Macbeth is on the lips of everyone at the moment thanks to the latest cinematic incarnation of it. I saw it two weekends ago in London. It was incredibly beautiful and of course very blood thirsty. The costumes were astoundingly brilliant, and the windswept, bleak scenery had me lusting after wet and wild wintery walks. I thought that, given the title of my blog, it's a little odd that I've never explored my Scottish heritage on here. It is, after all, something I hold very dear to my heart (with a name like MacBeth it's hard not to).
Lady Macbeth is an intriguing character. She is so often painted as a crazed woman, driven mad through her actions. The newest film paints her in a wholly new and rather more interesting light that I won't spoil for those of you who are yet to see it.
Lady Macbeth has had many incarnations over the years. From mad eyes to long flowing locks and slightly questionable Celtic dress, these images all provided ample inspiration for my own foray into her psyche.
|Leopolda Dostalova as Lady Macbeth, 1916|
|Sarah Bernhardt as Lady MacBeth, 1884|
Ellen Terry's Lady Macbeth is perhaps the most famous - and perhaps the least accurate Celtic costume! I do love her amazing plaits - I wish my hair was long and thick enough to make such magnificent plaits but sadly not quite yet! Singer Sargent's painting of her is wonderful, and I was so excited to read that the costume she wears in it has recently been restored by the National Trust. You can now see it in person at Terry's house, Smallhythe in Kent.
|Ellen Terry as Lady Macbeth, 1888|
|Ellen Terry as Lady Macbeth, John Singer Sargent, 1889|
The first thing that leaps to mind when Scottish heritage is mentioned is usually tartan. The MacBeth's do have a tartan all of their own:
I don't actually own any MacBeth tartan but I do have this rather fetching tartan cape that I bought in a Bath charity shop a few years ago. It's a bit like wearing a blanket so it's perfect for misty, windy walks. I perfected a deep intense stare because Lady Macbeth has to have one of those: dark, brooding and slightly terrifying.
Whisky drinking is generally the second thing that comes to mind. Sadly I'm not a Scotch drinker, I prefer a gin cocktail. However, I couldn't turn down the chance to road test this beautiful hip flask from SWIG. I've always wanted a hip flask to call my own; I like the idea of having a little something to sip whilst tromping across the heathery moors. This SWIG one does the job very nicely, it's incased in a lovely orange leather case and it feels like it'll stand the test of time extremely well. What have I got in my flask you may wonder? A snifter of Coole Swan; a delicious Irish whiskey (notice the different spelling of whisky!) cream that I discovered recently when a friend from Galway gifted my mum a bottle - I throughly recommend it!
I'm off on a few long journeys over the next few weeks so I'm quite excited to have the opportunity to road test it further. I rarely ever accept freebees as I hate to have things badly matched with the themes of my blog posts (I'm such a control freak when it comes to aesthetics!) so I accepted this with a little trepidation but I was genuinely delighted with the parcel that popped through my letterbox. I think the orange case looks so lovely against my bejewelled hand...
I hope you are all well and looking forward to Halloween. I know it's still a week away but I'm so excited! I love planning my costume. This year I'll be donning an ensemble inspired by the three witches from Macbeth. It'll be very spooky and not at all like the witches with pointed hats and warts (think more real witches). Don't worry I'll be sure to document it! What will you be dressing up as?
Smock made to a traditional English pattern, made by my mum from smocks in Worcester & Hereford museums
Wool tartan cape, charity shop in Bath
Hip flask, SWIG hip flasks *this item was kindly gifted to me
1930s red velvet cape, Oxfam
Bavarian hat, charity shop in Berlin
Red Hungarian folk dancing boots, car boot sale