Wednesday, December 29, 2010

December in Paris...with French Humor

December in Paris...cold and snowy !
So cold, even the restaurant chairs in St. Germain are wearing vests and jackets....
And the pig has on his scarf !!
French humor always brings on a smile..
My toast for 2011... feel the joy!

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Buying Groceries In France...On Your Honor

This time of year, the grocery shops are full and long check out lines await....
But not in France !!
In the south of France, I discovered the largest grocery shop I have ever seen...
So many aisles of would I ever decide??
But the part that really caught my eye....was their honor system

When you arrive at the shop...
you can choose to slide your credit card through a machine...
Select the hand held scanner that lights up...scan each item as you place in your cart....
When finished shopping, ...
Bag your own groceries...
Slide your card once again to say you have finished...
And go to your car !!!

No long check out lines !!!

To keep everyone on their toes ... there are random checks to be certain you scan all the items ;-)

Oh, how I wish my Atlanta shop would copy this system

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Package Delivery With a French Twist

This time of year, we all see FedEx trucks at every turn....but have you seen one like this???

What a great way to maneuver the streets of Paris !

Friday, December 10, 2010

Christmas at Scott Antique Market, Atlanta

If you are planning a trip to Atlanta, consider including antiquing at the Scott Antique Market....2nd week-end each month.
Dealers this month are keeping Christmas in the air...
Margaret Bostick, The Silk Purse, shows her creative touch with pieces she discovered in France and Belgium.
I love the cranberries cradling the white candles, paired with oversized old books and interesting lamps from architectural pieces...
Or the small gilt wreath, she casually draped over the stone bird...contrasted by the antique red wood horse..
Simple but Elegant !
And can find "me" each month on Aisle B3, stand 275
with my favorite French antiques.
Hope to see you

Tuesday, December 7, 2010

"What Is" ?? My New Favorite French Antique

Braving snow, rain, and cold in Paris....
my heart glowed when I discovered this gilt wood piece hanging in a dealer's shop.

I instantly loved it !!

The shape

The patina

The size....34" tall and 16" wide

The surrounding vine and fruit carvings
The front and back are the same

I could think of so many uses....
but how was it used originally in 1900??

I spoke to the dealer who explained....
then I loved it even more !!!

How do you think it was used ???

Sunday, October 10, 2010

CURIOSITY....Had Me Climbing Paris Stairs

In September, a friend and I were searching for a new lunch spot in St. Germain, Paris....we were drawn in by the restaurant's creative decor!

But what was above?

Lunch had not arrived before my curiosity had me up the stairs....the second floor??
French presentation is daring and creative !!
The impact was increased by allowing our imagination first....and view second.

Wednesday, October 6, 2010

Paris Antique Dealer Adds Pinch of Humor

This Paris Antique Dealer's recipe to catch a client's eye....included a 'pinch of humor'.
It caught my eye....and left me smiling. WIN, WIN !

Sunday, October 3, 2010

Treasures Found At Marburger Farm Antique Show

Driving home today from the Marburger Farm Antique Show, Round Top Texas and thinking about the treasures of the show.
Treasures to me are those special finds that give you joy, a smile...and make it a day to remember.

In my Marburger booth, the 1917, 4 foot long dog painting was the hit of my booth.
5 minutes after the show opened, a customer's smile said it would be her treasure to take home.

I had a hard time deciding to part with this French papier mache dog ....
I often found myself stroking his nose or playing with his original velvet collar with tiny bell.

I remember my smile in Paris when I discovered this pair of 18th century painted wall brackets
.....easing the pain of waking up before the sun.

This week at Marburger, treasures were everywhere.....the wonderful finds in all the dealers' booths AND the wonderful finds of friends...old and new.

Corey Amaro, Tongue in Cheek blogger was visiting Marburger this week....and brought Yann, known to us all as FH or French Husband.

I am still smiling as I remember her witty, animated stories during the past days.

And Yann deserves a medal for his many kind deeds for dealers during the show, a chest of medals! He even taught me to use Skype on my computer.

Plus the warmest hearts...when Corey heard a plumbing crisis had me searching for a new room (when every room is booked for miles and miles)....she, Yann, and her friend, Lynn (The Side Door Antiques) welcomed me, a stranger, into their rented house.

