Posted in British gifts, British travel, gifts, support uk

Mary Quant

Inventive, opinionated and commercially minded, Mary Quant was the most iconic fashion designer of the 1960s. A design and retail pioneer, she popularised super-high hemlines and other irreverent looks that were critical to the development of the ‘Swinging Sixties’ scene. Our fashion collections include examples of her famous designs from across the 1960s and 1970s.

Mary Quant was born and brought up in Blackheath, London, the daughter of two Welsh schoolteachers. Following her parents’ refusal to let her attend a fashion course, Quant studied illustration at Goldsmiths, where she met her future husband, the aristocrat Alexander Plunket Greene. She graduated in 1953 with a diploma in art education, and began an apprenticeship at a high-end milliner, Erik of Brook Street. In 1955, Plunket Greene purchased Markham House on the King’s Road in Chelsea, London, an area frequented by the ‘Chelsea Set’ – a group of young artists, film directors and socialites interested in exploring new ways of living – and dressing.

Quant was a self-taught designer, attending evening classes on cutting and adjusting mass-market printed patterns to achieve the looks she was after. Once technically proficient, she initiated a hand-to-mouth production cycle: the day’s sales at Bazaar paid for the cloth that was then made up overnight into new stock for the following day. Although exhausting, this cottage-industry approach meant that the rails at Bazaar were continually refreshed with short runs of new designs, satisfying the customers’ hunger for fresh, unique looks at competitive prices.

From the late 1950s to the early 1960s, Bazaar was one of very few shops in London that offered an alternative to the ‘mature’ styles produced by other high-fashion designers. It also offered a radically different shopping experience than the couturiers, department stores and chain stores that made up the mainstream fashion market. At Bazaar, loud music, free drinks, witty window displays and extended opening hours created a ‘scene’ that often kept going late into the evening. Young women travelled to Bazaar to enjoy shopping for ‘something different’ in a much less formal environment.

Quant’s developing aesthetic was influenced by the dancers, musicians and Beatnik street chic of the Chelsea Set, and the Mods (short for ‘Modernists’), a powerful subculture that helped to define London’s youth culture in late-1950s Britain, with their love of Italian sportswear, sharp tailoring and clean outlines. Quant’s first collections were strikingly modern in their simplicity, and very wearable. Unlike the more structured clothes still popular with couturiers, Quant wanted “relaxed clothes suited to the actions of normal life”. Pairing short tunic dresses with tights in bright, stand-out colours – scarlet, ginger, prune and grape – she created a bold, high-fashion version of the practical outfits she’d worn as a child at school and at dance classes.

Mary Quant and Alexander Plunket Greene, 1963. © Mirrorpix/Robert Young
Left to right: dress design, Mary Quant, mid 1960s, UK. Museum no. E.525-1975. © Victoria and Albert Museum, London. Wool pinafore sleeveless dress with A-line skirt, Mary Quant for Bazaar, late 1950s, UK. Museum no. T.219-1995. © Victoria and Albert Museum, London

Havoc is classified as a gorgeous powdery mossy, green, aldehydic chypre with a floral that begins with a tantalizing floral creme broule. It gradually settles down to a really lovely retro mix of green floracy and a faint musk. It is a very rare and hard to find perfume. This Fragrance was originally produced back in the 1970’S by MARY QUANT.

Mary Quant today.

Posted in British gifts, British travel, ceramics, countrylife, countryside, gifts, gifts for her, gifts for him, historic places uk, independent retail, stationery, wedding

Laura Ashley

Laura Ashley is another iconic British brand , known for fashion , interiors and accessories. It’s a company which has been on a knife’s edge financially for many years but still it has a high street presence.

Although Laura Ashley might not be to everyone’s taste and boy does it have competition, I feel there is still room in our hearts for this brand.

You might think now this dress is damn right ridiculous but in the day her designs were sought after and contemporary.

Laura Ashley (7 September 1925 – 17 September 1985) was a Welshfashion designer and businesswoman. She originally made furnishing materials in the 1950s, expanding the business into clothing design and manufacture in the 1960s. The Laura Ashley style is characterised by Romantic English designs — often with a 19th-century rural feel — and the use of natural fabrics.

