Clio from Chawton House – Tatty Devine


Dearest viewers, we are thrilled to tell you that our latest collaboration, Tatty Devine X Chawton Home has coaxed the interior Janeite out of each and every and each individual member of Staff Tatty. Neglect the tattlings of Woman Whistledown, we are heading straight to the oracle: give a regency wave to Clio O’Sullivan, lover of literature and Communications and Community Engagement Manager at Chawton Household! From solution scandals to all the Jane Austen linked information and the heritage of Chawton House, join us for the inside of scoop now!

Can you describe what you do in five words?

Sharing stories of amazing girls!


As with any great household, its history is chequered with each individual subsequent era producing their own alterations and additions. That is why it has these types of a exclusive form with rooms and staircases main to unpredicted destinations! The Property came into the Knight household in the 1500s while not always passing right from father to son. For this reason the Austen connection – Jane’s older brother inherited the Chawton estate from distant childless family members with the stipulation he adjust his surname to Knight.

Edward gave the aged bailiff’s cottage in the village to his mom and sisters in which to stay lease free of charge. In the 1990s American entrepreneur Sandy Lerner acquired the lease from the Knight household and totally restored Chawton Property, which had considerably fallen into a state of disrepair. She amassed a large selection of early contemporary women’s creating and included the charity, Chawton Residence Library, into a centre of eighteenth-century research. Sandy stepped away from Chawton Household in 2016 and as nicely as remaining a area for researchers, we also turned a beloved heritage web page with Household, Gardens and Parkland open to the general public for visitors to love all calendar year spherical.

What is your favorite component of this stated making? 

I truly do adore the Oak Space, which would have been the women withdrawing place in Jane Austen’s day. As these kinds of, we have hung portraits that reflect this feeling of a feminine coterie, exhibiting artists, writers and actresses, including my favorite portrait, Mary Robinson. It has amazing views of the Gardens and distant Parkland and in accordance to Knight loved ones legend is in which Jane Austen employed to sit in the studying alcove.

 Clio in the studying alcove in the Oak Room.


Do you have enjoyable historic facts about Chawton?

If you glimpse meticulously, you will locate witch marks carved on several factors of entry all through the home: above doorways, by fireplaces, on bannisters. These may glance like careless scratches but basically offer you defense against evil spirits.


As a postgraduate exploration pupil studying English, remaining surrounded by the most effective feminist library we’ve at any time noticed ought to be so remarkable. What initial drew you to Chawton Residence?


The library for positive! The selection offered every thing I essential and much more while exploring for my masters in eighteenth-century literature at Southampton, like diaries, manuscripts and some novels discovered nowhere else in the earth. Even though there, I used for their stay-in internship programme and obtained to keep onsite for 6 weeks, which was just magical. After that they questioned me to remain on in a momentary position and 7 a long time later on right here I nevertheless am! It is truly been the earning of me.  


It’s been a dream for us to collaborate with you on a assortment, what is your favourite piece and why?


Unquestionably the Jane Austen Bookshelf Necklace – it is the best assertion piece for any bibliophile. It is so attractive and the picket back presents so a lot depth to all the different coloured books highlighted, in addition it suggests Chawton on it!


You just lately curated an exhibition at Chawton Household, A Costume of Sport, seeking at outfits worn for exercise in the Georgian and Regency periods, what was the stand out star you highlighted in the exhibit?


You’re all no strangers to strange extras at Tatty Devine so I would say the pattens from the early 1800s. These are clumsy platforms, nailed to an iron ring to give females a bit of elevation, supposed to guard their shoes and hems from dirt. Jane Austen wore a pair and referred to “the ceaseless clink of pattens” in her novel Persuasion.



Pattens c.1800s, on loan to Chawton Home from the Hampshire Cultural Have faith in

As licensed Jane-ites, we have taken a nearer glance at frequent Chawton customer Jane Austen’s perform in our assortment. You have an upcoming celebration about the scandals of Austen’s spouse and children – is there any gossip you can share with us?
Which is ideal, I’m talking on all issues scandalous as aspect of Alton’s Jane Austen Regency Week in June. I will not give way too substantially absent but let’s just say there was a bit of a to-do when Jane Austen’s nephew ran off to Gretna Inexperienced for a hasty relationship! 

Is there nearly anything else exciting coming up at Chawton that we just need to know about?
I’m so thrilled for our summer time year of outdoor theatre! We have some amazing firms coming to Chawton House for a single-off performances, beginning with the Handlebard’s Twelfth Evening on June 15, followed by The Lord Chamberlain’s Adult men performing As You Like it on July 14. Then the hilarious The Relevance of Becoming Earnest on July 26 right before closing with Pride and Prejudice on September 4.

The Lord Chamberlain’s Men carrying out out of doors theatre on the South Garden at Chawton Property.


Prepared for some quickfire questions…


Favourite Jane Austen ebook? 


P&P if I want a chortle, Persuasion if I’m sensation sentimental.


Which inspirational gals ought to we be pursuing? 


Rupi Kaur’s poetry is normally a source of inspiration to me and Jameela Jamil’s candid championing of women’s legal rights is both equally insightful and at moments hilarious.


Bonnets, yay or nay?


Why end at bonnets?! I say yay to all historic hat use – I even wore a Regency Casqua a la Minerve to my cousin’s wedding!

On it like a bonnet!

Dying for a appear all over but not in the British isles? Check out out Clio’s digital tour here!
Thanks for chatting with us Clio, you are a correct historical hero and your style in headwear is dare we say, exquisite! Shop our NEW collaboration with Chawton Property on the web and in-retail store now. 


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