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Angy's Blog
August 2009

The trials and tribulations of a fashion designer in the Lake District!

ARCHIVE: my previous entries:

JUNE - JULY 2009 Sir Bobby Robson RIP - Mannekins - Liverpool - Georgian Splendour - Price of Fame - Detox - Top of the World
MAY - JUNE 2009 (Summer Solstice - Toon in Tatters - Fashion Communism - Ele Horsleys - Kittiwakes - Stolen Dreams - Bluebells)
Made in England - Stolen Dreams - Easter Sunshine - Victoriana - Alan Shearer - Funland
FEBRUARY - MARCH 2009 (Favourite View - Punk Revival - Gone with the Wind - Fast Fashion v. Recycled Fashion)
JANUARY - FEBRUARY 2009 (In Search of Winter - A Favourite Place - Catwalk Videos on YouTube - A Winter Chill)
NOVEMBER-DECEMBER 2008 (Recycled Outrageous Clothes Show (ROCS) - Florence No2. - Winter-Mere)
OCTOBER - NOVEMBER 2008 (Cumbria Life - NW Evening Mail - Glitz & Glamour Haggerston Craft Show)
OCTOBER 2008 (Woman Event - Collection on Catwalk - Radio Cumbria - Brochure Download)
SEPTEMBER - Early OCTOBER 2008 (Newcastle United Wedding Dress - Wedding Shows at Abbey House and Carlisle)
AUGUST - SEPTEMBER 2008 (Fashion Designers - Spectrum in Four Seasons Collection - Sara Gadd Millinery)
JUNE - JULY 2008 (Haute Couture - Vivienne Westwood - Wildlife - Dorset Buttons - Magna Carta)
FEBRUARY - MAY 2008 (Lake District Inspirations - Long Blondes - Wedding Show)


CLICK for: LOVE IT MEDIA WEDDING SHOW video clips on YouTube
CLICK for: SPECTRUM IN FOUR SEASONS catwalk pictures
CLICK for: SPECTRUM IN FOUR SEASONS video clips on YouTube
CLICK for: MySpace

Romantique Couture
1 Atkinson Court
Fell Foot
Newby Bridge
United Kingdom
LA12 8NW

T: 015395 30648
M: 07812 210880

Email: angy@


6 SEPTEMBER 2009: THE WEDDING SHOW SUMMER 2009, The Nines, Barrow-in-Furness
Contemporary Wedding Show and Catwalk 14:00-17:00 at The Nines, Barrow-in-Furness. Download Poster 2.2mb PDF

12 NOVEMBER 2009: STOLEN DREAMS 2010, Newcastle or Sunderland (Provisional date)
Spectacular launch of my unique, 2010 'Stolen Dreams' Collection - full details to follow - Macmillan Cancer Charity Event

20 NOVEMBER 2009: CHARITY FASHION SHOW, St Anne's' Church, Haverthwaite
Charity Fashion CatwalkShow by Romantique Couture, also feauturing designs by Ele Horsley

25 NOVEMBER 2009: LAVISH & LUXE FASHION EXTRAVAGANZA, Wynyard Hall, Tees Valley (Durham)
Night of Catwalk Fashion & Fun hosted by Scott Henshall in the luxurious suirroundings of Wynyard Hall; 19:00-Midnight

The Premiership Collection
By Angy Morton

Provisional Date of Launch:
Thursday 12 November, 2009-

St. James Park, Newcastle
or Stadium of Light, Sunderland (see below)

Unique Fashion Event in aid of
Macmillan Cancer Support


I am presently seeking sponsors for the spectacular launch of Stolen Dreams: the Premiership Collection. Catwalk shows will feature my revised ' Four Seasons' collection, followed by Stolen Dreams, a unique collection of haute couture outfits created from the strips of several Premiership Football Clubs. The collection was inspired as a protest at the continuing rollercoaster saga at Newcastle United, and is dedicated to their loyal, and long-suffering fans. It also includes a series of designs charting the ups and downs at Newcastle United over the last year; and a preview of a ready-to-wear range of outfits designed for discerning female football fans.

