Wednesday, 30 November 2011

Cranberry and brown and!

Jacket: vintage late 40's, early 50s swing jacket, Vintage fair in Liverpool
Brown polo neck: Primark?
Brown wide belt: Rackham's
Cranberry twirly scarf: gift
Pink skirt: charity shop
Cranberry boots: Ethel Austin
Not shown: cranberry tights

Can you wear pink in winter?  Not sure if it's allowed!  Anyway, I enjoyed this colour combination, and if the Fashion Police want to arrest me, let them come and get me.  I took this photo of the clothes on their own, as my hair was a fright that day.

Monday, 28 November 2011

Carol singing in Victorian costume

Sorry that this is such a dark photo, but it is taken at night!  We are carol singing, dressed in Victorian costume to celebrate the start of the Christmas season for our local retailers.  There were a group of about 12 of us, and we did three sets of carols, standing outside the Wheatsheaf pub.  I felt very Dickensian!!  Fortunately, it was a beautiful night-- very calm and still and actually quite warm (for November, at any rate.) I was grateful for that, as my hat wants to go flying at the slightest puff of wind.

Naturally we had a few drinks between sets.  You have to lubricate the vocal chords.

The Victorians meet the Darlek. Is it Dr. Who???

  Yes, it doesn't just look like a Darlek, it IS a Darlek.  Are we in a Dr. Who film?  No, Gorgeous Husband and I are at a friend's 40th wedding anniversary party and her son is mad on Darleks.  So, of course, we had to have a photo with the beast.  Contraption?  Creature?  Special Effect?  Whatever, it is, we do look like we're in an episode of Dr. Who!

The party was fun and enjoyable, but interestingly, we found walking the streets dressed as Victorians even more entertaining, as we were stopped three times by strangers to tell us how dashing we looked. 

The anniversary party was held in the Lion Hotel in Shrewsbury, where Darwin caught the London stage coach on his way to sea, and also where he stayed on his return.  How historic!  So either Gorgeous Husband was Darwin, or he could have been Charles Dickens, who also did a reading at this very same Lion Hotel.  This history lark is really heady stuff for someone such as me,  born in Canada.

Monday, 21 November 2011

Remembrance Day 2011

It's not Remembrance Day anymore but none the less, here I am on my way to the church service in Clive on Sunday, November 13.  I know the church will be packed, as it is on Remembrance Sunday most years.  In fact, as the years go on, it seems people are more willing and more "in tune" with paying respect to the sacrifice of those who have died.  Probably because now there are more recent wars to sharpen people's memories of  the great loss when a service man or woman doesn't come back.

Now there are photos in the paper of Cameron from Britain and Merkel from Germany with their heads together, both literally and figuratively.  How things change.  What was once the gravest enemy is now a nation that we trade with, communicate with, and work with solve common problems.  How the world turns!

Tuesday, 8 November 2011

Church in Bampton, filming for Downton Abbey

Downton Abbey fans may recognise this church as the one used in the final episode of Downton Abbey where they had the funeral of Matthew's fiance Lavina.  It is quite a small church, and the churchyard has two very large grooves in it.  One is a "channel" that leads up to the front door, the other channel seems to go to where a door used to be.  The ground is highly mounded up on either side, which is quite unusual and makes some of the gravestones tilt at an angle.

Second location for filming of Downton Abbey

Couldn't resist a photo in front of this house with my name in the village of Bampton.  This village is where some of the filming for Downton Abbey took place.  We visited the church, walked along the lovely lanes, and saw the sign of the "pretend" Grantham Arms, which is permanently left up. 

I'm not sure the hat and outfit is strictly speaking truly Edwardian, but it certainly was adequate for the day, and helped to "get into character."  It certainly raised eyebrows at the motorway service stops enroute to the locations.

Day out at Downton Abbey

Here I am, along with Gorgeous Husband, outside Highclere Castle, the filming site for the Downton Abbey series.  Sorry about the people in the background: they are part of the Australian film crew who were filming us for an Australian TV series.  Apparently it is a serious hit "down under"!

Highclere was actually closed for the season, and was open only by special appointment made on behalf of the Australian film crew.  That is why myself and the rest of the folks on the coach tour, organised by Helen Porter of P and P Tours were dressed in Edwardian costumes.  We got to "play" Lord and Lady for the day!  It really was my "cup of tea": a big house with servants.  Maybe it was me in a past life?!

We watched the final episode of Downton not only following the plot and watching the sumptuous costumes, but also nudging each other, and saying, "that is the staircase where we were filmed.  I remember that fireplace!  There's the hallway that Bates and Anna met up.  And the scene in the entrance where Matthew and Mary had their romantic dance!  Wow!  We had tea there, whilst being interviewed by the host of the Australian TV programme.

Also loved seeing the Egyptian exhibition in the basement of Highclere, as it was Lord Carnarvon who financed the expedition that discovered the tomb of Tutankhamen.  Fantastic artefacts, some of them real, and some replicas from King Tut's tomb.  And we were the only ones there, so could easily pore over the cases and be entralled.  We were only restricted by time, not by hoards of other Egyptian fanciers!

Unfortunately, we were not allowed to take photographs inside the house, which I thought was a real shame, as it was a 10 out of 10 in the gorgeousness scale.