Sunday, January 6, 2013

Downton Design - Steeped In History

In a few short hours, I’ll be nestled in my club chair, (the one from Pearson Furniture with Charles of London Arms), as I’m eagerly tuning into the new season of Downton Abbey

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(Pearson Chair – Shown with optional skirt trim.  Charles of London, also known as an ‘English Arm’, the style refers to any chair or sofa, with a low, rolled arm.  Perfect for resting one’s elbows and for reading!)

Heaven only knows this house needs a break from football!  Out with the peanuts and nachos and in with my steaming cup of Earl Grey and a squeeze of lemon!

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I’ve just returned from visiting my folks in Durham, so gothic architecture has been fresh on my mind.  (I guess I should add, Durham, North Carolina.  There is actually a Durham in England, too.  Didn’t want y’all to think I had a British accent or the like.) 

Meanwhile, as I passed by Duke University’s campus, it reminded me of my teen years when I loved to sit in the chapel and let the music from the pipe organ and the architectural surroundings transport me to a world away.  A music lover and interior designer was in the making!

Gothic Architecture

Just an aside, since recently having viewed the film version of “Les Miserables”, I had pulled together a few photos of chapels and cathedrals, to compare. While the story behind Les Mis was set in Paris, (with one assuming Notre Dame was in the backdrop), the filming was actually done around Winchester Cathedral in England.

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(Yes, little, old me used to sit in the very front while I listened to the organist practice.  Very “Phantom of the Opera” on Saturday nights.)

Who would ever imagine, within a short distance, one could experience such beauty in NC? . . . My hometown, Durham, having Duke Chapel and then a short drive to Belmont Abbey, in Belmont, NC.  Both stunning examples of Gothic, architectural influences.

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Though Downton Abbey is fictional, the actual home is Highclere Castle, in Berkshire, and it’s the current home of the Earl and Countess of Carnarvon.  It’s been through several updates, though its foundation began during the medieval period.  Edwardian is it’s final description.

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(The coat of arms of the Earls of Carnarvon.)

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(The cast of season 3)

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(The Carnarvon family and staff.  Just a casual, country home.)

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I’ll have to admit, even though I love my blue jeans and a good country estate, I’ve got a little Downton in me!

Now . . . Where did I put that tea cozy? 

(Oh, I forgot to mention, Pearson is providing me with great Winter Sale pricing for their upholstery!  I’m happy to pass that along to my clients!  Last day to order is March 1st.  Lots of beautiful styles for those who love all things English!)

All My Best

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