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vendredi 31 mai 2013

My angel took flight............



My treasured gilded porcelain angel that has hung above the door to the cuisine decided to end it all today!! For some reason she took flight and hit the tiled floor with an enormous crash that had us all running to see what had happened!!!

She is smashed beyond help but she did leave her wings behind.

I love them!!! Merci Mademoiselle!! Every cloud and all that!!

Bon weekend mes belles.

mercredi 29 mai 2013

The handcuffs are off!!



I find it SO hard to get back to work when the family have gone back home!

 Someone took the handcuffs off and now I don`t want to be captured again!

I want to "do lunch", go to the beach, be a tourist, go sightseeing, go to the chocolaterie and have hot chocolat and croissant amande and sunbathe in the garden. ( It is however raining at the moment but you know what I mean!!)

I don`t want to do the second world war museum again as I ended up sniffling at the touching letters sent by American soldiers stationed here in the war to their families and sweethearts back home in the US.  ( My blubbing was much to the amusement of my nieces!). When I read the letters of a soldier who didn`t make it home I had to go outside!!!



I am consoled that I have some delicieux pieces to list and shall wear the crown all day long as my last treat!


Can you please remind me to take it off before I answer the door to the postman? He already thinks I am a bizarre madame Anglaise!

A la prochaine mes belles
xxxx

mardi 28 mai 2013

Repettos brought to life..................



It has been a wonderful short break with the family on a long weekend visit. Yesterday the sun was scorching so there was nothing else for it but to pack a picnic basket and head for the beach.

My two nieces are both ballet dancers which was so evident as they elegantly tip toed their way through the shells on the beach to the waters edge!

The old faded pink Repetto ballet shoes hanging here on display were brought back to life when the girls stepped into them..............



So of course the girls came in useful to model some old theatre costumes I have recently truffled out!

 
 
 

This tailcoat is an amazing confection that has Louis IV written inside in old sepia ink!

Well they didn`t think they were going to visit without having to work did they?!!!

Back to work for me tomorrow with lots of new treasures to be listed.

A demain mes belles

xxxx

dimanche 26 mai 2013

A little break...........

Just a little break for me whilst the family visit.

Here is Mark`s horse Madame Edith with Lydia. As usual Edith is first in line if there is any head scratching to be handed out. She is happily in retirement here with Docile my old mare who is now 21.

Doci and Edith the "girls" are inseparable and have spent today basking in our first day of sunshine in the orchard.

Both of them are utterly pampered.

Docile haughty as ever declined a photograph and left to scratch her derriere at the top of the field!! She was born in Paris and is an absolute "diva". In her younger days she was the lead girl in a team of four carriage horses and will not turn out for any photographer unless they come from Paris Vogue!!! 

A la prochaine mes belles
xxx

mercredi 22 mai 2013

Another of the nine lives used up for the Baron............




My biggest fear for Charles le Baron is that he would ever injure his one good leg at the back. This is the one that takes all the weight of his back end.

Yesterday he dragged himself inside the chateau in terrible pain using the amputated stump leg with the good leg dragging behind him. We had no idea what had happened , there were no marks and the good leg was swollen and getting bigger.

We rushed him to the vets and she told us that if it was broken or fractured there wasn`t much hope for him as he couldn`t manage to be in plaster for 6 weeks and not be able to walk. There would be no way to support his back end.

We were told that they would x-ray him and do what they could and would ring us as soon as possible.

I have spent a long sleepless night worrying and expecting the worst.

This morning the phone rang early to say that there is no break or fracture and it would just be a matter of time and rest.

We have just arrived home with him and he came out of the cat basket walking normally as ever on his 3 legs!!! He ate his food and went outside to terrorise what he could find!!!

HONESTLY!!!!! I have been frantic all night long!

Thank heavens my boy is home!

mardi 21 mai 2013

Time-worn.............

I know nothing about clocks at all and tend to stay away from them for that reason. But sometimes one catches my eye and who cares whether it works or not!!




I would be happy to display this confection even if it never ticked again!

The gilded ribbon topped frames of the numbers are adorable



Time to get it listed before I keep it!!!

Aa prochaine mes belles
xxxx

lundi 20 mai 2013

Beating myself up...........



We have just arrived home from a wonderful weekend at a huge  brocante that once a year stretches for 5 kilometres through the woods.

We always start at 4.30am on the Saturday morning and no matter how many times you walk the 5 kms you find something you haven`t seen before.

The hotel was fabulous and the rain held off which was a miracle.

I would normally today be showing you all my latest treasures which are piled high and I absolutely adore them all.

But something happened that I absolutely cannot forgive myself for. I let something happen and I didn`t intervene and now I am beating myself up.

On the Sunday morning after the main day of the brocante  some new dealers arrive so we always have a slow walk up the length again just to check before we leave. Many dealers from the day before simply cover their stock with sheets and bed down in their vans for the next day.

