downton abbey {eye candy + english zombies}

So, if you guys are friends with me on Twitter and/or Facebook, you might know that I’ve recently fallen for a new show. And I fell hard.

Jamin was out of town all last week, so I found myself celebrating the survival of another day by diving for the sofa with a bowl of {double fudge brownie} chocolate ice cream as soon as the kids said their last goodnight, each night.

Guilty.

I was a little slow to this party, and I can’t believe it took me so long to join in on the fun. As a literary nerd growing up with her nose always in a book, I loved the likes of anything a-la Jane Austen/Louisa May Alcott vibes… so Downton Abbey had me at the opening credits.

No spoilers here, but Downton Abbey is a beautifully written juxtaposition of two very different worlds, as they collide and transform in the setting of the countryside of England, beginning in the year of 1912. A melodrama like no other, it sucked me in from the beginning with it’s addictive storyline and amazing characters.

But something apart from a great storyline, is another element in itself. This, my friends, is the deal maker.

The breathtaking styling + cinematography.

Every now and again, I’ll find a show that I can watch passively while I work, or fold the laundry. But Downton Abbey demands your attention from the very beginning. An unforgettable element in itself, are the brilliant costume design and interior eye candy. They’re absolutely jaw dropping.

Of course, it didn’t hurt that one of my favorite actresses is starring in it, either. Her one liners make my day. Hurray for professor Mcgonagall! 

The scenes are shot with such such fabulosity, that I sometimes have to rewind to hear what the actors were saying in a scene. I was too busy admiring some awesome element stage left.

If you love barn doors and crates alone…you’re in luck.

You’ll find yourself drooling over one that just so happens to appear in all it’s vintage glory… sitting oh-so nonchalantly in nearly every other scene. And I adore the color combos I see in each room.

High tea? Don’t mind if I do.

Has anyone else fallen in love with the wall paper/curtain combo in Sybil’s room?

Or that green paint color they used at the train station, with the awesomely huge numbers on the car doors?

I even love the servants’ staircase.

Every time there’s a scene in the kitchen, I find myself pausing…trying to decide how I can possibly get my hands on a genuinely antique mail/paper sorter thingy. I’m not even sure of the proper name for this. Anyone?

And while we’re on the subject of the kitchen…

behind the scenes shots via

If I could take the “downstairs” style, and mix it in with a touch of the “upstairs”…and throw it in with their second home where dream boat Matthew has been living…I think I’d have my dream house.

I’m not high maintenance or anything…

Check out that tile!

Yes, I think I would like to live in that time. There. In that house. Only if I were a disgustingly rich Crawley. I promise to use my richness and absolute power for good. With a couple of doctors + epis from the future to help deliver my babies so I wouldn’t have to bite on a stick and die. The killer accent wouldn’t hurt, either.

I said I wasn’t high maintenance.

Hey guys. Let me know when you decide to sell that giant piece with awesome hardware. I’ll show up with the moving truck to pick it up, mmkay?

Oh wait. What was that scene about again?

I love the old cars, too. So amazing!

It really kind of blows my mind to think that my grandfather was BORN around this time period. Shortly after the sinking of the Titanic. Kind of makes me wonder what my great grand children will be saying about our time…something tells me they won’t be drooling over the avocado green tweed sofa in the background of all my baby pics. I guess you never know.

Maybe they can fight over my chesterfield, instead.

I love this shot by Jason Bell, for Vogue.

To read more about the actual Highclere Castle where this awesome show is filmed, click here! Who’s with me for taking a pilgrimage? Clearly, I missed my calling in set design. That, and I want to be a zombie extra in The Walking Dead. My tastes are versatile.

Anyone with me? I’ve been perfecting my creepy walk.

Dreams do come true.

So tell me…have you been watching? Who’s your favorite character? What’s your favorite design element? If you could steal any room from the show, which would it be? Spill it!

Have an inspired day, everyone!