The show, which will raise funds for an exceptional cause, Macmillan Cancer, is expected to attract 800 to 1000 people, in addition to regional and national press interest. The venue will be either St.James' Park, Newcastle, or the Stadium of Light, Sunderland. The latter will be selected if Newcastle United is not sold by the end of August. Further details will follow on my Blog and website in due course.

Please do not hesitate to call (015395 30648) or email (angela@romantiquecouture.com) if you are interested in sponsoring part of this event. Alternatively, you can call Janet Richardson at Macmillan Cancer Support on 0191-214 5444


The North East's Exclusive Fashion Event
Wednesday, 25 November 2009; 19:00 to Midnight;
Tickets: £40.00-50.00 per person; call 0191 204 3310

Just when I think I've got enough on my plate, something else comes along ... stress, stress, stress! Just received notification from NCJ media that they are organising an exclusive fashion show at the beautiful Wynyard Hall near Sedgefield, Durham. Have signed up for the catwalk show to showcase 12 - 15 of my best designs.

The Lavish & Luxe Fashion Extravaganza starts at 7 pm and runs through until midnight. It promises to be a fab evening. The show will be compered by Scott Henshall, designer and TV fashion expert, who has celebrity clients such as Madonna. Victoria Beckham, Kylie and Dani Minogue. The show will begin with a Champagne reception and canapes, then the fashion show with four companies exhibiting on the catwalk - including Psyche, House of Fraser, and myself.

Photo: Wynyard Hall

WYNYARD HALL Sedgefield, Tees Valley

The premier venue in the North East for weddings, events, conferences, accommodation and fine dining.
"The most splendid 19th Century mansion in the country" Nikolaus Pevsner

Telephone: 01740 644811

There will also be four exhibition/ shopping areas which are themed as follows :

- Fashion
- Hair & Beauty
- Lingerie & Lifestyle
- Jewellery & Accessories

Undecided yet whether to exhibit on a stand or only on the catwalk. Proceeds from the show will go towards the children's cancer charity Clic Sargent. I will keep you updated about the event but for now you can click below to read an article in yesterday's Journal:

Lavish & Lush: Journal, 24.9.09


I'm lucky in my line of work because I meet some very interesting people - especially journalists and radio presenters. Some of them are fantastic and I keep in touch all the time. People like Coreena at the Sunday Sun, Mary at Cumbria Life, or Nell and Val at Radio Cumbria. The upshot is that I an sometimes asked to contribute. The Chaos feature last week, for example.

So, once again, I found myself being interviewed live on Radio Cumbria. Kevin Fernihough is running a wedding theme on his early afternoon show. Very appropriate as I will be exhibiting at the contemporary 'Wedding Show Summer 2009' at the Nines in Barrow (see earlier post, below). I was quizzed about the process of creating a wedding dress, timescales and of course the infamous NUFC wedding dress. That lead to a general conversation of recycling and the use of quality parachute silk during the Second World War.

I should be more confident with these things as I have had some experience over the last year or so. I was a little nervous at first, but I had a good briefing, and wedding dresses are my cup of tea, so the time sailed by! Mike said it was a good interview and I certaily felt good about it afterwards ... so, all in all, a good day! I must thank Nell, the producer, for the opportunity as it has really raised my spirits - thank you Nell.

The wedding theme on Radio Cumbria this week is because August is a popular month for weddings. However, as I mentioned to Kevin, planning needs to be well in advance. I often start on a design a year before the wedding, working through the stages with the bride, and ensuring that she has final fittings two weeks and one week before the actual day. This not only allows for final adjustments, but also enables her to pace her diet to ensure she is in shape for the big day!

Wedding Shows are excellent events for grasping ideas for the wedding - dresses, venues, catering, photographs, transport and so on. The Barrow event in September will be a very good starting point for many brides planning weddings for next year, especially as it promises to be rather different. It will focus on contemporary weddings with some interesting new ideas.

