October 7, 2019

Paula Gellibrand was one other upper-class socialite who lived life with verve and by no means dressed down. Even in a interval when her favorite outfit was a close-fitting, unadorned skullcap and a plain linen shift, the severity of her look mixed together with her  deathly pale face, darkish shadowed eyes and strikingly tall, slender determine provoked stares.


She influenced style, modelled for Vogue, was photographed by Cecil Beaton and Baron de Meyer, married a Marquis, impressed a novel, and didn’t care who liked or hated her. In actual fact, she had her personal “displeasure listing” which socialites and magnificence leaders fought arduous to not seem on.


Paula Gellibrand was born in 1898 to an upper-middle-class household within the Residence Counties. She was despatched to boarding faculty and loved hockey and searching. She was an unremarkable schoolgirl with an unremarkable household. However when she met her finest buddy, Baba d’Erlanger, issues modified.  Mary Liliane Matilda d’Erlanger was the daughter of Baron Emile Beaumont d’Erlanger and Marie-Rose Antoinette Catherine de Robert d’Acquéria de Rochegude – often called Mimi. Mimi is the essential determine right here. A complicated French flame haired magnificence, she gave start to Baba in Paris however introduced her up in London: in Lord Byron’s former house in Piccadilly, to be exact.


Paula Gellibrand by Cecil Beaton, 1928. Picture through Pinterest.


Paula Gellibrand by Cecil Beaton, 1928.

Paula Gellibrand by Cecil Beaton, 1928. Picture through Pinterest.


Paula Gellibrand, 1928, Cecil Beaton.

Paula Gellibrand, 1928, Cecil Beaton. Picture through Pinterest.


Paula Gellibrand for Vogue, 1930.

Paula Gellibrand by Cecil Beaton for Vogue, 1930. Picture through Pinterest.


Marquesa de Casa Maury in a 1928 portrait by Emil Otto Hoppé

Marquesa de Casa Maury in a 1928 portrait by Emil Otto Hoppé Picture through Pinterest.


Mimi was an thrilling one that held a well-known salon for the humanities in her house. She was often called a very powerful society hostess of her time. When she despatched the women out for a stroll collectively in St James’s Park, she didn’t give them a English nanny to take care of them however a turbaned Mameluke soldier in full Arabic costume.


The Twins

Baba and Paula grew to become so inseparable they grew to become often called The Twins. Each Mimi and Baba had been an enormous affect on Paula.  They inspired her to profit from her uncommon appears. “By nature Paula Gellibrand was an unaffected, considerably hearty schoolgirl sort, however by some freak of fortune she was endowed with an look of extraordinary sophistication. Her monumental blue eyes had been surrounded by a halo of dark-mushroom colored fatigue, giving her the looks of being closely made up. … Her arms had been of a rare size and suppleness,” is how Cecil Beaton described her.


The d’Erlangers inspired her to reinforce these eyes with Vaseline on the lids and to put on very simple, nearly extreme outfits. Society columns describe her arriving at weekend home events with an enormous wardrobe of “nun’s habits”, produced from luxurious materials. Beaton describes her getting married in a single, with scarlet fingernails.


“The Marquise de Casa Maury is among the most stunning girls in Society, and is an ideal blonde, together with her exquisitely set blue eyes and her golden hair and honest pores and skin. She was previously Miss Paula Gellibrand. She and her husband have a home in London however spend a great deal of time in Paris, `and have just lately returned from a go to to America. Our {photograph} reveals the Marquise carrying a easy black chiffon costume, and a number of her fantastic diamond bracelets on each wrists. Bracelets are one of the crucial trendy types of jewelry in the meanwhile.” The Sketch, 1929.


Portrait of a Pair of Mates


Augustus Edwin John (British, 1878-1961) - Portrait of Baronne Baba d’Erlanger and Miss Paula Gellibrand, 1919-1921

Augustus Edwin John (British, 1878-1961) – Portrait of Baronne Baba d’Erlanger and Miss Paula Gellibrand, 1919-1921

In 1919 when Paula was 21 and Baba 19, Augustus John painted their portrait collectively. The Portrait of Baronne Baba d’Erlanger and Miss Paula Gellibrand reveals how, although they give the impression of being very completely different from one another, they resemble one another of their mannerisms and poses. They each seem confident, direct, and haughty, to not point out fashionable.


The portrait was commissioned by politician Freddie Visitor, the chief whip of the liberal occasion with whom Paula was having an affair on the time. He liked her a lot that though he was sufficiently old to be her father, he confided in his cousin Winston Churchill that he was pondering of leaving his spouse for her. Churchill didn’t approve in any respect, and it didn’t occur. Different rumoured affairs included one with the Prince of Wales, with whom she was seen on the theatre, the races, and an appointment with a phrenologist.  She was additionally linked with Oswald Mosely. Due to these connections with politicians and royalty, it was even feared in governmental circles that she was a spy.


Multimarried Paula Gellibrand

Paula was married 4 occasions. She had a son, Peter, together with her first husband whom she married in France, artist Ivan Wilkie Brooks. It’s mentioned that her son was born in 1915, however that might make Gellibrand 17 when he was born. It’s not unimaginable, however can be stunning. Her second husband, in 1923, was the Cuban-Castilian Pedro José Isidiro Manuel Ricardo Mones Maury, the Marquis de Casa Maury. He was an aviator and racing driver often called Bobby. He had a fortune however misplaced it within the Wall St crash, regaining it by founding the Curzon Cinema in Mayfair, which continues to be profitable at the moment. Baba was her bridesmaid.


Her marriage conferred the title of Marquise de Casa Maury. After they divorced and he or she married the conflict hero and diplomat William “Invoice” Allen in 1932, she held on to the title and nonetheless appeared in Vogue because the Marquise de Casa Maury. This made two of them, since Casa Maury’s new spouse was additionally a wonderful socialite mannequin with the identical title who was additionally a lot in demand with the journal.


Anyway, the wedding to Allen solely lasted a yr. Her last marriage was in 1938 to Edward Caswell “Boy” Lengthy, a rancher at at Elementaita in Kenya. He was a part of the hedonistic Comfortable Valley set, as was she. Boy Lengthy was a tall, stunning man, who favored to put on brilliant corduroys, massive pirate earrings, an enormous sombrero and flame colored Somali scarf. He regarded like an English nation squire with a touch of cowboy, and girls adored him.

Paula Gellibrand, right, with Idina Sackville in Kenya, 1930s.

Paula Gellibrand, proper, with Idina Sackville in Kenya, 1930s.


It wasn’t simply males that Gellibrand bought on nicely with. She had very shut feminine friendships, not simply with Baba but in addition one other associate in crime, Alice, Countess de Janzé whom she met in 1921. They went to the theatre, ballet, artwork exhibitions, events and looking for couture collectively, and Alice credited Paula with serving to her by means of her post-natal despair. When Paula left London in 1923 after her marriage to Bobby, Alice was bereft. Nevertheless, they stayed in contact and had been to hook up once more fifteen years later when Alice introduced Paula to Kenya.

The Well-known Miss Gellibrand

In 1924 Paula Gellibrand was immortalised because the heroine of Serena Blandish, or the problem of Getting Married by Enid Bagnold. Bagnold was a very good buddy of Mimi Rochegude, and had attended her salons, so she knew Paula nicely.  “After I speak to you, I really feel endowed together with your sparkle, your well being, your hope, your vitality…” says an infatuated suitor of Miss Blandish, aka Miss Gellibrand. Nevertheless, Rochegude got here off much less nicely, and he or she was so offended over the satirised model of herself which appeared within the novel that the writer and society hostess fell out.


In 1936, Gellibrand wrote her personal novel, alongside together with her husband William Allen, known as Unusual Coast. It was a novel of romance and journey, set in Georgia within the 1920s. Within the e book they known as it the Meskhian Republic. It was printed underneath the pseudonym Liam Pawle. She was additionally featured in Cecil Beaton’s 1954 e book The Glass of Style.


By the 1960s, Gellibrand was residing in Nettlebed, a wonderful village within the Chilterns. She remained vivacious and enjoyable to be with, and native youngsters keep in mind her speaking to them and recommending books.  She died in 1986 on the age of 88.