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32 Responses to downton abbey {eye candy + english zombies}

  1. Kelly says:

    Ha! I don’t really want to be a zombie but I admit to having all the rules for surviving in Zombieland memorized. I love Downton Abbey so much! The castle is so amazing. I love the kitchen, but I do have to pause any scene in the Library! I have always pictured myself reclining on a leather sofa reading in an English library…my favorite is Brendan Coyle. He is kind of cute! I can’t wait for the next season.

  2. Julie says:

    Yes, I, too, love DA. The house is to die for. And I love the characters. I finished the first season on Netflix in a couple days & now I’m only like #35 out of 63 on the waiting list at the library to get the 2nd season. I know. I should just buy it. I’m ridiculous.

  3. Jenny wells says:

    Oh how I love that show! I too, attempted to fold laundry but had to stop so I didn’t miss a second while I watched. And the little quote about finding a new show and watching the entire season in a week…..oh so guilty (army wives,Mad Men, Downton Abbey)!

  4. Amanda says:

    I LOVE that show!! I watched both seasons within one long weekend. I can’t wait until the new season (not that I know when that is). Last night I even dreamed that it was the season premiere. Sad, but true.

  5. Welcome to the club! Downton Abbey is literally my favorite show (with The Walking Dead being my third fave, only beause I can’t stop drooling over the fashion in Mad Men…are you on that bandwagon yet?). I LOVE Sybil because she is so brazen and stands up for herself. Buuuut, I love the Lady Mary-Cousin Matthew dynamic (trying to be spoiler free here) so much it hurts. I can’t believe we have to wait until January 6 for season 3!!! Ugh!!!

  6. michelle says:

    Ooh…I know! Ditto! Ditto! And ditto again! Maybe if we just show up with the moving truck unannounced some guy will just toss some of our favorite things in and we can run like bandits! Ha! I know, I was hooked from the start. Beautiful. Ya know, I have a real hard time picking a favorite char actor because they all offer something so individual to the mix. Each one has to be there to compliment the other. Can’t decide. I will be practicing my zombie walk too. Let me know about any opportunities for that…it would be nice to put a check next to that item on the bucket list;)

  7. Erin says:

    I adore Downton Abbey for all the same reasons you so eloquently described. I also love Modern Family (I have a plate wall in my dinning room and some of the plates in the Modern Family kitchen are the same) because it’s so dang funny. I also enjoy Last Man Standing and I love the kitchen, living room, and study (just off the top of my head). I never would have thought of blue cabinets in the kitchen but they are really beautiful.

  8. Karen says:

    I love the show too! Anna is my favorite. I love how honest and true to herself she is.

  9. We have similar tastes! Downton Abbey and The Walking Dead are two of my favorite shows. I am sooo not into horror/gore, but my husband convinced me to watch the first episode when the show premiered and I was hooked–because it’s really not about the zombies at all.

    I love Matthew’s cottage on Downton Abbey. I love it all…the costumes, the characters, the grace, everything. If you haven’t seen Jimmy Fallon’s spoof “Downton Sixbey,” you must. Hilarious. :)

  10. jaime says:

    When my husband went out of town this summer, I took the opportunity to watch it too. Now I’m obsessed…and we have to wait until January for season 3! I’m reading novels based on the era until then.

  11. Holly says:

    LOVE LOVE LOVE Downton!!! You know someone hasn’t watched it when they prounounce it “downtown”. We mustn’t snicker…
    Totally agree with Amanda @ Serenity Now, you have got to see JF’s version. It only makes sense if you seen the real deal!

