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Wednesday, May 24, 2017

The Pride and Prejudice Home Is For Sale

Calling all Jane Austen fans! You can now live where Elizabeth Bennet lived.

The manor home, known as Longbourn in the 1985 BBC adaption of Pride and Prejudice is where the Bennet family lived and it is for sale for the first time in 70 years. In real life the name of the home is Luckington Court and you would indeed be lucky to live there.

The home is located in the Cotswolds, an area of 800 square miles that is known for its quintessentially English villages, lush landscapes of rolling hills and charming villages and cottages.

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The Cotwolds run through the following counties: Gloucestershire, Oxfordshire, Warwickshire, Wiltshire and Worcestershire.

The 18th-century home sits beautifully on 156 acres and is located next to the church on the edge of Luckington village. Bristol Avon flows through the estate which is fed by seasonal springs and leads out to the nearby river Avon.

Historically Luckington Court is placed on the site of a manor owned by King Harold before 1066. It is built of local Cotswold stone. The present house was remodeled and extended around the 16th-century.

Luckington Court

It was owned by the Fitzherbert family, wealthy merchants from Bristol from 1632 until the early 1800’s. Further alterations were carried out in 1921 by the Johnson-Ferguson family which included an addition of a service wing to the north.

The house has more than 9,600 square feet of living space which includes six reception rooms, seven main bedrooms, and six bathrooms.

Luckington Court

The rooms are elegant and well-proportioned with high ceilings and tall sash windows. In addition, there are several secondary buildings on the property to include traditional stables, farm buildings as well as five quaint cottages.  

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The home is surrounded by beautifully maintained gardens, pastures and woodland with frontage to the River Avon.

Both the interiors and exteriors of Luckington Court were used in the filming to represent Longbourn, the Bennet family home.

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Alas, Mr. Darcy, aka Colin Firth, is sadly not included in the £9 million ($11.6 million) asking price.

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Does anyone wish to pool our pennies together?


Monday, May 22, 2017

The Society Wedding of the Year ~ Pippa Gets Married

On Saturday, May 20th Philippa Charlotte “Pippa” Middleton married financer James Spencer Matthews. The happy event was deemed the society wedding of the year.

Pippa Middleton

For those who may not know, Pippa is the younger sister of Catherine, the Duchess of Cambridge, who is married to Prince William, son of Prince Charles and the late Diana, Princess of Wales. 

Pippa and James

The wedding ceremony took place in Saint Mark's Church in the quiet Berkshire village of Englefield.  The church is situated on private land known as the Englefield Estate.

Here is one of the three early English arches decorated for the special day.

The Englefield Estate is owned by Richard Benyon, one of Britain’s wealthiest members of Parliament.

The earliest parts of the church date back to 1190. It was extensively restored by Sir George Gilbert Scott in 1857.

The same shot in all its wedding glory. Faux tree trunks featured cascading vines, to include English ivy, and were topped with peonies, roses, sweetpea, as well as freesia and accented with various greenery.

No doubt the church was selected for it’s history, beauty and privacy.

The church is also located just six miles from Bucklebury where the Middleton's live.

The interior floral decorations only enhanced the loveliness of the church.

A closer look at the traditional floral arrangements.

The bride arrived to the church in a vintage 1951 Jaguar Mk V car.

Pippa Middleton

She was accompanied by her father, Michael.


The bride wore a custom Giles Deacon dress. It featured a high neckline, cap sleeves and a corseted bodice with a heart-shaped detail on the upper back. The bespoke guipure silk cotton lace was hand appliqued to create an illusion that the dress had no seams. The lace was additionally embroidered with pearls. The underskirt of the gown had multiple layers of organza and tulle to create a floor sweeping movement.

Pippa Middleton arrives with her father Michael Middleton

Her veil was a double-tier, cathedral-length design made by Stephen Jones. The tulle had a scattering of dégradé pearls (a minute change from one shade, tone, or color to another). The bride also wore a diamond tiara by Robinson Pelham in a Maidenhair Fern design.


The small bridal bouquet, made by Lavender Green,  included peony, sweetpea, asilbe, freesia, waxflower, green bell and lady’s mantle.

Pippa Middleton

Her bridal shoes were the Seneca bridal heel by Manolo Blahnik. The ivory silk satin pump has a pointed toe, ankle strap and Swarovski crystal buckle embellishment.

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The bride’s “something old” were the earrings she wore to sister’s wedding in 2011. They were custom made by Robinson Pelham who also created the tiara.

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Her engagement ring, also from jeweler Robinson Pelham, is an Asscher-cut, hexagonal-shaped diamond set in a platinum platinum bezel setting. This is surrounded by multiple smaller brilliant-cut diamonds. A very simple Welsh gold wedding band was selected to pair with the diamond ring.

The bride’s sister, Catherine Duchess of Cambridge, was Pippa’s matron of honor.

Her custom peachy pink crepe silk dress featured a fitted bodice with a deep v-neck and billowing sleeves that cuffed with three covered buttons. It was designed by Sarah Burton of Alexander McQueen.

She wore an elegant fascinator hat from milliner Jane Taylor and morganite and diamond earrings by Kiki McDonough.

