Posts Categorised: Travel

Red Carpet Glamour Comes to Ipswich on October 4th

Film Premiere Ipswich Breathe Andy Serkis Clare Foy Film Festival
Sponsored post in association with American Express®

Coming from a film and theatrical background, I’m always interested to see how new films come to fruition and where the idea has come from. There’s usually a fascinating story behind it. So this post has been a pleasure to research, and I also have some exciting news for you – if like me, you love a good film and the glitz and glamour of the red carpet.

If you live in the Ipswich area, you’re a film fan and fancy something a little bit special, then I have some fabulous news – American Express and the BFI are bringing the 61st London Film Festival to the town next month.

Breathe Film British Film Festival Tickers

American Express has been proud sponsors of the BFI London Film Festival for the last 8 years, and this year, along with the BFI they’re bringing the Opening Night gala of the Festival to Ipswich.  Members of the public could experience one of the benefits of being an American Express Cardmember, which includes gaining access to some of the most talked about films during the Festival.

Across the country, regional cinemas will be screening not only a stream of the live red carpet, but also the much-anticipated European premiere of Andy Serkis’ feature directorial debut, Breathe. You’ll find more information about how you can register for tickets at the end of this post and more detail about all of the cinemas taking part.

Breathe Film American Express Andy Serkis Director Claire Foy

I’m so looking forward to watching it, let me tell you a little about the storyline of Breathe.

Written by twice Academy Award nominated writer William Nicholson, Breathe is a true story about an adventurous man, Robin Cavendish (played by Andrew Garfield ), who meets, falls in love with and swiftly marries a beautiful young lady called Diana Blacker (Golden Globe Winner Claire Foy). Together they move to Africa and enjoy an idyllic life with Diana becoming pregnant, but suddenly, Robin is struck down with Polio, leaving him paralysed from the neck down, and rushed to a hospital and  attached to a respirator that enables him to him breathe. He’s given the prognosis of a few months to live.

A few months on and with a new baby son in their lives, Robin has been moved to another hospital and is being taught to talk again, but has given up. Diana though is adamant that she wants Robin to survive for the family, so instead of letting the illness take control of their future, she manages to bring Robin home from hospital, and between them they amaze everyone with their tenacity and lust for life.

Robin’s good friend and Professor Teddy Hall (played by Hugh Bonneville) develops a homemade wheel chair for him with a battery-operated pump. It means he isn’t stuck in bed anymore and starts to have mobility again.

Breathe film American Express Sponsored British Film Festival 2017

They continue to fulfil lots of their dreams and travel to different countries, all of which gives Robin a new purpose – fighting for the rights of disabled people.

The supporting cast members list is stellar – including Hugh Bonneville, Tom Hollander, Stephen Mangan and Dame Diana Rigg. It’s like a who’s who of my favourite actors, reading through all the names. The production team are also hugely acclaimed.

Producer, Jonathan Cavendish, who is actually the real son of Robin and Diana, always felt his father’s life would make a compelling feature film, and when he told William Nicholson one day about his background, the whole film started to take shape. He also works alongside Andy Serkis (famous for playing Gollum in The Lord of the Rings and his recent role in Star Wars: The Force Awakens) with their own production company – The Imaginarium.

Breathe Film Clare Foy Andy Serkis British Film Festival

I’m excited because reading up on the synopsis of the film – it resonated with me, and I think it will with many, because it’s a tale of challenges that anyone could face and how one family dealt with it all in such an inspiring way. Also, the way that the film all came together really moved me, as it started out with no money invested but with cast and production crew all keen to tell this story – it became a reality. Cool huh ?

Ipswich Premiere Breathe Film Festival 2017

I’ll be attending my local cinema in Ipswich on the night of the 4th October, and I’m really looking forward to it. The film will be released across the UK and Ireland on 27th October.

To register for limited tickets* to see the 61st BFI London Film Festival Opening Night gala film ‘Breathe at Cineworld Ipswich courtesy of American Express visit www.seeitfirst.com/Amex2017  

*Terms apply

I’ve already got my tickets, so I’ll see you there!

