She and Home: Gromit Unleashed

Gromit Unleashed

I know we bang on about Bristol and Gromit quite a lot. Hands up, we’re guilty. But, hey, we cant help it if our city is aces. This summer it managed to outdo itself in its impressiveness with the Gromit trail! You can catch up with our various canine shenanigans here but for now let’s focus on today. For today is a big day, a momentous day, for our fair city. Today is the day that we auction off and say a final farewell to our beloved Gromits.

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Last week I was one of the lucky folk who braved the queues and went to see all 81 (they added an extra one for the exhibition!) under one woof. It was a glorious sight and well worth the 2 hour wait. Continue reading She and Home: Gromit Unleashed

She and Home: Gromit Unleashed

gromit common

80 Gromits, 10 weeks, 1 city. Cracking good job, Gromit! Led by Wallace and Gromit’s Grand Appeal and Aardman Animations, Gromit Unleashed is a public art exhibition in which giant sculptures of the very loveable Gromit, decorated by invited artists, have been unleashed on the streets of Bristol and we have taken it upon ourselves to find every single smashing one! For those of you not lucky enough to live near Bristol, the original Gromit, pictured below with legend Nick Park, lives at London Paddington Station.

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After we wave goodbye to the Gromits on the 8th September (so hurry if you want to see them!) the sculptures will be auctioned to raise funds for Wallace & Gromit’s Grand Appeal, the Bristol Children’s Hospital Charity, follow them on Twitter @thegrandappeal. The Grand Appeal is SUCH an amazing charity raising money for over 100,00 sick babies and children every year, we hope they raise a humongous amount of money at the auction. The auction will take place on 3rd October 2013 at the Gromit Unleashed Pavilion at The Mall, Cribbs Causeway in Bristol.

Until then, here are a few of our favourite Gromits from the trail. Enjoy!

gromit cinema

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gromit station

gromit 3

gromit yellow

gom beddy

gromit pub

All 80 Gromits will soon be together in one giant kennel to form an exhibition called ‘The Greatest Dog Show on Earth’ at the Royal West of England Academy in Clifton, Bristol. Check out their website for more details.

Which one is your favourite?

V + J x

She and Home: A Vintage Hen

Last weekend I had the absolute pleasure of attending my beautiful friend Anna’s hen do! I had been excited about this day for months as Anna is a very creative lady and I knew her hen would be something special – and I was not wrong!

Photo by Joey Beard
Photo by Joey Beard

It was a bright and early start as we met at Premier Apartments in Bristol city centre. Anna’s ‘angels’ had been busy working their magic as when I arrived at 9am the place was fully decked out with bunting, vintage china, lovely throws and lots of yummy food! It was wonderful to walk in to! After the Bucks Fizz had been duly handed out, it was  down to business for the real reason we had all got up so bright and early! Hair! Anna9

Anna had booked three girls from the Pop Up Parlour to give our hair a vintage makeover! There was a lot of excitement (and a few nervous giggles) as we worked our way through the look-book the girls had provided. I was finding it very difficult to decide as I have a lot of hair but I am in no way adventurous with it. I don’t tend to wear my hair up, as I don’t think it suits me, but it seemed such a waste to not to go for it! Plus, it was so outrageously warm I was quite keen on the idea of having the barnet up and out of the way!

Photo by Joey Beard
Photo by Joey Beard
Photo by Joey Beard
Photo by Joey Beard
Photo by Joey Beard
Photo by Joey Beard

My vintage look was created by Faye, who as luck would have it, I actually already knew! She went to school with my BFF Ellie and I’ve been lucky enough to have her do my makeup on more than one occasion. This was the first time she had done my hair but she’s incredibly talented and did an absolutely smashing job! I love that she decided to leave a ponytail at the back so that I still had some of the length! I felt like a real vintage princess.

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After the hair was completed, it was time for a mosey into town for a glass of bubbly at the Riverstation. My seat gave me the perfect vantage point to take some hair photos! Aren’t they brilliant? The Pop Up Parlour did such an amazing job choosing different styles that would suit everyone.

Photo by Joey Beard
Photo by Joey Beard

Grom

We had been asked in our invitations to wear vintage inspired dresses and, as you can see, we certainly all looked the part! I wore a lovely yellow Lady V London dress which I had bought especially. I had been eyeing it up for some time and this was just the occasion it warranted!  I wore it with my, now obligatory, white heart sunglasses, my red Zatchel and my new horse and carriage necklace from Tatty Devine.  The lovely orange flower you can see in my hair was provided by the Pop Up Parlour.

After a few token photos with Gromit, it was time to board a boat to Beese’s Tea Gardens! The cruise was absolutely excellent, especially due to the soundtrack of Backstreet Boys and ‘N sync! It may not have fitted the vintage theme but you really haven’t lived until you’ve dressed up in your vintage finery and sung along to Dirty Pop on a river cruise.

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Whilst on the boat we were each given a lovely pearl necklace to wear to the tea party that awaited us. Anna’s very talented sister had made them all using necklaces she had picked up from car boot sales and charity shops and then attached pretty ribbons to them. I love mine and will definitely be wearing it again!

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Once at Beese’s we were absolutely spoiled with a humongous spread of sandwiches and cream tea. The size of the bowl of cream drew gasps of astonishment when it was brought out! I think we made a lot of the other customers rather jealous with our lovely little bunting filled corner, our veritable feast and, of course, our outrageously glamorous appearance.

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Photo by Joey Beard
Photo by Joey Beard

It was then time for the traditional party games to begin! Anna had the joy of being presented with a ‘vintage tea party’ lucky dip, which each hen had contributed to. Over the course of the day she unearthed treats such as a teapot, milk jugs, a cake stand and beautiful embroidered napkins! There was also an excellent game of Mr & Mrs, in which Anna proved herself to be infuriatingly knowledgeable about her husband to be, and a game of Kiss the Frog! (think Pin the Tail on the Donkey, only with less donkey and more kissing).

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As it was such a beautiful day, we ended up staying at Beese’s well into the evening. It’s an absolutely beautiful place, located right next to the river Avon and surrounded by a wooded bank.  Founded in 1846, it’s lauded as Bristol’s best kept secret and despite only being about a 15 minute drive away, it certainly feels a million miles away from the hustle and bustle of the city centre.

Photo by Joey Beard
Photo by Joey Beard
Photo by Joey Beard
Photo by Joey Beard

It was a truly phenomenal hen do and I feel absolutely honoured to have been a part of it! It can sometimes be a little daunting spending a day with people you don’t know but Anna’s friends were all so friendly and welcoming. We all had a great time and I can’t wait to see them all again at the wedding in a few weeks time! I will no doubt be blogging about that too, as trust me when I say it’s going to be stunning!

Photo by Joey Beard
Photo by Joey Beard

A big thank you to ‘angel’ Joey Beard who, you may have noticed, has kindly let me use a lot of her photos for the blog post. She’s a very creative lady too! You can check out her website here and I also highly recommend you watch the winning film from The Encounters Festival 2012 0117 Hour Film Challenge, “Wind”, with which both Anna and Joey were involved.  It’s brilliant!

Jx