Mother’s Day

You either love it or hate it I reckon.  Although I have realised recently that Mother’s Day is not just a commercial stunt it actually dates back a very very long way and all over the world.

hilI came across a very informative site Mother’s Day Celebrations which talks of the Greeks celebrating the maternal goddesses and the Romans celebrating Hilaria the Mother Godess.

Mother’s Day is celebrated all over the world and almost each country has a different date.  In the UK the date is the 4th Sunday in lent, this year that falls on the 30th March.  And in France it falls the last sunday of March, unless it collides with Pentecost.

hillllI personally feel it is a great day for children, of any age, to show their appreciation towards their mother.  So much of a mothers hard work and dedication goes thankless and it is a good thing to genuinely show appreciation.  Its not about the money you spend, a wild bunch of flowers you have picked will do the job, its about the thought and giving of thanks that is the key.

For those who do like to buy a little something for Mother we have put together an easy to find one page collection of suggested Mother’s Day gifts.  This is a diverse collection including pink suede slippers, Lavender Pillows and embroidered French Heart Baskets.  We hope you enjoy the selection.

CELIA LINDSELL.basket pair. white linen crop copie

 

 

 

 

 

However you feel about Mother’s Day I would like to wish all mothers out there a restful and happy day and hope you enjoy the appreciation thrown at you – you deserve it.

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Sydney Opera House

Now this has always been a favourite of mine and to celebrate I have put together a montage of various lighting effects that have been created on the Sydney Opera House over the years. I have since discovered there is a festival every year called Vivid Sydney.  This is where many of these lighting displays were carried out.  I would adore to be in Sydney one day to see this festival.  I hope you enjoy my favourites

Vivid Live 2013

Vivid Live 2013

 

La Mascular by Superbien

Vivid Sydney 2013

Vivid Sydney 2013

Lighting of the Sails by Eric Eno

Lighting of the Sails by Eric Eno

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

June 2011 AND FINALLY!

Vivid Live Festival 2013

Vivid Live Festival 2013

How to tie Silk Scarves

The ultimate of all accessories is the Silk Scarf.  Wether long, square, big or small these simple creations can make all the difference, not only to your appearance but also in keeping warm.  I started wearing silk or cotton scarf when living in France.  For some reason I had more courage to wear them there plus they are worn by many French women as an elegant accessory.  I think in the UK many people worry about how to tie their scarf and so generally have tented to wear them less. They can look beautiful and stylish if you know how to wear them. So below are some hints as to how to wear and tie your silk scarves.  We sell both square and long silk scarves so I will show you below various ways how to tie both.

 The Square Silk Scarf

Silk scarves are a wonderful wardrobe staple. They add colour, texture, and interest to any outfit, and are an ideal way to keep the winter chill off your neck.  Try one of these many styles of tying your favorite silk scarf to enhance any style.


Creating the basic knot around the neck.
This is one of the most classic styles for a square silk scarf. Lay your scarf out flat on a table.  Carefully fold two of the corners to meet each other, creating a triangle. Then taking the two corners sitting together and start folding inwards in 5cm sections. This will leave you with a long rectangular scarf that can be wrapped around your neck and tied in a simple knot.  Knot can either be worn at the front of the neck or at the side at a jaunty angle.

Square scarves are also a great way to tie your hair back. There are two ways to do this:

1.  Fold the scarf in half diagonally to create a large triangle. Drape the scarf over your head with the two tail ends at the nape of your neck, and the large triangle covering the top of your head. Tie the ends together in a knot underneath your hair to finish the look.

2. Lay your scarf flat out on a table, fold in half diagonally and then roll the scarf up to create a long narrow stretchy piece of fabric.  Place the centre of the scarf under your hair line at the back of your neck and bring the two ends up and tie together in a knot a the top of your forehead.  Then slip the scarf back slightly at the top of your forehead to a position that is both comfortable for you and keeps your hair off your face.  The knot can either remain in the centre of your head of be slipped round to one side for a slightly more jaunty look.

Our Very Large Square Silk Scarf 

This is a wonderful silk scarf to wear under a coat to keep you warm in the winter.  Simply fold the scarf in half to create a triangle. Drape the scarf around your neck with the point of the triangle resting down your back and then bring the 2 other points and tie them loosely around your neck.  The extra layer of silk under your coat will really keep your warm.

Our Long Narrow Silk Scarves.

These are extremely versatile and can be even worn as a sash belt.    Below are some examples of how to tie and wear them:

silk scarf, long narrow scarf, floral scarf, black scarf, bright scarfTied with a bow.  Wrap the scarf around your neck a couple of times leaving the ends long enough to tie in a bow.  After tying adjust the bow by stretching out the silk in the bow loops for a full and attractive bow.  The bow will feel more comfortable and look better worn slightly to one side.

