Thursday, February 10, 2011

Intimités du Coeur

Cher Madame Antiquariess,
Oh Madame, please forgive me as I have not put pen to paper for awhile, but know that you are always radiant in my thoughts.
I have some exciting things to share with you.
Do you know the place Verona, Italy? More specifically,
the casa of Julliet Capulet at 23 Via Capello?
Oh, the story so intriques me Madame, as I know it will you too.
Romantics from all over the world go there to leave letters to Julliet. The walls near her balcony are covered with scraps of paper bearing intimacies of the heart.

This is a place where the line is blurred Madame. The line between reality and imagination, and yes, the letters are answered. What a magical place Madame! A place where believing with such conviction makes it real. A place where, when the heart speaks...someone listens.

It reminds me of all the letters I've written to you Madame and have plastered on my wall. Why some, would probably scoff at the notion. Have they never been to such magical places Madame?

Why when in my friend, Elise’s garden, in the South of France, I am unsure of who to converse with first. The pixies, nixies, nymphs or Pigwidgeons. They all compete for my attention.

Oh Madame, there is simply nothing better than walking into a Fairytale. A place where the walls become the pages of the book and the characters begin to cross the line.

This is the Kingdom of Monique. A small barn in a village outside Paris, where Monique writes her story. A place where the walls are also covered with intimacies of the heart.

A place where pieces of the past, become au courant and the "Marchand de Vin" rules.

A place where eighteenth century antiques reside in harmony with the present. A terra cotta bust, an oil portrait, and a mirror of mercury, all once chattels of aristocracy, find themselves holding court amongst the more modest.  

It is here, in this place that Monique creates a flirtatious atmosphere with display cabinets, lamps and sconces, all created by her company, Pigwidgeon.

 As I turn the pages, something new takes the limelight. An ephemeral wall reminiscent of a childhood memory.
A peek behind a curtain hung from a surviving bonnet, gives me glimpses of a soul who changes from ballerina to poet with the wave of a wand.

Oh Madame Antiquariess, the traces of paint on the antique library shelves whisper a story to me. Such a beautiful place, to leave the remains of the day.

Why is this room not called a living room Madame? I find it has breath! 

Sometimes I find American ways so lacking. I read just the other day, that prior to being called the Living Room, our front rooms were called parlors. Before the  the creation of Funeral homes, (parlors) often wakes were held at the home of the deceased. I guess the trendsetters of the day felt it necessary to change the name to Living room when that tradition ended. Sort of implies that the rest of the home is... dead??? Then the kitchen is called the heart of the home. Sort of implies the rest of the home is void of heart. I much prefer a Salon, Madame. A room for gathering, a place to entertain, a place to display art for all to enjoy and discuss the topics of the day.  I want a French home Madame. The French just get it!

Such a beautiful place Madame. A tapestry of Monique’s life.
It is a magical place don’t you think Madame? A story told through the heart.
Isn’t that what a home should be? A place where the walls are the pages upon which to write your own story and all those characters deep within your soul have a voice?
Just like Julliet's wall Madame. Monique's home is covered with scraps of her life. Her intimacies of the heart. Written  not just for Julliet, but anyone, who cares to listen.

Wonderful and just in time for Valentines Day!

Hearts to you Madame, and all my wonderful readers!

Photography credits 5-13,  Gilles Trillard
Campagne Decoration


donna baker said...

Methinks the most beautiful post I've ever read. And, the first statue; well I would give my right arm... I will be in Paris for ten days in March. The Jambone Faire and other shopping. Can't wait.

Kristin Ketilsdottir said...

Beautiful pictures on your blog. Have a nice evening
Kristín K.

Unknown said...

oh, can you hear my heart leap from where you are?
I feel as if I am in a fairytale each and everytime I visit here.
This is just what my dreams look like.
thank you for sweeping me away..

Karen @ Brayton Homestead Interiors

Anonymous said...

So glad you're back! Please try to post more often. Thoroughly enjoyed this one. Thanks!

Karen T.

My Life of Domestic Bliss said...


christine said...

These pictures are all beautiful...and Monique'place is "superbe" !

T. Dobbs said...

Welcome back! A beautiful and dreamy post to uplift my day.

Country French Antiques said...

Merci beaucoup to all. It is good to be back and I will try to post more often. I need to get back in the loop!!!
Thanks for your comments!

Unknown said...

Thank you so much Shawn for dusting yourself off - your new post is exquisite, naturally. We need more of you!! Eleanor, The Green Barn

Chrissy...The Apothecary Shop said...

