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Showing posts from April, 2010

Friday again.....

{beautiful peonies -pivoines in French, at a local flower market}
I cannot believe that it is Friday already. Another week has whizzed past again, I am hoping that next week moves more slowly as then I can get more done.

Does anyone know how to slow down time, if so, please let me know how to do this.

Wishing you all a weekend full of beautiful things/Je vous souhaite à tous un week-end plein de belles choses..
L x

J'adore Etsy....

Where would we all be without etsy? I cannot imagine life without it and think that it has given "we" women a place to trade and make friends all over the world.

A couple of months ago I saw some fabulous cushions on etsy and thought that they would be perfect for one of our rooms at Maison No. 20.

So I contacted the owner of the etsy shop, the lovely Clara and asked if she could make me some "special" cushions for Maison No.20.

And here they are.........

I really adore them as they are a bit different to what is on offer here in France.

Clara and Marcela also have a fabulous blog, which I enjoy visiting regularly.

You girls are going to laugh at this bit, after taking the photos of the room, I decided that I did not really like the chandelier and that it would look better with a vintage black metal one that has leaves and crystals hanging down.

Luckily I already have one that I found at a vide grenier a couple of weeks ago so I have spent a couple of hours cleaning itth…

Lavage et repassage......

{Lavage de cerveau =Brain wash}

The vide grenier/brocante season has started in earnest which means that most weekends there are many of these taking place and it is a matter of making a decision as to whether or not it will be a good one based on previous experiences.As you already know vide grenier translates to empty attic and in the past it has been sellers selling off items that have been sitting around the house, often in the attic gathering dust.

Nowdays you tend to get a lot of brocanteurs who are professional dealers selling their often over priced wares and this does take the edge of the vide grenier.The main difference between a vide grenier and a brocante is that you must be a licensed brocanteur to sell at a brocante.

Early on Sunday morning we went to a vide grenier 5kms from our house. It was fabulous looking at all the interesting items on offer and I have to say that it was a real one with only a couple of professional dealers.Along with a few other items, I found some …

The secret language of antique hand fans...

{image Fabulously French Online Shop}

There is something about antique hand fans (eventail in French)that I adore and the more that I read about them, the more interested I become.

I found a fabulous one yesterday that dates back to the 1880's and am sure that it could tell a tale or two.

In earlier times hand fans were used to communicate. And in fact, the role of the fan was not only for cooling, or as a fly swatter or fire-bellows.

It was also the supreme instrument of silent communication.

As Sir Richard Steele, in the “Tatler” of 4 August 1709, wrote: “You may observe in all public Assemblies the sexes seems to separate themselves and to attack each other with eye-shot, that is the time when the fan, which is the armour of woman, is of most use in her defence, for our minds are constructed by the waving of that little instrument, and our thoughts appear in composure or agitation according to the motion of it.”

In earlier times, an infinite variety of meaning could be found in the m…

Happy Pink Saturday......

{image from here}
Happy, happy Pink Saturday. Where did the week go? I do not know about yours but mine whooshed past tres vite.
As you can see from the above photo, I am still obsessed by the fabulous and oh so french 2CV.
This week I would like to introduce you to a newish Pink Saturday participant, the gorgeous Erika who is the owner of the very interesting blog called Le monde d' Erika.

Erika was born and raised in Romania, in a Hungarian family, but like many of us, including moi, is French at heart.

She is an International Relations student, with a dream of opening small store in the future, selling recycled, beautified furniture and different decorating objects.

She loves to create, to paint, to sketch, to craft, to write and to design. She also likes to try different styles,and be one step ahead of the pack and also likes to be inspired by a bygone era.

{some of Erika's gorgeous creations}

Erika's motto is "Live simply, live beautifully", a girl after my own hear…

Friday Flowers/Vendredi fleurs.....

I love this time of the year in SW France as everyone emerges from their deep sleep and becomes alive again. The shutters on the houses are flung open and flowers start appearing in window boxes and on window sills of the houses in our village.

It is also "marché aux fleurs" time of the year when all the villages have flower/plant markets and I can think of nothing nicer than spending a Sunday morning strolling around a fabulous village admiring the flowers and just enjoying village life in general.

Of course, what I like even more is when they combine the marché aux fleurs with a vide grenier - my idea of French heaven.

Je vous souhaite à tous un beau week-end plein de bonheur et peut-être des fleurs.............L xps The kitchen is progressing, the interior walls are almost all up now and Mr FF is demolishing part of the old ceiling and putting in a new window. As the locals say doucement....