While working as a secretary and raising her first two children, Ashley undertook some development work for the Women’s Institute on quilting. Revisiting the craft she had learnt with her grandmother, she began designing headscarves, napkins, table mats and tea-towels which Bernard printed on a machine he had designed in their attic flat at 83 Cambridge Street, Pimlico.[2]

The couple had invested £10 in wood for the screen frame, dyes and a few yards of linen. Ashley’s inspiration to start producing printed fabric came from a Women’s Institute display of traditional handicrafts at the Victoria & Albert Museum. When Ashley looked for small patches carrying Victorian designs to help her make patchworks, she found no such thing existed. Here was an opportunity, and she started to print Victorian style headscarves in 1953.

The scarves quickly became successful – retailing both via mail order and at high street chains such as John Lewis – and Bernard left his City job to print fabrics full-time.[3] The company was originally registered as Ashley Mountney (Laura’s maiden name), but Bernard changed the name to Laura Ashley because he felt a woman’s name was more appropriate for the type of products they were producing. The new company moved to Kent in 1955, but when the third of their four children was born, the family moved to Wales in 1960.[4]

Laura Ashley’s first shop was opened at 35 Maengwyn Street, MachynllethMontgomeryshire, in 1961.[5] The Laura Ashley association is commemorated by a small plaque. The shop sold locally produced honey, walking sticks as well as the couple’s own products. Here Laura worked with a seamstress to introduce their first forays into fashion, producing smock like shirts and gardening smocks. The family lived above the shop until moving to CarnoMontgomeryshire. They first set up in the vacant social club, but moved in 1967 to the local railway station, which had been closed two years earlier.[4]

Laura Ashley has slumped to an annual loss of more than £14m after a collapse in demand for its signature floral home furnishings.

The retailer said Brexit concerns had hit consumer confidence and stopped shoppers from making big-ticket purchases or starting big DIY projects.

At the same time, the housing market has slowed and house moves are key to the health of specialist retailers like Laura Ashley. As a result, like-for-like furniture sales were down 9% and demand for its decorating products, which include curtains and wallpaper, was down nearly 14%.

It is a great shame that this company was sold to Malaysian Holdings and shop closures are anticipated with further job losses.

Posted in British gifts, British travel, countrylife, countryside, gifts, gifts for her, gifts for him, historic places uk, independent retail, interior design, jewellery, stationery, support uk, wedding

Liberty London

Libertys has to be one of my favourite shops in london. It optimises style , elegance resilience in an ever changing economic climate. It has stood the test of time

For me personally Liberty’s is more iconic than selfridges or harrods. Many might disagree , but whatever your views or preference it’s great to support British and the iconic brands which are recognised throughout the world and are synonymous with this country.

The shop opened during 1875 selling ornaments, fabric and objets d’artfrom Japan and the East. Within eighteen months, he had repaid the loan and acquired the second half of 218 Regent Street. As the business grew, neighbouring properties were bought and added.

InNovember 1885, Liberty brought forty-two villagers from India to stage a living village of Indian artisans. Liberty’s specialised in Oriental goods, in particular imported Indian silks, and the aim of the display was to generate both publicity and sales for the store.

During the 1890s, Liberty built strong relationships with many English designers. Many of these designers, including Archibald Knox, practised the artistic styles known as Arts and Crafts and Art Nouveau, and Liberty helped develop Art Nouveau through his encouragement of such designers. The company became associated with this new style, to the extent that in Italy, Art Nouveau became known as the Stile Liberty, after the London shop.

Liberty, during the 1950s, continued its tradition for fashionable and eclectic design. All departments in the shop had a collection of both contemporary and traditional designs. New designers were promoted and often included those still representing the Liberty tradition for handcrafted work.

In 1955, Liberty began opening several regional stores in other UK cities; the first of these was in Manchester.[4] Subsequent shops opened in BathBrightonChesterYorkExeter and Norwich.

During the 1960s, extravagant and Eastern influences once again became fashionable, as well as the Art Deco style, and Liberty adapted its furnishing designs from its archive.

