Monday, 25 August 2014

Bank holiday

It's Bank Holiday Monday and as is traditional it's tipping down with rain! Never worry, we've had a lovely weekend being out and about. Today, for Patti's Visible Monday I'm happy to be skulking about indoors in comfortable old clothes.
The skirt is Liberty wool and started life with fine pleats. I bought it in a market sale and I think I paid about £5 for it. I washed it when I got home and, of course, all the pleats dropped out! I've got some shapeless but comfortable old black leggings on underneath. The black jumper is a Fenn Wright and Manson hand-me-down from elder daughter worn with an equally ancient fabric belt. The peep-toes are another fiver from George at Asda - it's a very cheap and cheerful day!
I'm wearing a coral necklace with matching stud earrings, a bright red that is described as 'shipwreck coral', rather suitable for such a wet day!
But Saturday and Sunday were mainly dry. We had a saunter round the shops, calling in at the ever fascinating 'Vintage to Vogue',
which is a treasure trove of vintage clothing and accessories with delightful and informative owners.
At the kitchen shop I bought a dainty clip-on timer. I've been searching for ages and am ridiculously pleased to have tracked one down.
After that success we went to the Fine Cheese Company for a light lunch.
Crab salad.
And because we'd left Himself at home we made a selection of English cheeses to take back for the evening meal. They have such a great choice. And I love the names!
We choose three different varieties - one had to be goat, and some delicious savoury biscuits.
We should all have dreamed ferociously that night - but we didn't!

Tuesday, 19 August 2014

At the Fashion Museum: The Great War in Costume.

I've been to the Assembly Rooms in Bath. My last visit was a nostalgia trip to look at the Laura Ashley dress styles that I used to trip about in back in the day. But this time I went to see an exhibition of the type of clothing worn during the First World War. The first outfit to greet me was that of a suffragette.
It is easy to take for granted the freedoms that women now enjoy and to forget the frustrations and disempowerment that women of all classes experienced prior to the First World War.
I was fascinated to read about the reasoning behind their choice of clothing.
Fancy trying to be argumentative and disruptive in that hat!
When war was announced the suffragettes made a decision to stop campaigning and instead to put all their efforts into aiding the war effort.
Large hats with ostrich feathers gave way to practical outfits for whichever type of work they chose to do.

 But they all had rather enviable leather boots!

The Women's Auxiliary Corp. 

The Land Army.

The poster advertising for women to work in the munitions factories shows a clean, fresh-faced young woman. The reality of this work was very different. They were called 'canaries' not because they sang at work but because their skin became stained yellow from the TNT in the shells.
And you can imagine what that did to their health.

No elaborate corsetry was needed under such practical clothing.

Phew, that's more comfortable!
The central display was given over to clothing made for the 'Downton Abbey' series of the Great War period. These outfits were all beautifully made. Years ago I saw an exhibition of costumes made for the television series of Elizabeth the First. Those clothes were made up of bits of paper doily sprayed with gold paint. Nothing so shabby for Downton!
No expense spared!

 I wonder what her ladyship would think of today's fashions!
Looking at the costume for Lady Edith Crawley I have to say that the actress Laura Carmichael has the most enviable figure!

Lovely attention to detail.

What a fascinating way to spend a rainy afternoon!
Thank you to Bath and North East Somerset Council for such an excellent exhibition.

Monday, 11 August 2014

Monday link-up

I'm linking up with Patti at Not Dead Yet Style to show you my latest purchase. This was supposed to be a year of buying no clothing but a few exceptions have been made and on Saturday a new sunhat became one of them. (It's been raining ever since!) I've had my old cotton sunhat hat for so many years that the colour has faded to a rather useful 'no' shade that goes with anything. It's 100% cotton and can be crammed into a pocket without difficulty. If you look inside you can see that it started out a muted pink.
The new hat, a fair-trade product, is similarly made but with a bigger brim (I'll need larger pockets!) and a much bolder colour, although I imagine that it also will fade over time.
This is how the old one looks.
And here's the new version.
I'm wearing a Boden linen shirtdress today, a sale purchase from a year or so ago, with an amber necklace, a present from Russia from my elder daughter.
Come on, sunshine, I'm ready for you!