Thursday, 29 December 2011

Christmas at the 1940s House

In 2001 Channel 4 aired a programme entitled 'The 1940s House'. It was a reality tv show where a family lived in a 1940s style house and tried to live a 1940s life, for 3 months, to see if they could really find out what life was like during WW2.  It was a very interesting programme and I definitely recommend it (you can buy the dvd on Amazon). When the "experiment" ended, all the contents was taken to the Imperial War Museum. As part of the 'Children at War' exhibition, a replica of the 1940s house was built inside the museum and the contents of the original house was placed in the new replica. The exhibition was only meant to be up for a few months, but it was so popular that 10 years have past and it is still there. But sadly the museum have decided to take it down early in the new year. About 3 weeks ago I suddenly realised that I had never been to see the exhibit, so I promptly decided to go.

Well it was fabulous and if you haven't been and are in London during the next 2 days (it is closing on 2nd January) then you should definitely go.  As an added excitement it has been decorated with 1940s style Christmas decorations as a last hurrah.

Well here are a few photos. Sadly my camera was acting up again (it seems to happen more often then not at the moment :( ) so most of the photos are a bit blurry.

The Sitting Room

another view of the Sitting Room

the ceiling decoration in the Sitting Room

Food out for Father Christmas and his reindeer. :) 

There were ropes across the doorways to each room to prevent you from entering them and touching anything. When I was walking round, taking countless photos, a security guard came up to me and mentioned that it was unusual to find someone who was obviously really interested in the exhibit (Really sad if that is true!). After chatting for a while, about the 1940s, he said that, if I wanted to, I could quickly go under the rope across the Sitting Room doorway and that he could take my photo in the room!!!

Here is the photo - a pretty hideous photo of me, but I was so excited to be able to sit on the actual sofa that appeared in the programme. :) Pitty I wasn't wearing 1940s clothes!

The kitchen

Another view of the kitchen.

Ceiling decorations in the Dining Room

The Dining Room

The exterior of the house, all covered in snow :) It was rather hard to take a photo of the outside of the house as it was in a rather tight space. Hence the angle of the photo, making it look like I took it whilst lying on the floor!!

The front of the house

I didn't take any photos of the upstairs rooms as there were quite a few people walking around so I couldn't get any photos of the rooms without anyone in them. 

Saturday, 24 December 2011

Wishing you all a very Merry Christmas

I am crazy about Christmas. I just LOVE it from the decorations and carol services, to the music and the gathering of family and friends.

I was going to post some photos of my decorations but, as usual, the run up to Christmas has zoomed by and now I am in the countryside staying with my aunt until after Christmas. But I might post a few when I get home :).

Anyway I just wanted to wish everyone a very Merry Christmas, Happy Hanukkah and Happy Holidays. :)

Tuesday, 13 December 2011

Victorian Christmas Ball

A week after my night of clumsiness at the Regency ball, I went to a Victorian Ball. It is held every year in December by my 19th century dance group but this was the first time I attended. I was very excited about going, as it would be my first chance to wear victorian clothing, so I was really hoping that my ankle would be healed by then. Sadly it only properly healed about a week ago, but by magic it managed to hold out for the whole ball - it was painful but not too painful to dance nearly every dance :). I had a fabulous evening. :) 

Some of the photos are a bit blurry and my camera was having one of its tantrums!! 

The ballroom with everyone dancing 

I just loved looking at everyone's gowns. :)

Me with my crazy suntan!!  My beautiful ball gown (yes I absolutely love it. And for the first time at a ball I thought I had the prettiest gown!! :) Arrogant I know but it's so pretty. :) ) 
I had to have it made in America as I couldn't find anywhere in England that made a Victorian gown. Normally I try to avoid buying clothing from abroad as the customs charge in this country is so outrageously expensive.  But this gown was worth the charge. It was made by Atlanta of  The Story of a Seamstress (she has a lovely etsy store called Bonny Blue). I sent her an image of the gorgeous blue gown worn by Edith in 'North and South' 04, and one of the blue gown worn by Bella Wilfer in 'Our Mutual Friend', and said I wanted a gown like them but as a ball gown. They are too of my favourite gowns, but they both happen to be day gowns. Despite this, Atlanta still managed to come up with a gorgeous gown which is beautifully simple and my dream ball gown. :)

Me with my friend Suzy

The majority of people were wearing mid-Victorian gowns but a few were wearing Regency...

... and some were wearing 1830s, like this beautiful red gown.

And me again with another friend, Sandra. I always smile when having my photo taken but in so many photos I seem to look really unhappy - strange!! 

It was such an experience wearing a crinoline - sitting down was interesting!! :) I also had great fun swirling around in it - it's such a bizarre experience! :)

The whole evening was wonderful and I can't wait for another Victorian Ball. Anyone in England feel like holding one?? :)

Regency Ball in Camden

At the end of November I attended a Regency ball in Camden. It had the potential to be a lovely ball, but after the 4th dance I managed to be my rather clumsy self and  fall down a step (admittedly it was quite a large one)!!!! I landed flat on my face and sprained my ankle. Rather stupid of me, but least I got to dance a couple of dances before. Despite me having to go home early, I managed to take a few photos so thought I would share them.

Here I am, at the beginning of the ball, with a friend from my 19th century dance club. We had to wear tiaras as it was meant to be a royal ball (the Prince Regent was in attendance) - mine looked awful on me. It didn't help that my face was bright red from sunburn!! 


More dancing

and more

at last but not least even more dancing. These are all the photos I managed to take before I decided to go flying down the stairs!!! :)

Saturday, 10 December 2011

Historic Salta, Argentina

We did quite a bit of travelling around Argentina, which meant that it was far from a relaxing holiday!! One city that we stopped at for a couple of days was Salta, a very busy but lovely little city with some wonderful old buildings. Here are a few to peruse :) :

Iglesia y Convento San Francisco


Beautiful dome ceiling

Iglesia Catedral

Beautiful ceiling

Amazing alter

Building in  Plaza 9 de Julio

Museo Casa Uriburu - An 18th century house

We weren't allowed to take photos in this museum, so my photos were taken in a hurry so aren't amazing.

Some beautiful fans and headdresses that were worn by 18th and 19th century Argentinian women. One of them is enormous!!

The rooms weren't really set up as how they would have been in the 18th century. It was definitely more like a museum of historical home furnishings - hence the Victorian sofa.

A pretty building . The ground floor is a cafe.

Casa de Gobierno - beautiful french-inspired building.

Cabildo de Salta

I loved these! They are so cute and funny :). This was another museum where photos were forbidden. :( so these photos could definitely have been better.

The lovely sweeping balcony on the 1st floor - this museum used to be a private residence.

A sneaky photo of a beautiful 18th century waistcoat - sadly I didn't have enough time to take any close-ups

wonderful painted chair

I love the detail on the headboard

19th century chair and prayer stool in one!

Seriously decorated sink

This was the photo that got me in trouble. I thought it was too pretty not to capture, but as I did so I was caught and strictly told off by one of the museum's employees. She kept a beady eye on me for the rest of the time I spent in the museum, so sadly I could take anymore photos. :(