Promoter: American Express Services Europe Limited has its registered office at Belgrave House, 76 Buckingham Palace Road, London, SW1W 9AX, United Kingdom. It is registered in England and Wales with Company Number 1833139 and authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority
Ticket Promoter: See Film First Ltd, 62-70 Shorts Garden, London WC2 9AH

Adventure of a Lifetime on the Road with Coldplay

coldplay set toronto 2017 color colour music gig

If you’ve stayed with me through the last 3 posts you’ll know by this post we are in Toronto and the girls are literally having an Adventure of a Lifetime.

For the last gig and because they opened up the roof of The Rogers Centre we wanted to spend some quality time there during the day. It was literally baking hot and beautiful.

toronto ice cream van quirky fun inspiring

But first we wanted to eat eat ice cream ( mega ? )and take a trip up the CN Tower especially as it was right next to where we were staying.

view Toronto CN Tower vast

Apparently on a clear day you can see as far as Niagara Falls. it was a pretty good view but if I’m honest I was just keeping it together enough to do brave face up at the top … sssshh don’t tell the girls.

I’m sure the tower sways ever so slightly ? Or was I imagining it ? But it was spectacular to be up there and see the whole of the city. Mae even encouraged me to stand on the glass floor with her – which I did but there’s no way I’m posting that photo.

CN Tower buildings toronto CN Tower Rogers Centre Toronto

You could see the Tower inside the music venue  – and at night it twinkled along with the Coldplay hits and changed colours. I kept looking up at it and trying to paste the moment in my mind for keeps.

Coldplay Rogers CentreBoden Shoes on Coldplay Set coldly decorations set 2017 pom poms

There’s always so much to do on the day of a show. They have the finest team and they work so, so hard. Plus they are super nice with visitors. What a lovely bunch of people.

coldplay instagram concerts usa canada

Mae and Bets appeared on Coldplay’s instagram stories while over the week. Look a them being all industrious ! :)

So there we have it. Our little road trip. I’ve always wanted to do one but had no idea that we would get to do one as part of Coldplay’s tour. Which by the way was one of the kindest things anyone has done for us in a long time. I will never forget it.

The concerts each time were energising and so rich in colour. I was literally in heaven. I tell you, if you want to see a show that fills you with positivity then this is the show to see. They seem to have a way of connecting with the audiences even when it’s 50,000 and making everyone feel they are special. It’s a pretty cool thing.

The catering was out of this world. Different every day and very tasty. It gave me some ideas for some new recipes.

Mae has come home and played the piano non stop. So all in all an inspiring time for us all.

How am I going to up this for next Summer Hols ? Gulp !

Hope you have enjoyed each post. You can catch up on the other below in my stream and also find me on Bloglovin’.

Lucy x

Why Downtown Toronto Stole My Heart


Where were we in the last post ? Ah yes, that’s right. Just visited Niagara Falls on the tour bus and headed over to Toronto, ready for the third Coldplay gig at The Rogers Centre.

But we had some time to spare with a day off and wanted to make the most of it. So headed to some places that we knew were going to be fun and memorable. I have to say vibrant and friendly Toronto stole my heart.

graffiti alley toronto street art color colour visit

I was really keen to pop over to Graffiti Alley and check it out. It’s pretty popular and after visiting  I can see why.

I would say an alley. probably half a mile long of colour and art. All sorts of work but it blends and looks incredible. Apparently it is legal and painted over a 24 hour period each year.

boden blazer street art graffiti alley toronto

I’m glad I wore my my colourful clothing. I know I look like I’m posing but in reality I was thinking about chocolate pancakes probably.

boden heart trousers color colour fashion blog toronto street art

If you’re wondering where my outfit is from, it’s from Boden. So please with the Nell Ponte Blazer. I’ve listed everything at the bottom of the post so you can have a look if you fancy.

Toulon bag Boden Yellow

This Toulon bag was fantastic for the time away. I needed to fit in my camera, phone, make up bag, purse, show passes etc. It was roomy and I still love it now.

Boden Toulon handbag yellow toronto graffiti alley

In fact I love it so much I kept photographing it as the backdrop was just too tempting not to. How often do you get the opportunity and with so much artistic inspiration ?