Introducing a French bear called Pierre.....

I would like to introduce you to Pierre, a very dapper French bear. The familiar term for a teddy bear in French is "nounours".

Pierre loves to hear his light blue coat, navy cape and oh so french flat peaked cap.

The Pierre teddy bear range is part of our new product range for Spring 2010 and consists of the following fabulous products:

Pyjama bag (10 euros + postage)......

"Ma Chambre" door hanger (6 euros + postage).......

And last but by no means least, Pierre himself (15 euros + postage)..

Also new for Spring 2010 is the Brocante range which consists of french style gorgeous greeting cards, tea towels and a fabulously practical tote bag.

May 2010 will see the arrival of more fabulous Petit Coterie cushions, which I adore and I have used them in a couple of the Maison No. 20 bedrooms.

I have just had Mr FF come up and ask where I want the sink in the new kitchen as he is building walls at present so needs to know what is going where so I had better fly,

A demain mes bel…

Work has commenced......

{Image from here}

I mentioned yesterday that Mr FF has commenced work on the room that is going to house our new kitchen and dining room so I am getting really exciting and making sure that in my own mind I know what I want.

Yesterday while we were in Bordeaux, we popped into Ikea and I bought a magnetic knive holder so this is a step in the right direction.

So far I have bought:

*Fabulous red letters that spell out the word "C U I S I NE "that you can see in the photo above.

*Carmague Cushion cover from Toast for the window seat

*Antique light fitting for the dining area

{image from here}

*Antique Oak dining table, which I am going to distress and paint the bottom half of.

*Antique oak chairs which I am going to paint white.

*Vendange tapestry - this has lots of red in it and red is going to be my accent colour.

*Plate rack - not sure where I will use this but it was on sale a while ago and I thought that it would be good.

We are not having upper cupboards so I need to ensure that I …

Paris on a shoestring.....

{image from here}
Spotted this article in today's online version of the English "Telegraph" newspaper and thought that it was worth sharing......

Paris on a shoestring

We highlight 25 great ways to enjoy the French capital for next to nothing.

Published: 8:00AM BST 18 Apr 2010

1 Whoever said there was no such thing as a free dinner has never been to La Choppe on Friday and Saturday nights from 8.30pm, when Samir, the honourable owner, serves lashings of flavourful Moroccan couscous (with all the trimmings) to anyone who’s bought a drink (around €4/£3.50). It’s immensely popular so get there at least an hour in advance.

40 Rue de Clignancourt, 75018; 0033 1 4606 2010. Métro: Château Rouge.

2 A stone’s throw from Les Halles (just north of the main red-light district), La Cordonnerie is a favourite with a young crowd who fight for elbow room and listen to the occasional concert while tucking into free couscous and sauces, doled out in large portions most …

I have painting on the brain....

I do not know what it is about today, but I just want to paint everything in sight. I am hoping that is a short term illness and not a terminal one.

Hope you are all having a fabulous weekend, L x

Friday flowers....

{pansies basking in the sun this morning , Maison No. 20}

Another week flies past and voila it's Friday again. The sun is still shining here in SW France and the forecast is for lots of sun this weekend.Unfortunately we are going to be working on the house most of the weekend but are hoping to squeeze a vide grenier in, early Sunday morning.Today I found a website for a company that hires vespas, not far from us so I am thinking that this would be a fun thing to do one weekend. There is even a company that hires hot air balloons, I have put this on my list of things that I want to do, when we have finished working on the house, note I say "when" we have finished.So what are you doing this weekend? Working or playing?What ever your plans are, hope that you have a fabulous one!L x

Coco avant Chanel.......

Yesterday afternoon after finishing my painting, I decided to treat myself to the luxury of watching a girly DVD before Mr FF returned from work.

I decided that by watching the movie in French, it would also double as French homework.

What a fabulous movie, I loved everything about it - the fabulous and oh so french houses, gorgeous costumes and the fabulous and chic Coco. I love the word "coco", it somehow rolls of the top of your tongue.
The attention to detail is fabulous, what fun they must have had working on this movie set.
Love the tables, chairs and gorgeous lamps. Not forgetting how fabulous Audrey Tautou looks in this chic outfit.....

Simply fabulous, in every sense of the word!

I love everything in this photo, books, couch, fabulous suit and gorgeous shoes.....tres chic!

I do not want to give too much away in case any of you have not already seen this fabulous movie, but it is safe to say that I shed a tear and her life reminded me somewhat of Edith Piaf's who also s…

Painting results......

