let it be beautiful

When I was 13 years old I took some Beatles cassettes from my brother's room and made copies of them for myself. I would listen to "Strawberry Fields Forever" on headphones as I was falling asleep, sometimes rewinding to hear that part where you can hear George Martin counting again, and I fell in love/became obsessed with The Beatles. The White Album is still one of my favourite records, "Strawberry Fields Forever" still one of my favourite songs. There's something kind of magical about the music you love when you're a teenager. It never leaves you.

My friends Laura Jane and Liz have started re-writing all of The Beatles songs as short stories or essays, a very ambitious project that will span nine volumes called Let it Be Beautiful — if anyone can do it, they can. They have printed the first six stories as zines as a preview.

I read them in the order of Beatles songs I liked least to the ones I liked best, so: Another Girl, Like Dreamers Do, Penny Lane, Because, A Hard Day's Night, The Inner Light. The stories are about Laura Jane and Liz's lives — sort of, but not really at all — just as they are sort of, but not really at all about the Beatles and their songs.

Laura Jane has "Lennon" and "McCartney" tattooed on each of her arms in cursive script, and they're my favourite tattoos on anyone ever.

When I started reading one I wanted to stay up until I had read them all. When I saw Laura Jane in person afterwards I almost started to cry when I told her how much I loved them. I carried them in my purse for a few weeks afterwards, so I could re-read passages whenever I had the chance.

You can get them & read excerpts here. I really recommend them.

See also The White Album.


rachael: Agreed.

Arlie: I know, the scarves are so great!

thedailyanglofile: Thank you! It sounds like we're in the same boat. I overplucked for so long that I'm not sure they'll ever grow in properly, but I suppose I just have to be patient. Good luck with yours.

kater: Aw, thanks.

Bre: Monoi oil, you say. Just looked it up and I'm interested! I know what you mean about Rodin... But I have heard great things about it.

NoƩmie {as ink remains}: Thank you, glad you enjoyed.

viv: Thank you! I'm eagerly awaiting the delivery of my ballet DVDs (the one thing from my list that I bought).

Jane Flanagan: Oh, thanks for the recommendation. I've heard good things about them so I'm looking forward to trying them out.

Hanna: You're not alone! I do that as well. Haha.

danica: Thanks, Danica! And that's good to hear. I love a good tough workout that makes me feel as though I'm doing something good for myself. I used to do the New York City Ballet workout but I found it a bit boring & was easily distracted while doing it. It was beautiful, though.

Siubhan: Thanks, lady! I'm sure by now you've seen the peach and gold. Gorgeous, no?

hila: Thank you! I'm glad you understand my methods, ha!

Ringo, have a banana!: Thanks, girl! I love giving presents too. If only I had the cash to do it properly!

in dreams: Aw, that's too bad, but I understand! Thanks for the kind words on the silly ol' list.

Fresh Faced Girl: Thanks!

darcy dubose: That's funny... Aquarius isn't even a water sign.

Aprile: Oh, nice! She is so stunning. Sheesh.

CARLY WAITO: Thanks, Carly! I ordered the DVDs as a gift to myself because I'm not sure I'll be able to renew my yoga pass, haha. If anything they're beautiful to look at.

Giulia: Great! I hope mine will come in the mail soon because I'm looking forward to trying them out.

LeeLee: Thank you!

amy: Thank you so much!

hungryandfrozen: I know, I covet it all myself! That's great about the hot water bottle cover! They're so handy in winter.


  1. Oh thanks for sharing this. I can't wait to check them out!

  2. What a cool project/idea!

  3. In love! Those are darling and so meaningful. Thanks for sharing.

  4. I will have to have a look at them, what an interesting project! I used to be obsessed with the Beatles as well, and obsession which started around the same age. The only thing is, because I didn't speak English very well at the time, I would often sing the wrong lyrics(such as "For the Benefit of Mystic Eye" or "And when I touch you I feel happy and shy"). (I have to admit, I still occasionally sing them like that)

  5. ahh! i love your purse as well!!!

  6. That is so awesome! I may treat myself to these, since it's Christmas...

  7. this is awesome. i'll never forget what i was listening to as a teenager as i was falling asleep nights.

  8. really beautiful and thank you so much for sharing!

  9. Anonymous21.12.11

    "....sometimes rewinding to hear that part where you can hear George Martin counting again"
    I never noticed the counting before- Who is George Martin?
    I am so intrigued I need to go put on my record and listen to the song again, it's been years! Looking forward to reading these sweet little books now, too. Thanks for this post, Anabela. Lovely :)

  10. The Beatles were easily the most important band/thing in my life during the first fourteen or so years of my existence. Completely, utterly, deeply obsessed. I love everything about this.

  11. These sound very interesting. Thanks for sharing.

  12. Lovely simplicity in the black and white covers and an interesting project, sounds like fun!

  13. this is such a lovely idea - things like this make me happy.

  14. This is so very wonderful. I fell in love with the Beatles when I was a teenager too ... and yes, I'm still in love with them today. I can't wait to read these ... they sound like magic! :)

  15. This is completely brilliant! I still being only fifteen know how much of an impact music has on me and I look forward to being a bit older and seeing which songs inspired me the most out of all.
    Such a beautiful idea.

  16. beautiful. I just came a cross your blog and I'm in love with it already.

  17. "There's something kind of magical about the music you love when you're a teenager. It never leaves you." Such a beautiful (and true) sentiment.

  18. WOW. this is truly wonderful.

  19. Anonymous8.1.12

    that close up sequins picture is bananas.