What a fabulous start to the year as we welcomed Nicola Whittaker from Fellows Auctioneers. Fellows is a family run firm and Nicola is a sixth generation member of her family to join the business and she began working in the auction house aged 16 in her school holidays. Fellows are based in Birmingham but have an office in Mayfair, London where Nicola now works. Specialising in jewellery and watches, she explained that unlike many other auction houses, they do not put a lower price limit on items they auction. Passionate and informative she took us through a whistlestop tour of the history of jewellery, how changes in society emerged in changing aesthetics, and how things changed further as exploration, excavation and gem cutting equipment developed. She was so generous with her time and her knowledge and spent a further hour with us looking at the treasures members had brought in and giving us information on origin , history and potential value. She also mentioned that that Fellows have open afternoons where anyone can go and peruse the items up for auction so we are thinking we may plan a trip there. If you are interested in coming along email us at firstname.lastname@example.org
Debauchery in De Beauvoir? For our September meeting we enjoyed a hugely entertaining and informative talk from Eleanor Bloom about Georgian London and the culture of gin houses and the darker side of the East End. How the madness associated with gin was due to a blight on the grain and why they really wore those stupendous wigs. We also enjoyed some delicious gin cocktails and a lemon and cucumber cake with gin icing.
Plus Jessie from Solace Women’s Aid told us more about the work they do with women and children fleeing domestic violence and explained how our monthly donations are used in the welcome packs they give every family arriving at the refuges they run across London
We had a great time when we welcomed award winning comedian, journalist and actress Samantha Baines when she came to do her latest stand up show about amazing women who have been ignored by the history books. We wish her the best of luck at the Edinburgh Fringe festival.
Our May meeting was our AGM where we decided on our new committee and voted on which of the resolutions the national federation will take forward. We also had a talk from Karen Moloney about her experiences of being a founding member of the Women’s Equality Party.
A few crafty pictures from our February meeting where we welcomed Ugandan and English inspired fusion brand AfroRetro:
For those of you who missed our January meeting, local designer Ella Doran came to discuss incorporating the “circular economy”, recycle and reuse, into her business. Afterwards she taught us all to make pretty gift bags out of recycled newspaper, double-sided tape and ribbon.
On Thursday 6th October Alex Nunn, from Action for Happiness, led us on an inspiring and interactive exploration of what really matters for a happy and meaningful life. The evening was filled with personal insights and as usual the women of De Beauvoir opened their hearts to trying to make a difference.
Ten Keys to happier living:
GIVING – do things for others
RELATING – connect with people
EXERCISING – Take care of your body
AWARENESS – Live life mindfully
TRYING OUT – Keep learning new things
DIRECTION – Have goals to look forward to
RESILIENCE – Find ways to bounce back
EMOTIONS – Look for waht’s good
ACCEPTANCE – Be comfortable with who you are
MEANING – Be part of something