Liberty has a history of collaborative projects – from William Morris and Dante Gabriel Rossetti in the nineteenth century to Yves Saint Laurent and Dame Vivienne Westwood in the twentieth. Recent collaborations include brands such as Scott HenshallNikeDr. MartensHello KittyBarbourHouse of HackneyVansOniaManolo BlahnikUniqloSupergaT. M. Lewin, Drew Pritchard of Salvage Hunters and antique lighting specialist Fritz Fryer.

Perhaps the success of Liberty’s lies with it’s progressive ideas and more recently collaborations with other big brands. Liberty prints are still very popular today. Their designs are beautiful, intricate and timeless.

Posted in British gifts, British travel, gifts, gifts for her, small businesses, stationery, support uk

Caroline Gardner

West London based Caroline Gardner is best known as one of the UK’s leading stationery and gift designers. Her signature look is an ever evolving modern classic, set apart by a distinctive and playful blend of modern hues and scale. A portfolio drawn together by Caroline’s distinctive design handprint of quirky use of colour and placement.

Caroline Gardner is to moving towards ‘naked’ cards by using an InFold, invented by the company, that holds the card and envelope together while protecting the corner. The branded paper InFold is affixed to the envelope using a plastic-free peelable label.

Caroline Gardner

Caroline Gardner is to moving towards ‘naked’ cards by using an InFold, invented by the company, that holds the card and envelope together while protecting the corner. The branded paper InFold is affixed to the envelope using a plastic-free peelable label.

The InFold design, for which the publisher has applied for a patent on, also provides the opportunity for the company’s branding.

“We feel strongly about reducing the amount of single use cellobags and so set about creating a way of keeping the envelope with the card,” explained Luca Bridges, marketing and independent sales manager of Caroline Gardner.

Posted in British gifts, British travel, chickens, countrylife, countryside, dog lovers, gifts, gifts for him, independent retail, interior design, small businesses, stationery, support uk

Penny lindop designs

ABOUT PENNY LINDOP DESIGNS

A veritable Noah’s Ark of fluffy woolly animals. Quirky art to make you smile.

“Hello, I’m Penny, the artist behind Penny Lindop Designs.

We are a tiny team creating cards, stationery and art work in our rural garden studio on the Norfolk/Suffolk border. We love animals, and it would seem that you do too. Our animal designs are all hand finished with our signature finishing touch of real sheep’s wool. These are distinctive creations which simply make people smile.

We are passionate about our raw materials and where they come from. Handmade papers, made as part of a Water Aid project, are used for most of our artwork; we love these papers, and that their production is sustaining a whole community in India where they are made. Much of our wool comes from small holders across the UK, often from rare or ancient breeds of sheep.

Whether you are looking for a simple card, a special gift or a little treat for yourself, our work is full of joy and offers something just a little bit different.”

Posted in #tropic #skincare # natural #kindtoskin #beauty # madeintheuk, box beauty, boxmakeup,boxsubscribe,Sshop, facemasks, sand and sky, makeup in a box, boxed subscriptions, boxclubs, freebie gifts, facial scrubber, benefits, bridal make up, British gifts, British travel, countrylife, countryside, gifts for her, gifts for him, independent retail, organic, radiant skin, skin food, skincare, subscription boxes, Uncategorized

Cordelia’s House of Treasures

WE OFFER PAMPER GIFT SETS TO HOTELS, GUEST HOUSES, HOLIDAY LETS AND FOR SPECIAL OCCASSIONS.

http://www.cordeliashouseoftreasures.co.uk

Help your Guests to have a good nights sleep with luxury, natural skin products and Fragrance

We all love a bit of pampering and luxury when we go away. There is nothing more disappointing  than poor quality toiletries in your room. So make your guests feel special when they stay and encourage them to return. We can accomodate any situation or size of order.

We can provide small and affordable pamper gifts to your specification

We aim to promote the luxury of your business with skincare which reflects your style and ethos. We have artisan producers and larger suppliers who promote organic, natural skin products

Beautifully packaged and presented goods

We assess with our eyes first which is why presentation is so important. The pleasure of unwrapping a luxury gift is part of the pleasure and anticipation in receiving it.

