Hogmanay has been the historical New Year celebration in Scotland. For some time, it was really the only way the Scottish could celebrate with gift-giving and festivities in the winter since 1583 when the Presbyterian Church began discouraging Christmas, claiming it had no basis in the Bible. Due to the Protestant Reformation in 1647, Christmas was banned for over 300 years! In 1958 Parliament named Christmas a national holiday. Today, Hogmanay is still celebrated from December 31 through January 2.
In this blog, we’d like to share five basic historical Hogmanay traditions with you.
Droughtlander takes its toll on each and every Outlander fan. We scramble around finding books, shows,and events to fill the void while awaiting a new season. As Voyager comes to an end, we find ourselves in the doldrums, like Claire and Jamie, without our weekly episodes.
Often times, we search for a reprieve from these long never-ending months seeking anything Scottish, especially something historical. In our quest to find some sort of diversion, an opportunity arose for us to dive back in time to the era of Robert the Bruce with a novel entitled The Spider and the Stone.
Let us take you there with our review of this story…
Outlander has forever changed us. With all the choices of book authors and genres to choose from, nothing seems to compare to the writings of Diana Gabaldon. The length of her books are not for the faint of heart. However, those that begin the journey soon discover a whole new world awaits. It has led us to broaden our horizons by expanding our adventures and allowing us to meet others who share the same admiration for this series. As our appreciation for each character grows, we have been inspired to search for ways to walk in their footsteps.
Today’s adventure was no exception. We found a way to get closer to Jamie Fraser by exploring a local printing press. We couldn’t wait to discover more about the history that surrounded Jamie at this time and what defined him as The King of The Pressin our eyes. Travel back in time with us as we explore the history and workings of the printing press in historic Old Town, San Diego. Following this adventure and fun photo opportunities within the Print Shop, we decided to head to Afternoon Tea at the historic Cosmopolitan Hotel. Needless to say, it was a day we will always remember!
Season 3, Voyager, has begun. The Outlander producers and writers have brought us back to the 18th century, exposing viewers to the catastrophic events that resulted in the loss of thousands of lives at the Battle of Culloden. We also witness the violent suppression that soon followed to ensure the complete defeat of the Jacobite uprising of 1745. These events have moved Outlander fans, such as ourselves, to look beyond fiction to discover the true realities the Highlanders faced during this difficult time of history. In doing so, we have learned more about The Act of Proscription (1746), a law aimed to destroy the power of the clans and subdue any other attempts of revolt by prohibiting traditional Highland dress and possession of arms. The way of life for the Highlanders was ultimately destroyed, with devastating effects that reached well beyond the boundaries of war.
It is now 271 years after the Battle of Culloden. The strength of emotions that are elicited from the reflection of all that was lost on that battlefield can still be felt today. Diana Gabaldon’s Outlander series may have encouraged fans’ initial interest to follow these historical events. However, it is believed that her admirers now do so for a greater reason than solely searching for the literary footsteps of her noble characters. They research components of history, travel to sacred sites, and find ways to experience the magic of this majestic country to discover the true heart of Scotland: the culture, the people, and its heritage. Yet to understand the resilient spirit of this great nation, it is important to recognize the darker and more poignant moments of history that sculpted the past and led to the present. There is no better place to do this than spending time at The National Museum of Scotland.
We are getting closer to the highly anticipated Season 3 of Outlander. Can you believe it is only 29 days away! It is clear – we are not counting the exact time we have left, as we each smile in this revelation. To pass the time we have found ourselves re-watching our favorite episodes to divert our attention away from the daily countdown until the premiere. As we spend time watching treasured scenes, we are constantly reminded of the detail and artistry that could be seen within each set. It was remarkable to see each episode vibrantly come to life throughout their time in Scotland and the opulent lifestyle that was synonymous with upper class living in 18th century Paris. There is no question that the lavish portrayal of Paris intrigued us the most. These episodes were a visual feast that included rich colors, elaborate set designs, and striking textiles that told a story of prosperity and wealth that was representative of French nobility and upper class living during this time period.
Reminiscing about our favorite episodes in Paris, reminded us of Jae’s recent visit to London where she was able to explore one specific area of splendor that was shared between all nations. We are always in search to learn more about the historical reflections present in the show and within the books. It was natural for us to find a way to momentarily escape to the past, linking pieces of the show to true elements of history – such as the coaches that were designed to transport members of upper society. From Versailles to the wealthy middle class within the city, coaches were a vital means of transportation. Come, travel with us to the Royal Mews in London to discover a historical collection of coaches that will bring additional appreciation for those displayed during the filming of Outlander, while also bringing to light their importance in higher societal life.
