I think there’s been something about blue Monday? Apparently this so-called blue day was Monday, January 21st. Some psychologist invented the term after coming up with a formula for the most depressing day of the year when people feel depressed and at their lowest ebb. Really? Look, life is tough enough for I’d say a huge number of people, and not just the UK which has/is …… just go to my Twitter feed to find out what I think of current affairs. But setting that aside, this ‘day’ is a nonsense. Also I don’t get depressed (anxiety, me) but I had a mother who truly had the illness depression so I think it’s rather a misuse of the terms ‘depressing’ and ‘depressed’. This is a non-thing concocted by who knows for what purpose – just stop!
Actually I had a lovely day on that so-called blue Monday. It was cold (for the UK) and around 1C (33F) when we left the house, but we walked to the station, because, yes, this was our first trip of the year to London. I was well wrapped up though.
First, there was a (charity shop) hat that cost £5
Then a faux fur scarf, which I’d bought last year from a charity shop for, I think, £9.99. It’s rather lovely but needs a cold day to be worn, which it was.
I also wore old furry boots (bought new, but they didn’t cost much), my old Peacock’s slim-line black jeans, and the jacket, which you can just see, which came from a lovely junk shop in a French village a couple of years ago, and cost all of 5 Euros.
Then the coat. This is a warm and beautifully cut charity shop coat bought last year for £25, which is more than I usually pay but worth it, I think.
From Brighton the train took us to Blackfriars and there was a short walk by the Thames – just look at that skyline! And it was one of those glorious, blue sky, crisp, cold days – not depressing at all. Life is too short to think of being blue, although on Saturday, which was grey and rather grimly damp in Brighton, yes, it was a bit hard to be positive. However, I really do mean that, that life is too short to be thinking negatively and especially because of a social media meme – I hope we all aim to seize that carp! Which I don’t always achieve but one can but try! I’ll shut up now!
And where were we going? You must know me by now!
Yes, it was to the Tate Modern to see the exhibition of Anni Albers’ work. She was a weaver, but to say that and to show you a couple of pics cannot do justice to her mastery of her loom, and her ideas, designs and skill with that loom. Btw, it’s on only until 27 January – do go, if you can!
It was just wonderful to see what she did.
I’ve got very little idea how you work a loom and still don’t, tbh, but a short film in the last room showed some of the complexity of the art of weaving. But Albers did more than just weave, she designed wall hangings and room dividers, decor and important works of art. This one below was commissioned by the Jewish Museum, New York to create a memorial to the six million Jews who had been killed in the Holocaust. The six panels represent these six million. It’s a very powerful piece.
I thought the whole exhibition was exquisite and felt quite emotional at times. My great-great-grandfather William Hislop was a Scottish cotton hand-loom weaver (as was his father and probably even further back, albeit those ancestors are un-researched at the moment) in the days when the loom was in the home and the whole family participated in the industry of producing cloth. At one time, when the industry was young, cotton hand-loom weavers were the aristocrats of working men and women, but in the time of this ancestor, life were much harder as cotton was beginning to be produced in factories. His two sons, John and Archibald, didn’t continue as weavers but left Scotland, joined a British regiment with their descendants (me included) now as English as they come. But I went around the exhibition thinking of my Scottish weaver ancestors and how skilled they must have been.
Albers didn’t just do cloth, she also made some amazing jewellery from utilitarian objects like pins and paper clips. I bought a kit to make something similar to this and will show you one day!
We used our day well and went round some other exhibitions but by mid-afternoon felt quite weary, so finished with a cup of English breakfast tea and a lovely orange polenta cake. I don’t take pics of food but here instead is another view of London taken from the viewing platform high up in the Blavatnik building.
The day continued to be cold, but was the kind of cold which I love!
That’s all for now, but by the time this blog post is up there will be another short YouTube 5-minute Quick Tip. For a newbie YouTube is going well and I’m planning to do more filming over the weekend. We’ve just about sorted the sound which was a bit squeaky and not my voice at all! Lighting is another thing and in this one gosh can you see my neck – but hey that’s the whole point of the videos. They’re not made in a studio and there are no filters!!! Anyway, thank you so much for watching, I do appreciate you all. Also let me know what you want to know 🙂
And to reach these videos just click on the icon at the side or at the bottom if reading on a phone 🙂
With love, Penny, the Frugalfashionshopper