throughout the entire summer – and I just love the iconic Mininare recycled leather bag that I can take everywhere with me. 

After work, where do you head for some good food and drinks? 

There are so many spots that I love, but mostly you will find me at Kuzina for the great food, cocktails and views of the Acropolis, Hytra for some fine dining and amazing atmosphere, Vezene is also one of my favourites – it’s a bistro-style restaurant that’s located in the city. Upupa Epops for a great cocktail and to unwind after a long day. Beefbar at Four Seasons in Athens Riviera is a gorgeous spot year-round, and for more seaside dining in Vouliagmeni I head to Akti and Krabo. Finally, if you are after some amazing seafood, I recommend Varoulko in Piraeus. 

Some of your favourite places for a weekend escape? 

We really are spoilt for choice and for a great weekend away from the city, we usually head to Sounio or Nafplio. And for close island getaways, I love Kea and Kythnos. 

Finally, what do you always pack with you when you travel?

My camera, a good mood and of course… my favourite linen shirt!  

Nara Camicie is available in-store and online at Nara Camicie 

Autumn Cultural Events on the Greek Islands 

Autumn Cultural Events on the Greek Islands

We’ve gathered a list of great cultural events taking place on the Greek islands during autumn – that shouldn’t be missed!

Perhaps a well-kept secret that few know about, is that the incredible summer vibe on the Greek islands does not end in August. On the contrary, the heart of many cultural events beats strongly on the Aegean during September, October and early November. Picturesque islands come alive, as locals and visitors join to celebrate a range of festivities!

First stop… the island of Rhodes
Insights Greece - Autumn Cultural Events on the Greek Islands 

Festival European Polyphony

The Old Town of Rhodes with its stone-paved alleys and elegant mansions is a listed World Heritage Site, and over the last 5 years, this wonderful place has hosted a festival dedicated to classical music, photography and cinema. The event was born after a long-term collaboration between the French organisation Arts Spontanés and Ars Artis, which has its headquarters in Rhodes. For fifteen consecutive days, the medieval city of Rhodes turns into a music and art workshop, giving the audience an opportunity to take part in numerous interactive music workshops and high-quality concerts featuring internationally renowned artists and musical ensembles.

When: 18th – 30th of September, 2023

Where: Rhodes

Entry: Free

Website: el.festivaleuropeanpolyphony

Over to the “Queen” of the Cyclades… Syros
Insights Greece - Autumn Cultural Events on the Greek Islands 


Ermoupoli, the main town of Syros is stately and grand; from the marble-paved squares in the port to the fairytale mansions in town- the diverse character of the island helps attract international artists every year as part of the ANIMASYROS International Animation Festival. It’s the largest of its kind in Greece and one of the largest in Europe. And from the 26th of September, a rich artistic program full of awarded animations, educational programs and parallel activities, such as exhibitions, concerts and parties will take place in Ermoupoli. Having in mind that Syros was the first place in Greece to hold a film screening in 1900, the festival takes on another significance – making the experience unique for animation-cinema lovers and not only.

When: 26th September – 1st October, 2023

Where: Syros


Discover… marble art on Tinos Island
Insights Greece - Autumn Cultural Events on the Greek Islands 

Yanoulis Halepas: The sculpture’s highest lesson

Tinos, the island of marble is home to great Greek sculptors whose admirable creations raised the island’s marble-carving tradition to new heights. One of them was renowned artist Yanoulis Halepas, who will now have some of his stunning pieces presented for the very first time at a major exhibition titled Yanoulis Halepas: the sculpture’s highest lesson. The exhibition brings together two significant sets of works by Yannoulis Halepas: the collection of the Cultural Foundation of Tinos and the collection of the Onassis Foundation. Curated by Alexandra Goulaki-Voutyras, it will give visitors the chance to view pieces from his first works through to his later sculptures that were produced in Athens.

