Edwardian Fete at Winterbourne House

When Aysu suggested we take a trip out to Winterbourne House in Birmingham for their Edwardian Fete on Saturday I practically squeeed in pleasure. A chance to put my parasol to good use over afternoon tea on the lawns – yes please!

Naturally there followed a few days of costume research – what from my wardrobe would suit an Edwardian theme in what might potentially be 25-30°C heat? I immediately looked to Lucy Honeychurch in A Room with a View, and of course, Downton Abbey!

So, parasols, straw hats, crocheted wrist gloves… delicate patterns & neutral tones

Downton Abbey is, in point of fact, a little late for Edwardian fashion – beginning circa the sinking of the Titanic in 1912, and running through to 1914 and the outbreak of WW1. But fashions around this time did not move so quickly and precisely as we are accustomed to now – and more to the point, the heavy costume more closely akin to the Edwardian era is simply not fun to wear in near 30° heat! Had it been cooler, the application of my purple coat to various of my dresses would have created the perfect look!

I also found this incredibly quick and easy Edwardian hairstyle tutorial:

And this, slightly more difficult one:

But in the end I resorted to a familiar style I knew I could work, topped with my straw hat:

Originally, neither of the gentlemenfolk were available to accompany us, unfortunately, so we agreed to shoulder our parasols and chaperone one another, with a little help from Angelica, of course.

But a happy circumstance in marking allowed Dapper the sudden freedom to join us, and so our reputations remained unsullied!

It was a marvelous day out, complete with various traditional fete activities:

We had our photos taken A LOT, were mistaken for actors by the staff, and approached by a lovely couple in Edwardian dress who handed us a card for a society who are invited to dress up and attend events such as this, so get in for free and enjoy free refreshments – which sounds right up our alleys!

Dress: Miss Selfridge; cami top: M&S; sandals: Dotty P’s; basket: Ludlow Market; gloves and hat: charity shops; parasol, gift from Lauren from Malta


4 thoughts on “Edwardian Fete at Winterbourne House

    • We were SO lucky with the weather – it was just perfect! In truth, not many people did bother to dress up – but Dapper and I always like to rise to the challenge! 😀

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