To tie just with a knot – Again wrap the silk scarf around your neck a couple of times this time leaving long enough ties to make a small neat knot.  This can be worn either at the front of the neck or slightly to one side.

Wearing double under a coat.  Fold the long narrow scarf in half lengthways.  Place around your neck and then pass the 2 ends through the loop you created when folding the scarf in half.  Pull the 2 end downwards pulling the scarf gentley around your neck.  This creates a warm tie if wearing the scarf under a coat.

Silk Heart Scarf, long scarf, silk scarf, heart scarf, burberry scarfLeaving the ties long.

Wrap the silk scarf once around the neck and then tie loosely at the front leaving the long elegant ties to fall long down the front of your shirt, cardigan or jumper.

Worn as a Sash Belt.  If you have a plain dress using these scarves as a sash belt is a great way to dress up your outfit.  The belt can be tied either on the hips or around your waist.

 An essential tip – How not to loose your scarf

If you are wearing your silk scarf under a coat and want to take it off when going inside I suggest you place the scarf in the inside arm of your coat to avoid loosing it.  You will automatically find your scarf again when putting on your coat.

We also sell some divine Cashmere Scarves which you can find here

 

 

 

 

 

New Babouche Slippers

I bought a pair of babouche suede slippers over 30 years ago from Jonny Moke in the Kings Road.  And I still wear them today.  In fact I use them as house shoes.  When I come in from the dirty damp streets of London I toss off my outdoor shoes and happily slip into my soft soled suede babouche.   So it is with great pleasure to announce I am now selling a range of Babouche Slippers made from soft suede and leather.

Babouche RedBabouche chocolate suede slippers, house shoes, babouche

The Babouche Slipper is the everyday shoe wear of the Moroccans and are worn by both men and women.  Their origins are from Fez and which is where I have my collection made by traditional experienced artisans.  The collection is available in a number of colour ways and sizes are available from 37 up to 47.  The insole of the suede slippers is softly padded for extra comfort.  The sole is made from rigid leather.

I take my babouche slippers with me travelling too.  They are light to pack and don’t take up much room.  They look very elegant worn with long trousers with a slight flair.

They are a great gift – Last year I gave all my nephew and nieces and my brother a pair for Christmas.  They were the most popular present for years by far.  So for teenage boys and big brothers, who are often so difficult to buy for, these suede slippers are a great present.     All are sold in a cotton shoe bag.

Sold with a cotton shoe bag

Sold with a cotton shoe bag

 

We will shortly be introducing a Soft Pink pair to the collection so keep checking for new colours.  I hope you enjoy

What has been going on…..

It has been a very busy couple of months and I am pleased to announce that I have introduced quite a few new products to my online shop.

Right now I am in Marrakech where I am working with a woman’s cooperative who work in textiles and embroidery.  From here I have designed my collection of Tassel Fringed Bath Towels and am about to launch a new range of linen placemats and napkins embroidered here in Marrakech.  They too will be fringed with cotton tassels.  I will keep you posted as to when the Linen Placemats and Linens Napkins are available from my online shop.Bath Towels with Tassels

 

Cotton Pillow Case.  I have also designed an Oxford style Cotton Percale Pillowcase fringed with the same cotton tassels and embroidered in the four corners.  Receiving pillowcases as a gift has been a favourite of mine so consider these for friends and family.  Again I will inform you of their arrival.

The next product I have always wanted to sell is the traditional Babouche Slipper from Morocco.  These are traditionally from Fez and are handmade by artisans.  The slippers are made from soft suede with a padded insole for comfort.  The sole of the slipper is made from rigid leather.  I wear them as house shoes, that is to say that once home I flip off my walking shoes and with great relief slip into my babouche for comfort and a heavenly relaxing feel.  I have chosen a number of classic colours to start with.   The Dark Chocolate sippers I wear as house shoes and look great with slightly flared trousers.  This also is a colour suitable for men.   The china blue is perfect for lounging in your pyjamas and the Boston red is a favourite for teenagers.    Rose pink will be arriving soon and is always a womans favourite.

Silk Scarves  Whilst living in the South of France I always found trips back to the UK a little chilly.  The answer for this was the Silk Scarf.  I always travelled to the UK with a small selection and found wearing them the perfect way to keep a chill off my neck and they never took up much room in my luggage.  They can be tied in so many ways, they always finish off an outfit with style and most importantly keep me warm.   I sell a selection of Silk Scarves in different shapes and sizes so I hope there will be one to suit you.  I have found you can never have too many, they do not take much room in the wardrobe so get collecting and enjoy the experience.

Silk Scarf

 

Silk Heart Scarf

Moroccan Embroidery

I had no idea embroidery was such a thing for the women here in Morocco . Mainly done on table cloths, napkins, bed pillows and sheets.  The embroidery I am enamoured with is the geometric designs originally from Fez.  It is also done by machine now but the mind boggles at how this work is done by hand.  The patience…..