So much colour. I was literally in heaven. Luckily Andy and the girls love it too so we were all very happy to spend some time there.

graffiti alley toronto canada

A little pit stop before heading off to for a late lunch at Pizza Libretto in the Financial District  – nice food.

Sonic Boom Toronto record shop

Then we went over to a vinyl store recommended by a friend on the tour who knows his record shops. Had a good rummage there. They have an amazing selection of music downstairs.

Sonic Boom Toronto Store records vinyl cool

It’s not your average kind of place as it also has a very cool shop upstairs with books, gifts, home things. You’d love it !

Fashion District Toronto Colour color

After a bit more meandering we were totally ready for a rest. Niagara Falls and all of this in one day calls for a swim and sleep. Ready for a trip up the CN Tower in the morning and our last gig of the trip.

I’ve another post with us inside the  venue preparing for the Coldplay show.

Hope you can see why I love Downtown Toronto so much ?

Do leave me a comment  – would love to hear from you. You can also follow me on Bloglovin’ for updates.

Lucy x

Outfits:

Me: Nell Ponte Blazer, Richmond Trousers, White Easy Tee, Toulon Bag, Gloria Ballerinas.

Girls: Adventure Dress, Pointelle T-shirtHoliday Sandals, Patchwork T-shirt and Mint Bright Shorts.

All c/o Boden.

Where to visit in Cleveland USA and Hello, Niagara Falls

Cleveland sign Ohio visit places trip

You may have already read my first post in which I told you about the start of our USA / Canada road trip with Coldplay.

Here we’ve set off from Chicago on the tour bus and arrived in Cleveland at our hotel at some point in the morning. I was too jet lagged to know exactly when but it was a smooth sleep !

All I knew before about Cleveland was that it was in Ohio and that there’s a funny scene about it in ‘ This is Spinal Tap ‘. That’s pretty rubbish really isn’t it ?

We had the rest of the day to scour the area and then the show was the next day and we managed to visit some cool places in Cleveland in that time.

rocket fizz candy shop cleveland colourful candy rocket fizz sweet shop cleveland
Like the biggest candy and soda store I have ever seen called Rocket Fizz. Wall to ceiling colour and sugar. I went back to my youth and bought some bubble gum and other stuff that’ll I’ll probably never eat.

One thing that strikes me about the USA is how polite everyone is. I’ve always thought this but it reminded me. Even the girls commented on it.

Ohio Cleveland Rock and Roll Museum

Hope you can read backwards ..? Cleveland is famous for it’s rhythm and blues origin and a good place to visit is The Rock and Roll Music Hall of Fame.

Rock and Roll Music Hall of Fame Cleveland Boden OhioIt’s located by Lake Eerie and is unique in it’s sheer dedication to everything rock ‘n’ roll.

Nuevo Cleveland Mexican restaurant color colour

We had supper at Mexican Restaurant Nuevo. I loved the Palm Springs style decor, okay so that wasn’t necessarily Mexican but the place was very instagrammable and the food good with an open kitchen. The views were of the lake which is well worth taking a wander along.

We not only saw a couple getting married there but literally turned around and another couple were getting engaged. A romantic spot, clearly.

Cleveland Indians Progressive Field

The next day was spent resting at our hotel and then hanging at the next Quicken Loans gig venue which is right next to The Indians Stadium while the girls helped out .. and I sat and watched :)

You know, I have always wanted to go to a Basketball match in the USA so it was really cool to have a good look around. The concert was a more intimate 20,000 … ?! I’ve watched the band in various places with different audiences and I really enjoyed this smaller arena.

Coldplay’s show promotes such a healthy and kind attitude to life and I love that. We need more of it on this planet.

With jet – lag still playing with our heads, we set off for the tour bus and fell asleep pretty quickly, only to wake up at 6 am at the Canadian Border. We felt a bit like the Von Trapp family having to step off the bus for it to be checked and speak with the passport control.

Niagara Falls View SunriseNiagara Falls image Canada

Just around the corner was what we had been waiting to see. Lee our driver ( did I say how lovely he is in the first post ? ) timed it all so we could witness Niagara Falls at sunrise.