Treasures to me... special finds that give you joy, a smile...and make it a day to friends.

Sunday, September 19, 2010

Bird's Eye View of Paris

Just returned from Paris....

Spotted from a friend's 5th floor window in St. Germain....this young couple enjoying their view of Paris.

France will do that to you....her beauty invites you to leave worries behind.
Hope their parents don't see this photo!

Sunday, July 4, 2010


Today is special....
July 4th PLUS the 2nd anniversary of my move to my studio loft that doubles as my home. My loft building is from the 30's with a spectacular view of Atlanta's city lights. Tonight at 9, everyone gathers on the roof to watch the firework displays. The roof's 360 degree view allows you to see multiple events...Lenox, Centennial Park, Turner Field, The Underground, and Stone Mt.

My favorite space is the way the sun sets outside my window...casting an everchanging shadow on the walls. The concrete floors welcome outdoor!
I placed my platform swing under the overhead fan....the breeze and view of the city lights puts me back to my childhood days of swinging on my grandmother's porch.

Love watching foreign films...
so mix a little R&R among my antique pieces, keeping my favorite art close at hand.

The space never looks the I sell and buy!

I love the feel of the exposed duct work and 14 foot ceilings.

Tuesday, June 22, 2010

My Favorite French Nude Artist: J. J. Henner

I always search for beautiful French nude they are sought by my clients.
I quickly is my female clients that most often seek the sensual beauty of the paintings.

My favorite French artist for the nude is Jean Jacques Henner...known as J.J. Henner.
The above painting is one of his works that I sold in Atlanta. Henner was born in 1829 and was only 12 when he began his training. He made his debut at the Paris Salon of 1863 and exhibited regularly for 40 years...winning almost every award then available to artist. Although a well-known portrait artist, Henner is best known for his nudes...with cream colored skin and russet hair. He frequently included a blue seen in the above painting and some of his auction records exceed $50,000.

You can view many of his works at the Jean-Jacques Henner Museum in Paris with over 500 canvases and 1000 drawings..including some of his first sketches and late unfinished works. The Museum is located at 43 Avenue de Villiers, Paris 75017.

I favor nudes in outdoor settings. The above painting( another redhead) is by the 19th century artist, Jules Armand Hanriot.

As decorators, do you suggest the use of nudes?

Thursday, June 17, 2010

French Home Brings Focus To Paintings

I often see oil paintings for sale in France...unframed.
I have come to favor the focus that can be brought by hanging paintings without frames.

We may have overlooked noticing this small painting...
but it pops on the naked wall of the French home.

My eyes notice the painting on the floor over the 2 on the wall.
mixing framed and works.

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

Where Will Art Lead ??

I love it when a post really connects....
On June 4th, Ronda Carman's of "All The Best" post included interview with jewelry designer,
Elizabeth Showers.
"Elizabeth began her creative journey at her grandmother's kitchen table", touched my heart.
This is my Elizabeth....turned 3 on Sunday.
Grandmas know not to worry....
cover the French table with a painter's canvas drop cloth...
add t-shirt from grandma's closet (this is a special one from Marburger Farm Antique Show)
Encourage creativity with oodles and oodles of art supplies..

Wonder...where will art lead??

Friday, June 11, 2010

Creative Antique Dealers, Scott Antique Markets

Love this was a cotton processing belt from the 40s!
A door transformed into a mirror...
One of the booths at the Scott Antique Markets, Atlanta this week-end.
The Antique Market of 800-1000 dealers is 2nd week-end each month, Thursday thru Sunday.
Always a fabulous mix of French, Italian, Swedish, American....and creative dealers.
You can also find "moi", aisle B3

Tuesday, June 8, 2010

French Artist With Many Pseudonyms, Galien-Laloue

My favorite 19th century French artist of rural landscapes is Eugene Galien-Laloue, 1854-1941.
His life, both personal and professional, is intriquing.
Galien-Laloue was quite the solitary man and rode a bicycle to paint his country scenes as he hated walking in mud and even grass. The most intriguing aspect of his personal life....he married each of 3 sisters. The sisters were his neighbors and he married the youngest sister first. After her death, he then 5 years later married the middle sister...and yes, after her death, while in his seventies he married the oldest sister.