Oh my how wonderful to find a post from you...and what a post it is,so lovely from start to finish!! Hope you are well and happy,been a long time since last we spoke!!! All the best,Chrissy

Nellys said...

Me encanta este blog.

Martha at Authentica said...

Once again, takes my breath away! Such awe inspiring beauty. One day I will be there! I have so enjoyed your website and blog takes me away! As I've said before...If I can't get to France any time soon...I'm going to Kentucky...from Georgia..that's just a days drive! I'm there!
Love and Light and Happy Valentine's day!

mary anne said...


Truly an amazing Valentines Day tribute.

My your heart be touched, as ours, your audience, were touched on this day of remembering the love for those around us.

ox's to you.

Burlap Luxe said...

Love your post and photos to love!

I so love the mood of your site, I am truly inspired by is warn beauty.
Happy Valentine.

Slavica at Seductively French said...

wonderful! the first statue is my fav! -Slavica

Barb said...

As usual, a beyond beautiful post Shawn.
Welcome back!


P.S. I need to visit your shop!

La Maison Fou said...

Nicelt put!
Happy Valentines to you too!


A Gift Wrapped Life said...

How lovely to run across your blog, you have created a most beautiful world here. Your shop and doggie (Zoe?) are wonderful. I just may make it to KY one day again. XO

Belle Escape said...

My oh my! Simply breathtaking. That sitting room with the beamed ceilings is simply perfect. The combination of fine, crisp fabrics and natural wood is beyond gorgeous!

blessings said...

I love how you wove the tale while showing us that gorgeous, gorgeous place! Blessings... Polly

Diane Writes said...

Hi! I discovered your blog from one of your followers in the Philippines. I can't help but look at the pictures. Your posts are great. It gives me a break in the middle of a stressful workday. I'm following you starting today. :) I look forward for more great posts.


Rajrang said...

This is a wonderful shop

mudderbear said...

This is the most beautiful post I've ever seen, including the prose. I want my kitchen to look like the one here. Now I am really wishing for that to be so. This is extraordinary. I am so happy to have discovered your blogsite. Sorry to be so gushy on first meeting you.

Fay said...

im back from London
thankyou for your lovely posts ALL beautiful love EVERYTHING fay xx

Southern Foothills said...

WOW! What a beautiful post!

Fay said...

Hi SHawn Ive awarded you the stylish bloggers award please see my blog 161 for details fay x

vår lille verden said...

Hello.This is the most beautiful pictures and blogg I have ever seen!!I am soon movin by the countryside in Norway and I would like to have a french countryside style:O))Well thanks for lettig me see this,it made my day!:O))Il come back soon:o)Have a great monday...

Ispirato Design said...

Gorgeous as usual! I'm passing along the Stylish Blogger Award to you! Stop by to see my latest post for details.

Mit Vintage-Hus said...

Beautiful pictures, lovely stories. Every time I visit your blog - it's like a fairytale. I spend hours looking and reading.

Come visit my blog :)
Have a nice tuesday :)

Unknown said...

enjoy !!! looking forward to your tales on your return LOVE fay xx

karen said...

So pretty. I love pictures.

The Paper Mulberry - Glenda Steel said...

I have just stumbled upon your divine blog! I am a new an ardent follower! Warmest Spring wishes from England - Glenda

Chanel'ShabbyRose said...

I really love your blog every picture is so beauitful ,,,I love Paris and hoping one day I will be able to visit...Mary

Mikey Fuller said...

J'adore! So beautiful! now following!

~Mikey @ Shabby French Cottage

SoLoveLy{decoration} said...

joli blog
bonne soirée

Jesse said...

The photography is beautiful on your blog. I love what you have created here.

Carolyn said...

These pictures are so precious!

Silver MLM

Ann said...

Sooo many beautiful things!!!
Have a nice weekend! :0)

Ann, Glassveranda,

Jann said...

I am so moved with all these photos~ a little place in Heaven-they simply took my breath away!

Anonymous said...

I LOVE this post!!! If you get a chance visit my Blog, ~Garden Adornments~ and my new Etsy shop ~Strolling Through Time~
Have a great 4th!

Lily said...

Absolutely LOVE your photos.

Claire M. said...

Amazing photos!

Atelier de Campagne said...

I am enamored with your sense of style! I read your posting on Elise. What a talent. I just recently met her in Avignon and put a few pictures of her and her art on my blog. I am afraid I did not do her justice. You have on your blog and she deserves it!



andrew1860 said...

I love Monique's home so full of life! The 18th century decorations complements pieces of her design