Visits to Bath, and Lots of Ribbons

Tuesday, October 09, 2012

It wasn't the best weather for visits to Bath, but visit we did.

Even with thunderstorms looming, the buildings of Bath are eerily beautiful.

Ah, where to start? We only had a few hours.

As with all Janeites, a walking tour of the Austen Hot Spots was in order. Luckily we've done this a number of times before, so we scurried off to the best bits for Mother-in-law-on-the-highlights-tour purposes. Here's Bennett Street.

At the end of the circus we stopped to have a picnic with fruit cake ala The Great British Bake Off book. When I watch TV, I watch crime drama like NCIS, Castle, Grimm (my guilty pleasure).

But, The Great British Bake Off.
It caught me unawares.

I love it. This Fruit Cake is from last year's book, and it's the easiest and most delicious fruit cake. A bit crumbly, but that only means that it needs to be sliced quite thickly before serving. I'm not complaining.

This is inside Bath Abbey. It is very grand with its leafy vaulted ceilings and intricate stained glass windows. Churches make me uncomfortable, but this one is very interesting - there has been a church on this site since 757 AD! It's also the site of all coronations for the Kings and Queens of England.

Also on display in the Abbey were Sue Symon's rather unusual artworks. They are a series of 35 pairs of framed pieces - the one on the left is a hand-illustrated drawing and lettering bonanza, and the one on the right is an embroidery/fabric piece.  Here's a close-up of my favourite hand-drawn image. There is a lot of pencil in the images which makes me feel uncomfortable (from years of rigorous training in art where pencils under images were absolutely verboden) and the embroidery was quite modern for my tastes, but on the whole, the diptychs are rather quite lovely to look at and added something extra to our little afternoon visit.

The deck chairs were out, despite the bad weather. I particularly love this one! Although, it does seem grossly unjust to sit on The Garden Party deck chair while you're enjoying a holiday at the seaside or in the sun.

.... and no trip to Bath is complete without a visit to the Regency Tea Rooms at the Jane Austen Centre. We shared scones, tea cakes and bath buns with plenty of jam and clotted cream. Afterwards we ambled around the streets of Bath to the Assembly Rooms, down to the Pump Room, and around the shops.

We hastened to the Makery Emporium of Mollie Makes fame for a rummage around buttons, ribbons, spools, fabrics and other haberdashery whatnots.

I love the floral love birds and robot ribbons on giant wooden spools. I could have a shelf like this in my makery.

In the middle of the teeny tiny shop was a table full of cups and bowls and buttons. I particularly love the little chalkboards they have to price the buttons - albeit, priced rather - ahem - generously, I thought.

Tape! Jars! Ribbons! So much to look at. I bought a handful of small wooden spools. All in all, a lovely way to end our little trip.

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