This is a lovely blog written about Moroccan embroidery ZWEEN with delightful images.  I have had to include this photograph here so you can see what I am talking about.  Imagine every stitch sewn by hand and this is just a tiny part of the finished table cloth.

Moroccan embroidery cotton pillow case quality cotton decorative

 

This next image is more understandable in terms of labour but the simple geometry of it I find very calming.

simple embroidery geometric cotton towels pillow cases

 

I could happily have this painted above a threshold in my house.  The famous tiling in Morocco is all based on geometry too.  100’s of different patterns are learnt taking a life time to achieve.  When you study Moroccan tiling you begin to realise its complexity.  It was at this point I decided it was something I was never going to achieve so instead I let my mind boggle at its genius.

moroccan tiling, geometric, embroidery, towels,

 

I have started working with a Women’s Cooperative in Marrakech.  They have made my Tassle Fringed Bath Towels.   They are SO efficient, like a little army determined to do their best.  Feisty and tough, I am enjoying their work ethics and feel glad to be working amongst a team of women.  Girl Power I guess.

batjh towels, fringing, tassels, cotton,

I do wonder how long this kind of work is going to be sustainable for.  But thats a whole nother debate…..

In the meantime my current project is linen table napkins.    I am creating a collection that are 45cm square made from Estonian linen embroidered in Morocco.  (Eastern Europe produces fabulous quality linen) They are going to be available in lime green and marine blue finished with white cotton tassels.  I cannot wait to see them finished.

 

Wedding Favours

It has long been a tradition to give away little goodies to your guests on your wedding day.  They have often travelled far and wide and there is nothing like a little surprise gift to make them feel really welcome.

Bespoke Initialssmall close up largeLavender is an ideal gift to present for your guests.  At Celia Lindsell we have been working with Provencal Lavender for years and can make up little sachets from the finest Provencal Lavender which your guests can keep for many years to come to remind them of your wedding day.  These sachets can be colour matched to the them of your wedding and can be customised with your initials as well.

Over the years I have been following the  wonderful blog Love and Lavender , a wedding inspiration blog based in the US but with a world wide following.  Now if you need some great ideas check this out.  It is quite stunning.

S & D_253If you are wanting a true Provencal Wedding and need help with the organisation Lucy Till  is the lady to contact.  She has been organising weddings in Provence for the past 5 years with anything from 10 to 300 guests.  She knows all the great venues; chateau’s, pretty vineyards, flowering lavender fields, romantic hotels and can organise everything for you from the button holes to your going away car.  So where ever you live it is possible to wed in the romantic setting of Provence.  Let Lucy take the hassle out of your big day, she’s an expert.  Find out more here

 

So wherever you are getting married giving your guest wedding favours is a great little welcome treat.  It puts everyone in the mood for celebration.

Fur: the ecological and fashionable choice. Stay warm in the cold.

Baby it’s cold outside. And what better way to warm up than with the natural warmth of fur.

alberta-ferretti-fall-winter-2012

Alberta Ferretti Fall Winter 2012

Fur has been all over the catwalks this season. It’s the ultimate way to add a luxurious note to your outfit. Designers such as Fendi and McQueen went all out with their use of fur, while designers such as Alberta Ferretti were subtler in their use. Louis Vuitton brought out this wonderful handbag.

mulberry

The Mulberry A/W 12 ‘Where the Wild Things are’ campaign

At Mulberry, they took their inspiration from the book Where The Wild Things Are, and embraced the fur trend. At their AW12 show, Claridges’ ballroom was kitted out with long-haired fur seats, referencing a key textile from the show – Mongolian fur. Mulberry sent some beautiful looks down the catwalk, including lots of shorn fur jackets, layered over chunky knits, and pulled together with gorgeous belts.

fur2

Maggie Smith as as Countess Grantham

So fur accessories are back in a big way. We’ve also noticed it a lot in TV shows Downton Abbey, Mr Selfridge and Parade’s End, where the lead characters are often seen wearing beautiful furs.

 

The Countess of Grantham (Maggie Smith) is often regal and impressive under a mountain of fur shawls.

louis

Louis Vuitton’s fur handbag

 

Fur gets some bad press, but here at Celia Lindsell, we use ecological possum fur from New Zealand. The possum was introduced into New Zealand from Australia in 1837. The possums settled in very quickly, but unfortunately they are very aggressive predators, and soon were destroying much of the country’s natural flora and fauna. The current possum population in New Zealand is estimated at 60-90 million.

The possum is recognised by The World Conversation Unions (IUCN), the New Zealand Government and many other ecological groups as a serious threat to New Zealand’s biodiversity and a major ecological catastrophe; it features in the world’s 100 invasive species lists. As a prolific vector for spreading bovine tuberculosis it is also a major threat to agriculture.