I thought it might be useful for would be brides, especially in Cumbria, to list a few of my favourite contacts. I work with, and can highly recommend, all of the following as providers of excellent wedding services with interesting ideas or concepts that really help to make a special day:

Aspire Lifesyle Centre - Thursby (near Carlisle) www.aspirelifestylecentre.co.uk Contact: Lana Brown - 01228 710244
Lana is a great friend, and also a business and confidence building coach. Her organisation can take the stress and pressure off organising your wedding including providing all the final touches: designer hairstyling, swarovski crystals, beauty and lifestyle therapy, specialist make-up, and so on - all from a relaxing studio in the countryside close to Carlisle

Sara Gadd Millinery - Carlisle www.saragadd.co.uk Contact: Sara Gadd 07765 975108
No wedding is complete without hats and fascinators ... so for anything to do with millinery you cannot do better than contact Sara, whatever your taste. She even has discerning customers from the United States. Check out previous posts for further information or click on her website for lots of ideas and a very useful Blog.

A Brief Encounter - Windermere www.abriefencounter.co.uk Contact: Gill Muschamp 015394 44789
Great name, great place with a superb selection of lingerie ... our local 'knicker' boutique has a fantastic reputation, far beyond the shores of the lake! I use this boutique for tights and stockings - always something suitable, even for my wackiest designs!

Michael King Jewellery - A595, near Wigton kingjewellery.com Contact: Michael King 016973 45889
Michael King is another craftsman with a reputation that extendes far beyond the county boundaries. This is 'the place' for any tailormade, high quality jewellery - from rings to extravagant tiaras!

Claire Westwood Photography - Kendal www.westwoodphotography.co.uk Contact: Claire Westwood 07717 650615
Good photographers are often difficult to find for weddings so you should always book well in advance. Claire has a very distinctive, contemporary style - I have used her for some of my fashion shows and you can see some of her work on previous pages. She also does wedding photos and albums

Jason Chambers Photography - Keswic k www.photolakedistrict.co.uk Contact: Jason Chambers 07816 455562
Jason started off as a landscape photographer in the Lake District. He takes wedding groups up to stunning viewpoints for amazing panoramic shots against the best lake district landscapes.

Beaulea's Cake Studio - Bowness www.beauleascakestudio.com Contact: Lea Rogers 01539 448204
Lea makes fab wedding cakes with the most amazing designs. She has even trained with one of the best cake designers in New York, and her website includes an excellent, and very useful Blog.

Muncaster Castle - Ravenglass www.muncastercastle.co.uk
There are numerous stunning wedding venues in Cumbria and the Lake District. Muncaster Castle with its history, magnificient setting and famous gardens is one of the best - at any time of the year. The Penningtons who own the castle also have other venues in West Cumbria which are suitable for weddings, including The Pennington Arms at Ravenglass and Sella Park at Calderbridge. As with other popular venues, early booking is essential. Other attractive venues include Armathwaite Hall, overlooking Bassenthwaite, Storrs Hall and Langdale Chase Hotels overlooking Windermere, and the discreet Samling near Ambleside.

Cumbria Classic Coaches - near Kirkby Stephen www.cumbriaclassiccoaches.co.uk Contact: Alison Morris 01539 623254
Someting different for your wedding guests: Cumbria Classic operate a fleet of beautifully restored, vintage coaches and buses which they use for weddings and heritage services in the Lake District. They also provide chauffeur driven vintage cars and a full wedding service..

Harpist: Anna Kate Pearson - Windermere
www.annakatepearsonharpist.co.uk Contact: Anna Kate Pear Color son 01539 446043; 07977 150567
If you are looking for a musical background with a difference call Anna Kate who is a professional harpist - what a truly romnantic sound!


We had visitors staying with us this weekend - great friends who are always welcome. Nigel is from London. He has a fantastic sense of humour and always makes me laugh - can't help telling him that he sounds like Del Boy! It was a lovely opportunity to escape from the studio and chill out for a couple of days. Hard to believe we hadn't seen them for over a year so there was plenty to catch up with. How time seems to fly - quite shocking really!

With so little time we decided to ignore the weather forecast on Sunday and head west. So much for the rain that had been promised - the sun was shining as we strolled along Seascale beach (well, actually bent double against the wind and the sand) and round the links golf course. Nigel explained the rules as we avoided being hit by golf balls. I have to admit I had been clueless, and had always thought it a rather boring sport (hit the balll. miss the hole, pick up the ball ...) but must admit it has an appeal. Wouldn't mind a go sometime, especially on such a nice course with sea on one side and mountains on the other, not to mention the birds, flowers, butterflies ...