When: 10th June- 16th October, 2023

Where: Cultural Foundation of Tinos (Chora, Tinos)


Melodies and music… also in Tinos
Insights Greece - Autumn Cultural Events on the Greek Islands 

Tinos World Music Festival 

Launched in 2013, this popular event has hosted over 100 musicians from Greece and abroad and each year draws more and more crowds from different parts of the world. Featuring unique concerts that aim to highlight instruments including the clarinet, violin, cello, bouzouki, oud, rabab and the sasz, the program will include a range of artists’ own compositions as well as traditional songs from the Greek, Turkish, Armenian and Arab world.

When: 3rd – 5th November, 2023

Where: Tinos


The other side of… Mykonos
Insights Greece - Autumn Cultural Events on the Greek Islands 

Mykonos Running Festival

Mykonos is renowned for its cosmopolitan lifestyle, intense nightlife, and vibrant beach clubs – and now it’s also attracting those seeking a wellbeing escape with a three-day program that’s spread out into three races- the Half Marathon Mykonos Gold, the 10km Mykonos Run and the 2.5km Mykonos Family Fun. There will also be a Kids Athletics program, a holistic retreat wellness event, a music concert and beach party, a local gastronomy festival, a guided tour of attractions and places of archaeological and religious interest, as well as various other events, which will turn the new festival into an incomparable autumn event of sports and culture.

When: 22nd – 24th of September, 2023

Where: Mykonos

Entry: Free


Keen athletes head to… Spetses
Insights Greece - Autumn Cultural Events on the Greek Islands 

Spetses Mini Marathon

Sitting in the heart of the Saronic Gulf, Spetses has a lot to offer in terms of beaches, sightseeing and activities. This international sporting event is taking place over three days and is aimed at runners who are both experienced and beginners, with a range of options for participants, including races of 5,10, and 25 km, and three swimming races of 1.5 km, 3 km, and 5 km, as well as fun events for children.

When: 29th September – 1st October, 2023

Where: Spetses

Entry: Free


Chat With Luxury Travel Expert Cleo Anderson

Cleo Anderson, a luxury travel expert, and the Principal and Founder of multi-award-winning PR agency The Anderson Group, recently landed her own travel show with LUXE.TV.

In less than a year since its premiere, the talented media personality has already won ‘Broadcast Media Host and Producer of the Year 2023’ for ‘Wanderluxe with Cleo Anderson’ at the Influential Businesswoman Awards.

From carefully sourcing the finest stays in the world – to place inside each impressive Oscar nominee gift bag, to finding unique ways to launch new products for high-end brands – no two days are the same for Cleo, who loves travelling the world and sharing her 5-star experiences. 

We recently had a chat with Cleo about luxury travel, her time filming LUXE.TV in Athens, as well as her favourite getaways. Read on to discover more. 

What have been some of your career highlights so far?

I feel that anyone who builds something of their own and sustains that over some time has managed to do something that many do not, so for me that is an overarching accomplishment. Lately, there have also been some really exciting highlights, including being hailed a luxury travel expert in Forbes in 2020, which was fantastic. Early on in my PR career, landing the UK contract to do the PR for Monte Carlo SBM’s 150th Anniversary was a career highlight, as they are such a revered brand in the hotel world. Being crowned the Luxury Travel Curator for The Oscar Nominee gift bag has been great, too, but landing my travel show with LUXE.TV – ‘Wanderluxe with Cleo Anderson’ – has been the pinnacle of my career to date and is a dream job – it’s something I have wanted to do for a while.

As owner of an award-winning luxury PR agency, what do you enjoy most about your work?

I love the variety in terms of the types of clients we work with; working with luxury hotels, I will often visit and stay to get a feel for what they have to offer. I have visited a myriad of places like Cambodia, Bali, Turkey, Vietnam, and Monaco on client visits, which has been great. We also work with some gorgeous luxury products; recently we worked with a standout luxury olive oil made in Greece, which we did a fantastic global PR campaign for. Whether it be working on a campaign for gourmet vegan chocolates or a boutique hotel in some remote place, no two days are the same, so it’s never boring.

Insights Greece - Chat With Luxury Travel Expert Cleo Anderson

When did your passion for travel begin?

