Saturday, October 2, 2010

Bits Of October Magic and A Giveaway!

Bits Of October Magic
And A Giveaway!

If you have been a reader of this blog for any length of time, you will know that I generally revel in the start of each new month.  Mother Nature seems to bestow unique personalities upon each one of the twelve.
 May will always be a blonde wearing flowers in her hair, while November has forever seemed a bit professorial to me, an older chap in a Harris Tweed jacket with suede patches on his elbows and open book upon his antique desk.
April is a shy young girl with limpid eyes, and August can be a bit of a bully, an arrogant sort in dark sunglasses who often overstays his welcome. 
 But, October. 
 The most magical of months. 
 Could October ever be anything but a auburn haired enchantress, mysterious and mercurial, who can conjure up bonfires and cause pumpkins to smile?

To help celebrate October, I have put together a list of 13 bits of magic. 
Just the right number for this most bewitching of months.


1.  The Last Dress

The wizard who conjured up the divine ensemble Emma Watson is wearing in the photo at the top of this post was the late, and the divine, Alexander McQueen.  You can glimpse his face in Emma’s crystal ball.  What a tragedy it was to lose such a talent so early in his life.  The clothes he designed were frequently provocative, but always imaginative, and so often simply stunning in their beauty.  The white dress above is believed to be the very last one he designed.  Made for a friend to wear to one of Sir Elton John’s famous parties, it looks, appropriately enough, fit for an angel.


2.  Autumnal Crown

Oh, I do love this.  
Worn by the models for Anna Sui during the recently completed spring fashion shows in New York, these are just gorgeous to me. 
Do you think I could get away with wearing one on an afternoon walk with Edward?
See more of the show HERE.


3.  Andirons

One of the reasons The Songwriter and I purchased our much loved cottage so many years ago was its wonderful stone fireplace.  Flanked by bookcases, I could just imagine how delightful it would be with a roaring fire and the two of us snuggled nearby with books and dogs and mugs of spiced tea.  It was easy to see all the Christmas trees to come, twinkling away in the corner - easy to hear ghost stories being read aloud on windy October nights. 
 These amazing bronze andirons would be the perfect addition to any October fireplace, don’t you think? 
 Just bewitching.
Find them HERE.


4.  House

And while we’re on the subject of my own house..... this is how I see it in my mind.  
Oh, it doesn’t look like that to others, at least not on the outside.  
But to me, this is how it feels. 
 A bit quirky and oh, so magical. 
 From the massive stone frog in the flower bed, to the life-sized rocking horse in the bedroom.


5.  Little Halloween Goblins

With the big dress-up holiday of Halloween fast approaching, we all are starting to think about costumes, right?  
Well, these are just the cutest ideas ever imagined for your littlest goblins!  
Adorable, and you can find them HERE.


6.  Knitting

I have featured knitting patterns before, I know. 
  But I am in the middle of so much Christmas knitting at the moment, 
it is in the front of my mind. 
So, I thought I’d share this wonderful new pattern. 
 I think I’m going to make this for myself.  
I’m partial to hoods.
Find it HERE.


7.  Pendant

Imagine a dinner party. 
 Masses of orange sunflowers on the table. 
 Warm pumpkin soup served from a dark brown tureen. 
Homemade bread and Gruyere cheese.
 Tom Waits playing in the background.  
And this fabulous light hanging over the carved wooden table.
Find it HERE.


8.  In The Garden

There are little spots of eccentricity throughout my garden. 
 A stone monkey sits on a tree stump under the oak trees, his paws dangling in the azalea bed.  
There is a glass dining table inside the massive magnolia tree, surrounded by windchimes, with a candlelit chandelier suspended overhead. 
 And a big white dog can often be seen, wandering about in the moonlight.
Every garden needs a bit of magic.  
Katiedid featured this amazing topiary on her blog recently.  
I was agog!


9.  Bear

There is a heavy, old bronze monkey that sits upon my kitchen counter. 
 He holds bananas in his lap and generally keeps an eye on things. 
 I was reminded of him when I saw this amazing bear sculpture. 
 Isn’t this wonderful??  
You can find it HERE.


10.  Masks

I have always wanted to attend a real costume party. 
You know, the kind they have in Venice.  
Over the top, dazzling, with people dressed as Grecian gods and woodland sprites, instead of Teletubbies and Spiderman.  
Well, if I ever get an invitation to such an event, I am heading straight to this shop for my wondrous mask! 
 Such imagination.  Such gorgeous creations!  
  These are my favourites, but it was so difficult to choose just two.  
Find more HERE.