At 7.30am we started to walk and it was Soooooo cold!! We arrived at a van where a family were unpacking and a small pale little girl in a summer dress was sat on a chair in the cold. I noticed her as she was about 4 years old and had a dummy ( comforter) in her mouth. I thought she was perhaps a little old for it but "hey ho" who am I to say?! I did think someone could have given her a sleeping bag or blanket though to cover her bare legs as it was so chilly.

I thought no more of it and continued.

On the way back down about an hour later, her father, a small wiry rough looking man, was unloading his stock onto a plastic sheet on the floor. The little girl walked across the sheet and he shouted loudly at her which caught my attention. He then picked her up and threw her so she skidded on her hands and knees onto the gravel.

I stopped dead and couldn`t believe what I had seen as did a few French couples. Initially I thought I had imagined it. He then went over to her dragged to her her feet, knelt down and yelled and yelled right in front of her face. Her knees were bleeding, he took no notice and he pointed to the van telling her to go and get in. She never cried one tear and just stood there pale and shaking.

No one said a word. Including me and now I cannot forgive myself. I don`t know if I could have found the French words quick enough - as if that matters.

It is easy to say after the event but why didn`t I go and stop him or at least tell him I had recorded it all on my phone and was off to tell the gendarmes.

Why didn`t some bigger guy  just pick him up throw him in gravel to see what it felt like?

Why didn`t I just knee him in the groin- you don`t need French words for that?

So, that little pale girl is stuck in my mind and I know I should have done something although I don`t know what.

Why on earth didn`t I do something?

A demain mes belles

xxx


vendredi 17 mai 2013

Charles le Baron du Breuil



They know nothing! Nothing at all! They think I am just a semi feral three legged cat dumped in a ditch! Huh!


What do they know?! When they are not looking I am secretly researching my ancestry as I am sure that I am a descendant of one of Maire Antoinette`s cats.

Already I have discovered Great Great Aunt Mimi a famous court cat.


And Great auntie twice removed Mademoiselle La Souris

 
But best of all Monsieur Louis le Marquis de Vannes
 
 
When this becomes public they will have to treat me with the respect I deserve.
 
Until then................. I shall dream of my life to be.
 
 
 
A la prochaine & bonne weekend mes belles
xxxx

jeudi 16 mai 2013

A new service?


As I sat replying to emails in the warm sunlight flowing into the cuisine this morning two chattering swallows flew in through the door.

Charles le Baron du Breuil thought his breakfast had arrived and panic followed! I pressed a quick " send" on my email and then rushed to open the windows.

The swallows were panicking and fluttering against the windows ( pooing as they went!!) and Charles was leaping like a lunatic with his claws out.

I managed to get them both out safely and went back to my emails ignoring the dirty looks from Charles!

Then I looked at what I had sent!

The email was a lady asking me if I posted items to the USA. I had replied " Yes, we WHIP internationally".

A new service perhaps?!!!

A la prochaine mes belles
xxxx


mardi 14 mai 2013

Time for chocolat..............

I adore chippy old distressed paintwork............



................and I adore chocolat............................





So what`s not to like?!!!

This divine old chocolaterie clock from the late 1800s/early 1900s is being listed in my auctions tonight.

A la prochaine mes belles
xxxxx

dimanche 12 mai 2013

First through the door............

I know I have mentioned this Paris apartment before but now more details have come to light. What would you have given to be first through those doors ?


 

The Paris time capsule apartment: Untouched since the wealthy owner locked up and fled to the South of France at the outbreak of World

 

The doors open on the 70 year-old timewarp to reveal a hoard of 1940s treasures, including a £3million painting



Caked in dust and full of turn-of-the century treasures, this Paris apartment is like going back in time.

Having lain untouched for seven decades the abandoned home was discovered three years ago after its owner died aged 91.
The woman who owned the flat, a Mrs De Florian, had fled for the south of France before the outbreak of the Second World War.
She never returned and in the 70 years since, it looks like no-one had set foot inside.

Back in time: The flat near the Trinité church in Paris between the Pigalle red light district and Opera
Back in time: The flat near the Trinité church in Paris between the Pigalle red light district and Opera
The property was found near a church in the French capital's 9th arrondissement, between Pigalle red light district and Opera. Experts were tasked with drawing up an inventory of her possessions which included a painting by the 19th century Italian artist Giovanni Boldini.
One expert said it was like stumbling into the castle of Sleeping Beauty, where time had stood still since 1900. 'There was a smell of old dust,' said Olivier Choppin-Janvry, who made the discovery.
 

But he said his heart missed a beat when he caught sight of a stunning tableau of a woman in a pink muslin evening dress.
The painting was by Boldini and the subject a beautiful Frenchwoman who turned out to be the artist's former muse and Mrs de Florian’s grandmother, Marthe de Florian, a beautiful French actress and socialite of the Belle Époque.