It was just so nice to get out in the fresh air for once. I even got rather carried away when I found a swing ... weh hey, happy memories. Swings were one of my childhood favourites ... the object then was to swing hard enough to touch the top bar ... no health and safety in those days!

Then onto Wasdale and another walk, this time an easy stroll up Irton Pike for a view over Wastwater and the coastal strip. I found some lucky white heather, and lots of bilberries! There is nothing like gathering wild fruit ... aren't they just wonderful, fresh organic bilberries with vanilla or chocolate ice cream? Yes, yes, call me Miss Piggy ... but at least the fruit is healthy! Mind you, I left plenty more up there for all those little hairy or feathered bilberry lovers.

Seascale Foreshore;
Small Copper Butterfly

I love the drive home from West Cumbria, crossing Corney Fell with the coast, the Irish Sea and the Isle of Man on one side, then over the summit and the jagged outline of the Lake District mountains stacked up against the sky. It's a relatively gentle ride, no hair pin bends, no feeling that the car might fly any minute with you in it. just up, then down. But ... on this occasion, my dear husband took us over a different pass altogether - Hardknott. I have seen it described as the steepest in England, even in Europe. The signs warn of the climb at the bottom, and the sign that suggests 30% is laughable ... believe me, it is almost vertical on the inside of some of those hairpins. I hung on for dear life praying that our little. old car would make it up, and that the brakes wouldn't fail on the way down the other side! It is the most hair-raising drive in the country, but don't get me wrong - I always love the view back over Eskdale from the top. Its the getting up there and the white knuckles that are the problem!

View down Eskdale to the Irish Sea from Hardknott Pass

9 AUGUST 2009 - CHAOS!

'Chaos' represents my beloved football club in tatters, the never-ending rollercoaster ride into chaos and uncertainty that has been picking up speed ever since we were relegated. Nobody knows what is happening from one day to the next. It is also a rollercoaster ride of emotion for the fans - the optimism and excitement when Shearer was appointed (albeit too late), the failure to avoid relegation at Villa Park, the hope of an opportunity to rebuild and regain promotion, then the club up for sale again, the phantom bids and buyers, lack of money for transfers, players sold, no manager, the broken promises and above all, the lack of communication from the owners. Chaos reigns and it is destroying this once proud club ... affecting the fans, the players, the people at the club that have been made redundant, and of course the city of Newcastle as a whole.

My dress is made up of rags torn from old and new, home and away strips, highlighting that this chaos has ruled our slide from Premeiership to Championship - the chaos is the only constant throughout this saga. The shards are the broken hearts of the fans, hanging on for a solution, while the fabric of the club breaks up. Beneath this outer skin is nothing, just bare patches, highlighted by the worn out left cheek encircled by the name of the person who has presided over this chaos!

I heard that Mike Ashley is a decent person. I wanted to believe that to be true, especially when he decided to give it another go and appointed Shearer. But where is that evidence now? Some even suggested that he was entirely innocent - that the bad decisions and the mistakes had been made by his 'yes' men. That it can't get any worse ... but it does, day by day.

[photo courtesy Sunday Sun]
More often I read comments on blogs that insist he is purposely destroying the club to wreak revenge on the fans - those that have defied or criticised him. Surely not? He is a businessman, isn't he? He wouldn't purposely devalue the club? It makes no sesne. But that is the reality - it is what has happened, and it is what will continue to happen until theis sorry affair is finally over. So is he destroying the club on purpose? Can there be another reason?

'Chaos' at St James' Park, was featured today in the Sunday Sun :
SUNDAY SUN "Angy Tears Toon off a Strip!" - 9.8.2009 - 1.1mb PDF
SUNDAY SUN "Angy Tears Toon off a Strip!" - 9.8.2009 - Direct Link

[photos courtesy Sunday Sun]


I set the alarm for just after 5am, and was out of the house by just after 6am! I'm not usually such an early bird but we had to be in Newcastle before 9am. Anyway, rising early has its advantages in this part of the world - the early mist rising over Windermere was like crushed chiffon, there was wildlife everywhere, even a couple of deer just standing beside the road, and of course no traffic and no tourists!