Wow.

The sound hits you before you see it. The mist spray teases you as you get closer and then there you are. Sitting by the most famous waterfall in the world.

Because it was so early we were literally alone. I can’t tell you how happy it made us all. I could’ve cried if I wasn’t so tired ! I will be eternally grateful for that being arranged for us. Amazing.

Niagara Falls fire Boden Canada Famous

We sat and soaked up the experience before heading back to the bus for some more sleep before reaching Toronto for the next few days. Will update again soon on one of my favourite areas Downtown. It’s a very colourful one !

Lucy x

Clothing and accessories c / o Boden.

On the road with Coldplay starting with Chicago

coldplay tour bus travel USA experience boden dress cool music

Now that we’ve been back for a good few days and the jet lag has subsided I’ve had a chance to sort through some of my photos of our road trip with Coldplay. We visited Chicago, Cleveland and then over to Toronto in Canada all in the space of a week. I managed to take a lot of images as I’m never without my camera for inspiration so I’ve broken the rip down in to no less than 4 posts !

But, hopefully you’ll find them interesting especially if you’ve ever wondered what it’s like travelling and living on a tour bus or if you fancy seeing Niagara Falls at sunrise. I’m still scraping myself off the ceiling over that view. All to come over the next few weeks. I’ve also written about some cool places to visit in Downtown Toronto the next time you visit.

So, you may wonder why we were on the road, over the pond with Coldplay ? Well, they very kindly organised a family tour bus for their team over the holidays. I mean, this is quite unusual in the music business but highly appreciated. In fact, really kind I thought.

chicago skyline image USA big city lake michigan

If you follow me on instagram you will have seen our shenanigans that kicked off in Chicago, the windy city.

I have always loved the USA but it was the girl’s first time there so you can image the levels of anticipation. High !

silver bean chicago travel USAChicago images navy pier travel inspiration

To wake ourselves up on the first day after a HUGE breakfast at 15th Avenue Diner ( recommend by the way ) passing this colourful wall  en route … and with only a day to soak up the atmosphere in Chicago before the gig and onwards, we popped in to some stores, checked out the ‘ Silver Bean ‘ and then went on a speed boat ride just off the Navy Pier on Lake Michigan. I’m not joking – I couldn’t breathe we were going so fast much to the amusement of the girls. It was pretty funny in hindsight.

boden tour bus kaftan outfit canada stylish

So if you have ever wondered what it’s like to travel on tour  – I can confirm it’s pretty bl**dy amazing. These particular buses are also known as ‘ star buses ‘ as they are usually used by artists for instance Dolly Parton loves to travel this way apparently.

They have a living space with TV’s, well stocked kitchen area and a loo and then a door that leads to bunk bed areas for 4 and a shower room  – and then at the back a main bedroom with wardrobe, ( super comfy ) double bed and another TV. The whole bus is air conditioned really well which was a bonus as all places were very hot. I did make a little video which I will probably pop on to YouTube soon.

Lee our driver was possible one of the nicest guys I’ve ever met. We were really lucky.

I got the giggles on the bus because the experience was surreal and the feeling of travelling on an American Highway on a double bed in my PJ’s was pretty immense.

touring trucks USA transport chicago concert coldplay

All in all, I can see why touring is quite addictive. The buzz, the people and the places. Although I have toured with theatre productions in the past – it has always been in the UK so it was kind if realising a dream doing real a road trip.

The first concert in Chicago was fantastic and the girls were totally ready for the next venue.

Another post soon to tell you about Cleveland and show you our early morning stop at Niagara Falls.

Lucy x

Cleo Kaftan, Mayfair Skinny Jeans, Rose Gold Elsie Flats,Sunglasses, Summer Hotchpotch Dress, Holiday Sandals, Denim Shirt Dress cat pumps all c / o Boden.

The Coat is off, the Boden Jacket is on. It’s Spring !

Boden jacket and jeans blue houses Aldeburgh travel

This is my favourite time of year. It’s full of so much hope for the coming months and I find it a good time to work on new ideas for the blog and certainly this year it’s already looking interesting.

