Archive for the French fabrics Category

Awaken to the Closure of Le Rouvray Fabric Shop, Paris

Posted in French fabrics, French Quilts, Paris, Paris Shopping, Therese Waddell's Quilts with tags , , , , , , on February 9, 2014 by Therese Waddell

Bonjour friends!

For those of us who do some quilting, I have some sad news. It is with deep regret to inform you that the beautiful Paris fabric shop across from the foot of Notre Dame, ‘Le Rouvray’, which many of you have used, is now closed. After 45 years of patchwork and adventure in Paris, the lovely owner and co founder, Diane Obaldia passed away some time ago now and Le Rouvray has closed its doors for good.

Before her death, Diana wrote to me a expressing great interest in ‘My French Awakening’ and the article I did on her shop at: https://myfrenchawakening.wordpress.com/2010/02/16/awakening-to-le-rouvray-french-fabrics/

Good business deserves acclamation I’ve always thought and Le Rouvray was no exception. Diana was “touched and dazzled” by the article (which I felt was by no means brilliant) but beckoned “come have lunch with me” and that’s the kind of lady she was. No wonder her shop was filled with beautiful fabrics and beautiful service from quietly passionate people. Diana and her team made for a very successful business and above all, a business of friendship building. Well, that’s how I see it anyway.

I shall always regret not being able to share that meal with Diana Obaldia and hearing about her road to success and adventures in Paris. It would have made a much better story than the one I told.

What was your experience in Le Rouvray?

Best Wishes,

AuRevoir, Therese

copyright@2014Therese Waddell

 

Advertisements

Awaken to French Decor

Posted in Decoration & Design, French fabrics, French Quilts, French Travel with tags , , , , , , , , on February 18, 2012 by Therese Waddell

Bonjour my friends,

Why don’t you come and journey with me through some of the French homes and chateaus I’ve stayed in across France and get a sneak preview into the delicious world of French interiors?

We usually need this to enter the French bedroom…

and just imagine who has turned this same key before us last century!

In other French homes, we may well cast our eyes instantly onto beautiful embellished walls of murals and trompe l’oeil decoration. It’s just like stepping straight into a glossy page from ‘Better Homes and Gardens’ magazine. I don’t mind a bit of Mary Poppins transporting myself.

I can take you through unexpected rooms of historical significance as we enter century old libraries with artworks and even brocante antique bird cages…

And you’ll enjoy the quircky world in the homes of french provincial artisans who simply allow imagination to run wild… even in the bathroom.

And they’ll welcome us in elegant Bretagne interiors with more refined French simplicity

and chateaus where their wonderful ambience are true testaments to the passion of their generational owners. My french awakening to decor with its unique French appeal using beautiful french fabrics and quilts, made my stay even more inspiring and memorable than you can imagine.

But keep in mind you will sometimes have to polish the patina from an antique balustrade on your way up and down a French staircase…

to breakfast with the stars…

Life can be tough in French interiors.

Discover for yourself. x

AuRevoir,

Best Wishes, Therese

Awakening to French Quilts

Posted in French fabrics, French Quilts, French Travel, South West of France, Therese Waddell's Quilts with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , on November 16, 2010 by Therese Waddell

Bonjour mes amis.

This weather is really inducive to the arts or any indoor activity don’t you think? Outside drizzling rain and inside opportunites. Staying at home now and again in this sort of inspiring weather irrevocably brings me to what I love to do-designing, writing, quilting… My list is endless. My time like yours, is not. Therefore I BLOG, offering quick blurbs of France, which are essentially a combination of the things I love, especially on a day under a rain splattered roof.

So, how are you?

I’m thinking of quilts and all things French as usual so I invite you to enter the charming world of the French bedroom (chambre) in the small village of Lautrec…

As I listen to the trickle of the rain, this room and bed is looking more inviting by the minute with its cosy warm hues and turned down cover but then I remember the quilts…

My french awakening to fabulous quilting was realised in Lautrec- a village in the south west of France. See for yourself and examine a great example of a whole cloth quilt with its elegant pattern and highly developed style. Just lovely don’t you think?

I make a lot of quilts and design in colour (check out http://www.quiltingthejourney.com/) but there is definately something to be said about a fashionably plain white French quilt which highlights detail and shadow at every turn of the needle. What do you think?

Beautiful? I’m sure you would agree. Pity no one can agree on the exact origin of quilting, but the earliest reference to a French quilt was in a ship captain’s inventory from Marseilles way back in 1297.