In the early days, it was a trip I did with a group of friends and my sister – we went to Miami’s South Beach. That was my first transatlantic girl’s trip and that piqued my interest in world travel. Shortly after that, I went to Thailand with another group of friends, and it became a habit to visit new places when I was able. Once I started, I realised that I was born to travel the world.

In the year 2023, how would you define “Luxury Travel”?

People are travelling more than ever after being grounded for so long, and I believe that luxury travel is about the individualised, bespoke travel itinerary. For me, that’s what 2023 travel is all about following the pandemic.

What type of travel experiences do you think people are currently searching for?

I feel that it has given people a new perspective on life, and I think that people are looking to tick off their big bucket list trips. People want to live their lives more fully than before.

Insights Greece - Chat With Luxury Travel Expert Cleo Anderson

What have been a few standout hotels you’ve recently visited?

We work with a company in Germany that converts lighthouses into luxury boutique hotels – one such hotel in the Canary Islands, Spain is Faro Cumplida. That stay was fantastic, and the location is great. Al Sahel by Anantara in Abu Dhabi was also an enjoyable stay; Anantara is one of my favourite hotel brands, and Al Sahel, in particular, is a nature lover’s dream. The dwellings have a ‘glamping’ feel – luxury on the inside, with a gorgeous setting and a much-needed plunge pool for the heat. I have memories of sitting on the patio with my morning coffee and watching the wildlife -deer, peacocks, and more – stroll past me completely unfazed. It was beautiful.

On the Athenian Riviera, Dolce by Wyndham in Vravrona was a pleasant find. It’s a delightful family resort, but many people don’t know that it also has a handful of private villas with your own private butler, private pool and stunning sea views. I stayed there during filming, and we feature the villa on the show. It was a gorgeous stay. I also love the Four Seasons Astir Palace

One of your most memorable getaways?

I remember a stay at a hotel called Argos in Cappadocia; the location is like nowhere else on earth. The terrain is out of this world, and the landscape is incredible. In the mornings you can watch scores of hot air balloons rise into the sky and I loved going up in a hot air balloon myself one morning, with a champagne and strawberries breakfast laid out once we landed. It is a unique place and a must-see for anyone who loves travel.

Insights Greece - Chat With Luxury Travel Expert Cleo Anderson

Tell us more about your new travel series ‘Wanderluxe With Cleo Anderson’.

It’s a brand-new luxury travel show that premiered on LUXE.TV earlier this year, with 462 million subscribers in 65 countries. Each episode features different ways to enjoy luxury, from exclusive hotels and resorts to unique experiences in each location. The show is available to watch in Greece on Cosmote TV and Vodafone, as well as other channels. The cinematography is beautiful, and it’s a dream to film.

Your first series is based in Athens. Can you share some of your favourite experiences filming in the Greek capital?

We feature several gorgeous places, including a penthouse with Acropolis views. It was beautiful to wake up to that historical view in the morning after filming – I never get tired of it. Walking around Plaka and filming there was stunning; the Greek people were really hospitable and interested in what we were doing, so it was fun. We also enjoyed going out to sea – we wanted to highlight the things that people don’t seem to know about both Greece and Athens; being in Greece is not just about visiting the islands – the Athens Riviera also has a lot to offer and it’s so close to the city centre.

Insights Greece - Chat With Luxury Travel Expert Cleo Anderson

What are a few of your favourite Greek islands?

Visually, Santorini for me is the most elegant and beautiful island. I also enjoyed Mykonos – walks around the island are just lovely. In my teen years, I would visit Skiathos and Rhodes with my sister each year, so I’ve been coming to Greece for some time and know it pretty well. There are always more places to explore, which is what I love about Greece.

What do you always pack with you when travelling?

I always have my laptop so that I can keep up with work – it’s my portable office. A good face and body moisturiser is a must and is always in my bag. My portable speaker by Bose goes everywhere with me, especially if I’m going to be poolside. Vaseline for my lips is essential – the small tins with cocoa butter are perfect. I also switched from sugar to Stevia last year, so I always keep liquid Stevia in my bag for my coffee in the morning. When travelling I also make sure I have a chic bathing suit or two with me – in Athens, I really enjoyed swimming in the sea.

Finally, if you could go anywhere tomorrow, where would it be?