Just over two hours later I was sipping a cappuccino in Cafe@ St James' with plenty time to change before meeting the photographer from the Sunday Sun. I had allowed them a sneak preview of my latest creation, 'Chaos' - one of a series of designs chronicling the mess at Newcastle United, which will form part of my 'Stolen Dreams' collection. More about the dress on Sunday. I really hadn't expected the saga to drag on for so long, and after overhearing a conversation between a couple of men in the cafe I was already up for a fight when I emerged in front of the stadium to the bemusement of passers-by!

'Chaos' on the pavement in front of
Shearer's Bar ...

... and in front of the main entrance on Barrack Road - note the new 'custard cream' away colours!

[courtesy Sunday Sun]

The conversation had been on the only subject you hear in Newcastle these days - the multi-million pound question about whether the club will or will not be sold. In this case the comment made was that Ashley would hang onto the club, bring in a manager on the cheap and sod the fans ... they would be on side after a couple of wins! Words spoken in a London accent at St James Park ... are these people for real?

I was ready to make my stand and didn't complain once as I was photographed grimacing in front of the stadium, Shearers Bar, and sprawled on the pavement outside the main entrance. If I'm not already on Ashley's blacklist I probably will be now! I really don't care because somebody has to make a stand. All has gone quiet regarding the autumn show, and I already fear the worst about the venue. There is so much paranoia that even some journalists have been banned from St James' Park for voicing an opinion. But they can't stop the fans from baying for blood on a match day - they want their money too much!

Afterwards we wandered into town and called on Coreena at the Sunday Sun offices in Bigg Market. Lovely to meet her at last - we have been talking for months on the phone or by email. She explained how much the chaos, uncertainty and lack of communication was affecting the town.

I went back to St James' Park to sign the book of condolences and pay my respects. It is only a couple of weeks since I was at Sir Bobby's charity match. The seat I sat in was now occupied by a bouquet of flowers and a knotted NUFC scarf. The tributes were very moving, especially some of the comments, and the way they transcend rivalries - from Sunderland, Ipswich, Liverpool, Celtic and so on ... not only from Newcastle fans. I loved the comment on the falg below. It just about sums up the north-east for me. Take a look at this article from Times Online to see what I mean:

Sir Bobby Robson's Passions Unites North East


There was no rush to get straight home after my photo shoot as I had a late afternoon meeting in Carlisle. This gave me the rare opportunity to relax and appreciate the late summer for a change: sunshine and thunder clouds, the dramatic undulating landscape stretching north from Hadrian's Wall into Scotland, and of course all the riches of the harvest.

We stopped at a fruit farm near Corbridge and picked strawberries. I stuffed my face until I was nearly sick! Note in diary: strawberry picking season lasts until October! Further west the fields south of Carlisle were golden-yellow, and all over there were farmers taking advantage of the sunshine to bring in the harvest - wheat and oats, or raking hay for the winter. How this year has zoomed by!

Despite people working flat out on the land, racing against time, thunderstorms and rain, late summer is such a lazy time of the year. The landscape seems so peaceful, especially in that magical, soft glow from the evening sun that sooths the soul!

As I have reported before, I usually have meetings on Thursdays and call in at Whitehaven on the way home. This week I was a day late due to the photo session, but I couldn't miss my fish supper at Crosby's! I know I keep going on about it, but it's just ... well, I have eaten fish and chips in a few places on this island of ours, some of them more memorable than others - Arnside, Scarborough, even a rather posh place in the West End ... but Crosby's is just out of this world! The crispy batter is exactly as I like it and as for that huge, mouthwatering piece of fish ... you would think it had been caught just five minutes before you ordered. And everytime I stand in that queue I tell myself that I should try something else ... mmm! Sausage instead of fish, or scampi, or chicken perhaps? Nahhhh ... haddock every time, please!

Whitehaven was busy as it was the begiining of the 'Food Festival' - there were three ''tall ships' (historic sailing ships) moored in the harbour, a funfair on the South Shore and the Beacon Cafe was selling a celebration rum-based Hartleys ice cream, appropriately called 'Whitehaven'.

From left to right, top to botto:

Morning mist rising over the Winster Valley at Bowland Bridge;

Harvesting Oats near Thursby; the tractors were shuttling back and forth to take the grain every few minutes. The whole fieled was probably harvested in just an hour or so.