I rather doubt any females today could tolerate the loathsome and often bloody battles on board a medieval sailing ship of the thirteeenth century. However, this very same quilt could have belonged to the French woman of a marauding Viking or a sturdy lass being transported amongst a fleet of crusaders fighting for the cause. We shall never know. (The identification label was well and truly missing from the back!)

Perhaps its owner was the sea captain himself, but to think a ship’s captain would ever admit to not only owning a quilt but carrying it under his muscular arm on his sea faring journey, is quite another story.

French quilts were common in the seventeenth century around Provence and have since then become extremely popular across the globe. The quality of French fabrics (tissus) I can attest is second to none, regardless of what is on offer elsewhere.

If you’re interested in the beautiful Provence Indiennes fabrics, you’ll enjoy this-

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Y97CbtO95iU

Only the very lucky own a French quilt.

Happy sewing and happy travels all of you!

Au Revoir,

Best Wishes,Therese Waddell

copyright@2010 Therese Waddell

Awaken To Lyon, France

Posted in Decoration & Design, Food and Recipes, French fabrics, French Quilts, French Travel, South East France with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on June 16, 2010 by Therese Waddell

Bonjour mes amis,

How are things with you? I hope you’re feeling adventurous because you’re going to be taken to Lyon today. It’s about 400km from Paris (Gare de Lyon) to Lyon, and it will take just under two hours on the very fast moving TGV. Let the train glide you through some gorgeous French countryside and before you know it, you’ve arrived in Lyon.

Head straight for the Old Quarter of Lyon and explore the courtyards and traboules (alleyways) which the silk manufacturers and escaping French Resistance fighters used many years ago.

And you’ll see wells tucked in a corner or two- remnants of the past…

In the Old Quarter, you can browse fabulous shops and artisan galleries and enter any one of the Lyonnais cafes or fine restaurants for some gastronomic delight of veal sausages, salads, coq au vin made with local wine, pike (fish) dumplings, potatoes and lentils …

My french awakening  found Lyon the culinary capital of France! There’s so much to see, taste and experience here, you could easily spend a year!

For one thing, you MUST try the tempting meringues (the size of footballs ) from any Lyonnais patisserie. Mouthwatering meringues which are surprisingly encrusted with ripened red strawberries or you may fancy merigue ones filled with delicious French chocolate. Tempted eh?

And you can take Lyon in, sitting at a fountain with the locals and soak up some Lyonnais sunshine…

before visiting a fabulous Museum such as the Musee Des Beaux Arts. Get completely lost in the seventy rooms of this magnificent building holding many inspiring works from Primitive Art to Modern including the French masters and fantastic sculptures from the Middle Ages to the Twentieth Century works. There’s something for everyone here.

For practical information such as opening times go to:

http://www.mba-lyon.fr/

For a dominating view of the city, head for the Basilica of Fourviere on the hilltop (take the funicular upwards) and you will be overlooking all of Lyon.

The cream and pale blue  is Fourviere’s homage to Mary, who is believed to protect the city of Lyon.

You can walk the very pretty terraced gardens at the base of Fourviere…

and stroll through the Garden of The Rosary…

and while you’re near the Basilica, why not visit the site of the Roman Ruins where Lyon was first founded? These days, concerts, opera and dance performances are held in the large amphitheatre which is still intact.

and the Museum of the Gallo Roman Ruins. It’s truly beautifully displayed.

Then walk across the bridge where Old meets New and wander around in bustling, modern Lyon for a whole lot more.

For anyone interested in fashion and costumes, quilting, silks and tapestries, find your way to the Museum of Fabric/Textiles (Tissus) and Decorative Arts (and don’t spare the horses!).

You’ll be able to not only view some drop dead gorgeous fabrics and textiles and authentic costumes with extreme detail and finery but you’ll be able to purchase some fabric samples  which are made into envelopes (these are very small, but heavenly) in the foyer shop…

This place is a quilter’s dream and a haven for fabric collectors.

 For more information go to:

http://www.musee-des-tissus.com/

Lyon will keep you happy for quite some time. You can discover the fantastic trompe l’oeil paintings on many unexpected spots on buildings and if you’re lucky enough to be in Lyon on the 5th to the 8th December 2010, you’ll witness the city coming alive with the Lyon Light Festival (Fete des Lumieres). Take a peep here…

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MyphK_Jvtu8

Thousands of candle lamps are lit in the windows of Lyonnais homes as well as fabulous lighting illuminations along streets and shopping precincts in honour of the Virgin Mary.