St Barth’s had been on my bucket list for so long and that’s where one of the next episodes was filmed. As I’m half Caribbean, I feel right at home there!

5 Greek Shoe Brands You Should Know 

If you are looking for a new pair of stilettos, slides, pumps, or mules, you are in the right place, as we’ve rounded up the best Greek shoe brands to shop for your next kicks!

From a few old favourites that we’ve loved for years to some new names offering the latest must-have designs, these are some of Greece’s leading shoe brands to get your hands (and feet) on.

Tsakiris Mallas 

One of the most well-established shoe brands in Greece, Tsakiris Mallas has been creating and selling his stylish designs since 1969. With a new collection for each season (depending on the time of year) you can choose from a wide range of classic strappy sandals or the latest must-have winter boots. There are 39 stores throughout Greece, a global online shop, and with the brand also stocked in 23 countries, it’s easy to pick up a pair (or two) anywhere you are!

W: tsakirismallas

Iride De Portu 

Meticulously curating every item, and keeping a close eye on the entire process from the design and production stages to manufacturing, it’s no surprise leading designer Iride De Portu’s handcrafted shoes are not only stunning to look at but also wonderful to wear! 

W: iridedeportu

The Workshop

Handcrafted in Greece, with 100% leather and fine quality fabrics, these are the kind of shoes you never want to take off! From classy wedges and flattering sandals that you can wear during the day, to striking stilettos and chic boots that are perfect for the evening, The Workshop has a shoe design to match every outfit! 

W: theworkshop

Kotsonas Shoes 

A family brand based in Athens, the Kotsonas’s have a philosophy of creating feminine and unique shoes that will be loved by anyone who wears them. Here you will find stunning tailor-made pumps, strappy sandals and peep-toe heels that are 100% handmade and custom-designed. 

W: kotsonasshoes

Femme Fanatique 

Having started designing tango shoes in 2014, since then the company has gradually expanded and is now creating a great range of made-to-wear evening shoes. All designs are entirely handmade with an exceptional fit, and the entire collection (with its soft vintage look) is carefully created to make a statement.

W: femmefanatique

Introducing Kear, Natural Greek Beauty Skincare 

Multi-award-winning brand Kear is known for its sustainable skincare range that is an ode to natural Greek beauty.

By embracing the use of authentic elements and scents, each product is made exclusively in Greece and features pure raw ingredients sourced from local producers. We recently had a chat with founder Ypatia Mitsatsou about what makes the brand unique, Kear’s best-selling products, and asked her to share her own beauty routine. 

Can you tell us a few ancient Greek beauty secrets that have influenced your products?

Ancient “kallos” – beauty in ancient Greek – is a holistic concept. It is not only about the outer appearance but mainly about the connection between mind, body and soul. Ancient Greeks believed that nothing and no one was separate and that everything was connected. Inner wellness is expressed with outer beauty. The common denominator is energy, which is what Kear wishes to express through its holistic skincare; the energy derived from the sun, the sea, nature and potent herbs. 

What are some of the key ingredients used? 

Kear uses only natural ingredients and we are committed to explicitly sourcing them from local producers or cooperatives around Greece. Our olive oil comes from a farm in the Peloponnese region, famous for its quality olive oil. Our beeswax comes from Crete and our herbs and essential oils from all around rural Greece. Although it is not an ingredient, even our packaging is produced in Greece!

Who do you have in mind when creating Kear products?

The women and men of ancient Greece respected the earth and used its produce for therapeutical and cosmetic purposes, gracefully and ethically. We are inspired by the simplicity of each woman who grows up in this wonderful place using pure products, made from the best raw materials. The woman “nurtured” by Greek elements; the sea, the sun, and its perpetual energy. She has a clean, pure beauty and an earthy freshness! 

What makes Kear unique?

