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Marianne Dashwood ~ Sense & Sensibility ~ Jane Austen fabric by peacoquettedesigns on Spoonflower - custom fabric

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By Sarah Walden

Fascinated by all things historical - but with a modern twist. What can I design for you? All designs are original, taken from public domain, Creative Commons or legally licensed.

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Description:

The despondent Marianne has refused breakfast and is heartbroken over her returned letters and love tokens from the cad, Willoughby.

This is my contest entry for the "Life in a Jane Austen Novel" contest. I chose the character of Marianne Dashwood, surely one of Austen's most overwrought but ultimately charming characters. I have chosen a scene from Sense and Sensibility wherein Marianne has refused breakfast (symbolized by the tea tray) and subsequent meals while she weeps over the returned letters from her suitor (or so she thought), Mr. Willoughby. He is represented in the silhouette so popular at the time. (It is actually my husband!) She has penned him three indiscreet letters (symbolized by my painting of her with pen in hand, looking pensively by candlelight). Insult to injury is the returned love token of a lock of her hair. Silly thing! Colonel Brandon is already in love with you! Perhaps he was the one that left the lone flower blossom on your doorstep....

All artwork is original and completely created by myself. The font is actually a licensed font based on Jane Austen's own handwriting. I based the ring on an actual ring of Jane's that was up for auction recently. I hope my fellow members of the Jane Austen Tea Society approve!

Here is a link to a trailer for a film version...

Here is the abridged excerpt: In her earnest meditations on the contents of the letter, on the depravity of that mind which could dictate it, and probably, on the very different mind of a very different person, who had no other connection whatever with the affair than what her heart gave him with every thing that passed, Elinor ... returned to Marianne, whom she found attempting to rise from the bed, and whom she reached just in time to prevent her from falling on the floor, faint and giddy from a long want of proper rest and food; for it was many days since she had any appetite, and many nights since she had really slept; and now, when her mind was no longer supported by the fever of suspense, the consequence of all this was felt in an aching head, a weakened stomach, and a general nervous faintness. A glass of wine, which Elinor procured for her directly, made her more comfortable, and she was at last able to express some sense of her kindness, by saying,... "Oh! Elinor, I am miserable, indeed," before her voice was entirely lost in sobs. ...

The contents of her last note to him were these: - "What am I to imagine, Willoughby, by your behaviour last night? Again I demand an explanation of it. I was prepared to meet you with the pleasure which our separation naturally produced, with the familiarity which our intimacy at Barton appeared to me to justify. I was repulsed indeed! I have passed a wretched night in endeavouring to excuse a conduct which can scarcely be called less than insulting; but though I have not yet been able to form any reasonable apology for your behaviour, I am perfectly ready to hear your justification of it. You have perhaps been misinformed, or purposely deceived, in something concerning me, which may have lowered me in your opinion. Tell me what it is, explain the grounds on which you acted, and I shall be satisfied, in being able to satisfy you. It would grieve me indeed to be obliged to think ill of you; but if I am to do it, if I am to learn that you are not what we have hitherto believed you, that your regard for us all was insincere, that your behaviour to me was intended only to deceive, let it be told as soon as possible. My feelings are at present in a state of dreadful indecision; I wish to acquit you, but certainty on either side will be ease to what I now suffer. If your sentiments are no longer what they were, you will return my notes, and the lock of my hair which is in your possession. "M.D."

That such letters, so full of affection and confidence, could have been so answered, Elinor, for Willoughby's sake, would have been unwilling to believe. But her condemnation of him did not blind her to the impropriety of their having been written at all; and she was silently grieving over the imprudence which had hazarded such unsolicited proofs of tenderness, not warranted by anything preceding, and most severely condemned by the event, when Marianne, perceiving that she had finished the letters, observed to her that they contained nothing but what any one would have written in the same situation. "I felt myself," she added, "to be as solemnly engaged to him, as if the strictest legal covenant had bound us to each other."

"I can believe it," said Elinor; "but unfortunately he did not feel the same."

"He DID feel the same, Elinor - for weeks and weeks he felt it. I know he did. Whatever may have changed him now, (and nothing but the blackest art employed against me can have done it), I was once as dear to him as my own soul could wish. This lock of hair, which now he can so readily give up, was begged of me with the most earnest supplication. Had you seen his look, his manner, had you heard his voice at that moment! Have you forgot the last evening of our being together at Barton? The morning that we parted too! When he told me that it might be many weeks before we met again - his distress - can I ever forget his distress?"

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peacoqu...

peacoquettedesigns says: Thank you so very much, Winterblossom.

Posted over 3 years ago.

winterb...

winterblossom says: This is a really interesting design. I could never get tired of looking at it and wondering what she is thinking.

Posted over 3 years ago.

peacoqu...

peacoquettedesigns says: Thank you, KCS! That is so nice of you to take the time to comment~

Posted over 3 years ago.

kcs

kcs says: Well done! Well, well done!

Posted over 3 years ago.

peacoqu...

peacoquettedesigns says: Thank you so much!

Posted over 3 years ago.

mag-o

mag-o says: Excellent illustrations and wonderful description!

