Monday, March 24, 2014

The Ghosts of Aunts Past

Confession here...

I have been a little short on project completion lately.  I have a few things started but somehow this long, cold, SNOWY, winter has worn me down and I just don't have anything quite ready to share.

So, I thought I'd share a couple of my favorite pieces from my home.  Most are family pieces or have a story attached, all speak to my decor style - accessorize with vintage, decorate with classic.

First up, this pair of end tables.  These were my great, great Aunt Dean's and spent most of their life in Cranston RI.  Aunt Dean was 99 1/2 when she died...she lived a very full life.  She was married 3 times but didn't have any children so when she passed away my Grandmother inherited her belongings.  

This chair was also Aunt Dean's but it came from her cottage in Maine.  I spent summers with my Great-Grandmother on Sennebec Pond in Union and Aunt Dean's cottage was next to my grandmothers so we spent a lot of time with her.  She had the best attic at the cottage that my brother & I spent most rainy days hiding out exploring all of the goodies in her attic...old furniture, very old golf clubs, was great!

My Great Uncle Scotty sitting in the chair.  This photo is fom the late 1960's/early 1970's
Reupholstered and sitting in my living room...this chair always gets compliments from my guests

The chair was reupholstered & spent close to 20 years in my grandparents guest apartment suite.  I loved sitting in it, having my morning coffee and taking in the view of the coast of Maine...they had such a spectacular view that spanned the coast from Camden to Castine.

This piece I scored at an estate sale a couple of years ago (you can read about it here).  The house was just MAGNIFICENT...and I found this piece hiding in a room on the 3rd floor way in the back.  It was the 2nd day of the sale so much of the furniture had already been sold.  It took some charming to get some help to bring it down the stairs & load it in my car.  It's a Lane cedar chest so I think it's a piece that was really intended for a bedroom but it's just perfect for my dining room.

My Great-Aunt Hilda lived right up the road from Aunt Dean & my Great-Grandmother's cottages.  She had traveled the world and lived in many places over the course of her life.  When I was a kid she had moved back to Appleton Maine and was living in the house she grew up in...a house that was significantly larger & more modern than the cabin she grew up in but it was still the same house in it's core.  She had also been married 3 times and did not have any children so again my grandmother lucked out with some beautiful pieces.  Many many years after Aunt Hilda had passed away I randomly found a picture on the wall of an antique shop of Aunt Hilda and shared that story here.

Behind this lady (who is not my Aunt) a Sheraton Desk is peaking the right is my Grandmother, to the left is my Grandfather.  This was taken in Aunt Hilda's house in the early 1960's
Today it sits in another corner of my living room.  It's so great to have the
extra storage
Looking from my dining room into my living room you can get a better view of my mixing old with more modern
comfortable pieces that make for a livable space
Another one of my favorite pieces from my grandmother was this french influenced mirror.  She had this hanging in her home for so many years & I always loved it but I'm not entirely sure where she got it.  Likely some fun hidden antique store.

And here are 3 of the lovely ladies who lived with some of my favorite things for many many years.  Aunt Hilda is on the left, my Great-Grandmother is in the center and Aunt Dean is on the right.
I love that in so many corners of my home their spirits live on.  Not only do they bring familial comfort to my home but they also bring a uniqueness that speaks to my personal style.

Sunday, March 2, 2014

Joyeux Noel from the South of France - Part 4, Isle Le Sorge

My next day in France I headed out to see some of the antique markets Provence is known for. First stop, a small market in Avignon.  There was a small market that was just a short walk from my hotel sounded perfect to me.  I headed out with walking directions in hand - no GPS since I had not had the foresight to enable my cellphone with international service before I left the states.  I really didn't think I would need it, and I really didn't necessarily need it...but it sure would have come in handy in several instances.

Well, the walk over turned out to be such a pleasant way to start a day.  It was early, so quiet and really gave me some time to appreciate my surroundings and the just utter beauty in the architectural detail of even the most ordinary of buildings 

Given this is not tourist season in Avignon the market definitely reflected that.  It was small and more of a flea market than an "antiques" market.  

Avignon Sunday Market
So after a quick perusal, I headed to what I was told was one of the more beautiful towns in the area that was supposed to have a spectacular market - Isle le Sorge.  Ok, riding through the beautiful French countryside to get to this market..not a bad gig at all.   I think there were a few Frenchmen cursing the Sunday driver though.

Isle le Sorge is built on a river so the market follows the path of the river with stalls along its length.  It was a spectacularly beautiful day and I don't think I could have planned for a better way to spend it.  

Isle Le Sorge France

There was everything from rotisserie chicken to French linen & pottery to antique silver and furniture at this market.

Lesson learned from this can charge a whole lot more when your silver is nicely polished :)

This man was making basket bags while folks watched.  Just beautiful.
Not a disappointment...

My final day in France I traveled back to Nice returned my rental car and hopped a train to Eze.  Several of my friends had rave reviews about Eze and it really was spectacular.

Eze France
I had such a wonderful visit.  Now I just need to learn to speak a little French before my next visit.  

sharing this week on: