Monday, September 28, 2009

The Big Screen.

     Someone in this household has set his heart on a big flat-screen TV. We have not had a TV for 16 months and I haven't missed it. But winter is coming on and there are all those DVDs we've found at flea markets or ordered from Amazon...
    So the deal is: he can have the big screen and I'll make a big screen to hide it when it's not in use. Scouting around on-line, I've seen numerous "scrap" screens from the Victorian era decoupaged with kittens, faces, roses and all the other images beloved of the era. 
    I want to make something similar and, in recent months, had been hunting around for a source of pictures...postcards, giftwrap...I wasn't quite sure what.
    Then the answer fell into my hands. Bear with me if my prose gets a little purple further along in this post. It's the result of spending time with Volume 2 of Les Batailles de la Vie--The Battles of Life--a thick, heavy tome that, as luck would have it, I came upon lying forlornly on a heap of Readers Digest Condensed Books at today's vide grenier in Chalabre. My heart thumped and my cheeks paled as I asked the price. "Two euros." I swooned.  
    The first few pages are missing but I'm guessing from the fashions and the prose style that it's late 19th century. There's also a telling reference to a certain comtesse Régine who is described as "still charming" at 37 (!!) with shoulders of an ampleur superbe. That era was hot for big lusty shoulders as you can see in the 100 or so engravings punctuating the 1000 somewhat stained pages of mayhem, lurve and betrayal. 

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