I used to call this ‘Weekly Round-up’ but I think that title sadly lacks romance and imagination.
I’ve fallen in love with a lot of things over this past week, and I’d like to share them here with you. Sit, brew a tea and curl up. Be still, be quiet. Read…
Winona Ryder/Stranger Things
If you haven’t yet gobbled up Netflix’s nostalgic 80s set series, which evokes Stephen King novels, Spielberg movies, and Tangerine Dream, then please, add this page to your reading list and get on with watching it now. I watched all eight episodes in one weekend. I adored all the 80s pop culture references, the music and that neon red opening title. I felt a fondness and empathy for the four schoolboys stumbling across the strangeness, and a fierce protection over Eleven, a mysterious girl with telekinesis. But for me, it was a welcome return to the screen for Winona. Sure, she’s cropped up in films in the past few years, but nothing really meaty, and I felt that this was a return to the good old 80s/90s Winona who I loved, albeit a more mature, adult version. Winona was my favourite actress when I was a kid. She played the outcast perfectly in Mermaids, Heathers, Welcome Home, Roxy Carmichael and Beetlejuice, and even when she was supposed to be the popular girl, in Edward Scissorhands, she brought a frailty and quirkiness to the character that more conventional-looking actresses of the time would have lacked. Winona makes a great mother in this role because she retains that outsider archetype whilst being a loving parent. Unlike the typical mothers in these films and shows, where the truth must be hidden from them, because their duty is to restore order and in some cases call the cops, Winona, as Joyce Byers, is a believer from the outset. She is on her own journey to find out the truth about why her youngest son has disappeared.
Cardamom + Rose iced latte
I’m obsessed with anything rose scented or flavoured, or actually anything with a floral flavour, so when I stumbled across this recipe I was pretty pleased that I could make a yummy flavoured coffee at home. I always have a decent supply of dried rose petals in my pantry, and I’m always looking for new ways to use them. Find the recipe here
Alysia Nicole Harris
This American poet writes poems that are absolutely gorgeously stunning. And I really admire anyone that does spoken word poetry. Check out Alysia’s poem ‘Paris in the Rain’ here and ‘Crow’s Sugar’ here. I don’t read poetry often enough, probably because I like to get lost in a story, but when I do pick up a book of poems, I like the ones that veer from feeling like you’ve been punched in the gut to seeing something rare and spectacular like a moonbow (yes, that is a thing).
Florence’s dreamy townhouse and garden
I saw Florence + the Machine live at Alexandra Palace a few years ago. She moved across the stage like some ethereal, fairy alien being, some willowy wood nymph from a Pre-Raphaelite painting. This tour of her home is perfect. I’m nosey and I love looking at other people’s homes. Florences’s is eclectic and romantic, and that garden!
Smells like Spells
I discovered this company whilst perusing the shelves at my favourite esoteric shop, Watkins in London. Carved candles and gorgeous scents. I couldn’t resist. I am obsessed with scented candles. And one with a little magic inside. Oh go on then! Buy here
The Love Witch
I posted about this on social media because I am so freaking excited for this movie. I love the horror films and melodrama pictures from the 60s and 70s. Hammer Horror films were my late night sneaky treat. The outlandishly fake-looking blood and even dodgier bats on strings were all part of the fun. Filmmaker Anna Billing has made a sumptuous ode to those movies, but with, I suspect, given Billing’s blog posts, a feminist twist. The Love Witch is about a modern-day witch named Elaine who is unlucky in romance, and will do anything to find that elusive forever love. Newcomer Samantha Robinson reminds me a little of that naughty Je ne sais quoi that Lana Del Rey possesses in her music videos. I’m attending a showing of the movie in late August at FrightFest in London and will be posting a review then. Stay tuned! Check out Anna Billing’s blog here
The Folklore Podcast
I’m a bit of a folklore geek. I love hearing folk tales and ghost stories from local areas or in places that I’m visiting. If you’re a geek too, you’ll love The Folklore Podcast. Each episode is dedicated to a different theme or type of folklore or urban legend. Listen here.