Sunday, November 4, 2012

RARE vintage Weekend Style and Inspiration: Two Mitfords, Two Duchesses and One King

Crawford Doyle Booksellers is a very wonderful little bookstore on Madison Avenue.  It is a great antidote to the superstore bookstore which is often not so super.  The selection is highly edited and just by looking around, you discover many books you want to read.  

My discoveries...

The Sun King by Nancy Mitford

"Have you been to Versailles yet?"  Nancy Mitford wrote to her brother Tom in 1928.  Nancy Mitford is, of course, one of the fascinating Mitford sisters.  Her biography of Madame de Pompadour has been on my reading list for a long time but I have not found it yet.  But I was happy to find The Sun King yesterday.  

"It is my spiritual home and at this time of year it is the most melancholy place in the world."  Mitford continued in her letter to her brother.  Now, I don't know about you but I too have always felt that Versailles is my spiritual home.

Maybe it is because it is just so cozy, I naturally feel at home there : )

The book promises to be "brimming with detail and delicious bon mots and written in a witty, conversational style, The Sun King restores a distant glittering century to vibrant life."

All in One Basket by Deborah Mitford, The Duchess of Devonshire

Maybe it is because I have been reading books on raising chickens and studying chicken coops (have you seen the $100,000 Petit Trianon inspired coop in the Neiman Marcus Christmas catalog?  If not, you can see it here.) for the spring arrival of my "girls" that I have had a desire to reread the Duchess of Devonshire's Counting My Chickens.  So, I looked to see if Crawford Doyle Booksellers had any of the Duchess of Devonshire's witty and entertaining books and found All in One Basket which is a compilation of the books: Counting my Chickens and Home to Roost with a few "newly laid" stories.

The Last of the Duchess by Caroline Blackwood

If you were to make a competition to see who more books have been written about: Coco Chanel or The Duchess of Windsor, I am not sure who would come out on top of the book pile.  I have no idea what could possibly be left to say about either Coco or Wallis but then I found a little book by Caroline Blackwood published in 1995.  It is actually less about the Duchess of Windsor then her lawyer, Maitre Blum, who kept her isolated and vodka-less (!) in the last years of her life.  Should be rather fascinating.

And speaking of the Duchess of Windsor, I did not notice this photo right away but in my father-in-laws apartment there is a photo of Letizia Buitoni's husband Giovanni Buitoni with "That woman".

I hope I have given you some stylish reading inspiration for the weekend!

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