Sunday, October 31, 2010

Having A Ball

I have many great pictures from the Jane Austen Ball last night. I also took some video, which I will post when I get back home, so stay tuned for that.

Today, before our selected breakout sessions, we heard from Juliet McMaster, who along with her Many other accomplishments, is the founder of Juvenalia press, publishing many of Jane Austen’s minor works along side her own illustrations.

IMG_3070We also slipped away for a trip (pilgrimage) to Powells book store. With floor after floor of new and used books, it was hard not to send the whole day there. This picture is deceptive. It is one corner of a store that includes several (stories pardon my pun) and a whole city block.IMG_3069 A shelf of Austen and Austen related books-IMG_3068 And another,

IMG_3067 And another.

IMG_3077After two more talks it was time to get ready for the ball.

Before the Ball[2 cropped] The overall effect was more ‘Lydia’ than ‘Elizabeth Bennett’, but that was OK with me.

I wish I could share all my pictures, but here is a sampling. Remember that in addition to the Jane Austen theme, this was also a Ball Masque, so many participants are in costume.

IMG_3092 IMG_3096IMG_3109IMG_3114IMG_3120IMG_3121IMG_3122IMG_3123 IMG_3104 IMG_3130IMG_3097 IMG_3128 Even the purse table looked very elegant.

 IMG_3146 I had a great time and I am especially glad my mom could share this trip with me.

I Love you Mom!

And Happy Anniversary Jon, You’re the best!


Saturday, October 30, 2010

Gothic Mystery of the Hilton Abbey Tower…or, Day Two of Jane Austen Society in Portland.

Just as Catherine Morland suspected a woman to be languishing trapped in a tower of Northanger Abbey in Jane Austen’s book by the same name, we had a little suspicion about the mysterious 23rd floor of the Hilton……But more on that later………..

Today’s busy schedule included………..

IMG_3062Boehms fudge from Washington and an Anniversary card from my husband, tucked away in my suitcase as a surprise!

IMG_3006 And if that’s not romantic enough, a lively morning with Mr. Tilney and his staunch Team Tilney defenders.

IMG_3009 Viewing first editions of Jane Austen novels and also novels, conduct books, and satirical cartoons by her contemporaries.


Not far from the library, we made a stop at Button and Ribbon Emporium.IMG_3017 Just look at these cards of exquisite beaded lace!

IMG_3020 And of course, plenty of buttons.

IMG_3033 We went to to the Portland Art Museum to see the Rose Garland Dancers.


I took this on the walk back to the Hilton.

IMG_3047 Laurie Viera Rigler signed my ’Confessions of a Jane Austen Addict’ and ‘Rude Awakenings of a Jane Austen Addict’ books.

And there were costumes!


Kelly Kirchner from the Jasna Portland Region.

IMG_3032 Janet



It seemed a very normal first half of the Jane Austen Society gathering………..But things were about to change!

It started when we entered a crowded elevator and pushed the button for the 22nd floor. Another hotel patron exclaimed that he had not thought those upper floors existed, and had not seen them in use.

We assured him we WERE on the 22nd floor, and departed to our room, but soon began to wonder about the mysterious 23rd floor.

Could this be the source of the strange noises at night, and the ghostly figure near the elevator?IMG_3061

 Jasna invstigete  Late at night my mother and I decided to go investigate!


The thick stone walls of the tower led us up a narrow passageway, the end of which was blocked by an old iron gate.IMG_3054 Terrified we silently made our way up the passage.


Was that a noise?IMG_3053 Mom fainted………..


And I ran mad.

Until we decided the safest course of action was to return to our room and resume novel reading.


Thursday, October 28, 2010

Day One, Jane Austen Society of America Annual General Meeting

The PortlandSneak Peek at my ball gown

This morning, after staying up late to put the final touches on my dress, I picked up my Mom at the airport and off we were on our road trip to Portland.

We were able to check in to out room at the Hilton early. We went to registration tables, saw some cute T-shirts, picked up our packets and headed up to out lovely room, where we dumped out our “Jane Austen- The Abbey” tote bags to admire the contents.

IMG_2967 With post cards, a book light, and chocolate. You can’t go wrong!

IMG_2968 Mom and I in our room.

Mom and I decorate our nametags And take a quick snapshot before unpacking or dresses.

IMG_2972 I unpacked a portrait of Dear Jane for our room.

After this we went down to our dance workshop. We practiced four English country dances in an hour and a half. Sometimes it was exasperating, but when the dance came together it was exhilarating!  I danced across from my mom, but after the first dance they encouraged us to change partners. A nice looking and friendly woman agreed to be my partner. I saw my mom introduce herself to her new partner, and thought I should do the same, but then upon seeing her nametag I got VERY excited and almost lost it. I was dancing with Laurie Viera Rigler, the author of ‘Confessions of a Jane Austen Addict’ and ‘Rude Awakenings of a Jane Austen Addict’! Oh! (I may need a moment)…..Do you know how AWESOME that was???

OK, composure regained.

After dancing and a great dinner, we went to look at ‘Milsom Street’, the emporium full of booths, books, and other items for sale. Here is a sampling of the ‘shops’

IMG_2975IMG_2974 Rebecca Morrison Peck of ‘The Thatched Cottage’.


IMG_2988 Kay Demlow, Designer, Dressmaker, and Fashion Historian for Lavender’s Green Historic Clothing

There were also some lovely historic dresses on display that I photographed for your enjoyment. But first, here are links to a few more of the vendors:

Vintage Passementerie

Jean Judy- Jane Austen Charm Jewelry

Charlene Ahern- Henry Was a Railroad Man Card Company

After a brief rest in our room we attended Angela Barlow’s “Jane Austen, An Actor’s View”, with observations, readings, and delightful observations about the characters Jane Austen created. That leads us to where we are now, enjoying the view from my window, exhausted.


And now for more DRESSES………….




See you tomorrow,