Friday, February 26, 2010

Snow White and Rose Red

"There was once a poor widow who lived in a lonely cottage. In front of the cottage was a garden wherein stood two rose trees, one of which bore white and the other red roses. She had two children who were like the two rose trees and one was called Snow-White, and the other Rose-Red."

"Snow-White was more quiet and gentle than Rose-Red. Rose-Red liked better to run about in the meadows and fields; but Snow-White stayed more at home..."

"They often ran about the forest alone and gathered red berries, and no beasts did them any harm"

The above excerpts were taken from "Snow-White and Rose-Red" by Jakob and Wilhelm Grimm (The brothers Grimm.) I have had a longheld fascination with fairytales, from childhood. I was read countless tales by my parents, before graduating to reading them myself and listening to taped versions. I have a feeling they have influenced me in countless ways, such as my love of literature and also as a rich source of inspiration. This tale was one I knew, of two young girls and their kindness to a talking bear who turns up at their house.. who then turns out to be a prince. (Obviously! What else do you expect from a fairytale?) The idea of the two polar opposite sisters inspired an idea for a shoot about six months ago. I already had a white dress, but needed to find a red one to contrast it with. Luckily I did, and here is the shoot!

The red dress was fortuitously found hanging in a charity shop. It is Laura Ashley, and I'm assuming it was a bridesmaid's dress in the eighties. Although slightly unnapealing to look at on a hanger, it has that perfect, slightly over the top fairytale/ princess feel- right down to the puffed sleeves and V shaped waistline. It reminds me of the kind of dresses I would draw when I was little! I added a little black vintage belt and red silk shoes from ebay. The pendant is from a vintage market stall.

The white vintage dress was given to me by a friend of a friend. So thanks Clara! I love it.. The detail of the fabric is beautiful, and I love the 'sixties vibe' that it exudes. I have a white top on underneath- though more for warmth. As you can probably tell from the contrast between the white dress and my red hands, it was completely freezing! The shoes are sixties too- thrifted. Slightly too small, but very loved. The ankle socks and tights throughout were christmas presents.

The first and last shots were taken in the remains of a ruined stone cottage that we found. Reminds me of the cottage mentioned in the story!

It was quite a relief to have access to the internet again today. After a web free week on holiday, I was having what seemed to be blog-withdrawal-symptoms! So it was really lovely to log on and find all your thoughtful comments on my last post, I really appreciate it.

Thanks to dad again for taking the photos (& to my family for patience in the cold while the photos were taken!)

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