Recently I’ve also just started home schooling my youngest daughter for a little while so it’s a good opportunity to get out and about and do some fun topic days with her.

I’m also so happy to be back to wearing a blazer and lighter clothing. Aldeburgh definitely has been mild enough recently – I didn’t mean to coordinate myself here but it’s a pretty good match with the doors, hey ?

Aldeburgh seafront colourful homes seaside houses boden

If you’ve ever wandered along the seafront in Aldeburgh you will know these colourful, tall and eye catching houses well. The place is peppered with lots of bright homes and  many of them are varying. Shades of blue but lots of Suffolk pinks too.

It’s a really inspiring place to hang out and soak up some fresh sea air.

Boden clothing by Aldeburgh sea jacket seaside relaxing pretty viewBoden shoes pebbles aldeburgh beachRelaxed Aldeburgh Boden handbag colourful travel suffolk east anglia

By the way, what are your thoughts on my new Boden shoes and handbag ? I am a real sucker for black accessories to go with my outfits. The shoes are super comfy. A wardrobe staple – and ooh ..  on that note, I recently designed our new bedroom wardrobe and can’t wait to show it to you later this week along with our new wooden floor. I digress … :)

Ice cream seaside Aldeburgh boden jacket handbag trend suffolk east anglia travel

Let’s get back to the business of Spring and seaside love ! The other thing I especially love about this time of year is this. Strawberry ice cream in a sprinkles cone. It really is that simple sometimes. Bliss.

Come on sunshine, I’m ready for ya !

Are you set for it too ? Leave me a comment under this post and let me know what you’ve got planned or just to say hi  -always good to hear from you.

Emilia Ponte Blazer, White Swing Tee, Mini Saddle Bag, Black Slipper Shoes, Mayfair Skinny Jeans all c / o Boden.

Lucy x

Back in beautiful Berlin for a quick trip

berlin-street-art

If you follow me on Instagram  – you will have seen a few pictures of our little Berlin trip a few weeks ago. We spent ages looking forward to it and suddenly we were on our way home again but at least this time we were there for longer than 24 hours.

To say that all of our stay in was entertaining would not be true – only because visiting Checkpoint Charlie and the museum nearby, was a real eye opener and reminder but we kept the educational side of the visit to a minimum as we needed to have some family fun time.

We hadn’t really prepared ourselves too much with what we were going to do. We knew we were going to see Biffy Clyro at Max – Shmeling – Halle Arena but that was about it ! They were amazing as usual and Andy got to watch them this time instead of working on the show which was a real treat for him.

25-hour-hotel-berlin stay travel germany

Having stayed at Soho House in East Berlin last time it was nice to try out a different area, so we stayed at The Palace Hotel which is a family hotel, so a bit quieter  ( we needed some sleep ) in Chalottenburg  –  directly opposite the 25 Hours Hotel which is the home of ‘ Monkey Bar ‘. If you don’t know of this hotspot, it looks down over the zoo with big glass window walls – very cosy inside and the views are quite amazing across Berlin if you sit outside. It’s super trendy and very busy.

monkey-bar-berlin cafe cool places visit germanyview-from-monkey-bar-berlin travel fun visit It’s situated on the top floor where you can look out at all the amazing buildings. Hard not to enjoy the architecture in Berlin. Old and new. I’m not entirely sure of the name of the curved building. It looks brand new – really interesting looking, don’t you think ?

friedrichshaindistrict-berlin colourful street germany

On our second day, we did manage to find the colourful quarter of Kreuzberg. Known as ‘ The Heart of Turkish Berlin ‘ You literally turn a corner and there it is – in its glory. We actually spent quite a lot on a cab getting there. That’s colour inspiration dedication for you …  I was watching the cab meter thinking ” hope this is worth it ”  – but thankfully it was.

friedrichshain-district-berlin

The district is very buzzy and is full of eateries, galleries and cool bars. It’s very arty and has a cosmopolitan feeling to it. I loved it !  Definitely worth a visit and make sure you take your camera. I just wish we’d had more time to spend in the area. Of  course the girls were checking the walls to see if they could see any ‘ naughty ‘ words. Luckily they don’t speak German yet … !

berlin-door colourful german travel berlin-in-greens moped retro germany travel

Although it wasn’t particularly warm or sunny while we were in Berlin – there were lots of colourful moments. Well, I wasn’t going to leave without a few, was I ?