Under a thick layer of dusk lay a treasure trove of turn-of-the-century objects including a painting by the 19th century Italian artist Giovanni Boldini
Under a thick layer of dusk lay a treasure trove of turn-of-the-century objects including a painting by the 19th century Italian artist Giovanni Boldini

Untouched: The cobweb-filled flat was discovered in the 9th arrondissement of Paris
Untouched: The cobweb-filled flat was discovered in the 9th arrondissement of Paris
Treasure trove: Behind the door, under a thick layer of dusk lay a treasure trove of turn-of-the-century objects
Treasure trove: Behind the door, under a thick layer of dusk lay a treasure trove of turn-of-the-century objects
Treasure trove: Behind the door, under a thick layer of dusk lay a treasure trove of turn-of-the-century objects, including the Boldini painting that sold for £1.78million

When the owner died died aged 91, experts were tasked with drawing up an inventory of her possessions
When the owner died died aged 91, experts were tasked with drawing up an inventory of her possessions
Mrs de Florian fled Paris before the outbreak of war in 1939, which saw the Nazis invade France and reach Paris on June 14. Pictured here, German officers and Parisians mingle near a sidewalk cafe on the Champs Elysees on Bastille Day in 1940
Mrs de Florian fled Paris before the outbreak of war in 1939, which saw the Nazis invade France and reach Paris on June 14. Pictured here, German officers and Parisians mingle near a sidewalk cafe on the Champs Elysees on Bastille Day in 1940
Marthe de Florian was an actress with a long list of ardent admirers whose fervent love letters she kept wrapped neatly in ribbon and were still on the premises.
Among the admirers was the 72nd prime minister of France, George Clemenceau, but also Boldini.
The expert had a hunch the painting was by Boldini, but could find no record of the painting.
'No reference book dedicated to Boldini mentioned the tableau, which was never exhibited,' said Marc Ottavi, the art specialist he consulted about the work.
When Mr Choppin-Janvry found a visiting card with a scribbled love note from Boldini, he knew he had struck gold. 'We had the link and I was sure at that moment that it was indeed a very fine Boldini'.
He finally found a reference to the work in a book by the artist's widow, which said it was painted in 1898 when Miss de Florian was 24.
The starting price for the painting was £253,000 but it rocketed as ten bidders vyed for the historic work. Finally it went under the hammer for £1.78million, a world record for the artist.
'It was a magic moment. One could see that the buyer loved the painting; he paid the price of passion,' said Mr Ottavi.

 

Ooooh if only mes belles!!

samedi 11 mai 2013

Boing!!

Yesterday evening we went to a birthday cocktail party at a friends cottage.

It was a beautiful evening so as everyone was chatting away inside Miss Frou Frou and I took a walk around their huge  and very beautiful wild flower garden. And then I saw it........................a  trampoline!!


Oooooooh la la!!!  The temptation! We only went over to look but.........soon I was trying to climb up ( in my finest cocktail dress!) but realised I was too short to make it.

Unable to breathe because of laughing so much I took another try and Miss Frou Frou gave me a huge push from behind and I was sprawled like a sky diver at the centre of the trampoline!!!

Well I`d got that far it would have been rude not to try it wouldn`t it? No one could see us....no one would be any the wiser.

At this point we were both totally helpless with laughter so I could either slide off the other side like an anaconda or try to stand.

I did the latter but soon realised I was too scared to jump and just wobbled about for a while as Miss Frou Frou was in need of oxygen watching her old mum out of control.

In my mind I looked like this....



But the reality was that I had to crawl on my hands and knees to reach the edge and then couldn`t get down again as it was so high.

We smoothed ourselves down  and sorted out my bird`s nest hair and returned to the party to find that everyone had been watching us through the cuisine window!!

By the way I hadn`t even had a drink at that point!

Bon weekend mes belles!
xxxx

jeudi 9 mai 2013

Recover or not to recover?

Here is the chair I adore!!! Original old paintwork and blue faded silk.





Divine swags and ribbons and I know I shouldn`t bring things home that cannot be posted in a box!!

But hey ho!! It will find a corner here somewhere!

I would quite happily leave it just like this but that may be a tad too far for Mark!! 

To cover or not to cover .....that is the question!

mardi 7 mai 2013

Versailles treasure trove..............



Driving through Versailles today ( as you do on a Tuesday!!) we found in a backstreet the most wonderful architectural antiques brocante.


It has been in the same family for over 100 years and is a huge sprawling yard filled with stunning period doors, windows, window grilles, oeil de boeuf zinc windows, garden furniture, every old fitting you could need to restore an old house.

Row upon row, avenue upon avenue of stunning pieces. I redecorated the chateau over and over in my head with each new treasure I found! I had to be literally dragged out to continue our journey. But , you can peruse the treasures at your leisure with the photographs below!








( cast iron stair rails)







I have had a wonderful truffling trip and I shall be home tomorrow. The car is packed so full that you couldn`t even find a gap to slide an anorexic mouse that has been run over by a steam roller!!

But oooooooooooh the chair......a chair I found this morning....so delicieux it may be staying at the chateau! I will photograph it when I am home.

A demain mes belles
xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx