2 September 2016

Fairytale in New Haven

Today was a FairyYale, you were the Prince... Taylor was missing a trick here! When we planned our New England itinerary, Yale was one of the places I wanted to visit. I'll admit that Gilore and Gossip Girls may have contributed slightly to this... suffice to say, I finally saw why Blair and Rory were so determined to go! After Brown, my Ivy sights were set high, but Yale was as postcard pretty as I envisioned... 
Fun fact: Yale was nearly called Dummer College, after one of its founders Jeremiah Dummer. Imagine if another founder had been called Tweedle? You could have had Tweedle College, Dummer University. Dummer. Okay it's official; despite how many times I write "Dummer", it will only ever sound sweet to Harvard ears...


Several times, I did have to remind myself that I wasn't in Hogwarts... or my homeland. The Oxbridge Deans called - they want their quadrangle back! Not that I can blame them; there are few places prettier than Cambridge on a sunny day. It therefore didn't come as a surprise to learn that Yale architecture was inspired by the Gothic Revival of Oxford and Cambridge. What did surprise me was the date of construction, which is  a fair bit later than its English counterparts. Less than 100 years ago, to be exact!

Built between 1917-31, Yale went against the Great Depression tide with dramatic investment in its campus. To echo the history of rival schools Oxbridge and Harvard, Yale architect James Gamble-Rogers used a rather unorthodox method of faux-ageing the buildings: he splashed the walls with acid and set fire to the stonework. As you do. He also left alcoves deliberately empty, as though statutes had been stolen once-up-a-time. Very FairyYale

As promised in my Waldorf Wardrobe post, Ms Blair was the inspiration for my Yale outfit! I am quite besotted with this midi skirt from Louche; it's a bolder print than I would usually go for, but it is so comfortable and - by some miracle - doesn't look ridiculous on 5ft 3" me. Fellow hobbits will appreciate the excitement of this! 

The Ivy League look is Preppy to a tee, which is another way of saying "all things Sophie." I was a bit gutted that I couldn't find my headband that morning, but I did have beloved Periwinkle push-lock by my side. Imagine if there was a  CSC pop-up around the Ivy League campuses? Match made in Haven!
So this is the Library. If you're confused and thinking "no, it's a Church", then you're right; architecturally, it is a Church. The story goes that Yale Architect, Gamble Rogers, really wanted to build a Church in his lifetime. When he pitched this idea to the board, however, they rejected it. So returned with exactly the same blueprints for the church, but renamed it a library. Long story short, fast-forward 5 years and Yale had its own... Church Library. 
One thing I'll say one about New Haven - it's a tale of two sceneries. I adored Yale, from the clock tower to the Hogwarts-ready Colleges. Yet step outside the FairyYale and it gets a bit... maybe nightmare is too dramatic, but let's just saw New Haven isn't exactly a Haven. My lack of non-Yale photography speaks for itself...

That being said, we did find a lovely restaurant for dinner - Pacifico - where Mum and I both ordered shrimp. Frustratingly, the meal was accompanied by a few food anxieties; I'd ordered shrimp for lunch, so my head panicked that I "couldn't have the same thing twice in a day"... but I managed to screw my logical head on and shush those thoughts. New Englander know how to cook their seafood and this was delicious! 

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