22 April 2011

Cecil's Aunt Jessie-with all the frills


Cecil Beaton is a favorite.

I have dabbled in designing overpriced, over sized correspondence cards in the past few years with great results. My nerves were soothed- therapy akin to adult coloring .

The concept- gathering the materials, the words and putting them together in a pleasing way within a small space and hope they say something.

Here are the results of one favorite card from Cecil Beaton's book My Bolivian Aunt, the tale of Beaton's Aunt Jessie and her hat.

Cecil Beaton's Aunt Jessie~
(from the book)

the Beaton card, COVER, a vintage French millinery plume & tag with trims laid on a Cole and Son flocked paper

and the words by Beaton:

The women who leaned over my crib had not yet forgone
the lines of the hourglass and were laced into corsets
that gave them pouter-pigeon bosoms and protruding
Perched on their heads, and elevated by a little roll
just inside the crown, were hats which had grown as
frivolous as the milliner’s trade could make them-
enormous galleons of grey velvet with vast grey plumes
of ostrich feathers sweeping upwards and outwards,
or they would be trimmed with artificial flowers
and fruit.
One of the most flamboyant and generous
exponents of the prevailing styles and modes was my
godmother, Aunt Jessie, Who was the first woman
of fashion that I ever knew.
During here lifetime, and especially
the first half of it, she was an ardent
devotee of fashion, scurrying to keep up with the
latest hats from Paris, much as the Red Queen
raced across the squares of Lewis Carroll’s chessboard

Aunt Jessie with other pouter pigeons~( from My Bolivian Aunt)

post cards in my collection from the period~

& a LAST WORD: the Best Design Advice of Recent Note
from Alexis Hampton in February's 2009 House Beautiful. Christine Pittel asked 101 Designers-for a Makeover idea the home... So you want to do something right now?...

Hampton advice " Take a nap. When you wake up, everything will seem much nicer."

I agree- a nap can renew your senses and recharge your creative batteries.

a small little reminder inside the Beaton card

inside the card

night night.

1 comment:

  1. How wonderful that you make cards Gaye! You are so right, it is akin to 'adult coloring', I love that! YOur card is beautiful by the way and very thoughtful...the creativity abounded!
    Nice to learn about aunt Jessie too...I am actually called that by several young ones, though I'm sorely missing the extravagant hat to go along with such a title. ;)
    Have a wonderful Easter...
    xo J~



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