Saturday, March 26, 2016

My Easter Gift To You

Easter is early this year.  
The reason is odd to me - something to do with the first Sunday 
after the first full moon after the Spring Equinox.  
And then you have to decide whether to go with 
the astronomical full moon or the ecclesiastical full moon.  

Rather than wade through all that, I look around for big juicy beds of these:

And then I sniff the air to see if I can smell Easter...
it smells like buttercups, organdy dresses, and the inside of a church.

I hear refrains of "He Arose, He Arose, Hallelujah, Christ Arose!"

But then there is something deeper than sight, smell, and sound 
that comes to me every year about this time.  
Something primeval that stirs in me and has to do with 
dirt and stones, creation and windy solitude.  

This year, I found it in the artist Lotte Glob, a Danish Ceramicist 
who lives in the wild Highlands of Scotland, off the Wee Mad Road.

Here is her ceramic
Book of Bones.

And her Book of the Sea.

Her studio sits on about 14 acres of wild hillside, overlooking Loch Shin.

Here is another photo, taken by Steven Fallon, with daisies instead of buttercups...
I'll bet it was taken around Easter time.

Go and wander through her artwork and methods.
She's about as close to primeval creation as it gets.

And that is my Easter gift to you. 

Tuesday, March 8, 2016

Lessons on Beauty From Downton Abbey

The final episode of Downton Abbey has aired in the US, and like millions of others, I am mourning the end of this beautiful show.  It has been such a fabulous feast for the eyes, 
that I almost didn't care about the story lines.  
Well, almost.

One of the things I loved most about the series was the fabulous clothing that both women and men wore,
and the way they wore them.  

Especially the way 
they wore them.

In this stunning ensemble,
Edith gives us 

Lesson number one:

Stand Up Straight,
Own Your Look.

In other words,
be utterly aware of 
how you look,
top to bottom, 
front and back,
and flip yourself a tiny smile
 when you catch a glimpse of  yourself in the mirror.

Edith wore her clothes beautifully, moving through the scenes looking as though she was utterly comfortable with her layered outfits, jewelry, and of course those gloves.  
She probably wears tattered jeans at home, 
but she wore these dressy clothes like they were her skin.
And she looked absolutely stunning.

Beauty lesson number two:

If you aren't slender 
as a reed

and who is, these days?

Stand Up Straight
Wear Clothes That Are
Slightly and Properly Fitted.

If you put the Dowager into the outfit that Edith has on above, she would look 
like a tent with feet.  

Loose and shapeless tops don't slenderize.  Nope.  What they actually do is add bulk
to your profile and you look even
bigger than you are.

The Dowager's jacket is loaded 
with couture details 
which can also add bulk,
but she gets away with it because
from top to bottom,
she is dressed 
all in the same color palette.

Oldest trick in the book to create
a slender, vertical line.

Lesson number three:

Stand up and sit up straight, 
lift your head up and away from your shoulders,
and smile from your heart.

No one can resist a smile that reaches your eyes.

Bidding a fond farewell to Downton Abbey;
I am much enriched with the history you portrayed so beautifully.

Now if I could just get my hands on a few of those outfits...


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