But where was Mr. Darcy??????

England has been basking in unseasonably warm weather.  It is absolutely glorious up here in the Yorkshire Hills and easy to find inspiration for alsorts of projects.  However, a little exploration both on the internet and the winding country roads, enabled us to find a hidden 'gem' of house that was just bursting with history and treasures and ideas for embroidery.

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Nostell Priory is a magnificent Georgian House, nestled in the Yorkshire countryside.  Built between 1733 and 1785, it is just the sort of place that you imagine Jane Austen's heros and heroines would be quite at home in.  Infact it is constructed on the site of a 12th century monastery that was destroyed in our 'ever notorious' King Henry V111's rampage and reformation.  In 1654, a wealthy family of textile merchants by the name of Winn, bought the land and existing dwelling and ruins with 'big big ideas' for a new country house.  After the upset of the english civil war, the savy Winn's backed the winning side and the King and in return, were rewarded with a 'baronetcy' to sit nicely with their growing fortune and estate.  The architect James Paine would work on the house for 30 years to create a Rococco feast!! 

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In 1765, the title passed to a new generation in the Winn family and as it always goes, the new baronet - now established in the world of aristocracy and fantastic wealth, married a beautiful Swiss lady who came along with her own grand fortune and even grander ideas.  This fashionable couple insisted on nothing but the best and employed the great interior designers of the day - Robert Adam and Thomas Chippendale to make sure that their home had one of the greatest collections of fine furniture and georgian style in the country.  Many of these original bespoke items are still in the house today and it is completely 'splendid'.

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 The ceilings had a 'wow' factor for sure and I loved this mixture of colour and shapes.

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Fireplaces too, had beautiful details on them - oooooh, I think this one especially is cool for use in applique, don't you think?

The library was perhaps our favourite room...

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There's an idea in there for sure and there were amazing textiles everywhere....

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The gardens too, were magnificent and on such a glorious day it was bathed in autumn sunshine and perfect for some photographic shots.

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Not sure about that bridge though!! especially in long petticoats!!!!  

The back yard!!!

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And finally my favourite shot of the day - the bulrushes ......

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So where is my notebook?.......ah there it is and a little doodle design inspired by my day.

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I know exactly what I am going to do with that, but you will have to pop back in a while to see.  Oh and incase you are interested - working with circles is so much fun with a few helpful tools - Circular template rulers by Lori Holt of 'Bee in my Bonnet' and a whole ring of mega useful plastic discs called 'Bigger Perfect Circles' by Karen Kay Buckley, all of which are available at www.fatquartershop.com.  

Bye the way, Nostell Priory is owned and run by the National Trust today and you can find more info about it on their website if you should get a chance to visit.   I have to say that after years of living abroad, the National Trust is really a National Treasure - I am not sure there are many other countries in the world that do this sort of thing as well as they do.  I probably never told you about the times I visited 'Arckangelskoye' in Russia - the once grand country house of Felix Yussopov.... and wished the National Trust was there to rescue it.  But that's a whole other story...maybe next time.  Meanwhile, it was a totally glorious day at Nostell, but really...... the main question of the day was......where or where was Mr. Darcy? LOL!  Ruby x