  12. Just watched the season finale on Sunday night ( Sydney Australia) – how on earth can I wait until season 3 . I am addicted! I’ll meet you in London for a pilgrimage to Downton. By the way have you seen the spoof -”
    Uptown Downstairs Abbey? It’s hilarious and brilliant
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=r5dMlXentLw
    Cheers, Victoria

  13. Amy says:

    OH MY!!! I love this post!!! I’m new to your blog…thank you Pinterest… I too am new on the Downton Abbey bandwagon and I ADORE it!! I just finished watching Season 1 AGAIN. I went out today to buy them on DVD. I’m loving all the humor and little details I missed the first time through for some reason. I absolutely adore Matthew and I love Mary. The relationship between Lord Granthem and his daughters is very endearing to me as well. And “Granny” and Mrs. Crawley (Matthew’s mother) are hilarious! Mr. Carsen and Anna….Oh, seriously, how do you choose a favorite character?? I’m just glad there aren’t any zombies! hehe. Although, O’Brian and Thomas would make pretty good ones!

    • I think I will watch them through again, as well. Hilarious on the subject of zombies. I love to hate O’Brian, and I kind of feel sorry for Thomas for being such a loser. Hilarious! I think my faves are Mary and Anna. Though the show just wouldn’t do if one were missing…I must agree!

  14. Lora R says:

    Just got into the show and watched the first season on netflix (almost all at once of course!!)

    I love everything, but Ialso really like how they don’t over do it in some areas. Like in one of the last episodes, they showed Cora’s room and it was very simple. I appreciate that.

  15. oh gosh ashley, it would take me 3 hours sometimes to get through an episode; if one of the boys needed me I had to pause so I wouldn’t miss a thing. LOVE that show; i’m on the waiting list at the library for season 2; i’m not rushing it; sometimes anticipation is half the fun…although I’ll squeal like a little school girl once I get my hands on it!

  16. I just joined the bandwagon too. Bought the first season and went through it in two days and made an excuse to run out to buy the 2nd season…. CAN’T WAIT for the 3rd. :)

  17. Shalagh says:

    I have a feeling I’ve missed a Titanic Sized boat here. Love costume flicks and now, thanks to you Ashley, I will have to become addicted to this as I am to the Walking Dead as well. Pictures are Awesome. Can I say what a fuzzy feeling I had knowing all these women commenting are as geeky as you and me. Yeah for Sarah in the Suburbs and Amanda @ Serenity Now and the Handmade Home. Net Flix is about to be my new BFF to catch up with ya’ll. Thanks, Shalagh

  18. I just watched the entire first season this week! It was wonderful, I couldn’t stop staring at all the damask printed wallpaper… so pretty.

  19. amanda says:

    Sooo, I was late to the Downton Abbey frenzy, being in China in all. But I heard so many people talking about it that I went out and found both seasons for about $5 bucks (yes, it’s pirated – don’t hate)!!! I watched both seasons in about 4 days and loved every minute of it. Cannot wait for the next season!

  20. donna says:

    Never heard of this show until your blog. Downloaded Season 1 on my Kindle so I could see what you were talking about. I’m officially hooked. I’m trying not to stay up all night watching the episodes and have to make myself shut it off so I can go to bed. I just watched the one where the one daughter (can’t think of her name right off) but showed off her new dress which was actually pants! Can’t wait to watch the next one tonight! Thanks for getting me hooked. Now it’s a “must see” for this show and Castle on ABC.

  21. Vera says:

    Wow, Downton Abbey is what I’ve been obsessed with for, well, 2 days now. :) I tell you why: we have just moved to the UK, 2 weeks ago, and yesterday I started watching this show when the kids went to sleep. It really is addictive! I was so in love at once that I checked the location. Maybe it’s not too far away and we can visit the castle and the park this summer or autumn… (Even with kids, stately homes are fun!) Aaand: it is literally 5 kms from where we live, just south of Newbury, Berkshire. Can you believe it?!
    I do hope, my daughters wouldn’t mind living in a tent for a while, because I am moving there tomorrow! :)

    • oh my word. Please take pictures! LOVE!

      • Vera says:

        I will! The problem is that the castle is fully booked on weekends (there must be lots of fans, what a surprise :), you cannot just walk in and buy tickets, this summer only a few weekdays are available. And I really don’t want to go alone with the kids in tow, so we will have to wait for my husband’s holiday. Oh, well.

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