Wednesday, April 22, 2009

Courtly Pomp and Easter Crowns

As I struggle to scale Mount Laundry and re-enter my life here in Baltimore, I wish I could say I had my finished BJP to show you today. Alas, it is not complete.

But, I simply must share some wonderful links and news and some pics of a book that arrived while I was away.

If we could only get ourselves to Versailles before June 28! There, we would be able to see over 200 pieces, borrowed from all over the world, showcasing the fashions worn in the courts of Europe from 1650-1800 in the current exhibition, Court Pomp and Royal Ceremonies. Oh, my friends, the embroidery, the goldwork, the extravagance! It's another fabulous embroidery exhibit in two months! Unfortunately, I won't be able to travel to this one.

Since I won't be making it to Versailles (unless someone out there has a free ticket they want to share?), I ordered the exhibition book from the French Amazon website -- and it was well worth it! I wish I could show you everything but here are a few pictures to whet your appetite...


And here are two pictures of an embroidered waistcoast that my sister and I saw in a French flea market when we were there in 2005... If I'd only had the $4,800 to buy it at the time...


I first learned about this exhibit through the wonderful blog of Ingrid Mida, Fashion is My Muse. She posted today about Lace in 18th century France and will be posting about lace all week long. I loved this post on the Wardrobe of Queen Maud of Norway! She loves embroidery and fashion, and her book blog, Blog of a Bookworm, is a treat. Check out this review of 18th Century Embroidery Techniques.

It all literally makes me swoon. If you have enjoyed today's post as well as my other post on modern haute couture embroidery, you might enjoy the French movie, Sequins, with English subtitles. It's a sweet story of a 17-year old French girl whose passion is embroidery; she finds herself pregnant and alone and seeks out employment with a professional embroiderer who has stitched for the big French designers such as Chanel and Christian LaCroix. It's a simple story of the strength of human relationships and most of the "action" takes place over the embroidery frame. Now that's my type of action!

Also, remember when I posted about Aretha Franklin's hat at President Obama's inauguration and I shared the book, Crowns: Portraits of Black Women in Church Hats? Well, for Easter, the Los Angeles Times ran this story...A Congregation of Splendid Hats which touts that hat culture is alive and well in America's black churches. But the best part of all, is the images in the photo gallery -- take some time to view all of these hats and the queens who are wearing them... they are sure to make you smile.


I found out the article through Elaine Lipson's blog, Red Thread Studio -- another beautiful and informative read on slow cloth, textiles, art and culture.

Here's to finding your own crown and courtly pomp! Enjoy the day!

9 comments:

Heather J. said...

LOVE the hat photos! My mom always dressed my sister and I in hats when we were younger, and we kept it up through high school. Most weddings we attended - or special church events - found us in big, gorgeous hats. I really miss that ... maybe I'll have to find some to wear now. I think you've inspired me!

But wait, where do you BUY hats nowadays?! I've never seen them in the stores, at least not many of them ...

Carol said...

Nice post. CBS morning news had a segment last Sunday on the oriental engineer (I think he was an engineer, but some profession like that) turned hat designer. He was the one that made the hat that Aretha wore to the inaugeration. You can sure find hats if you want them, Heather J. Look in the ethnic neighborhoods for shops. There are several fashion catalogs that sell them also.

Actually, I wear a hat quite often, but mostly casual brimmed hats. Being raised Catholic in an era when women wore hats to church gave me my love of hats.

Isn't the french embroidery beautiful! Amazing workmanship.

Marty52 said...

Wow... the eye candy in this post is overwhelming, Susan. I'll have to come back and follow all the links when I have time to really soak it all in. Great post!

Allison Ann Aller said...

These images from France are flat out amazing!!!

Balwearie said...

Swoon indeed! Those coats bring to mind one of my favourite Beatrix Potter books -- "The Tailor of Gloucester".

Judy S. said...

Wonderful photos, Susan. Welcome home! Have you scaled the top of Mt. Laundry yet? That's the worst part of traveling, I think, a real reminder that the fun time is over except for the memories.

Wanda said...

Wow....what a shame you won't be able to make France this year. But there's always great things going on in this part of the world...maybe someday! Thanks for the pictures. They certainly are amazing. I remember that it was VERY necessary to have an Easter Bonnet when we were little girls. I loved them! You'll conquer Mount Laundry and conquer it well!

Lisa said...

The amount of time involved in creating such detailed and exquisite work on these coats is overwhelming to think about! Beautiful!

TattingChic said...

WOW! WoW and MORE wOw!!! Those coats are so extravagantly gorgeous! The stitching and the beautiful jewels! Oh, so gorgeous! Thanks for sharing!

Related Posts with Thumbnails