Celebrating the Return of “Downton Abbey” 2022 with Quotes from the Dowager Countess

Celebrating the Return of “Downton Abbey” 2022 with Quotes from the Dowager Countess

OK…so you got me! Busted! I finally gave into the whole “Downton Abbey” craze after resisting for more than 10 bloody years. (Oops! I sound like a commoner!)

“Vulgarity is no substitute for wit.”

I started watching and simply could not stop!!!!!! I have now watched the entire series 3 times over, the 2019 movie twice, and am gearing up to see “Downton Abbey: A New Era” at our local theater. Satisfied?

So to celebrate the new movie, the glory of all things “Downton Abbey”, the beauty of formal table settings, and most particularly the wry humor and steadfast wisdom of the Dowager Countess, Lady Violet Crawley (quotes in her signature violet color), I’ve created a couple of tablescapes that I think capture a bit of the splendor. This is the first of two…or many…not by any means historically accurate!😉

I read somewhere that a white tablecloth was used in the series only to protect the decades-old table at Highclere Castle where “Downton Abbey” was filmed. (If I read it on the internet, then it must be true!😉) Hmmmmm…🤔 So naked formal table it is for this entry!

I don’t know, nor did I note in the series or the first movie, that gold was used very much decoratively in the 1920s. (Silver – or silver plate, nickel, or zinc for the less monied – had prominently established its place.) I’ve blatantly strayed from that with this gold leaf charger, the flatware, and gold-rimmed Royal Scotland china.

“Nothing succeeds like excess.”

Meals were always served in courses at Downton, and a cream soup bowl and saucer like these from Nell Hills in Kansas City, MO may have been a part of that.

I took notice of the elaborately folded dinner napkins and did my best to replicate a Bishop’s Hat fold. I failed miserably and settled on this one instead. As noted in an article in Victoriana Magazine, the famous Delmonico’s restaurant in New York always employed a napkin fold to hold the dinner roll. Whether or not the Dowager Countess would approve of such a change is up for debate…or not.😒

First electricity, now telephones. Sometimes I feel as if I were living in an H.G. Wells novel.”

My beloved Nell Hills (Kansas City, MO) beverage stem with Cristal d’Arques “Asheville Gold” champagne flute.

While you’ll never, ever, ever see the likes of these little dudes (they rather look like footmen, don’t they?) on a formal dining table at Downton, I felt them right at home 100 years later. I like them, so they stay…unless the Dowager Countess says otherwise, of course! (Source: The Painted Sofa, Kansas City, MO)

Don’t be defeatist, dear. It is very middle class.”

The Dowager Countess referred to Lady Grantham’s floral arrangements as being better suited for “a first Communion in Southern Italy.” Geez…that was harsh! 😒 I don’t even wanna know what she’d say about this monstrosity in heavy lead crystal! (It would, of course, be removed for real dining.)

“Why does every day involve a fight with an American?”

While multi-arm candelabra were more the fashion of the time, I don’t think anyone (except perhaps the Dowager, of course!) would sniff at these leggy gold candlesticks.

“Edith, you are a lady, not Toad of Toad Hall.”

Although one would never catch the Dowager in such “hep” fashion as this, it certainly might be found in the closet of the very fashionable Lady Mary or Lady Edith. It’s certainly found in mine!

If you like this formal tablescape and would like to see others on this site:

9 thoughts on “Celebrating the Return of “Downton Abbey” 2022 with Quotes from the Dowager Countess

  1. Another splendid job! This table is so elegant and beautiful. Those candlesticks and that centerpiece look like they are straight from Downton Abbey. I also love your “footman,“ who adds a bit of whimsy to the table. Your dishes are beautiful, your sterling is lovely, and I continue to marvel at your crystal collection.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. You will absolutely love this latest movie and the Dowager is her usual greatness. I can’t wait to go see it again. Your table is beautiful also.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Alycia, your table is absolutely delightful, as is your running commentary on the Dowager Countess, and the customs of the time. Maggie Smith is such a hoot! This reminded me of a tea tray I did a long time ago with Downton as inspiration: http://dreamsandepiphanies.blogspot.com/2013/02/staging-little-romance.html. Aside from not having enough footmen to stage a proper Downton dinner, your table is a respectable entry into the pantheon of all things Downton. Now, to really shock the Dowager, you must have the dinner on a “weekend” and serve something very American, like barbecued ribs.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. I just went this week to see the latest Downton Abbey movie with two friends. We loved it! Your naked table is just stunning, Alycia. I always love your centerpieces and oh my, your crystal pieces are beyond stunning. I like the idea of the dinner roll in the napkin fold. I’ve never seen that but I approve!! Great job!!

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Well, I’m happy to read that you finally caved and watched the series. I haven’t seen the movies yet but now that they are available on demand I’ll try to connect and watch with our trippy country internet! I certainly approve of all the details of your tablescape. Love those footmen dudes. The stemware is so pretty. Hats off to you for another job well done!

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Oh Alycia, I dare say you’d give the Dowager Countess a run for her money, lol! This is irreverently superb! The quotes among your element descriptions are so witty too. I love the dudes on the table, but it all shines. Very entertaining! And, believe it or not, I have yet to watch any of Downton Abbey, and the New Era years especially are my favorite. The Dowager would NOT have approved of my inner flapper girl, I’m certain.

    Liked by 1 person

  7. Gorgeous! I’m so happy to have found your blog, and I’ll be delving deeper – I’m loving your beautiful style! Thanks so much for the inspiration – I’m your newest subscriber!

    Liked by 1 person

  8. Pingback: White Glove Service | Tablescapes at Table /Twenty-One

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