Monday, August 30, 2010
After a mad last minute rush, we were finally ready to open our doors Sunday morning. We are really pleased with the impact our new stock has made on our store - it has so much energy! We hope that everyone can feel it as they walk into the store. At our front entrance we have set up a French cherrywood farmhouse table with rush seat country chairs. And as a backdrop there is a French cherrywood buffet de corp with the loveliest carved detail. It dates to around 1800. Next to this piece is one of our favourite finds of our trip, a Swedish mora clock (pictured above). The beautiful blue mora clock (below) has already found a new home to go to (and unfortunately not my home!) Oh well, if the other clock does not find a home...
Friday, August 27, 2010
It has been a big week in the store. Our biggest yet, for sure. We have never before had to fit so much into our space. Whilst it has been a challenge, we are all very pleased with how it is shaping up (although there is still a lot of work to do before our Sunday re-opening). Hopefully these images show that we are a bit more organised than earlier in the week.
Tuesday, August 24, 2010
This is a huge concern of mine at the moment - will it all fit within the confines of our store? It is hard to see from one side of the store across to the other, everything is stacked up. We have club chairs on top of tables, buddhas almost reaching the light fittings and ladders blocking the aisles. I have been working in the garden room this morning, I can barely move around myself...we will have to work something out!
Saturday, August 21, 2010
Our container arrived on Thursday and we have been very, very busy. Firstly we had to unload the container, then we had to fit it all in to the shop (which was not easy) and now we are unwrapping and sorting. Our new shop counter is in situ and we love it. We have had to do a bit of rearranging to fit it in.
We are aiming to be reopen Sunday the 29th August. We definitely have some work ahead of us, as you can see from the photos. But alas, Donna made some friands for afternoon tea, that may help.
Tuesday, August 17, 2010
This magnificent Magnolia tree in my neighbourhood inspired me to go get one of my own (below). Whilst it is very young it is already coming out in flower and I can't wait to plant it into the ground. One of my camelia plants is also beginning to flower. As is my dwarf peach tree that I have in a large glazed pot in the centre of my vegetable garden. The pink buds are really quite vivid. I wouldn't think I will get much fruit in its first season, very cute though. Even my brocolli is coming into flower! I bought these adorable French herb pots on the weekend. I love French glaze in this colour.
Saturday, August 14, 2010
I can just imagine curling up on this day bed with a favourite book. Not sure if I would get much reading done though... We recently delivered this folding French day bed to a beautiful country home in Tasmania. It went up into a large loft area and looked fabulous! This day bed is actually English. I love the deep buttoning and the neutral linen. It looks very comfortable. (Image from http://www.brownrigg-interiors.co.uk/).
You can actually stay in this room in Paris - le Turenne, a beautiful apartment available for rent in the Place des Vosges district of Marais (Image from http://www.bellefrancaiseinteriors.blogspot.com/).
This day bed is in the French Directoire style (Image from http://www.alhambraantiques.com/). We bought a very similar day bed very early on in our buying trip. Our container is due at our door this week. We will then be closed for a period of time, busily unpacking, sorting and arranging. We will post details at the time when we close and re-open.
Friday, August 13, 2010
I came in a close second! Admittedly there were only 4 challengers in total, but I am proud of my pudding. Donna was crowned the family champion Christmas pudding maker. It was then that we announced she will have to make the Christmas pudding for years and years to come! (So I am not sure if she really won...). Her pudding was superb, I have to concede.
Wednesday, August 11, 2010
Our inaugural family Christmas pudding challenge took place in July this year. Earlier in the year I proposed a challenge to my fellow family members to make our own Christmas puddings, to be consumed at our Christmas in July meal. The non-cooking members of the family were to be the (blindfolded) judges and score each pudding. The winner of the challenge would win the duty of preparing this year's Christmas pudding and bragging rights. I spent a long time in April researching pudding recipes and combined what I believed to be the best elements from each to create my own recipe. I even took meticulous notes in case I won and had to replicate the same pudding. I made the pudding early May as I was about to leave for our buying trip. So I cut dates (and heaps of other fruits, including dried fig)...and soaked them overnight in stout and other liquids. Ground my spices...in my antique mortar and pestle, of course! Made the pudding mixture in my English TG Green bowl. And mixed it all together before placing in an old pudding basin (I love these). My biggest dilemma was the size of my mixing bowl - it wasn't big enough! As such, I am thinking next time I will need a pancheon to mix it in. These are pancheons - they are huge antique pottery bowls with the loveliest glaze. The results to our Christmas in July Christmas Pudding Challenge will be posted soon!
Monday, August 9, 2010
We were lucky enough to find this French baker's stand on our antiques buying trip. It is original 19th century and is stamped 'Paris'. We can't wait for it to arrive along with all our other goodies. It was one of the very last pieces that went into the container so it will be the first item to greet us when we open the doors. How exciting. Wouldn't this French baguette basket look great on the baker's stand? As far as I know, the curved areas at the ends of the baker's stand were to hold the baguettes. (Photo from http://www.1stdibbs.com/). I have always wanted a French pastry or baker's tables like the one above (photo from http://www.1stdibbs.com/). I am not sure where I would put it when I find one, but I believe if you love something enough you will always find a place for it. Look how good this one looks! I love the lighter grey colour and the French glass cloches on top (photo from http://www.insidehomepage.com/). I might take another look at the French glass cloches in our store at the moment (above) and add to my collection.
Saturday, August 7, 2010
Spring blossoms in a French storage jar in our store. Ok, they are not quite out in flower yet, but they are still beautiful and a reminder that Spring is just around the corner... I am taking some inspiration from these beautiful outdoor settings. And I am looking around the store at what has recently come in, including vintage glass cake stands and this delightful English cup and saucer - perfect for a Spring afternoon tea...now for some baking!