Harry Potter Read by Actors and Celebrities
Ever since I discovered it, well over 15 years ago, the Harry Potter series has been one of my favourite and trusted comfort reads. Spending Christmas at Hogwarts, even alone, almost makes one wish one had the unfortunate family situation of the Boy Who Lived.
In case you share my passion for this magical universe, this year a number of actors and celebrities, including Daniel Radcliffe, Eddie Redmayne, Stephen Fry, Olivia Colman, Whoopie Goldberg and even David Beckham (as Lee Jordan, quidditch commentator, who else?) have recorded themselves reading chapters from the first volume – Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone. Watch them here, and enjoy hours of wizarding fun on the website.
Embellished Party Tights
I am in an absolute glittery and bubbly mood this week still, and even though I see no parties on the horizon, I have been enjoying all the holiday outfit edits I’ve seen in the past few weeks. One detail that stayed with me was the embellished party tights, as a simple way to elevate the right outfit.
But I think there’s a fine line between looking spectacular or looking like you need a visit to the beauty salon, especially with the rhinestones ones, which are my favourites. I own a simple glittery pair and I’ve worn it on a few occasions, mainly with an all-black outfit. I’d say you either make them the star or risk having too much going on, but I am sure someone more creative and courageous than me could come up with a dazzling combination!
Jewelry Christmas Tree
It’s finally December and I think it’s now safe to share even more Christmasy exquisite finds (not like I didn’t start a few weeks ago anyway!) One DIY project that has been on my list for a while and that I’m hoping to create this year is a Christmas tree made of jewelry. I think it’s normally done with mismatched or broken pieces, but I don’t have that many that fit the bill, so I am minded to just create one from items I love and wear, making sure not to damage them in the process.
I already store most of my earrings and broaches and the like on a canvas hoop that hangs on a wall in my bedroom, it’s mainly a case of rearranging them and adding some other items like statement necklaces and pearls, which I think will look very good! Plenty more inspiration on this dedicated Pinterest board!
V&A – Secrets of the Museum
This short BBC series has been on my list to share since I started writing these letters, but I think I had to go back to the Victoria and Albert Museum to remind myself why I find it so fascinating and always want to go back and explore it more. Yesterday I did just that, for the first time ever with my son and I felt so privileged to be able to do it for many different reasons. It was a unique experience that I can’t wait to replicate!
But back to the series, here is the synopsis: Secrets of the Museum follows the team of experts and conservators who are hard at work behind-the-scenes of the Victoria and Albert Museum in London. With over two million works in the collection, a great deal of effort is needed to care for fragile objects, and ensure that they are in the best condition, both for display to the public, and for future generations.
It is truly revealing and highly entertaining if you are even remotely interested in how these cultural institutions work!
⚜ Uncommon Places to Find Exquisite Gifts ⚜
Earlier this week I sent out a special letter with my top ten Uncommon Places to Find Exquisite Gifts, a few of which I have mentioned here in the past weeks. I realised there is not enough time left until the gift-giving holiday is upon us to allow me to share one place each week. If you want to receive this special letter, all you need to do is to subscribe before Christmas. That is my gift to you!
There were a few more places that didn’t make it to that list and I thought it would be a good idea to share these here. In no specific order, here they are:
- Heritage Gift Stores: if your dear one loves a specific country or culture above any other, it might be worth checking if they have a dedicated heritage gift shop, like English Heritage. There is no telling what you will find!
- Curated Stores: this is a trend that has generated numerous uncommon places to find gifts, like the Uncommon Goods store whose tagline I find brilliant – We’re all out of the ordinary™.Their thing is to offer products that you can’t really find anywhere else, but there are many other specific options out there – stores that only sell products by women, stores that donate to charities, stores that are all about sustainability – you name it!
- Etsy Christmas Markets: These used to be small local events organised by Etsy sellers, but this year the platform is bringing together online artists and artisans from all over the world to showcase their best Christmas creations and gifts. Be ready for endless scrolling and finding more than you bargained for!
Vintage Waffle Makers
I don’t know how I stumbled upon some pictures of vintage waffle makers but I do know it made me think it shouldn’t be complicated to make something simple also look really beautiful, even when it comes to food. These make for a lovely change to the classic honeycomb pattern, don’t you think?
I don’t suppose I’ll be buying one soon (no talent or much interest in cooking or baking), but if I were, I’d sure be looking for a pretty pattern to add that extra elegant factor.
Fairy Lights Canopy
The last find this week is a real-life exquisite find that doesn’t come from a car boot or even a charity shop, and it’s actually something quite basic – fairy lights! I bought 100m of outdoor fairy lights which we’ve used in our back garden to create a lovely canopy that honestly brings me so much joy and a literal ray of light during these very short winter days that are slowly starting to get to me.
I chose warm white, as I prefer the classic look and I think it’s a simple, yet very festive decorating idea. This has replaced our bunting canopy installed back in June and I have a feeling it won’t come down until we put something up instead either. In any case, I am in no hurry!Bonus exquisite find is this article about the history of the fairy lights, as I was curious to know more. Turns out it all started quite close to home!
If this letter has offered you a moment of inspiration, kindly forward it to others who might enjoy it too. And if you have been forwarded it, indulge in all previous Miss Onion’s Exquisite Finds and subscribe to the weekly letter.