07 May 2010

Dorothy Whipple, meet Julia Louis-Dreyfus


Anyone who likes Persephone is bound to like the publisher's colorful endpapers and bookmarks unique to each title.

Imagine my surprise as I watching the moderatly funny sitcom "The New Adventures of Old Christine" and said outloud "Persephone!" The show's star, Julia Louis-Dreyfus (Elaine from Seinfeld) was wearing a print dress that absolutely had to have been inspired by the vintage fabric used for the endpapers for Dorothy Whipple's The Priory.  Unfortunately this is the best image I was able to find of the episode, but I still think you can see the link between Julia's dress and the vintage pattern.

The original pattern is 'Wychwood', a 1939 design by Noldi Soland for Helios.

Part of the joke is that she over did it on the fake tan. Hence the orange skin.


  1. Ha, it is very similar!

    Verity had a similar Eureka! moment recently whilst watching Sophie Dahl's Voluptuous Delights cookery show, when Ms Dahl was reading Excellent Women by Barbara Pym (I *think* it was the Orla Keily fabric hardcover edition for Virago's 30th Anniversary for VMC).

    I would love the Cheerful Weather for the Wedding fabric in a dress or skirt.

  2. Ha, ha Thomas! I can just see you shouting that. You've got Persephone on the brain.

  3. Yes, it looks very similar! i do love the fabrics that Persephone chooses for its endpapers. I'm reading Still Missing right now and I love the fabric they chose, which is a late-1970s knit pattern, in purple and white with some orange flecks mixed in.

  4. That's really funny! What a lovely pattern.

  5. How fitting! I still have yet to see a Persephone book in the flesh, as it were, but I mostly look forward to those pretty patterns!

  6. That's a very close match. You have a good eye.

  7. Ha, how funny! It does look very similar. Hmm, I'd love some blouses made from prints of Persephone endpapers!

  8. Paperback Reader: Speaking of cooking and Excellent Women, I just discovered there is a Barbara Pym Cookbook that was published in the 1970s. It has Americanized recipes of food found in her novels. As soon as we move I am ordering a copy of that.

    Mrs B: Well I do have an amazing mind for detail. It means my husband never gets away with anything.

    Katherine: I don't have Still Missing but Persephone sent the bookmark for it out with their latest biannually. I loved how different it was from previous bookmarks.

    Books Sliced and Diced: As I watched it I knew it wasn't identical, the blues are different, there is a slightly different use of black. But so obviously inspired by the original. I would love to find out who made the dress. Although it is clear they probably don't give credit for their inspiration because nothing comes up on the Web.

    Aarti: I was the same way until my first order came. Even with all the pictures online I couldn't quite figure out what they would be like in person.

    Ti: As I mentioned above, my husband thinks it is a bit of a curse--for him.

    Skirmish of Wit: Not surprisingly I wouldn't want a shirt made of Persephone patterns. I'm not that gay. But I certainly agree that bringing back some of them would make for great women's wear.


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