Everyday stuff from lampshade designer maker Polly Kettley _ "the barkcloth lady".
Sunday, 9 May 2010
Bohemian Dream at Charleston Farmhouse
We are very lucky to live on the edge of the South Downs in East Sussex. It is a truly beautiful part of the world that has attracted generations of artists and crafts folk many of whom have made it their home.
From 1916 a group of thinkers, writers and artists known as the Bloomsbury set (Virginia Woolf, Maynard Keynes, Vanessa Bell, Duncan Grant, Lytton Strachey, T S Eliot and E M Forster) banished stuffy Victorian conventions and created a unique Bohemian lifestyle against the background of the stunning Downs. There are three magical places to visit close by where they have made their presecence felt. The Monk's House, Berwick Chruch and the amazing Charleston Farmhouse.
Charleston is very much alive today and attracts coach loads of visitors undeterred by the remote setting down a pot holed track. There is no surface left untouched - wals, doors, fireplaces, lamps you name it are painted in the most extraordinary colours. Oh and the textiles!
Its is hugely popular with fashion designers as a backdrop for their latest collection. Most recently I spotted the beautiful Brora cashmere girls in residence. Now that's my kind of house - where a girl is inspired to paint wearing fingerless yellow cashmere gloves and baggy linen whilst sitting on an amazing multicoloured needlepoint rug.
You must come and see. Its only an hour a from London by train to Lewes and then a 15 minute taxi or bus ride through Firle to Charleston.