Now that’s spirit for you!

I know you’ll have a wonderful time here in Lyon. See for yourself!

Au Revoir,

Best Wishes, Therese Waddell

Copyright@2010 Therese Waddell

Awakening to French Kids in Paris

Posted in Decoration & Design, French Affair, French fabrics, French Travel, Paris with tags , , , , on May 6, 2010 by Therese Waddell

Bonjour mes amis,

I hope you’re all doing just fine today and I thought I’d put a smile on your face by sending you this one photo- especially since  Mother’s Day (Fete des Meres) is around the corner.

One of my favourite things to do in Paris is simply sitting on a park bench behind Notre Dame watching the people going about their daily routine.

On this particular day, the last day of school before the holidays,  a very cute trail of weeny toddlers made their way like ducklings following their teacher across the small park here.

They were obviously dressed in fancy costumes for a special pageant that day in pre school. Sooooo cute don’t you think? And what do you think of the Middle Age costumes? It’s a little different from the usual Spiderman and Ninja Turtles!

It could only happen in Paris.

Have a great day all!

Au revoir,

Best Wishes, Therese Waddell

Awakening to Quimper and French Fabrics

Posted in Decoration & Design, French fabrics, French Quilts, French Travel, North West France with tags , , , , , , , , , , on April 13, 2010 by Therese Waddell

Bonjour mes amis,

Enter the fabulous French village of Quimper in the south west of beautiful Brittany. Being the artistic and cultural centre and the oldest city in Brittany, Quimper (pronounced cam pair) offers pleasant surprises for any shopper, quilter, pottery/earthenware  or gourmet food and history lover. Or perhaps you’re a little or a lot of all these- either way you’ll really like what Quimper has to offer!

There’s always a few surprises here and who doesn’t like surprises?

Like the odd pony or two greeting you on the cobbled street of the main thoroughfare in the Medieval Quarter…

Walk through the streets lined with medieval half timbered houses as Quimper has done a great job in preserving the city’s heritage. Keep going towards the cathedral and find the gorgeous modern carousel sprouting weird and wonderful sea creatures straight out of Jules Verne’s, ‘Twenty Thousand Leagues Under The Sea’ I’m sure…

I do love a carousel!!

Then there’s the Cathedral, the Cathedrale St Corentin built between the 13th and 15th centuries and is a fine example of Gothic architecture. Come see the beautiful stain glass windows commemorating Breton Saints. Why not take a virtual tour of this lovely cathedral while you’re sitting there? Go to:

http://www.360-degres-web.com/visite-virtuelle/cathedrale/index.html

Quimper has literally loads of shops including gourmet foods, chocolates and fab local produce, creperies, bars, many great restaurants, decorative craft shops and clothing boutiques.

Oh, you may decide to ditch your usual beautiful companion and take a like minded shopper at this point. (Are you nodding your head right now?…)

There are many galleries and art dealers selling paintings by local Bretons here as well and you’ll also find painters from the Pont Aven School in Quimper’s superb Musee des Beaux Arts. Take a look won’t you at:

http://www.musee-beauxarts.quimper.fr/

Also, being so close to two rivers (The Odet and The Steir), faience pottery is all the go here. Beautiful, hand made original pieces which are never duplicated are made just outside the town of Quimper in a nearby factory. It’s been making faience pottery for about three hundred years now, (having been commissioned by King Louis XIV himself)  so they really know what they’re doing! The faience pottery is world famous and it is sent to anticipated customers all around the world as we speak!

You could easily spend absorbingly brilliant hours here. And that doesn’t include treasure hunting at the Quimper markets (if you’re there on any day other than a Sunday) for bricolage, vintage treasures and sewing and quilting fabrics.

Did my quilting friends all just sit up?

Look what I found in the Quimper markets…

This floral number I used in my ‘La Vie En Rose Quilt’. For the pattern and more go to  http://www.quiltingthejourney.com

The second divine little number I’m using in a quilt yet to be revealed.

It was no wonder we visited Quimper on more than a few occasions that same holiday and we came away from this great town with an armful of gifts  for family and friends back home and quite a few metres of fabric!

On leaving Quimper, we looked up and guess what?…

Does this not say it all?

Go to Quimper on your next trip to France. You’ll learn and see heaps. You’ll love it!

Au Revoir,

Best Wishes, Therese Waddell

copyright@2010 Therese Waddell