The Duchess of Cambridge stands with her daughter Britain's princess Charlotte, a bridesmaid

Princess Charlotte’s ivory silk dress, by Pepa & Co., had a frilled collar with pale pink trim on the sleeves and neckline. The bodice features a vintage-style pleated panel. Underneath is a silk petticoat with lace trim to provide volume. The charming frock was accented with a pale pink silk sash.

This same style of dress was worn by all the flower girls.

They also wore custom pink leather “Angelica” strap shoes created by Papouelli.

Here you can see the back pleating of the Duchess’ dress. Her heels were Gianvito Rossi suede pumps in the “Praline” colorway.

Prince George, and the other page boys, were dressed in Pepa and Co. knickers made of pale olive silk dupioni and ivory double-breasted silk pleated shirts accented with olive silk covered buttons and matching cummerbunds. They wore blucher style “Celebration” shoes.

Prince George was cherubic in his little page boy outfit as he gathered some petals to throw over his auntie 

The pageboys were Casimir Tatos, Edward Sebire, William Ward and the bride’s nephew, Prince George.


The flower girls were Countess Philippa Hoyos, Lily French, Avia Horner and the bride’s niece, Princess Charlotte of Cambridge.


Prince William and Duchess Catherine’s children were angelic cherubs.

Prince George of Cambridge, paige boy and Princess Charlotte of Cambridge

Just as her sister did for her six years ago Duchess Catherine arranged the back of Pippa’s bridal gown.

Pippa played doting maid of honour to Kate on her big day in 2011 so it was Kate's turn to return the favour by helping her sister out

Spencer Matthews, James's younger brother, was the best man.

Spencer Matthews

In attendance were princes William and Harry wearing customary morning suits.

Princess Eugenie of York (the younger daughter of Prince Andrew and Sarah, Duchess of York) attended the wedding with her boyfriend, Jack Brooksbank. She wore a Paule Ka dress and carried a metallic Anya Hindmarch clutch.

Princess Beatrice

The bride’s brother, James Middleton, escorted the bride’s mother, Carole Middleton, to the church. Mrs. Middleton wore a pale pink bespoke Catherine Walker design.

The grooms parents, David and Jane Matthews. Mrs. Matthews wore a gown in a lovely shade of mint green and accessorized with emerald green.

Parents of the groom Jane and David Matthews looked to be in excellent spirits as they arrived at St. Mark's Church today. Elegant in mint green, Jane teamed her look with an emerald clutch and matching stilettos 

The happy couple immediately following the ceremony.


The first public kiss.

The happy couple share a tender kiss outside the church moments after saying their vows

Pippa and James kiss

A jolly wedding party.


The beaming couple.

Pippa Middleton and James Matthews

The reception took place at the Middleton family home, Bucklebury Manor.

The Duke and Duchess stayed here for a few weeks after Prince George was born.

A custom glass conservatory-style structure was shipped from Belgium and constructed on land behind the home.

As appropriate, the airspace above both villages was closed to intrusive press crews from flying overhead or launching drones on the day of the event to prevent video footage of celebrations.

PHOTO: Aerials views of the Middleton family home in Bucklebury, UK where a gigantic conservatory-style marquee dominates the surrounding gardens. Preparations continue for the upcoming wedding of Pippa Middleton to James Matthews.

The happy couple leaving the church.

©Ken Goff/IPA Rota/Nunn Syndication/Polaris

They drove through the village in a 1961 Jaguar E-Type car.

The groom's hair blew in the wind as he drove his new bride home after marrying her at St Mark's Church. Despite rain forecasts, the couple certainly got lucky with the weather 

Best wishes to the happy couple.

I hope you have enjoyed this post!


Sunday, May 21, 2017

What’s Brightening The Weekend

This weekend has been rainy and gloomy. But never fear, there were still several bright spots to be enjoyed.

Weekend Reading:

An oldie but a goodie, Garden People: The Photographs of Valerie Finnis. It’s  an absolute tongue and cheek representation of the British upper classes tending to their gardens. You can’t help but smile while perusing this book.


Weekend Watching:

Anne of Green Gables (Also known as Anne of Green Bagels in our house. :) is one of my all time favorite books. It’s probably tied for first against Jane Eyre or Pride and Prejudice.

I still have my treasured VHS tapes of Anne, with Megan Follows in the lead role, so Anne With An E has been greatly anticipated. While I still love the 1985/86 adaption the best, this very happy series, available on Netflix, is worth watching.

Weekend Happiness

Lewis Miller, aka “The Flower Bandit” is giving a cheery gift to New Yorkers by transforming random city trash cans into beautiful bouquets.

yellow flowers nyc trash can lewis miller

Weekend Pampering

A pretty gift for the upcoming graduation and bridal shower season. The Unicorn Glow Box summer limited edition. Available today at Ulta and Wet and Wild tomorrow. 

Weekend Wearing:

Scallops + gingham = perfection. I found this Southern Proper Brooks popover blouse, with scalloped collar, at Marshalls for a steal.


Best Design/DIY of the week

This DIY brought a smile to my face and heart. My son, the Scout, introduced me to Jake Weidmann last year as he was intrigued by this master of calligraphy. But you MUST visit this new dad’s FB page to see what he made for his sweet baby girl. Here’s a few sneak peeks:

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Go HERE to see the finished project in action.

Tell me about your weekend.


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