Sunday, November 18, 2012

Antiquing in England

This Anglophile LOVES antiquing while in Britain. The Decorative Antiques and Textile show is a favorite held three times a year. Let's take a peek at what caught my eye
Intaglio's are still white hot but displayed in unique ways  (sorry for the quality, my I-phone)

Antique dealers from all over Europe attend. This is obviously a dealer from France with a chalkware Joan de Arc
Same dealer. Take a close look at this intriguing lamp fashioned from a french barn door hinge.

Speaking of chalkware, I adored these pigs and wanted them for my kitchen. At 800 pounds =
$1,475.00 dollars, this was not to be

I love framing objects and was mesmerized by this early 17thc gown

An 18th c bureau from Spain with original paint. Has anyone antiqued in Spain? This piece has me thinking.........
Simple but different with the button placement

Classical elements were abundant. Notice the blue butterflies under a dome?
Here is another dome with a display of ancient ship ballast balls
A bibliothique, or French library cabinet. Notice the narrow profile
This long ago barrister's cabinet from London
The whimsical nature of this toy captured my imagination for it's charm. This Dutch toy made of paper mache cost $1,660.00!
Sorry for the glare, and no it is not an antique, but the decorative art of the talented Elisabeth LeCourt
In case you were wondering, yes, these are crafted of maps
Some of my purchases.......     Found this heavy linen fabric in France and loved the wide stripes and colors. What separates this from typical linen is a subtle oil cloth-like coating. Thinking this would be perfect for a current interiors client. They have been wanting a fabric for bench seating at their kitchen table, we have searched. With children, this was a shoe-in but they changed their minds......7 yards was a bear to carry around........and now it is for sale

Maxwell of London is the finest bespoke riding boots in England. What drew me to these is the small women's size. Not original, but may turn these into lamps.
What can I say? It spoke to me! Victorian era parade horse harness. As my luggage became unbearably heavy I thought I could wrap this around my neck, breeze through security and if stopped claim, in an insulted tone, 'I am a jewelry designer!' Would have broken my neck!
Like everywhere around the world, 'antique centered towns' are disappearing in Britain. One of those that remains is Tetbury England. In planning our 2013 tour, Sylvia and I made a visit to this royal town in the Cotswolds. Prince Charles' Highgrove is in Tetbury so needless to say, this is an upmarket region. We are on the list to receive tickets to Highgrove Gardens for next year's group.
In town is his stunning shop called again, Highgrove Garden shop.
Terrific imagination abounds, like this gardening can turned wall sconce
A series of garden sconces, all different, were fashioned from vintage gardening implements. Notice that the bell cloche on top is the 'light'

A diminutive courtyard. Isn't the painting scheme attractive? As we departed, Sylvia queried 'did you know that there were signs posted everywhere stating 'NO PHOTOGRAPHY?' Actually I did not, aren't you glad?
Endless antique shops lined Long street. Here is a Knole sofa with contemporary lines. So named after it's origin at Knowle House in the 17thc. It's design was for visiting Monarch's to receive their guests and once had adjustable arms. Knole House is the family home of Vita Sackville-West, erected in 1605.

Source: google.de via Debra on Pinterest

Next years trip.......September 5th through September 13th, 2013. Won't you consider joining us?

Thank you for visiting!

Wednesday, November 7, 2012

Urban vs Rural

For the past four years we had rural, riverfront property and prior to that semi-rural riverfront property right on the edge of a very small community (about 200).  We got used to the peace and quiet.  Then we moved back into an urban setting and while the neighbourhood is upscale and quiet, I find it a lot noisier than our last house.  Folks here are attached to their power lawn mowers that are

Tuesday, November 6, 2012

For the love of France

The Dordogne region of France is to me, pure magic. Considered one of the most unspoiled 
regions of Europe in the southwest of the country. Gastronomic France, un-touristed, genteel and medieval France. With my tour group recently returned, I wanted to share this stunning region. 
The land of the prized 'Black Diamonds'; the black truffle. More and more the truffle hunters use dogs versus the typical female pigs, the latter of whom may bite your fingers off for the delicacy. Apparently to pigs, (how do they know these things) truffles resemble the scent of an amorous male boar!
Fairytale castles abound
The region of dizzying heights culminating to the Dordogne River

Market remembrances made me weep, when I arrived home that is, and went to the local grocery chain
Antiques are attainable 
Charming cafes and villages vie for attention
And the gardens! This is Marquessac, know as the "cloud" gardens, high on a ridge, it's boxwood seemingly trimmed with cuticle scissors.

Traditional French gardens are about symmetry and controlling Mother Nature. Viewing is historically from above
We had the lovely 'La Combe'  B & B to ourselves. Our hostess Wendeley Harvey, is a renown cookbook author,  gourmet meals were lain before us like the queens we were for a week. Due to a friend of Sylvia's, Wendeley deviated from her typical format of accommodating chefs and their groups only and will do so again for us next year.

Her charming and naughty companion was ever-present, particularly when backing out of the driveway.
A quick few days in Paris, how could you not!

Clingnancourt, the main market. Word is that Vanes may be a good bet too, anyone been?
Ralph Lauren Paris in a once and still opulent Parisian mansion. Sylvia and I wanted everything and could afford nothing.......sigh.........
Loved this simple arrangement outside his shop
Particularly loved seeking out the many floral shops with their massively creative offerings.
In a shop window, one side in French, the other English. Loved this saying!
Bonjour France for now. Reservations are now open for France 2013, September 20th through 28th, hope you can join us!

Next post........Antiquing in England, wait until you see what I found

With love,