11.  House For Sale

Sometimes, on rainy Sunday mornings, I like to peruse Scottish real estate sites, playing “what if”.  
One such perusal led me to this house in Perthshire.
 If it looks storybook, well, it is.  
Beatrix Potter actually wrote Tales of Peter Rabbit here.  
And it’s for sale!!
What if.......
See more HERE.


12.  Book

I haven’t yet seen the movie, but I just finished the book, Never Let Me Go.  I won’t give away too much, because I wouldn’t want to spoil anything if you’ve not yet read it.  But, it was such a chilling read.  Written by Kazuo Ishiguro, it is similar to his classic work, Remains Of The Day, in that it features a narrator who doesn’t ask the questions the reader is asking, who doesn’t see exactly what the reader sees.  Masterfully done, and I guarantee you will be thinking about it for days afterwards. 
 It’s the perfect book for October.
See more HERE.


13.  Sir Paul’s Poetry

I was so tickled by all the responses I received when I recently mentioned inviting Paul McCartney to dinner. 
 Seems he is still a bonafide charmer to quite a few of us.  And rightfully so.
  So when I came across this copy of his poetry, Blackbird Singing, in a used bookshop recently, I knew I had to get it for an autumnal giveaway. 
 (The Songwriter has an autographed copy!  Lucky boy.) 
 This copy is a bit bruised, as used books often are, but if you would like to give it a home in your library, just leave a comment on this post. 
 I’ll draw the winner on Tuesday at midnight, wrap it in lovely paper, and send it right out.

  Good Luck and Happy October!


Congratulations to Cait O'Connor!
She's the Winner of the Giveaway!


  1. You are such a beautiful writer...I've been enraptured for the last half an hour reading your last several posts and wish I had been sitting in front of a toasty fire (although it was in the 70's today) sipping tea while doing so. You captured Octobers enchantment and whimsy perfectly...please show us your hooded caplet when's so cozy looking, I'd wear it in the house too.

    How's the china lid situation coming along??
    xo J~

  2. I'd be thrilled to have ANYTHING of Paul's!

    That dress is simply enchanting...and Emma Watson does it full justice. She's certainly grown into a beauty.

    The crown? If you wear it, be prepared to find yourself shooing birds off your head!

    It seems we have similar tastes and eccentricities in house and garden styles. Storybook - definitely! Something quirky, with odd angles and deeply pitched roofs, heavy woods and cedar shakes, goblins and wood nymphs hidden among the flower beds. And yes, whenever I look at a house, the first thing is imagine is where the Christmas tree will go. If there's no good place for it...phttt! That house is off my list!

  3. What a beautiful post, Pamela! I am afraid you have now turned October into a month of desire for me...

  4. I want the bear bowl but most of all I WANT THAT AMAZING cottage!!! Where is it??

  5. I love all you share
    Love and hugs and many blessings

    Rabbit Rabbit

    Love Jeanne

  6. Great October choices!
    The dress and Autumn crown are very beautiful.
    I like quirky houses as well. In my mind I live in a odd little house with magic rooms!
    Stephanie's hoodlet is a must knit and wear for this season. Lovely for woodland walks and gathering berries.
    The Halloween goblins are too cute for words. I love their hats! ;-)

  7. Oh. Oh. Oh. Pamela you have a truly magical ability to transport us into your world; to use all the senses, to feel the essence of everything you describe with such clarity and erudition. I loved every single moment of this I do when I lose myself in your other masterful writings. Such beauty in everything you say, think and do. How lucky I am to have found you in this amazing bloggy medium!

  8. I think it was the two houses which really blew me away. I want them madly.
    You live in such a magical world.
    Very magical here today........pouring with rain
    and must take the pup out.
    Lovely photo of Sir Paul?

  9. What a wonderful collection of October joy. And lovely words to accompany the collection.

    This is my favorite month. There is nothing better then orange leaves against a blue sky.

  10. Well Pamela, that is definitely the perfect image for October.... and what a perfect selection of Octoberness !!!!
    I adored Alexander McQueen's designs. They were so 'me'. So sad that he is gone but, he will never be forgotten. Love the Anna Sui crown, topiary HAS to be in every garden in some form, I have always wanted to go to the Carnival of Venice in February. I have only been to Venice in the's on my 'things that I must do' list.The autumnal masks that you have shown are fabulous, I too, would love to live in that house in Perthshire. It's also not far from Edinburgh and the views are to die for......yes, I've been over to the site to read the details and look at the other views of it !!..... and, finally, the lovely Paul, he who was plastered all over my wall as a teenager !! He did cross my path a couple of times. What a brilliant giveaway and what a lucky songwriter to have a signed copy.
    I will put your giveaway on my sidebar, even though it will lessen my chances of winning such a precious and coveted prize....hehe.
    Have a wonderful weekend and thank you for a beautiful and generous post. XXXX

  11. Some lovely October pastimes, Pamela. The masks are fabulous and I've just spent several minutes browsing! That quirky house is rather hansel and gretel-ish to me in a non-gingerbread way?! Maybe Sir Paul's poetry could give me a few pointers?

