Sew and Strum

around the World with Rich and Anniek

Strumming and Sewing

Rich and Anniek are travelling around the world with an acoustic guitar and a sewing kit! Rich is a keen guitarist and would like to spend a year playing as much guitar as possible, improving his technique and learning about new styles of music and rhythms. Anniek is obsessed with fabrics, patterns and textures and can't wait to explore foreign fabric markets to find unique pieces of material to make into clothes. Through this we hope to meet like minded people, visit unusual places, learn about other cultures, share experiences and be inspired!  All this and more while on our year long honeymoon around the world! You can read about our experiences in our blogs by clicking on the buttons above. And we would love to hear from you, so do leave a message!


So far we travelled through parts of Kenya, Ethiopia, Uganda, Rwanda, Tanzania, Oman, India, Indonesia, Japan, Mongolia and Brazil. Before we go home we hope to explore parts of Bolivia, Chili and Peru.

Our Travel Stories

Into the Andes

September 27, 2015
After our lazy days on Brazil's tropical beaches, steaming rainforests of the Amazon, and plenty of culture in Rio, we flew to Bolivia, a country that has been on top of our wish list for many years.
Bolivia has the highest proportion of indigenous people in its population in South America and is also the first country to have a Native American president, Mr Evo Morales. After the heavily European-influenced culture of Brazil it was refreshing to visit villages where the traditional Andean way of life is still evident. Both in the country and in the cities, many people continue to…

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All good things must come to an end, but...

September 18, 2015
It will be a shock to no longer wake up to blue skies, sunshine, warm seas, palmtrees, coconuts, wearing flipflops, shorts and t-shirts, after a 15 month long summer.
We are less exited about rain, grey clouds, dark and cold winter months in Europe. But we can't wait for Spring!
We will miss living without posessions, knowing that you can be happy with very few material things, not needing anything, apart from what's in our backpacks (and even half of that is pretty useless most of the time), not caring about what other people may think of us crazy (bearded-Rich) hippies,…

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Feeling chilly in Chile! (Atacama Desert)

September 4, 2015

From southern Bolivia, we plunged down into Chile, where we have been blown away by the beauty of the Atacama Desert! This means we have now been to the driest and wettest (town in northern India) places on earth. Definitely more impressed by the dry!

After being stuck in a 4wd for the past few days, we were happy to find we could explore the beautiful mountains surrounding the town of San Pedro de Atacama by bike! All these extreme rides were appropriately named Valle de la Luna (valley of the moon), Valle de la Muerte (death valley), Piedra del Coyote (coyote rock) and Garganta del Diablo…

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Os verses dos Amazones (by Rich)

August 20, 2015

A sea of green on a sea of black
Floating forest to the horizon and back
Ferns and orchids, shades of green
The biggest trees you've ever seen
Drifting under the draping vines
Searching for sloths or whatever we find
Butterflies making their haphazard way
Accross the ripples to another glade
Cormorants dive as parrots natter
Howler monkeys join the chatter 
Piranha fishing in our canoe
Having just been swimming, before we knew!
Floating houses, churches, schools
On the water like scattered jewels
Slinging hammocks over trees
Swinging gently in …

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Beach Bumming in Brazil

August 4, 2015
(definition of 'beach bumming': sitting around on the beach doing a whole lot of nothing)
There are many beautiful beaches around the North East coast of Brazil and we have taken the time to slow down and explore them. We have been moving from village to village, using it as an opportunity to restore the mind and body - doing lots of water sports and yoga, and pausing to digest our experiences over the last 10 months. There's a lot to, dare I say it, process and reflect on!

Not much sewing or strumming has been going on though.... Rich left his guitar behind in Holland, as frankly, it …

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Connecting with nature in Mongolia

July 2, 2015

Mongolia is the least densely populated country in the world, and outside Ulaanbataar, the capital, most people continue to follow a nomadic lifestyle. As we travelled around the country's vast landscapes, spending the night with nomad families, we felt a real connection with the natural world that made our experience in Mongolia truly amazing.

All well as the people and culture, Mongolia's beauty lies in its huge natural landscapes. It's one of the few places in the world where you can drive for days barely seeing any signs of human habitation. No buildings, no fields of crops, no fences, …

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Only in Japan

June 18, 2015
Here are a few things we like to share with you about the weird and wonderful culture of Japan:
Only in Japan:
You can experience heated toilet seats. In fact, you often get a toilet seat with a whole control panel, including a' music' option if you're worried about making too much noise, different pressure washer buttons and built in air freshner. In public wc's you often find hilarious signs explaining precisely how to use the toilet.
Parking attendants and traffic control police swing about real light sabres. How could you possibly direct traffic without a long illuminated…

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Indonesia - Top of the stops!

May 17, 2015
...and straight in at 
#1 Indonesia (it's sure to please ya!), by Panniek and the Riches
#2 (am) The time to get up and start climbing the Ijen volcano to see it's unique blue fire! 
#3 (years) The length of the total process to make an Ikat, a traditional woven sarong worn by both men and women, starting with cotton plants and natural indigo and turmeric dyes, and finishing with hand weaving (see more of the process here )
#4 (religions) Indonesia gave us a great view of how culture, tradition and …

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Himalayan Highlights

May 7, 2015

Our time spent at the Bethany Society in Shillong was very special, and an experience we won't forget. The kindness, cheerfulness and tenacity of the kids and staff really touched us, and their spirit and energy to make the best of every situation was infectious. To celebrate Easter they played 'musical chairs' (stoelendans), and we were curious to see how that would work out as 1/3 of the kids couldn't see the chairs as they were blind, 1/3 couldn't hear the music (deaf) and the others had physical disabilities, which made running around the chairs rather challenging. It was amazing to se…

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