Dotted around the streets were lots of old style mopeds and bicycles. How about this one ? All the greens in one go. Couldn’t resist.

berlin-wall colourful travel

 

Obviously, we had to go and see the remains of the Berlin Wall. It is just covered in street art and old visitors comments but it is also protected with a fence for most of it. Which is understandable. Mae and Betsey were fascinated by the history of the wall and Berlin in general. A lot to take in for them but they enjoyed it very much and learnt a few words.

berlin-quirky-car travel visit places

We went on to a restaurant called Heat on Karl-Liebknecht-Str which is part of The Radisson Hotel – it was really good food – nice curry. A little pricey but then everything in Berlin was to be honest. Not as reasonable as before Brexit.

It is a big place, Berlin – you effectively feel like you are visiting two cities in one go. So much to see and do. I still don’t feel like I have seen much of it but am keen to explore more. It’s kind of quirky but stylishly done  – and SO clean. Maybe a trip in the Spring or Summer next time to enjoy some scenery with a blue sky backdrop.

Would you like to visit Berlin – or have you already been ? Do leave a comment with some recommendations. Would love to hear them ..

Lucy x

How We do Autumn in Southwold …

lucy-loves-ya-boden

Would you believe me if I told you that this was Southwold yesterday ? Blue skies, sunshine and all the colour that you could wish for. All in one place. On a late October afternoon. Stuff dreams are made of ..

beach-huts-of-southwold

It’s the time of year when we get the promenade pretty much to ourselves and we can wander around the town still enjoying the warm ( ish ) days while sharing fish and chips and checking out some of the interior shops. Squeezing in at least one trip here a week is always on my agenda, sometimes I pop over after school with the girls.

I’m starting out this season as I mean to go on – with more bright clothing. Considering how much I talk about strong colours and pastels here on my blog – you’d think all my clothes would be crazy bold but that hasn’t been the case recently. I’m putting that right though now and it feels much more ‘ me ‘ again.

lucy-loves-ya-in-boden-clothing

You might already know how much I love teal. It’s a really flattering colour, I think, on most people. This Jennie coat is a new staple favourite. It’s from Boden ( my whole outfit is here ) and it’s versatile being perfect for Autumn and the right shape to pop an extra layer under for winter. Kind of classic isn’t it ?

lucy-loves-ya-with-boden-bag

One type of item that I wear all the time is a tunic. If it has a little stretch, then all the better. I like to layer them over skinny jeans. It’s just a nice relaxed look isn’t it ? This breton stripe kind of suits Southwold. Nautical ! Talking of jeans – what did we ever do without the skinny style ? I can totally recommend these ‘ Mayfair ‘ ones as they stay fitted.

light-house-southwoldpumpkins

So you may wonder why I have a picture of the lighthouse here ? Well, we walked from the promenade up to Cafe Fifty One for a milkshake ( check out their cool pumpkins display – and do visit  – it’s really good ) and passed it on the way to the pier and I just thought how quirky Southwold is for having a lighthouse right in the middle of town. Kind of suits the place, really.

southwold-pier-boden-shoes-bag

Right under my feet here is the sea. But in all honestly I was admiring my new pumps and bag on this occasion. The shoes are called Patti and I love the contrast of black and navy. Do you like them too ? I have needed a drawstring bag big enough for my camera and everything else I need for the day ( kitchen sink, anyone ? ) and am very into the Beatnik Red. I honestly didn’t intend to coordinate with my surroundings but it worked out pretty well :)

sunflowers

Before heading home  I stopped off at the local flower store to grab a bundle of sunflowers for the kitchen table.

Long may these blue sky days last …

I’d love to know your thoughts on my outfit ? Are you a fan of brights too ? Do leave me a comment under the post or tweet me @lucylovesyablog ..