  12. Dear Pamela, What a wonderful selection of autumnal goodies to take us through the months of shorter days. The garden topiary, as you may imagine, really tickled my fancy but I think that my favourite choice will be the book which, upon your delightful recommendation, I shall seek out forthwith.

    Have a relaxing and enchanting weekend!

  13. Life is a wonderful place....
    Like you, I love to find magic and beauty in the gardens and houses, see it like you enchanted, cozy, a heaven for the weary and refreshing for the soul.
    You capture my feelings and I think about it long after I have read your lines.
    October always has a golden glow to me, a lovely month!
    You list is wonderful!
    Sir Paul poems, what lovely give away!
    Happy weekend!

  14. WOW! I was completely transported through this post. Amazing imagery! I so love your writing.
    Please count me in for the giveaway...I would definitely enjoy his book of poetry!

  15. So wonderful, you always inspire me!

    I too am posting pink today!

    Art by Karena

  16. I love October too Pamela - well I would as I was born on Hallowe'en. I think your choice of the maiden is absolutely spot on - we get quite good weather here in October and the leaves turn russet and the horse chestnuts are shiny and brown and everything smells wonderful. Thank you for the bits of magic too - love that bear.

  17. I too have always wanted to attend the Venice Carnival. So moody and mysterious. The masks are beautiful. Alexander McQueen was a genius. He alwsys struck me as an old soul and it shows in his exquisite work. Emma Watson looks gorgeous in the photograph and well, the houses are beyond romantic !

  18. Aah, pure magic....and I just realised its October..goodness!

  19. It is always such sweet delight to see your monthly treasures of books to read, movies to see, items or whimsy and dreaming. I know to get a cup of tea first, or to come back later when I have some moments of leisure to savor all the treats you serve to us.

    October is, indeed, magical, from the changing of the leaves to the last bursts of color. Hmmm, it would be so nice to share some of it with Paul's poetry.

  20. LOVE LOVE LOVE that knitted hoodie! XOXO

  21. I'll take both of those houses, that hooded creation, the first mask, and a copy of the book.
    I don't know how you manage, Pamela, but you find the most enchanting photos to tantalize us with.
    Happy weekend to you!

  22. I wore a smile and felt a sense of calm as I read your post. P.S. I'm in love with that bear...

  23. Pamela: When you write from the heart, nothing is wrong. I have been down the Rabbit hole of your post for a good while. The first Alexander McQueen dress seems to be a modified winged Venus. It is timeless, indeed!! Now, the house in Scotland took me to Dunkeld and Birnam. How is the food? With that house selling for a first bid of under 100m, it must be a mess, but I'm thinking about the roof, go on call me crazy. I've been looking at real estate in France lately!! Someday.... You caught me on Never Let Me Go. Your description of it is exactly right, I'd like more on the subject. Well, and Sir Paul....I wish I still had my old Beatle cards. Thank you for the mini stay-cation.

  24. Pamela, I always think of you and Willow when October arrives. I can't decide if I love October or December more...

    This list is amazing. I so love that photo of E. Watson...She has grown into such a lovely young woman.

    I've always dreamt of throwing a huge Venetian "Carnivale" masquerade ball...How amazing that would be to dress in such elegance and wear one of those fabulous masks.

    Happy weekend...

  25. The Never Let me Go poster reminds of the paintings of Caspar David Friedrich, except of course one his paintings would have a single figure.

  26. what a lot of wonderful things you've shared in this post, and you're right with your description of October that's how I see her too!

    I hadn't realised that Sir Paul wrote poetry, now that would be an interesting read!

  27. What a wonderful post! I love the masks - so beautiful The whimiscal cottage transported me back to my childhood dreams. Thank you Pamela,
    (Moments in Time)

  28. What a wonderful post! I love the masks - so beautiful The whimiscal cottage transported me back to my childhood dreams. Thank you Pamela,
    (Moments in Time)

  29. October...the most beautiful of months. You nailed her personality perfectly. I t is my birth month (today, actually!)and my favorite.

    I love your house in your minds eye...mine is a rambling hacienda with horses out back.

    Would love a chance at that book!

  30. What if I got all six numbers in the lottery tonight? I might just buy that house and invite you and Paul to dinner, and the songwriter of course.

  31. What a fantastic collection. I love the house most of all. Splendid magic you weave, my dear.

  32. Pamela - I just love this post! It is a beautiful tribute to this amazing month - the AMQ dress, the masks, the knitting and the poems...

    Thank you...

