Costume Design & Historical Dress

January 12, 2014 at 2:45 pm (fashion, history) (, , , , , )

Thanks to a Facebook post by Alessandra, I’ve found the website Idlewild Illustré: Historical Dress, Cosume Design, and Making Things. First “find” this article about “National Costume,” Munich circa 1816. Delightful illustrations!

idlewild

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A SoundCloud Trial

October 27, 2013 at 11:38 pm (diaries, history, news, research) (, , )

Just a short entry tonight, to say that I’ve put up a short (37 seconds!) snippet of a letter. In 1829 Emma Austen was writing to her sister Fanny Smith, about Edward Austen’s desire for the Waverly series authored by Sir Walter Scott. Emma had met the man who so entralled her husband! In 1815, Emma’s cousin Spencer, Lord Compton married Margaret Maclean Clephane, ward of Walter Scott. Scott called at No. 6 Portland Place.

pen and lettersSoundCloud (though not without its problems today) seems an easy way to record sound, and I have several projects that could go online. Today’s test was intentionally short so I could experiment a bit. I’d love to hear if readers find these little snippets of interest.

Or, I may post a paper or a podcast; SoundCloud limits the amount of material, which isn’t a plus in my books. And I find little consistancy: sometimes the snippet plays; at other times it does not. I don’t get it…

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My Austen Summer, 2007

May 17, 2013 at 9:29 am (a day in the life, diaries, history, jane austen, news, research) (, , , , , , , , , , )

Last year, about this time, I promised to share with readers of Two Teens in the Time of Austen my own research diaries, kept during a stay in Winchester, England, in order to visit the Hampshire Record Office. Now, thanks to Memoirture, where I can post these private thoughts in a slightly less “public” medium of a social network, I hope to get this “project in process” online. [UPDATE (April 2015): Memoirture has been taken down; I’m not sure I’ll repost the diaries anywhere.]

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By May 2007, I had interlibrary-loaned the microfilmed diaries of Lady Smith (image above, 1829); visited Duke University to transcribe Mary Gosling’s pre-marriage diaries; ordered the microfilming of Sir Charles Joshua Smith’s late diaries (1826-30). Now it was a chance, I hoped, to learn more about Mary’s life among the Smith family. I had slowly built-up the two families: parents and siblings for both Mary and Charles, and even placed Emma Smith within the circle of Jane Austen. I was writing, and hoping to have published, a story of my two girls.

I had left my job, and pitched headlong onto a plane and into the spare room of a stranger whom I had never met. I would live with Chris for two months. During those two months I met people like Rowland and Peggy — lifelong Hampshire natives; and visited Chawton Cottage with them. I was befriended by Helen Lefroy, and been taken by her to a wonderful luncheon with an entertaining guest speaker, speaking on… who else but JANE AUSTEN! I was given the opportunity to speak to a group in Kinwarton about my dear Fanny Seymour. And I typed and transcribed my fingers to the bone. Letters, cross-written letters! Diaries, the daily life of my Emma and all her siblings.

1833 letter-2

I had a favorite spot, sitting every day – Monday through Saturday – by the window. You’ll undoubtedly read some gripes about those around me, but at present the diary is rather prosaic: flying from my home in Vermont to London Heathrow; getting from Heathrow to Winchester. Meeting Chris and seeing “my home” for the first time. Reading – “in the flesh” – my first letters and diaries from Mary and Emma. The diaries were so TINY. At one point I realized I had all the generations: a Letter written by Lady Cunliffe (Mary’s maternal grandmother), Eliza Gosling (Mary’s mother), Mary Smith (my diarist), and Mimi Smith (elder daughter of Mary and Charles).

UPDATE January 2018 – the Memoirture website is no more (the following links do NOT work); I lost the photos & links, but I have the original “word” documents. Part I is up on this blog. Others will follow in the coming weeks.

UPDATE 5/19/13: Part 2 of “My Austen Summer, 2007” is now online – an account at Memoirture is FREE; you must be logged in to enlarge photos, click on links, and make comments.  At present, all parts will be viewable by the public; future plans will limit parts TWO and beyond to “contacts”.

UPDATE 5/25/13: Part 3 of “My Austen Summer, 2007” is now online.

UPDATE 8/19/13: Part 4 of “My Austen Summer, 2007” is now online. My father’s birthday; laughter, reading Mamma Smith’s letters; British weather: rain…

morning dresses

Hear part of a letter, written in January 1797, on YouTube

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Boston Marathon: Express Yourself at Memoirture

April 17, 2013 at 1:39 pm (history, news) (, , , , )

memoir

I invite all readers of TWO TEENS IN THE TIME OF AUSTEN to visit a new website called MEMOIRTURE. Several people have been posting about the recent explosions in Boston at Monday’s marathon; I added my two-cents. The gist of the site is to give people a place, and an opportunity, to post their private thoughts (I have a ‘me-only’ diary for my research), as well as weigh in and interact with others who “share your experiences”. Registration is free (and very easy to do).

You can find the Marathon thread by searching the site (once you’re logged in) for BOSTON. Take look around, click on some of the countries listed, or do alternate searches. Our ‘today’ is history in the making.

More later!

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