Whooppee, fingers firmly crossed ……Here are the first few dates for 2021. Monday April 12th and Sunday 18th Parrots & Peonies will be at Cirencester Corn Hall and Saturday 17th I will be at The Shambles in Devizes. I have been busy getting some beautiful scarves and pashminas dyed to order so they will be available, I will have some traditional patterns and some modern designs too and all of them will be wool, silk and cashmere – either pure or mixed so lots to keep the Spring chill away and lots to take you into the warmer weather too. Can’t wait to meet you all again – until then stay safe and get jabbed!
I hope tomorrow brings us good news – if that includes the opening of non essential shops, though personally I think a scarf is absolutely essential, then I will be able to share market dates, Until then do get in touch if there is anything you saw that you liked, or indeed see on the website, more than happy to post and I can take a remote credit card payment too, or a cheque so have a perusal and email me if you would like anything sent. Cant wait so share some really special pieces with you, stay safe and hopefully see you soon.
Treats to come…..and a little bit of the history of cashmere.
The Empress Josephine of France might not have been great at choosing partners, but her wardrobe was simply marvellous. Amongst many treasures, she possessed over 200 beautiful cashmere shawls so was obviously a woman of sartorial taste and elegance!
Cashmere, and its use in clothing, has a long history. Marco Polo is reputed to have remarked on the fine quality of the woven cloth when he popped into Kashmir on his travels and Kashmiri traders have been sharing their wonderful wares with us for several hundred years.
There are some wonderful images by artists such as William Simpson of the weavers at work. William Simpson – 1823-1899 – was a Scottish journalist and water colour artist working as a war correspondent. In 1859 he was sent by his employers, the Illustrated London News, to cover the Indian Mutiny of 1857 and also to send back sketches. The artist arrived at Calcutta on 29 October 1859 and travelled widely in Northern and Central India and the Himalayas and Kashmir. In February 1862, he returned to England having drawn about 250 sketches which were later published as a book in 1867 and give a wonderful insight into the country and its artisans.
Even Jane Austin was apparently not averse to a fine shawl – very handy when sitting at ones desk writing – I have a cashmere scarf around my neck as I write this, tho that is where the similarity between me and Jane Austen ends, as you might have guessed.
The more traditional designs are simply wonderful, and I have ordered just a few of the very fine large ones which will be winging their way to me shortly. If we are allowed to have picnics, garden operas, outdoor music and the like then a big snuggly cashmere shawl is very handy on a less than balmy British summer evening. Should we get lucky and have a hot summer cashmere is great too, it has very good wicking qualities so there is just no excuse not to add one to your wardrobe. I have also ordered some very fine soft wool pashminas, dyed to order, in the loveliest of pastel shades, plus some modern patterns in silk, silk wool and cotton silk mixes – see the pics below, they are just gorgeous. I will also have some scarves bearing parrots & peonies, how exciting is that!
As soon as I know when I can be out and about again, I will give you dates of where I will be and in the meantime I, like most of us, am dreaming of summer and just a little freedom and I hope that you are all safe and well.
If you want more info, or have a special occasion and want a particular colour match do let me know, I can get shawls, pashminas and scarves dyed to order – there is a little lead time due to delivery from India so do get in touch in good time.
I am delighted to say that, all things being equal in these tricky times, but as I write this I will be at:
The Shambles Devizes on 2nd, 9th and 16th January 2021 so do come and say hi and I look forward to sharing some just gorgeous new designs with you – I have added a supplier who has some wonderful, original designs in wool, silk and cashmere – watch this space!