Thursday, October 2, 2008

Please come in...



Welcome to my blog.  First things first.  Why "A Bloomsbury Life"? 

1.  Because I have an enduring love affair with the Bloomsbury Group, those chic artistic souls who resided at Charleston House in the south of England in the 1920's.  Vanessa Bell (sister of Virginia Woolf), Clive Bell (Vanessa's husband), and Duncan Grant (Vanessa's lover).  All broke away from the uptight, judgmental mores of Victorian London and strove fill their lives with art, beauty, wit and the emancipated hedonism of rural living.

2.  Because in these uncertain and stress-inducing times, maybe it's time to refocus ourselves on the simpler things in life.  Overspending is as out as the "in" bag.  And while I've admittedly bought my share of designer purses and suffered pangs of jealousy over Rachel Zoe's archival wardrobe, I'm honestly trying to renumber my priorities.  Old habits are hard to break, but slowly and surely, I am beginning to take as much delight in watching the climbing roses grow up and around my balcony as I used to take in being first in line at the warehouse sale at Barneys.  

3.  Because although I live in citified Hollywood, California, I firmly believe that countryside living is a state of mind.  I may not have acres of green grass in my backyard, but my bare feet are just as happy treading on the early morning dew as they would be if I had boundless acreage.  Life is made up of a series of delicious moments strung together.  The more of those I can accumulate, the better.  

4.  Because the Bloomsbury Group were fearless explorers of life.  Like them, my curiosity is  fervent and deep.  I want to learn to paint.  I want to speak French unflinchingly.  I want to learn to compost.  I want to cook with confidence.  I want to know the Latin names of my favorite plants and flowers.  I want to return to India, Cambodia and Tibet.  I want to take a welly walk on a rainy August day in Scotland.  I want to read all of Cecil Beaton's diaries.  I want to do more yoga.  I want to be a better wife and mother.  I want to make my house a beautiful home.  I want to be more grateful.  We have just the merest blip of time on this planet and I want to maximize the journey.  Join me.

(Photo credits, top and bottom:  Charleston Farmhouse in Sussex, England, taken by me in August 2007)

26 comments:

Ivarene Farmer said...

Beautiful sentiments... It can be done here right?

pve design said...

Where do I sign up to join a Bloomsbury life?

ArchitectDesign said...

I just read your entire blog and LOVE it! Found you via Habitually Chic of course. I'm adding you to my blog roll!

Joanna said...

Such beautiful words to live by. And your home looks so inviting! I think I'll stick around awhile and discover more of your delightful blog.

P.S. I just finished a book on Virginia Woolf's relationship with her servants. It was interesting to see how they responded to the Bloomsbury group's bohemian antics (translation: they barely batted an eye). The book has a brief mention in my blog.

Lisa Borgnes Giramonti said...

Joanna: I want to read that book! I was lucky enough to buy an entire lifetime's collection of Bloomsbury books last year on Ebay...a lovely gentleman was moving back to England and couldn't take them with him. They have a happy home here now. I'm sure the servants at Charleston witnessed a lot of... shall we say, "frivolity"?!

Thanks for reminding me of it -- I'm adding it to my Amazon cart!

Rowan said...

I really needed to meet you today via your blog. The pics of the V&A textiles were exactly what I needed. I am inspired, and for that I thank you.

Tara Dillard said...

Ordered books from Edward Hamilton. Cecil Beaton, and, Sir Roy Strong.

Delicious arriving home to a box of new books on the doorstep.

Then discovered they knew each other. Quite well. What are the chances of that?

Enjoying your blog greatly.

Garden & Be Well, XO Tara

Hels said...

"Because although I live in citified Hollywood, California, I firmly believe that countryside living is a state of mind. I may not have acres of green grass in my backyard, but my bare feet are just as happy treading on the early morning dew as they would be if I had boundless acreage."

It is a delicate balance, isn't it? On one hand you imagine yourself to be in the place and in the era that you are most fascinated with. On the other hand, that very passion might border on the magical and the not-quite-mature.

I live in Australia but I know without a doubt that I "belong" in late-Victorian and Edwardian Devon and Cornwall. Half of my blog is about Australian history and art, but the other half is about my Britain, plus France, Germany, Austria etc.

good luck with the blogging
Hels
Art and Architecture, mainly

Donna Rose Houchen said...

Just found out about you in the LA Times. You are my cup of tea! I grew up in Hollywood and have been an Anglophile since age 7!! I love how you've mixed all the elements of England together--you've created what I have visualized in my head. Your needlework is fantastic and right on. Thank you!

Buy Cialis said...

I think I had seen this reading before somewhere, I don't remember but well anyway I'm gonna keep this link just in case.

viagra online said...

wow that its a beautiful house, it's just amazing, i love to live there, england it's beautiful.
thanks for sharing.

Raf said...

The very word "Bloomsbury" evokes a very positive feelings in me. Look what I've have written on the famous Bloomsbury Group this time.

http://strefakreatywna.blogspot.com/2010/12/grupa-bloomsbury.html

House of Hemingway said...

Hi Lisa, I have something I'd like to e-mail you, is there an e-mail I can reach you to? Please let me know.


Luce

my e-mail is: houseofhemingway.blogspot.com

david said...

i little bit of the bloomsbury life for you.. thanks for your blog

http://itstartedwithajug.blogspot.com/

david said...

bloomsbury dinners.. eating at Charleston
http://itstartedwithajug.blogspot.com/2011/01/normal-0-false-false-false-en-gb-x-none.html

L'Elégante said...

I like Bloomsbury life. I dream to create an identical place somewhere in France. I have many books on the life of occupants, very interesting.
Fine

My Garden Diaries said...

Rock on! It is about creating your life where you are in the moment...so excited to have found your blog...From one mama to another...keep up the good work!

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Coulda shoulda woulda said...

Love your blog, but as a Bloomsbury fan, I hope you have been to Amalfi. The spirit lingers on for sure. It would be great to see your experience there!

A Well Styled Life said...

Congratulations on your book coming in 2014. Looking forward to reading it!!

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