A Birthday Trip Out

Well, I am ashamed to say that my Birthday Post has taken me so long to write. I did give you a hint of what was to come and that I did get the lovely turqouise shoes I wanted! But, I have yet to write any more and there is so much to say.

I have lived in London for a number years and I know some of its secrets, but not all. I love when I have gone somewhere that I have been a thousand times, but yet I discover a secret I did not know it held. Our secret discovery came in the form of a secret garden.

We went to the Natural History Museum in search of Phoolan, alas she was no longer there. In our hunt for her we wandered onto a side of the Museum that I have never wandered to. It is there that a wildlife garden exists behind an iron gate. Next to the entrance of the gate stood a majestic bronze fountain.

Inside those gates held a wild meadow, a little stream, an impressive bee hive in the hollow of a tree. It was a little oasis in the middle of London. You completely forget where you were, watching the little ducklings following there Mama, with reeds and lilies surrounding you.

From there we walked across the street to I think my most favorite Museum, The V&A. The Grace Kelly Exhibition was sold out for the day, so that will be a Birthday treat yet to come, but we did manage to get into the Quilt Exhibition.

The Quilt Exhibition was amazing. The quality and workmanship in the quilts was awe-inspiring. It was very interesting, to me, to walk through the gallery and see these pieces objectified and paid homage too. It is a fine line we walk with Art. I have two quilts in my possession, both from the 1800’s American Mid-West and I use them, they are lovingly looked after, but they are used. I stared at some of the quilts on “bed-frames” or hung on the wall, being revered, dated to around the same period of my own, never to be used again, which is against the reason they were created for in the first place. A little dichotomy that I find intriguing.

There is such a hidden story to tell with quilts: How many hands touched it? Who made it and who was it made for? How long did it take to create, to save the fabric scraps? This was a wonderfully put together show as far as the pices went, there were a few I would have loved to have seen in more detail, but the bed frames they lay upon made it impossible. There are a few quilts I would have gladly liked to have called my own as well, like this one:

The scalloped edges and the detail in her work was so intricately beauitul.  It was enough for me to have just seen seen the exhibition but a few surprises were put into my hands, and one of them was this:

Created by the artist who designed the quilt featured on the exhibition poster. We were able to see the real quilt piece this was made from and I think it is such a cool way to tie everything in. I love when you see thought has gone into something in the exhibition store. That a fabric “poster” was available to tie-in with the fabric in the show.

I was disappointed to not get to see Grace Kelly as well, but in retrospect, I think we were being very ambitious, we were in the Quilt Exhibition for over 3 hours and after that, we needed a visual break, I would have hated to go through Grace Kelly and not have enjoyed it because I wasn’t taking in and absorbing everything that I possibly could have.

After the V&A we wandered down to do a little shopping and thus a new pair of Birthday shoes jumped into my hands. For dinner we went to one of my favorite places. It is my own Luke’s Diner (if you watch the Gilmore Girls, you will know what I am talking about). It is not as bright and cozy as Luke’s, but is is a happening little dive.

After dinner, we strolled to Liberty’s and Snog had set up a mini store inside. I walked out with a delicious frozen yoghurt covered in chocolate and fresh summer berries. It was a perfect end to a perfect day.

(Quilt Exhibition Fabric Banner created by: Natasha Kerr, Quilt images copyright the V&A)