Monday, January 18, 2010

A Little Glitz and Glam and Fun for Monday

Good afternoon! Hope you're having far nicer weather than we're having here in Connecticut. It's rainy and grey and muddy from all the snow melting so quickly. Oh, well. We'll make it bright and sparkling here for a while!

If you came to climb over the backs of all the others who are taking a chance on winning my giveaway, just scroll down to yesterday's post ... all the information is there. Or you could just click on this image and it will take you there!
And, speaking of giveaways!, grab your sweetie's hand and head over to...

Shabby Cottage Shops for an amazing giveaway, valued at $350! Now that's a giveaway! Lots of goodies and treasures and gift certificates, oh my! Just click the icon below and it will take you to the spot!
This piece of performance art, entitled "Ghost of Versailles" was discovered via G's exciting and informative blog, Doves Today. As G describes it, "Performance artist Tim Dey has recreated the "Ghost of Versailles" as white-wigged and white-powdered aristocrats of the court of King Louis XVI of France, using bubble-wrap for materials. That's right - their costumes are made of bubble-wrap, plastic hose, water bottles and plastic wrappers."
It just knocks my socks off! Bubble wrap!


And, continuing the note of unusual and breathtaking art ... have you met the marvelous enchanted works of Su Blackwell? I am just awestruck by these exquisite assemblages. Take a stroll through more of her work at her site Su Blackwell. I would so love to see the delicacy and intricacy and detail of this work upclose and in real life!



Okay. We all love our mothers. Really. Is there anything better than a mother? Well...that wonderful creature called "Mother" sometimes just makes me want to take a running leap off a cliff.

My mother follows my blog (though she never comments), and keeps asking why - as I always post gifts and acquisitions with photos - I never mention the Christmas gift she sent me. So, just to keep her happy - and to keep me from jumping off a cliff - here is the wondrous treasure she sent me this year.

It's a Reuge musical automata pocket watch. It is truly exquisite. It is gold (well, LOL, gold plated), and when the alarm goes off it plays "Oh, What a Beautiful Morning." But even better, while the music box plays, the horse raises and lowers his head to drink, his arm (with the bird) waves, the young lady operates the pump, and the gear from the music box appears as the water coming out of the well.

Frankly, I'm terrified to carry it for fear of losing it LOL. But it looks very nice sitting on my bureau ... and I set it almost every day so that at some point the magic will happen.

sigh. Okay. Thanks, Mother!
My bedtime reading right now is Honoré de Balzac's la cousin Bette. I don't know why I've never read it before, but I'm enjoying it immensely. It's a little tough going sometimes - LOL - as novels from the early 19th century can be sometimes ... but well, well, worth the effort. It's a tale of revenge and lust and money and family - think early 19th century Parisienne Dynasty.


Well, imagine my surprise when I found the movie version on Ovation TV yesterday! I didn't know it had been filmed! And, it was filmed with a superb cast, headed by Jessica Lange as the vengeful Cousin Bette. What a fun film! It is performed in a style that makes the tale more amusing than the books seems to be - though after seeing the film, I'm reading the book with a new sensibility.

I recommend this movie as a fun wallow in melodrama - and especially if you love beautiful films. The sets, costumes, accessories, everything, is just a delight. As Cousin Bette works as the head costumer in a little opera company, there are many scenes with her working on marvelous costumes and there were many shots of the delicate embroidery and knotwork she did on the costumes. If you can find a copy, I think you'd enjoy it!

I don't know if you remember. But almost a month ago I wrote here about this delightful ornament that I found a picture of on-line. Well, this weekend, at one of my favorite blogs, Tales From an OC Cottage, she pointed us towards an online shop called Plastic Land. And what was there?!? My wish list Edwardian Christmas ornament!!! I was so excited ... I'm going to own one of my own! I actually had decided to create one for myself, but I couldn't find those do-it-y0urself empty snow globes anywhere. I'm so glad that I found it!
And, if that's not fab enough ... look what else they have! Titanic ice cube trays! I can't WAIT to serve drinks with Titantic ice cubes sinking! Sick? Well, maybe a little. But the uber-fabness of them overrides any inherent bad taste!Well, in my quest to bend over backwards to find you things of sheer beauty ...
I thought a little grand rococo architecture might brighten our day.

The amber room is probably the most famous room in Catherine Palace, St. Petersburg, and it was used as a study. King Frederick William of Prussia gave Peter the Great the original inlaid amber panels after Peter admired them in a room in Frederick's palace. The 16-foot jigsaw-looking panels were constructed of over 100,000 perfectly fitted pieces of amber. The Nazis dismantled the amber panels and shipped them to Germany during World War II, and they have never been found. Much mystery surrounds the fate of the amber room panels, and many Russians believe that they still exist somewhere in Germany. Russian artists began recreating the amber panels using the old techniques in the early 1980's, and the room was opened to the public in 2003.

François de Cuvilliès created the masterpiece which is the Amalienburg11: a hunting lodge that, inside and out, positively bursts with the exuberant frivolity of Rococo. I find it astounding that something so heavily and lavishly ornamented can look so light and airy!
This is the Pilgrimage Church of St. Peter and St. Paul in Germany. I think our church is most lovely, but I have to admit, this one would keep me awake through anything - even an extra long communion line! What fanciful adornments!

Abbot Rupert died while erecting the outrageously rococo building of the Basilica at Ottoeruren, completed by his successor, Anselm Erb, in 1766. In 1803, Ottoeruren became part of Bavaria. I love the way the paintings and ornamentation makes the entire chapel look like a huge piece of Bavarian porcelain!
Naturally, I couldn't discuss rococo without traveling to my favorite city in the world, Paris. Here is the elegant, shimmering Opéra Garnier - or Opéra Paris. What a remarkable example of the French rococo style. If you have never had the opportunity to walk through the Paris Opera House, put it on your bucket list. It just excites the senses!
And, finally, the bedroom of the queen of all this is lavish and extravagant and ornate and magnificent: Marie Antoinette's bed chamber in the Palace of Versailles. Click here to see more of the magical enchantment of Versailles.

Now, I know this is a little off my usual style of posting - but, I saw this and literally chuckled right out loud. So here it is. If you are offended - well - don't be. It's just a joke.


I thought it could never happen - but I actually found a photo of Marilyn Monroe which I have never seen before! This was from a photo shoot later in her career with Bert Stern. There are many other famous photos from this shoot (including the nude-with-chiffon-scarf and the in-bed-with-sheet and the black Balenciago gown) - but this was a new one for me. It's difficult to believe today, when every 22 year old actress' photographs are airbrushed and photoshopped, that once there was a woman of a-certain-age who could be photographed and printed with nothing more than make up and some false eyelashes and still be a rare and celestial beauty.
Thanks for visiting with me today. Hope you found some things that amused or delighted or inspired you.

Now ... go make something beautiful!
♥´¨)
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(¸.•´ (¸.•´♥ Tristan
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