There are many aspects of history surrounding the institution of slavery that have been forgotten, left to remain hidden in the past, until subtle clues revealthe truth and invite questioning. As these invisible pieces of history begin to come to light, our perceptions begin to be challenged – opening our eyes to the true reality that slavery can be traced beyond America. The short film 1745 exposes the truth that Scotland also shared in this deplorable past, confirmed by documented evidence that it had a direct link to the slave trade.
For many, this important piece of history was not readily knownnor reflected in the general teachings of Scotland’s dynamic past. Research has exposed that significant civic and personal wealth were derived from their involvement in the slave trade. However, it is of tremendous importance to also address the morality of slavery, portrayal of power, and the symbolism for wealth that surrounded its existence which further contributed to the complexity of this hidden past. A search to find and acknowledge this social inequality led to the inspiration for the short film 1745.This film tells the story of two enslaved sisters who must gather immense courage, find strength within each other, and overcome unspeakable adversity to succeed in their pursuit of freedom during Scotland’s most turbulent time of 1745.
It is with great pride and pleasure that Sass3 shares a unique interview with Morayo and Moyo Akande, the writer and actresses of the film 1745. We are proud to feature their story as we discuss their inspiration for this project, the importance of reflecting on this invisible piece of Scotland’s historical past, and how this film challenges all of what we understood about this time period. Come travel with us to the past as we explore the true realities that surrounded this significant year, while also sharing Morayo and Moyo Akande’s journey to acknowledge this important yet unknown piece of history.
Have you ever wished you could travel back in time to experience what life was like in Paris during the 18th century? The lives of the people were vastly different, based upon their social status and degree of wealth. During this time period, Paris was the second-largest city in Europe, after London, while it was also most notably recognized as one of the founding points of high fashion and haute couture. This was a fashion-forward era that led to the creation of custom-fitted clothing that was exclusively handmade from start to finish. Each piece of clothing was created by using high quality fabrics with extreme precision in craftsmanship and attention to detail that reflected the wearer’s wealth and societal status.
Sass3 felt privileged to be able to explore this era of French fashion while attending a live lecture at The Getty Museum in Los Angeles, California. In this blog we will highlight the extraordinary teachings of Maxwell Barr as he discusses and demonstrates the art of fashion in the prosperous world of 18th Century France. With the help of a model, we were able to catch a glimpse into this world through live demonstrations of the daily wardrobe that was worn by the elite households of France. Each article of clothing was reflective of historical pieces found during this time period while also illustrating examples of original fabric, lace, and accessories from this era.
Come take a Timeless Journey with us as we experience the level of artistry and design that will not only delight the eyes, but also please the soul – as nothing can truly prepare you for the level of beauty and workmanship found in the attire we discovered while attending: An Artist at Work – French Fashion. ♥
April 16. There are so many meanings associated with this important date. Foremost, it is on this date in 1746 – on the battlefield of Culloden Moor – valiant Highlanders faced their final confrontation of the Jacobite Rising of 1745. Those who have visited this site have hinted to the strong feelings of emotions that arise – whispers of the indomitable men that fought so bravely upon this battleground – and all that was lost on this date in history. As we approach the 271st anniversary of the Battle of Culloden, we felt not only a desire to have a moment of reflection on the significant markings of this fateful day, we also wanted to honor the valor and bravery that will always be remembered.
In this blog, we will explore this moment of reflection, our own personal link to this date, and a recent trip to the Highlands that reinforced the beauty and magic of Scotland.
Outlander: A Place to Find Refuge During Life’s Most Unexpected Moments
Have you ever been faced with a difficult life moment and without conscious knowledge or thought turned to the Outlander series as a place of refuge? Not under the best circumstances, but I found that this happened to me while sitting at the Ophthalmology office waiting for the physician to look at my son’s newly stitched, three-inch eye-lid laceration. The depth of the laceration unfortunately led to the exposure of the lacrimal gland, causing additional complications. An unforeseen accident, we were faced with surgeons and a series of doctor appointments that were not only stressful, but also terrifying in the process. I have often heard many fans describe the Outlander series as place to find sanctuary or comfort when faced with difficult life events. Here I was sitting in the doctor’s office, having the same experience that I have often heard from many other fans. Continue reading Keep Calm and Love Bees: A Personal Link Back to Outlander→
In a previous blog, we shared about our experience at the Back In Time With The Frasers event held at The Mission Inn in Riverside, California. Here we will go into more detail about this beautiful and historical hotel.