Faced with massive destruction of its huge forested areas, New Zealand is providing a sustainable solution; the humane reduction of the Australian Possum is the only way to resolve this urgent ecological crisis.

The fur we use is wonderfully soft, and perfect for this freezing weather. It’s the ecological and humane fur choice, perfect for eco-conscious fashionistas.

If anyone needs more convincing, have a look at Hannah Betts’ article on the Guardian, where she says that:

 “In an age of “slow”, eco, sustainable fashion, in which heritage has become the watchword, fur can boast an ancestry of 100,000 years. It is a natural, renewable, biodegradable resource. In contrast, most fake furs are made from petroleum-based products derived from non-renewable resources. There is a tradition of fur being handed down and restyled through generations, rather less so with fast fashion substitutes.”

Fur is the ecological choice, and the fashionable choice. So wrap up warm and keep out the cold.

Click here to discover our range of Fur Accessories or click a product image below

Fur Trimmed Mitts

Fur Trimmed Mitts

 

Fur Hat

Fur Hat

 

Fur Evening Bag

Fur Evening Bag

 

 

 

 

 

Fur Trimmed Shawls

Fur Trimmed Shawls

Fur Lavender Pillows

Fur Lavender Pillows

Fur & Silk Collars

Fur & Silk Collars

 

Where we make our Lavender Bags

My mother taught me to sew so I was well prepared to create my first lavender bag, and a great many to follow.  However there was always going to be a time when I needed to outsource the manufacturing of my Lavender Collection.

I was apprehensive about creating rising costs, having to commission very large quantities and finding greedy factory bosses.

By chance I was introduced to Jesus Mereno, the managing director of IPSIS, a state aided scheme to help handicapped people into work.  I have to say his name gave me hope.  Part of the IPSIS group is a sewing factory run by Chantal.   I instantly liked her.  She is a ‘yes we can’ lady which is rare to find in France and was happy to start off with relatively small quantities with the belief that these would grow.  The factory employs 40 people with various mental or physical handicaps.  Due to their conditions they are unable to hold down jobs in conventional factories.

 

Chantal is one of the finest people I have worked with.  She is highly efficient, frank and always enthusiastic.  Such a pleasure.  Nora runs the factory floor, has a divine smile and is a stickler for detail and precision.

Their sister factory fill all my lavender bags.  They are 2 kms apart with frequent deliveries between the two.  Elisa 30 is also an IPSIS organization and Noelle is the boss of the factory floor.  She has 14 employees who meticulously weight my lavender, fill the bags and tie the pretty bows.  Elisa 30 has 4 separate divisions in total:  a commercial cleaning service, a motorbike garage, a restaurant and the assembly factory.  In total they employ over 100 handicapped people.

Noelle has worked hard to perfect my collection and nothing leaves the factory before passing before her beady eye.  Once it has left her factory I know it will be perfect.

These factories give opportunities to handicapped people, I for one, take for granted.  They provide the pleasure of job satisfaction, the rewards of being part of team and a very important salary.

Being so close to where I live I am able regularly to visit the factories.  I adore seeing neat rows of my lavender bags all ready to go.  I can tell you it beats getting on a plane to China!

Lavender Locks Rock

Has anyone else noticed the trend for lavender-coloured hair?  No longer the preserve of the ‘purple rinse’, lavender is this season’s most beautiful beauty trend. Chanel embraced the trend at the 2013 Resort wear show. And where Chanel goes, others will follow.

Plenty of the big fashion houses sent models down the runway with pretty purple hair, while celebrities such as Katy Perry and Kelly Osbourne have  both opted for lavender locks this season. It’s a much easier colour to carry off than some of the more ‘outrageous’ colours out there, and it goes with most complexions.

If you’re getting bored of your current colour, then lavender could be perfect for you. It’s flattering, and what’s more, is a great way to inject some more lavender into your life.

In order to dye your hair lavender, you first off have to bleach your hair. Bleaching your hair is the most difficult part of this process, because it can severely damage your hair if it’s done wrong. If you’re feeling at all uncertain, enlist the help of a professional. Paying for the style up-front could cost a lot less than having it fixed later.

But if you can’t quite bring yourself to go the whole way, lavender eyes are a good nod to the trend, as seen at Versace. Although we have been conditioned to think that blue/lavender tones are a mistake (and should be left in the 80s), lavender around the eyes can actually look very pretty.

There are a few tips you might want to follow though to make sure you choose the right shade of lavender for you.

Cool colours like deep purples and lilacs make green eyes look beautiful, while navy or indigo can make blue eyes pop. Lilac and purples look best on brown eyes and bronze-skinned, olive-skinned and black-skinned women.