We are great Supporters of British Brands

We have business relationships with skincare suppliers large and small. Bayliss and Harding, Wild Olive, Tropic, Heyland and Whittle, little cosy cottage plus many more. 

Give your guests a luxurious experience on holiday, weekend break, wedding. special occassion or birthday.

We can provide packages from £5-100 whatever suits the occassion or requirement.

Contact us via email cordelia@cordeliashouseoftresures.co.uk

Posted in British gifts, British travel, historic places uk

Favourite places in Shropshire

I was born in Shropshire and so were many of my ancestors.

As a youth I don’t think I appreciated the beauty of my home county . I will share with you some of my favourite spots.

Where is Shropshire many people say. ” never heard of it!”. Well shame on them!

Buy from Shropshire

Shrewsbury, the birthplace of Charles Darwin. A beautiful medieval town with black and white buildings. It has some beautiful architecture with some Georgian buildings close to the river Severn. The ox bow river meanders around this town. It’s beautiful in the summer and has a lovely atmosphere close to xmas as it is full of independent shops.

Buy local, buy from Shropshire

Ludlow is another favourite of mine. The architecture is similar to Shrewsbury. A pretty market town with a castle. The food festival draws many visitors and a plethora of high quality restaurants are present in this small town. The silver pear gift shop is well worth a visit. There are some beautiful jewellery shops and delicatessens. Great for independent retail shopping.

Buy local buy from Shropshire

Attingham park is a lovely National Trust property just outside of Shrewsbury. The grounds are beautiful and you can enjoy a leisurely stroll come snow or sunshine. Deer are reared in the grounds and are lovely to see. Badger sets are protected in the grounds and is home to a variety of birds. There is also a great tea shop. Just ideal after a brisk walk on a Sunday afternoon.

Buy from Shropshire,  buy British

The rolling Shropshire hills are truly a sight for sore eyes. Driving from Shrewsbury to Ludlow you can appreciate the expanse of these hills and their beauty especially when they are topped with snow. Great for walking and blowing away the cobwebs.

Buy local buy British

Stokesay castle.
Stokesay Castle was constructed at the end of the 13th century by Laurence of Ludlow, who at the time was one of the richest men in England. It remains a treasure by-passed by time, one of the best places to visit in England to experience what medieval life was like.

Buy local buy British

Stokesay castle. The north tower.

Buy local and buy British

Whittington castle.
Although not recorded in the Domesday Book, local legend claims that a series of primitive castles has existed here since the 9th century. The present castle ruins date from 1221 when the fitz Warren family applied to King Henry III for permission to build a stone fortress. Originally, the castle had 7 towers, each about 18 metres high, with walls 3.7 metres thick and a drawbridge over 12 metres long. The fitz Warrens had a remarkable love/hate relationship with the English monarchy.

Buy British buy local

Moreton Corbett castle

This is a haunting and impressive structure in its current state.
The impressive ruins of Moreton Corbet Castle are the product of over 500 years of building. The earliest surviving remains are those of a stone castle begun in about 1200, including a fine gatehouse. The Corbet family remodelled the castle in the 16th century, and the Elizabethan south wing is a rare survival from this period of a bold Italian-inspired design, which was devastated during the Civil War. Fine Corbet monuments fill the adjacent church.
In the 18th century the castle was abandoned as a residence, and it soon became roofless. Plans were drawn up in 1796 to build a new house on the site, but the project was never realised and the castle remained a ruin. The Corbet family still owns the castle today, although the site is managed by English Heritage.
In the 18th century the castle was abandoned as a residence, and it soon became roofless. Plans were drawn up in 1796 to build a new house on the site, but the project was never realised and the castle remained a ruin. The Corbet family still owns the castle today, although the site is managed by English Heritage.

Buy from Shropshire

Hawkstone hall and follies.
Hawkstone Hall is a 43,400 square feet early 18th-century country mansion near Hodnet, Shropshire, England which was more recently occupied as the pastoral centre of a religious organisation for many years. It is a Grade I listed building.

If you like medieval history Shropshire is the county to visit. Enriched with history and architecture you won’t be disappointed.