First of all, “κέᾰρ” means heart in ancient Greek, but it is pronounced exactly like “care” in English. And as a brand, it has a real story to tell about ancient Greek beauty heritage. We adapted timeless formulas passed down to us by scholars and philosophers into conscientious products, to meet the needs of today’s fast-paced daily personal care routine. The result? Products that are natural, potent, safe, versatile and multifunctional. Not to mention non-toxic, cruelty-free, and long-lasting. With a comprehensive range, Kear has everything one needs for healthy, natural and glowing Grecian skin. Every product is carefully designed to embrace both its ancient roots and its modern presence. 

What are some of your best-sellers?

From the soap bar categories, the Exfoliating Herbal Soap is by far the best-selling soap we have. Loved by both women and men, it leaves your skin feeling so soft and velvety you will not believe it. If you use Hydrate Relax Body Oil afterward you will be amazed at how supple your skin will feel and how hydrated it will be.

From the face balms, AgeDefying is a best-seller as it is both an anti-aging balm and a moisturiser. Soothing Body Balm is a wonder in a jar, packed with the goodness of arnica extract which is a natural anti-inflammatory. And SofiLip Lip Balm is preferred for its soothing and hydrating properties. 

What do you highly recommend for glowing skin?

Kear face balms are one-pot wonders, as they provide a “mini-lift effect”! For glowing skin, the natural way, use AntiOxidant Face Balm with a high content of sea-buckthorn berries. Hippophae rhamnoides Oil (as this is its botanical name) is a rich source of rare fatty acids that regenerate and revive skin cells. It is rich in “beauty vitamin” C, which can reduce inflammation, boost collagen for plump, firm skin, and provide radiant skin! Lastly, it can also balance sebum production in oily skin.

And what would you use for aging skin?

We are very proud to have created a bespoke fusion of skin-beneficial nutrients that gives AgeDefying Face Balm its silky texture. Suitable for ages 35+ it is the ultimate anti-aging balm that is versatile and easy to use. Beeswax, calendula, and propolis soothe and regenerate the skin, reducing the appearance of wrinkles. Antioxidant superstars, extra virgin olive oil, sea-buckthorn berry, and grapeseed oil, fight free radical damage and promote moisture restoration. 

What does your daily beauty routine look like?

I always prefer soap bars to emulsion cleansers, so I wash my face with either Mastic Herbal Soap (especially when I wear makeup, as it is a fantastic makeup remover) or Sage Olive Leaf Herbal Soap if it tends to be more oily than usual; sage is known to regulate sebum production in oily and combination skins. Then I take just a pinch (or pea-size) amount of my favourite face balm, rub it on my palms to liquefy it, and I apply it on my face and neck. I wait a couple of minutes and then I apply either makeup or blush. Simple as that. 

Ideally, I rotate the face balms morning and night: AntiOxidant Face Balm with sea buckthorn to protect against free radicals in the morning, and AgeDefying Face Balm with sea buckthorn, calendula, propolis and red grape to prevent fine lines and wrinkles in the evening when our body enters restoration mode.

And at nighttime, I never forget to apply our SofiLip Lip Balm. In the morning my skin is velvety and my lips are soft, supple and so moisturised. I also use SofiLip as a base, under my regular lip gloss or lipstick. 

What do you always pack in your beauty travel bag?

Although I love to travel light, my beauty bag has all the essentials to keep my skin hydrated, nourished and protected. A soap bar to use as a face cleanser, and Kear travel minis; a versatile face balm to use day and night, a body balm (usually Soothing Body Balm to deal with any unnecessary accidents), and Hydrate Relax Body Oil to use as a body moisturiser. As my lips tend to become dehydrated and chapped easily, I always carry one SofiLip; I love cinnamon!

Lastly, can you tell us a few of your favourite places to travel to around Greece, for both work and play?

I try to combine work and play and visit places that have unique energy as well as flora. One of my favourite places is the Zagori region in Epirus, home to a large variety of herbs. It is one of the most beautiful and rich ecosystems in Europe. The energy it emits is magnificent, as each season has something else to offer! You feel as if you open the door to a wonderland!

And now, off to the islands of the Aegean to get some sea air! Using Paros island as my base, where my brother and his family live, we embark upon day sea excursions to forgotten beaches and small islands far away from the crowds. 

Still, this land has so much to offer that I wish I could have the time to travel all around Greece to receive the energy of each place!