There will be a short hiatus on this blog as I am going to the annual conference (www.SCOS.org) of the scholarly organisation of which I am currently chair. So there won’t be much going on here for about a fortnight as the medieval historian and I are having a few days off after it.
I am going to present some of my Laura Ashley research at the conference, particularly the methodological stuff about what you do with an invisible research population or what you do about stories that do not get told. Dealing with what is known in the trade as the absent present. I have been aware that people have only told me happy stories about their relationship with the brand and I want to find a way to tell the unvoiced stories as well. So, I have been making a series of dolls who can tell the absent narratives, including this one, my current favourite, Barbara. She is only my current favourite because she is the last one I made. All the dolls have Laura Ashley fabric somewhere about them. Barbara has a pretend vintage Laura Ashley quilt as an apron. Others have dresses made from the fabric:
Given that these are part of the paper I will present, it would have been a good idea to have made little dolls that are very portable, but I chose to make dolls that are about 20″ high and in some cases quite heavy. Genius. Photos will have to do instead. So, I will write more about them later. In the meantime, Barbara, the medieval historian and I are off on our travels.