Yesterday, I wrote a review of Igigi clothing, emphasizing the importance of Princess Seams for the Appley Woman.
So now Francesca has princesses on the brain.
Here is a book I love: The Lonely Empress: Elizabeth of Austria by Joan Haslip. You know what is spooky? How much the Empress Elisabeth of Austria was like Princess Diana of England. Both married men in line for the throne (or on it) who had been “supposed” to marry her older sister; both were raised in the relative freedom of common or semi-common life, and were thrust into court life when they married; both had major problems with their mothers-in-law; both had eating disorders; both were known and loved for their beauty, and youth, and fantastic clothes. Haslip does a good job of bringing Elisabeth to life while still being somewhat dispassionate, and fair to the mother-in-law.
Then we have the colorful Marie Antoinette: The Journey, on which the movie with Kirsten Dunst was based. The production values for this hardcover version are incredible. From the metallic design inside the covers to the color photographs and the high-quality paper, this book is beautiful enough to befit the royalty it describes. But if you want to save some money, the softcover version, pictured at left, is here. (Oh, and by the way, chances are slim that Marie Antoinette ever said to “let them eat cake.”)
A story that starts out more austere but ends more happily than either Elisabeth’s or Marie’s: the beloved 1905 children’s novel A Little Princess by Frances Hodgson Burnett. A pampered rich girl suddenly finds herself orphaned and poor, leading to a series of unfortunate events . . . but don’t worry, this delightful story has a happy ending, or else they never would have made a movie out of it –one of Francesca’s favorites from her childhood — starring Shirley Temple.
Speaking of movies starring Shirley Temple which Francesca loves . . . and Austria . . . when was the last time you saw Heidi?
And finally, if you need a cute chyck flick (that’s “chick with a y,” get it? I bet anyone who went to a Seven Sisters school gets it) Francesca recommends The Princess Diaries and the sequel, The Princess Diaries 2: Royal Engagement. Yes, the plot is ridiculous. Yes Francesca is embarrassed for Julie Andrews, who deserves so much more. And yet, when you are in the mood for ordering Chinese food and cuddling up in your sweatpants while watching something fun and brainless, these movies are perfect.