Monday, 2 July 2012

A masked ball deep inside the earth

Isn’t this picture wonderful? Caroline and I are looking at a living flame, lightening a mining cave and we are 155 meters underground.

This weekend was spent at the silver mine at Sala, a couple of miles northwest from Stockholm. The mine was active for about 400 years, until 1908 and is today a museum. One weekend every years there is an 18th century festival, though I must confess that I have never heard of it before. The idea is, I gather, to make it bigger and more well-known. The Society of Gustafs Skål was invited to be part of the entertainment for food and a bed. And, on Saturday night, there was a masked ball inside the belly of the mine.


Ten years old, but I still love this dress.



Pleased as punch as the makeup is completely made by myself after period recipes. I talk more about what I made and, how, here.



J looking great in the gala version of Gustaf III's national suit.



Into the mine. To appease the Lady of the Mine (Gruvfrun) you must knock on the rock three times when you come into the mine. You have to be very polite to her and not shout, whistle, swear or hurt animals when you are inside. Otherwise she may cause the roof to fall down over you.



We never met the Lady of the Mine, but perhaps there was a Lord too?



The lake. We don't know where you get if you take the boat. Gollum's island, perhaps?



It was either wearing umbrellas when we went outside the designated party areas, or wearing hard hats. I can tell you, nothing brings out your inner silliness better than wandering around underground dressed in 18th century and carrying umbrellas!



Up, up and away!



In the ball room. Every pictures taken in this room showed up these peculiar lights all around, though they weren't visible for the naked eye. Somewhat spooky.



And outside this fog that we couldn't see either, only on the pictures.



The honeymoon suit. Yes, you can spend the night deep into the rock. I wouldn't want to...







Meanwhile, outside...







The tower is where the elevators are. It takes four minutes to travel down.



Caroline looking adorable, if somewhat misplaced in centurywise in an 19th century kitchen.



A big thank you to her and to Aggi who let me use their pictures!

13 comments:

Comtesse Olympe de la Tour D'Auvergne said...

That first picture is just like a painting. It looks like a fun (and silly) time was had. Thanks for sharing!

Sarah said...

What a neat event, looks like you guys had a lot of fun!

Isis said...

Thank you! It was an event that managed to be fun, silly and awesome, all in one. :)

Rowenna said...

What an incredible location! Thanks for sharing!

Susanne N said...

Att Sala hade 1700-tals event, det kände jag till men inte att de ordnade maskeradbal nere i gruvan. (Det låter en smula läskigt faktiskt, att vara i gruvan menar jag...) Jag som till och med bor i Västmanland borde ha varit där, men ack...

Sala är en urmysig liten stad, dit brukar familjen åka på utflykt ibland.

Jenni said...

Wow, a party in a cave! That is possibly the most awesome location for a ball that I've ever heard of. :)

Isis said...

Rowenna: It really was!

Susanne: Det var lite läskigt att åka hiss ner, men väl nere så var det inte så farligt. Men jag skulle inte vilja sova över i gruvan... Jag tror det var första året som det var maskerad, men förhoppningsvis så blir det fler gånger.

Jenni: Yes, it was pretty awesome!

Angela said...

What a fantastic day and evening! Everyone looked great! Isis, remind me where are you in the world? Thanks, I can't remember. Cheers!

Augustintytär said...

Awesome location! Looks like it was really fun! I'm a little terrified of deep caves, but maybe for a masked ball I would dare to come too.

Isis said...

Angela: Thank you! I'm in Stockholm, Sweden. :)

Augustintytär: I was a little bit scared on the way down, but well into the mine it didn't feel scary at all. Perhaps because you just can't get a grip on how far down you really are. :)

Johanna Öst said...

This looks pretty amazing, and you looked perfect!

Isis said...

Johanna: Thank you so much! I think they want to make a tradition to it, so perhaps you could come in the future. :)

Rhissanna said...

This looks like an illustration for an amazing story. What a wonderful photograph!

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