Sorrento is a lovely city which serves as an excellent hub and gateway to the Amalfi Coast. The shopping can entertain me for the entire day, and I can get lost in the tiny alleys that branch off from Via San Cesareo, the narrow passageway and main shopping street in Sorrento. Filled with artisan shops and outdoor kiosks, this narrow shopper’s haven teems with life all day and evening, except for a few hours in the afternoon when much of Italy pretty much shuts down. Handmade local products such as limoncello, leather crafts, ceramics, silk scarves, and more entice me as I enjoy the time browsing alone with no deadline.
On my first trip there, I had hoped to find a wooden music box crafted by hand using a special technique known as intarsia. This unique artistry is a method of creating an intricate design with a mosaic of wooden pieces and is a true art form that requires exceptional skill.
This beautiful video of the wood inlay process is from Roberto and Franco, artisans at Stinga Tarsia. In their own words, “our family is in its third generation of cabinetmakers, and today we continue to produce by hand prized inlaid objects using ancient techniques that respect our tradition.”
On that first trip, much to my delight, I encounter a shop that sells these inlaid wood boxes, and since the price is right, I purchase three of them, one for myself, and the other two for my three-year-old twin granddaughters.
The cool thing is that next spring, I’m bringing my granddaughters, who will be 18 then (Yes, time flies!) and we are going to Sorrento, where I hope they can meet one of these intarsia artisans, like I did fifteen years ago. This time I’m hoping to visit Roberto and Franco at Stinga Tarsia. I’m excited. We have made a few plans already, which you can read about in a recent blog post, Italy Travel with Teens.
Parts of the above are excerpts from My Amalfi Coast Love Affair, a travel memoir, available in paperback, kindle, and audiobook, and is consistently my best-selling book. Grazie to everyone who has purchased it and told their friends about it!
You can check it out here: My Amalfi Coast Love Affair.
More to come, so stay tuned.
Grazie and Ciao.
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