Sunday, November 4, 2012

Playing Downton

I've had a very busy day grooming at a One Day Event. We had five horses to look after, and they were all good boys (mostly). I was ready for a lie down when I got home. It is always fun, and a little nerve wracking. It can be a high-risk sport, and I would be devastated if there was a bad accident. Not to worry, everyone in the team returned intact, probably a bit stiff and sore, but there were some placings, so that was good. 

I've been working my way through the first series of Downton Abbey which I am enjoying immensely. I am fascinated by women's roles at that time. It is incredible how their activities were so restricted by convention. The elegant wealthy ladies had such lives of privilege, but also lives that required them to meet the expectations of society constantly. Waiting to be taken as a wife, hopefully to a wealthy suitor (loved or not), then to have children, in particular, a son and heir. And the women in service were also highly restricted and limited by their social positions. I guess if they enjoyed their work, living and working in a large, wealthy home would be rather a coup. 

I think anyone who knows me would realise that I wouldn't be cut out for a life in service, because I'm  rather a lazy bones, and a hopeless housekeeper. To be a proper Downton Abbey lady I actually need my own lady's maid to help me to put my corset on and to do my hair beautifully. Since I have neither a corset, or a lady's maid, I'm on my own. I'm lacking in the appropriate clothing as well, although I'd be quite happy to wear divine Edwardian clothing all day, every day. That didn't stop me trying to create a sort of five minute Downton Abbey hairstyle before we went out last night. 
 Edwardian ladies generally didn't have a fringe, and I look horrible without one, so I made the best of the situation. Apparently blonde hair was much less popular than darker hair during the era, which is interesting. My hair colour would have possibly been quite desirable because it has chestnut highlights in the light. I'm a big fan of washing my hair, but to be a real Edwardian lady I would need to bathe daily, but only wash my hair every couple of months. Yuck.

Anyway, I gave it a good brush, then sorted out the front. I teased it a bit to give it some volume, then twisted the pieces at the sides around and tucked them over and clipped them in place with a big hair clip. Then I took smaller pieces of the hair still hanging down at the back and twisted them in pairs and clipped them in place with hair pins, concealing the big clip.

 If I had a lady's maid it would be all elegant with smooth sections intertwined, and a few real jewels tucked in. Plus I'd have a dress to match. I was thinking I didn't have any time to fuss over makeup, but that would actually be historically accurate, because ladies with reputations to maintain would steer well clear of painting their faces. If I don't paint my face to some degree, people have a tendency to ask me if I'm ill.

So I'm happy to play Downton Abbey with my hair, clothes, shoes and loads of posh jewels (in my dreams), but I'll still be married to the man I chose cause I loved him, working for a living, and running around after a bunch of horses, picking up their poo and rubbing grease onto them for the cross country.


Gigibird said...

Your hair looks lovely - well done for making such a good job of the rear.
We gave up after the first series of Downton but I'm glad you are enjoying it

Anonymous said...

I haven't watched Downton Abbey before. your hair looks great, gorgeous photo of you.
Glad you had a good day being horsey..sounds lovely.
We went to Mapua for a drive and a muffin and walk. I took Henry and Stellsy out for a walk this afternoon and braved the Warehouse and all the fireworks buying bogans to get some sparklers for Christmas..thought Henry might enjoy them.

Love you guys,

Anonymous said...

Lovely photo of you, sounds as if you have had a great weekend. We were just doing the usual, planting, weeding typing..... love you xxxxx