The book I keep dipping into at the moment is a beautiful colour hardback about the life and times of Laura Ashley: Laura Ashley by Martin Wood (£35 Frances Lincoln Limited Publishers).
Laura Ashley was a designer who started producing textiles from her kitchen table in the 1950s and soon moved very successfully into clothes. She was a pioneer of her time as she was able to sell us a unique, pastoral vision of the UK that harked back to a simpler time and even now 'Laura Ashley style' is instantly recognisable and thirty years after her death the company is still trading.
Here is Laura with her family below in a classic shot of them all having a countryside picnic and wearing Laura Ashley clothes...
I remember in the 1980s as a teenager going to a friends' house and her bedroom had been newly decorated. It was wall-to-wall Laura Ashley. The wallpaper, curtains and bedding were all in a floral green pattern and I was green with envy.
I am not sure why I am yearning after a little slice of Laura at the moment. Perhaps the recession and difficult times mean we like to look back at a 'golden era' and Laura was certainly an expert at doing that too. In the 1960s and 1970s her designs were reminiscent/near copies of Victorian and Edwardian clothing - she simply added some modern twists and they sold and sold.
Even Princess Diana loved Laura...here she is below wearing a Laura Ashley skirt.
The start of summer also makes me yearn to wear a Laura Ashley floral dress and run around corn fields...whimsical and nostalgic this may be but don't tell me you don't want to do that too?
Here is an original Laura Ashley dress available from Lovely's Vintage Emporium. Click on link here to buy.
Here are some of my favourite images from the book.
To buy Laura Ashley by Martin Wood click here.
Are you a Laura Ashley obsessive? Do comment on this blog and tell me what you think as I do love to hear from you. Do you like her designs?
Love Lovely x