Wednesday, October 3

Black swans and paintboxes

I took lots of photos when we went to visit Chartwell, a National Trust house & gardens once owned and lived in by Winston Churchill. Lots of photos of the gardens, which were lovely. Early autumn purples, a huge vegetable garden complete with sleepy hens, rolling lawns landscaped to hide the house and make you feel far away from everything. Black swans sitting by a lake.

The house itself, design-wise, wasn't completely to my taste (nor was the overpowering ivy vined wallpaper covering the whole of the upstairs landing). But, being nosy and obsessed with other peoples homes, I still loved exploring all the rooms, particularly liking all the 1930s kitchenware and - bizarrely - one of those old trellis-y lifts. Preserved interiors are fascinating, especially from that sort of era - not quite four poster beds and chamberpots, but not quite modern either. I kept imagining what the house would look like had it not been preserved, and had been updated as the decades moved on.   

In buildings set apart from the house Churchill had his art studio which was crammed floor to ceiling with his paintings - yes, as well as leading the country and being a great writer & orator he was also a pretty good painter. In fact the visit really inspired me to pick up my brushes again. I loved this quote from Churchill:

"We must not be too ambitious. We cannot aspire to masterpieces. We may content ourselves with
a joy ride in a paintbox


  1. beautiful photos. I love lavender and these are such a striking colour <3

  2. Wow, what a lovely garden. Great pics.

  3. These are stunning pictures. Your blog is a very refreshing read in a sea of outfit posts :)

    le fresne

  4. I love this post, your photos are wonderful. The garden just looks absolutely lovely, I adore all of the purples and the adorable vegetable patch. This kind of place is just the sort that I like going to to escape from the rush of everyday life :)

  5. Absolutely beautiful photos as usual! Nice to see some sunshine. The gardens look beautiful, I have never seen a black swan before! xo