Jennie Coat, Breton Tunic, Mayfair Jeans, Drawstring Bag and  Patti Shoes all c / o Boden.

Lucy x

Photography by Andy Henderson & Lucy Gleeson.

#InspirationIsColour – Latest Gallery of Pictures

#InspirationIsColour 1

Left to right: @artistmeetsmother @jessrose1702 @fifi.and.florence @mcv96 @rachel_tattered_rose @oandystudio @thesilverfactory @hellopartyinsta @oldfashionedsus

This time choosing pictures to display here from the #InspirationIsColour gallery on Instagram was even harder.

I started a while ago thinking that it would be good to hook up with the colour lovers around the world, which has happened but I never thought there would be so many shades of different colours, each week. So many creative photographers out there, having fun with their Instagram accounts.

These posts will be made a bit more regular as I was looking through images since my last blog post and there were lots and lots, most definitely worthy of featuring here on my blog. In fact, I am honoured to.

#InspirationIsColour 2

Left to right @abookishbaker @pixieconceptstore @silverpebble2 @idontcrampmystyle @zoepower @potterandbloom @natasha_nuttall @lottie_storey @hannahberridgeceramics

As I always say to my daughters, art is a subjective thing – and that is why I love Instagram so much. We all have a different take on colour, art and style.

I especially love to see people showcasing their own handy work in photos – what  do you enjoy the most ? Of course, if you follow me – @lucylovesyablog on instagram you will know that I am pretty partial to sharing a colourful home and a brightly painted beach hut also.

#InspirationIsColour 3

Left to right: @rachelandhercoffee @anna.moraissoares @stylophileuk @_amanda_design @capetowngirl12 @miafleur_home @rebeccadesnos @jennamichellepink @mollyandtheprincess

All of the accounts featured are well worth checking out.  What’s interesting is that I know now who the photographer is of an #InspirationIsColour photo before I even click on it – which shows how unique we all are !

Do add your pictures on Instagram if you fancy it. It’s a great way of finding each other on there and I hope I can add one of your pics to a gallery here on Lucy Loves Ya soon.

Have a good one.

Lucy x

A Whimsical Day with Wedgwood and Amara

World of Wedgewood

There are days out and then there are DAYS OUT. Sorry for shouting but I am still quite excited post – visit.

When Amara dropped me an email asking if I would like to join them and a little group of fellow bloggers and spend an afternoon in Stoke on Trent at World of Wedgwood to celebrate 250 years of their company  – it was an immediate yes. I have been a fan of Wedgwood for as long as I can remember. I found lots of vintage Wedgwood for our wedding a few years back always  drool ( not literally, but almost … ) over their ranges online and in stores. They’re just so beautiful.

I love spending time with the Amara team too because they’re always such fun and they treat bloggers so well.

So, after a 4.30 am wake up start, I set off to meet them all at Euston with an onward journey to Stoke on Trent.

Painting a plate

First on our itinerary once we’d arrived was to be shown around the factory. World of Wedgwood do this as a regular thing. I asked how many times a day they do the tour and I was told around 4, so it shows how popular they are. We watched ‘ Bruce ‘ paint an intricate bowl.

Dye on plates

On the way round we also learned that the kilns are hotter than lava. I imagine that is all of them but especially when they are on their second firing with glaze. They spend about 9.5 hours in the kiln and as you can see here, a red dye is applied by hand.

You might be surprised to know that some of their one off pieces made in the factory are worth tens of thousands. We were offered one to hold but I was only brave enough to stroke it lovingly. Imagine if you dropped it ?

The technique used for lithograph is when they apply a raising paste and then on top of that –  22 carat gold which looks like a brown colour but is actually gold dust. Each one takes a bout a week to decorate and usually goes through the kiln 7 times.

Decorating Wedgewood

All of the specialist artists and decorators were concentrating intensely on their work and it was honestly amazing to witness. I said to one guy that he must have the steadiest hand in the world.

This vase with a Jasper body was impressive. I think it must be quite therapeutic sitting and painting them. Jasper is essentially stoneware but called clay. So I am told.