Harvest time in north Cumbria, looking out over the plain towards Carlisle

Grasmoor and the Lorton Valley leading to Crummock Water and Buttermere, view from above Cockermouth

Eating my favourite fish and chips, sitting on the harbour wall in the evening sun - what can be better? Answers on a postcard! I can't think of anything but the sunset that followed rounded the day off perfectly. Needless to say it was very late when I finally arrived home - to the black looks of two sulky cats. Thank goodness I had saved some fish to bribe them with - Felix loves it so it must be good ... believe me, he is a very fussy cat!

From left to right:

The church at Bridekirk,near Cockermouth, with the
north western fells;
A small boat passes by the Tall Ships in Whitehaven Harbour

Here are a few more pictures taken in Whitehaven on Friday evening. The harbour gate was closed so it was possible to walk right round to the South Beach and look back at the tall ships and the marina. The sunset over the Irish Sea was spectacular - as it often is on the Cumbrian coast - and well worth waiting for, listening to the gulls crying and laughter and screams from the fair.

From left to right, top to bottom: Fishing Boat in the inner harbour; sunset over the Irish Sea; Sunset between the Whitehaven lighthouses; View over the Solway to the Scottish Hills.


I was contacted today by Love It Media who asked if I would like to participate in a Wedding Show in September. The show will take place at The Nines, a smart cabaret bar in Barrow in Furness and will include a catwalk show. I have been so focussed on my new collection that I have had little opportunity for exhibiting my work this year. However, as the lake District event that I had planned for the summer has been cancelled I have decided to go along.
Not sure how many or which designs for now, but you can be assured they will be different! I still have a few bridal(ish) designs that have rarely been seen and a couple of new dresses too. However, I will not be exhibiting any of my new 'Stolen Dreams' designs before the Newcastle Show.

Furter details:


Date: 6 September, 2009
Time: 14:00-17:00
Venue: The Nines, Barrow-in-Furness
Price: £3.00 in advance; £ 4.00 on the door

Telephone: 07792 654393

Download Poster 2.2mb PDF

31 JULY 2009 - SIR BOBBY ROBSON 1933-2009

It was with great sadness that I read of Bobby Robson's death, this morning. Lost but never forgotten. R.I.P.
I feel honoured that I had the opportunity to see this great man, frail but clearly delighted, just a few days ago.
He will surely rest in peace knowing that he leaves behind him a foundation charity which will contribute
to saving many more lives through the early detection of cancer.
If you would like to show your respect please click on the link below and see how you can help.


My previous Posts:

JUNE - JULY 2009 Sir Bobby Robson RIP - Mannekins - Liverpool - Georgian Splendour - Price of Fame - Detox
MAY - JUNE 2009
(Toon in Tatters - Fashion Communism - Ele Horsleys - Kittiwakes - Stolen Dreams - Bluebells)
MARCH - APRIL 2009 Made in England - Stolen Dreams - Easter Sunshine - Victoriana - Alan Shearer - Funland
FEBRUARY - MARCH 2009 (Favourite View - Punk Revival - Fast Fashion v. Recycled Fashion)
JANUARY-FEBRUARY 2009 (In Search of Winter - A Favourite Place - Catwalk Videos - Winter Chill)
NOVEMBER-DECEMBER 2008 (ROCS - Florence No2. - Winter-Mere)
OCTOBER - NOVEMBER 2008 (Cumbria Life - Glitz & Glamour Haggerston Craft Show)
OCTOBER 2008 (Woman Event - Catwalk Photos - Radio Cumbria - Brochure Download)
SEPTEMBER - OCTOBER 2008 (Newcastle United Wedding Dress - Wedding Shows)
AUGUST - SEPT. 2008 (Fashion Designers - Spectrum Collection - Sara Gadd)
JUNE - JULY 2008 (Haute Couture - Vivienne Westwood - Dorset Buttons - Magna Carta)
FEBRUARY - MAY 2008 (Lake District Inspirations - Long Blondes - Wedding Show)
Angy's Blog is written by Angela Morton, Fashion Designer & Dressmaker
Photographs copyright of Mike and Angy Morton

Copyright Romantique Couture 2009