In his professional life, he continues his intrigue....for he painted with many names/signatures.
It has been said by those that studied his other artist has worked with so many pseudonyms.

He signed the above rural landscape, "Lievin"....possibly honoring a soldier friend, Jacques, that was from the town of Lievin.
One of my happy Marburger clients took this one home to Dallas.

In addition to landscapes, Galien-Laloue also painted marines...often inspired by postcards and photographs.
The above marine has another of his popular signatures, "L. Dupuy", possibly used to honor an artist friend, Leon Dupuy, almost 60 years older than Galien-Laloue. They both lived in Fontainbleau and enjoyed painting rural landscapes.

Galien-Laloue did sign his birth name on his Paris street scenes....yet another subject that was so different in nature to the rural landscapes and marines. For the Paris scenes, he often chose to paint in gouache rather than oil as gouache dried easier and he could complete a work in two days rather than two weeks in oil.
Painting techniques were influenced by his background...his father had been a set designer for theatre.... the architecture was painted precise with attention to season, sky, lighting, and time of day. Sometimes, he even used relatives to help animate the scenes.
As he painted Paris street life for over 50 years, his paintings tell a colorful story of the history of Paris.
The Paris scenes are extremely valued....the above scene of the Grand Boulevards (pencil and watercolor on card) sold for $90,000 at auction in 2007.
Another in gouache sold for $173,000 in 2004.
Even his less important Paris pieces usually demand prices $30,000-$50,000.

Galien-Laloue continued painting in his eighties....painting constantly and only stopping to eat.

Saturday, June 5, 2010

European Flavor For Windows, CANTONNIERES

On my buying trips to France, I stay on the search for French and Italian window valances, "Cantonnieres" in France.
I like the simple elegance of the flowers ... 19th century French carved wood.

and the ornate flair of this pair of 19th century Italian

This pair of 18th century Venetian, with the original paint, could make a room.

Wine lovers?

Need Black Forest for a lake or mountain retreat?

I find the pieces, turn them over to the magic hands of decorators and designers....
Often imagine the rooms with these wonderful treasures.
Please share or email me....would love to see.

Sunday, May 30, 2010


Clients somehow spot my dog paintings, even when surounded by scores of others. Their faces light up as if they have found their new best friend.....which our dogs often become.
In April, during my Marburger Farm Antique show, one client discovered the 3 dog paintings I had purchased from a private collection ...when she heard the 3 paintings had always been together at their earlier home in France...she simply could not split up the family and took all 3 to her home!!
For more than 5000 years, artists have portrayed the image of the dog. During the 16th century more and more people wanted to be painted with their pet dogs. The first paintings solely of dogs started around the 16th century, taking off even more in the 17th century. By the 18th century, the importance of dogs to hunting, especially in France, added to the increased number of dog portraits.Artist have portrayed dogs as mythological beings, hunting companions, prized possesions, a symbol of fidelity, and one that greets us with eyes lit up, tails wagging, and never ending love.

My favorite quote....
"In order to really enjoy a dog, one doesn't merely try to train him to be semi-human.
The point of it, is to open oneself to the possibility of becoming partly a dog."
Edward Hoagland (known for his nature and travel writing)
I think that also explains the joy of being a grandma.

These little guys have all passed through my fingers....on the way to clients' homes.
I can see all of them licking my face!
Which one would you like to greet you at the door ??

Thursday, May 27, 2010

A Delightful Discovery, French Color

As my blog is about French antiques, objects of beauty, and....."delightful discoveries",
I thought Memorial Day week-end would be a good time to add some frolic to my post.
A long week-end is perfect for extra time with family and friends....grilling and entertaining.

On a recent trip to Paris, I discovered these colorful forks at a delightful shop off Saint Germain.
I placed them in my silverware drawer amongst my traditional pieces....expecting to use on occassion or with my young granddaughters. The surprise was, my hand continued to pass over the tradional pieces and go straight for the pretty, colorful ones...pausing only long enough for my inner voice to say "what color do you feel like today?"

I soon understood that now I was enjoying selecting my fork color the same as selecting my clothes for the day. Today I chose purple.

I hope eveyone has a fun and colorful week-end with those you care about.

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