This morning was one of those mornings, you know the kind where nothing goes the way you planned it.

I went to take some photos of the things that I have been painting, only to find out the battery was flat.

So here are some photos, albeit a little later than planned...... This dressing table was originally white and gold, I bought it to replace the table that I originally had in my showroom as being kidney shaped it was not very practical as I found out when it came to wrapping large items.

I had two louis style chairs which were originally white so I painted these in Farrow and Ball's "Charleston Grey" to match my new desk.

Whilst I had the camera out, I took some photos of the Fabulously French showroom to share with you......

Note the cupcakes are faux but don't they look real?

Some vintage salad paniers and new tea towels along with some french school blackboards...

The new perfume box that I told you about yesterday....

This is another new arrival, these fabulous bags…

It all started with finding a perfume box...

{image - moi}

My morning started like this...... Decide to update online shop, inorder to do so, need to find out some history on an old perfume box that I found at the weekend at a local brocante.
Almost an hour later, I emerge almost an expert on the creation of French perfume!
It turns out that my fabulous find dates back to the 1893 and it would have contained perfumed powder,created by Roger & Gallet, Paris.
The perfume range was derrived from the leaves of French violets, just writing this is making me think of the sweet smell of violets - such a beautiful and delicate flower.

{image - moi}
I even managed to find a photo of the whole range complete with gorgeous satin box, created for an exposition in Paris dated 1901.
{image from here}The collection is fabulous but at an asking price of 3000 USD is a little out of my reach.Hence I think that an asking price of 30 euros for my box is a little more affordable. It is available in our online shop, details can be found here.And to thin…

Lundi matin....

{Blossoming plum trees and dandelions at our friend's fabulous farm}

I cannot believe that it is already Monday morning, why does the weekend always go so quickly?

The weather here in SW France was fabulous at the weekend and it would appear that the sunshine is here to stay, as the forecast is for lots of sunshine for the next 10 days.

Most of the weekend was spent painting, although we did manage to fit a vide grenier in yesterday morning and a visit to see some friends who we have been neglecting of late.

They have the most fabulous farm, which has even featured in one of Rick Stein's books on France and yesterday the prune trees were looking fabulous covered in blossom.
Yesterday our friend; Michelle was making an aperitif out of dandelions (pissenlits in french), something that I had never heard of until she mentioned it.

All you need to do is gather a whole bunch of dandelion flowers (the big early season blooms work best for this purpose). Place them in a large jar along with…

My motto for the weekend is......

{image from here}

What do you think? Is this a good motto for the week-end?

L x ps Mr FF has bought me a new paint roller, so 3 guesses what I am going to be doing this weekend.....

Vide Grenier/Brocante season begins...

Yes it is that time of the year again, the weather is warming up, the blossom is blooming and the locals are cleaning out their favourite time of the year!

After many months of waiting, the long awaited guide to ALL vide greniers and brocantes in our area has been published by one of the local tourist offices.You can find it here.

Anyone fancy a long weekend hunting for fabulous antiques in the sunny Dordogne? If so, you know where to come.

Note an early start is required in order to get the bargains and you can even catch a lift with us if you want.

Speaking of bargains I am updating my online shop today so you may just find a few here.
Je vous souhaite à tous un mercredi belle,

L x

Oh la la I have a new top......

{images from here}

Today it is hot and sunny so what a great excuse to wear my new top.

Can you believe that I had to wait 6 weeks to get this t-shirt as they were sold out in France. It would seem that even the French love the Eiffel tower as much as we "étrangers" do.
A demain,

L x

Spring has arrived...

{Fabuleux Printemps - Dordogne, SW France}
Spring has finally arrived and today the sun is out, and there is not a cloud to be seen.

But there is a big black cloud over Maison No. 20 as the fabulous vintage basins that I bought for our new bathroom have perished washers which means that Mr FF is far from happy at present as everytime that he turns the water on, water appears from the most unexpected places.

I am supposed to be painting the new bathroom but have to wait until he has completed work on the plumbing. So what is a girl supposed to do in the interim, but have a wee look at the internet and wait.......

What are you doing today?

L x

Perfumed thoughts.....

{image from here}
Today I am being a guest blogger at Signature Scent and would be very happy if you would pop over and visit me.

Wishing you all a very Happy Easter/ *** Je vous souhaite un très Joyeuses Pâques

L x

Rouge coco

{image from here}

Love these words "rouge coco" and I love Vanessa Paradis in the latest commercial for the new chanel lipsticks.

Click here to see and hear more. C'est magique......

bisous, L