Posted over 3 years ago.

peacoqu...

peacoquettedesigns says: Thank you, kiwiandsteve! I really appreciate it!

Posted over 3 years ago.

ksteve

ksteve says: THANKS for sharing your process, your design is amazing!

Posted over 3 years ago.

peacoqu...

peacoquettedesigns says: You got it, Su! (Though I never thought I would post a picture of me sans makeup for the world to see!) I used an old photo of my husband for the silhouette of Willoughby, too! <a href="http://www.flickr.com/photos/psarah/7097043345/" title="Me Hubs by PeacoquetteDesigns, on Flickr"><img src="http://farm8.staticflickr.com/7056/7097043345_8e6e956c25_n.jpg" width="320" height="240" alt="Me Hubs"></a>

Posted over 3 years ago.

su_g

su_g says: I thought I recognised your face Sarah!

Posted over 3 years ago.

peacoqu...

peacoquettedesigns says: Thank you, Vannina. I based the painting of Marianne off of a self-potrait I shot a few years bach with me as Emily Bronte. <a href="http://www.flickr.com/photos/psarah/6977395565/" title="Self Portrait ~Emily Bronte by PeacoquetteDesigns, on Flickr"><img src="http://farm8.staticflickr.com/7054/6977395565_8c8c3c3263_n.jpg" width="320" height="240" alt="Self Portrait ~Emily Bronte"></a>

Posted over 3 years ago.

peacoqu...

peacoquettedesigns says: Thank you, Karen! I just used the code from YouTube and embedded the video in the description box. I was surprised it worked. I am going to start making video montages of my collections to embed, I think. Maybe on my popular designs, I might even do a showcase of them. I try embedding other things, like Flickr pictures, but only this worked.

Posted over 3 years ago.

karenha...

karenharveycox says: I came back to wish the the very best luck in the contest. I just love this design. How were you able to upload a video? Your site is wonderful. Karen

Posted over 3 years ago.

vannina

vannina says: I am impressed by your artistic work. Thank you for sharing your passion for this character. I love the expressive face of Marianne.

Posted over 3 years ago.

peacoqu...

peacoquettedesigns says: Thank you, Miart!

Posted over 3 years ago.

miart

miart says: Wow! You really thought this out! Nice artwork!

Posted over 3 years ago.

peacoqu...

peacoquettedesigns says: Thank you very much, Art Tree!

Posted over 3 years ago.

taramcg...

taramcgowan says: This is a fabulous design! Your description is perfect!

Posted over 3 years ago.

peacoqu...

peacoquettedesigns says: Thank you, Karen! As a member of The Jane Austen Tea Society, it is true that I do love Jane! You should see how I love the Bronte family even more ~ I have a mini-museum in my front room! The first half of the 19th century in England really fascinates me! Thanks for commenting! :) <p> http://www.flickr.com/photos/psarah/sets/72157628279699585/

Posted over 3 years ago.

karenha...

karenharveycox says: Wow, this looks like allot of work and a beautiful result. I love the design and how passionate you are about Jane Austen's character. Good luck in the contest, this is lovely.

Posted over 3 years ago.

peacoqu...

peacoquettedesigns says: Updated 25 March to include a silhouette and a flower. I felt the design could use a few more details and a pop of color that echoed her shawl. I had fun making a silhouette out of my husband's profile! Lucky for me, his hair is very fitting for that era!

Posted over 3 years ago.

peacoqu...

peacoquettedesigns says: Oh, thank you, Rhonda and Su! I am so pleased everyone likes this! Maybe I will try this style of art more often! Of course, Marianne is such a fleshed out character, she proved a great inspiration! (And wasn't Kate Winslet PERFECT as Marianne! I just loved everyone cast in that film version. Emma Thompson and Alan Rickman are such heroes of mine!)

Posted over 3 years ago.

rhondad...

rhondadesigns says: Well done, Sarah! With sensitivity and a deft hand you have created a lovely design that evokes the sadness and heartfelt yearnings of Jane Austen's character, Marianne

Posted over 3 years ago.

su_g

su_g says: Wow this is amazing! Really like your choice of the character and the part of the story to illustrate, and the way you've gotten so many details from the scene into this design! Very impressive!

Posted over 3 years ago.

peacoqu...

peacoquettedesigns says: Thank you. Demouse~ I really appreciate your compliment!

Posted over 3 years ago.

sheila'...

sheila's_corner says: Wonderful artwork! I think you captured Marianne beautifully! Sweet composition :)

Posted over 3 years ago.

peacoqu...

peacoquettedesigns says: That is very kind of you to say so! This was my first attempt at something like this so I am grateful for the encouragement, Bad Penny!

Posted over 3 years ago.

bad_penny

bad_penny says: This is just wonderful! So true to the spirit of the story. You are an excellent illustrator.

Posted over 3 years ago.

peacoqu...

peacoquettedesigns says: Goodness! That is soooo very sweet, Glimmericks! Thank you! It is true that I did put a LOT of effort into this!

Posted over 3 years ago.

glimmer...

glimmericks says: An amazingly detailed and beautiful interpretation of the theme! You did such a beautiful job on this and put so much effort into it. I am in awe!

Posted over 3 years ago.