Monday, March 5, 2012

A Return to Loveliness

Posted by MAKMU ta On Monday, March 05, 2012 No comments

Cotswolds Cozy

The Marchissues of Victoria Magazine celebrate England – 
its countryside, its style andmore.
In the 1998March issue you will find an article on furniture inspired 
by the lifestyle inthe countryside of England, Cotswolds.

The descriptionsof the homes, people and 
countryside of Cotswolds is

Some two hours’drive east of London, one comes upon golden-hued villages cupped in the greenhands of the hills, each with its ancient church tower. This ist the Cotswoldsregion, where cottage doorways are a tangle of roses, and within, one can sinkinto furnishings as amply welcoming as these—
a return to atimeless English comforts”. Mary Forsell

Books and pictures were everywhere, patterned china ewersfilled with dried flowers. Photographs, ornaments, small items…covered everyhorizontal surface”. Rosamund Pilcher, The Shell Seekers

Nowhere elseis there such a sense of tranquility” Julain Thompson – furniture designer forthe Cotswolds Collection for Highland House is quoted as saying.
According tothe Victoria magazine article, due to the dark English winters, the walls inthese cottages were typically whitewashed to reflect light. Also, ‘nature has away of crowding in too. A butterfly collection gathered by a Victorianancestor, a sprig of herbs enbcouraged in a warm corner, play their role in theartless decoration. For what cheers and comforts has its own dateless style—anda gift for fitting in, like an old stone dwelling on a hillside that greensanew each spring' Forsell.

Portions ofRosamund Pilcher’s novel, The Shell Seekers is set inCotswolds.

Happiness is making the most of what you have, and riches
 ismaking the most of what you've got.” Rosamuld Pilcher, The Shell Seekers.

Cotswold alsoappears as a central character in stories written by 
a number of authors, somemysteries.

“Miss Read” hasset a whole series of novels, The Thrush Green books which areset in a fictional village in Cotswolds. These stories relay a clear picture ofthe life of those living in Cotswolds – seemingly as they have for decades.

Reportedly ‘semi-autobiographical’books by Nancy Mitford, such as 
Love in a Cold Climate’ are well written witha wry sense of humor.

Also JoannaTrollope novels are said to be set in the smaller villages in the  Cotswolds. These stories are said to be‘unique and interesting…as well as intriguing because of their British setting’.

Apparently,there are the Mary Russell Mysteries, stories set in the countryside. 
MaryRussell is said to have been the wife of Sherlock Holmes! 
These stories arewritten by Laurie R. King.

Even AgathaChristie set her Miss Marple books in the 
Cotswolds village of St. Mary Meade.

Also there is Cider with Rosie by Laurie Lee –stories set depicting the author’s childhood including some of the darker sideof rural living. A movie was made with the same title.

Other authorswho base their stories in the Cotswolds include:
Anne Granger –Meredith Mitchell series;
PatriciaHarwin's series of Far Wychwood mysteries;
Fiona Mountainhas chosen for her sleuth, Natasha Blake;
M.C.Beaton'sbrisk and aggravating middle-aged sleuth Agatha Raisin;
Rebecca Tope'sCotswolds Mysteries;
Melissa Craig,creation of author Betty Rowlands;
EdwardMarston's historical mystery The Owls of Gloucester set in the11th century;
Rosemary Rowe'sbeguiling series set in Roman Britain;
Freda Davies'sdetective Keith Tyrell

I am fascinatedby all I have found of this romantic sounding place – with names of villagessuch as Bourton-on-Water, Chipping Campden, Stow-on-the-Wold and more. There doesseem to be a sense of mystery and magic in these names and the descriptions ofthe ‘honey colored limestone villages of Cotswolds.
here no one isever too busy to chat and perhaps to invite you in for buns and tea” In a placewhere – nothing seems to have changed – where sheep remain the main economy ofthe countryside and chickens still roam through the gardens and into thekitchens.

Idyllic.Completely idyllic. I plan to find one of these books and travel through myimagination and look to my home to see if I can bring a sense of thetranquility of Cotswolds into the décor.

A Return toLoveliness
Is a blog partyI host each week.
To Join
Simply createand publish a post. Apply the URL specific to this post
To the Linkyprovided below.
Please linkback your post to this blog party.
I also inviteyou to visit as many of the other participants as you are able. This is awonderful – creative community.

I will be sharing this post with these Delightsome blog parties:

Also, Laura Child's book, The Agony of the Leaves will be available to purchase on March 6! If you haven't ready my review, you can find the post here.

Wishing you amost Delightsome day,

images from 1998 issue of Victoria Magazine


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