  33. You give me dreams and inspiration (if only I could knit) and I do think that all the month are diffrent. How do you think January is ??
    And yes !! I want to be in your Give away.


  34. Ah... you have me dreaming again!
    And I thought I was the only one who sees her home quite differently in her minds eye to the way it looks in reality!

  35. Oh the house! I have eyes only for the enchanting No.4 .....but No. 11
    is not far behind. I have just watched the Beatrix Potter movie yet again and love it even more than the first time I watched it. The countryside is just so beautiful.

  36. I thoroughly enjoyed your collection of October-esques! You have so perfectly captured the mood...thank you for sharing

  37. oooo... love it all. Especially the little cottage, that's MY house, too, but not really, only in my imagination. A magical October to you!

  38. 13 is my lucky number. Honest. I have a photo of me from high school with the lucky number sewn on to my jacket.

  39. Could October ever be anything but a auburn haired enchantress, mysterious and mercurial, who can conjure up bonfires and cause pumpkins to smile?
    I love this quote Pamela and it is just how she feels to me too.
    Never let me go - I read a few months ago - chilling indeed!
    The Scottish house is gorgeous and your house in your mind is similar to mine.
    Paul's poetry book I would cherish forever....poetry being my passion and being a child of the sixties.
    There is so much I adore in this post but then all yours are like that :-)

  40. It's a Harvest Moon! I love your post about the month of October - it's beautiful!!!
    I am a newby reader to your blog, however, I consider myself lucky to have found it.

  41. This comment has been removed by the author.

  42. Hi Pamela--
    Saw "Never Let Me Go" last night. Beautifully shot, acted, and edited. Fascinating premise. I'm a big fan of speculative fiction, especially when it's set backwards in time. This is one movie that will haunt me for a very long time. Your depiction of the narrator not asking the questions was beautifully recreated in the movie. If you see it, let me know!

  43. Wow! What a give away. Please count me in. I love the number 13 which happens to be my birthdate. This year I celebrated my 60th on Friday 13th and it was the most perfect day.

    Ditto all of the previous comments on your blog. I love your writing and I especially love all of the photos.

  44. we share a love of magic! I'd love the book- and I still feel the loss of Lee Alexander McQueen very much. Did you read about his memorial service at St Paul's? how fitting it sounded, Zadoc the priest and pipers and everything he deserved.

    I'm very lucky to be going to a screening of Never Let Me Go at the London film festival and I cannot wait- I'm taking the day off work to go. I devoured the book. Ishiguro is truly the most mahjestic writer- and the way he writes Brtish people especially, he is so on the money and inside the British brain- I think because he is British but his parents are Japanese- he must see and feel the culture but also be able to look in on it. Anyway I admire his work possible above all other living writers.

  45. Pamela you are so generous with your art images, and prose. This would be a wonderful book to add to my collection. I would be honored!

    Art by Karena

  46. You have a way of making each month so personable and real. I suppose every month has a mood, just like a woman.

    January can be cold, but beautiful, and November can be cozy and giving.

    Your blog is stunning.

  47. What an exquisitely whimsical ramshackle little knock-kneed cottage - it makes me want to adopt a black cat and take up residence! I do love that polar bear bowl too - he's cradling the fruit so tenderly.

    Thanks for assembling such a lovely collection.

  48. Hello Pamela, I love the little babies in quirky funny bonnets, they're adorable!

    Before my husband and I met, and when he was a young man he used to visit 'The Cavern' in Liverpool and one night The Beatles were playing. This was long before they became famous. His then girlfriend had been at school with Ringo's wife Maureen, so when they'd finished playing they came over and all sat together, John even asked for a cigarette from my husband. And my husband didn't get their autograph... can you believe it!!


  49. I came upon your blog today and will now go through and am looking forward to back tracking all of your posts!

  50. I do love Sir Paul and have since I was 12...So happy I came by to catch up today:)

  51. Sigh. What a lovely selection. Number 11, the storybook house in Perthshire, fills me with longing. What a perfect antidote to rainy Sunday mornings - much more inspiring than the real estate ads in the local newspaper. And Sir Paul, well, I've never gotten over him. After Paul's (sordid) divorce I warned my husband of thirty-five years that I couldn't promise anything if Paul came calling . . .

  52. Dear Pamela, what a beautiful and magical post. Reading that's enough to cheer anyone up. It's pouring down with rain in London but I was quite transported by your writing.

    I've only seen the trailer for Never Let Me Go but one of my good friend's Steven was the costume designer He's delighted with it after reading the book so I think it's well worth watching xx

  53. Hi Pamela...I love your list and how I would love a pair of those little goblin hats for myself :)) For my mad mad moments...a sure bet for a houseful of laughter!

    Best wishes for a wonderful week.

    Jeanne xx


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