Some of the machines used ( by a man called Neil ) still use parts from over 100 years ago, maybe more. One in particular has a wooden wheel that up until the 80s was spun by hand all day – the lady who did this was called Elsie. What a star ! Her arms must have been made of steel.

Teapots

If you own any Wedgwood then if you check the base you will see it is stamped like most china. But the more stamps you have, the more prestigious it is. Get checking ….. :)

I could literally talk to you for hours about this because I am fascinated but I don’t want to tell you everything in case you visit  – plus there’s more to the visit to show…

Huge Vase

Next we were taken to the museum where we found out about the humble beginnings of Josiah Wedgwood and his history. He was an exceptional man by all accounts who had strong drive. If he hadn’t have had issues with his right leg after contracting smallpox as a child,  which resulted in him having to recuperate – he may not have had time to come up with all of his ideas for designs. He got other potters to make them and also pioneered new ways of making pottery. He was really interested in a scientific approach to his work.

Bowl

His style became very distinctive and it all took off from there. By the sounds of it – he and his working partner Thomas Bentley were very good friends who were very focused on their company and turning it in to a huge success. Which they did.

Josiah married his 3rd cousin, Sarah – and they had many children. Not all of them survived. Though their daughter Susannah married a man called Robert Darwin and they had a baby  – Charles Darwin. You might possibly have heard his name before ? ;)

I felt like a kid in a sweet shop in the museum  – the huge vase above is circa 1863 – 64 and probably made especially for a exhibitor. It is painted by Emile Lessore. Inspired by by a series of paintings originally commissioned by Louis XIV of France.

Alicw in Wonderland

You know what i’ts like when you try and photograph things behind glass – you generally just get a pic of yourself holding a camera … but I did love these Fairyland Lustre Vase Bone China Vases just too much to not post here on my blog. Produced in the 1920’s and based on exotic fairytales.

WedgewoodTables Wedgewood

After a superb afternoon lunch with delicate sandwiches, cakes and a choice of teas served in quaint cups and saucers ( I had their Moroccan Mint ) and with much chatter, we were let loose in the craft areas to either do some potting ( many jokes about the film Ghost ensued ) or paint a plate with a template.

colour shades Colourful plates

 

More plates!I opted for the latter and luckily for you, we didn’t take them home on the day hence no photo. I say luckily because everyone else’s were really pretty but I chose to colour a unicorn and was so distracted by all the colourful plates and prints around that I managed to achieve a very below par mythical creature. I don’t have to show you it and you don’t have to humour me … Win, win ! It was really great fun and the staff on hand were really lovely. In fact, everyone I met at World of Wedgwood were really friendly. Eve the cab driver from the station.

Designers Wedgewood

I loved these pop art style prints on the wall in the pottery painting room of some of the Wedgwood designers. Really eye catching. It also shows how Wedgwood has evolved over the years and although still a very classic brand – they have moved with the times in many ways.

They have collaborated with so many different designers over the years. Vera Wang being a more recent one and my personal contemporary favourite.

Flowers

They also joined forces with Royal Doulton and glassware company Waterford Crystal to become one big company some time ago which makes sense as they are all iconic British brands that sit perfectly together.

Of course – we had to stop off in the Factory Shop before getting our trains home. I might have bought myself a little cheeky treat. Some Royal Doulton tapas bowls which no doubt will pop up here on the blog at some point soon.

A massive thank you to the Amara IBAs for inviting me and letting me explore my inner geek a little more  – and to World of Wedgwood for a great day. If you are reading this at home and are tempted to visit them – do. It’s a really interesting and creative place with incredibly surrounding scenery.

I’d also like to point you in the direction of the other bloggers from the day – Flat Fifteen, Fairytale Pretty Picture, The Only Girl in the House, Interior Style Hunter, French for Pineapple, Don’t Cramp My Style Blog, British Style UK and Yasmin Chopin. All great blogs – check them out.

Are you a Wedgwood fan too ? Or do you have a favourite when to comes to ceramics ? Do share. Leave me a moment under the post or tweet @lucylovesyablog …

Have a good one and thanks for reading.

Lucy x