Bon Voyage


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Luxury homes in California

I’m leaving for Italy very soon, but wanted to show you my brother’s house that was recently put on the market. He is an overachiever who more than doubled the amount of children I have (sibling competition!), and yet now those fine little folks are growing up and moving off to college. My angle was originally going to be about staging, but what I see in the transformation of his home as it came to market is simply the excess stripped away so that the good bones and architectural details can shine through.

Ross, California Real Estate

The Tudor style home was built in 1927, back in the day when homes in our small town were defined not by their street number, but by the owners who lived there. When we moved into Ross, people would say “Oh…you live in the XXX house”. Doors opening and closing, families growing up and out.

Northern California real estate

Classic Tudor style: original lead paned window, poised above the brick edged front door, beneath the characteristic steep pitched roof.

Northern California Real Estate

At the end of a quiet cul de sac, in one of the most desirable neighborhoods in Ross for families with young children, the property is surrounded by Oak trees and view of the nearby hills.

Northern California Real Estate

The back yard can be accessed via garden gates on both sides of the house. On the left, past the front door, formal lawns swoop gently across the yard. Through the garden gate to the right, there are terraced elevations for vegetables and cutting gardens and a wilder area for pets and children. Deer often make their way happily through the hills of Ross. Hence the weather vane homage…and garden gates. 2 Fallen Leaf Ross CaliforniaCalacatta marble. My favorite feature. Gorgeous…everywhere in the kitchen…even behind the pull up cabinet of the baking station. Northern California Real Estate

2 Fallen Leaf Ross California

Beautiful dark wood floors. Any shade of gray could be an alternative for the cabinets, wood panels on the fridge, Venetian plaster on the hood. An entertaining kitchen. One of the original owners used to lend it out for cooking classes for the community. Northern California real estate

With a house that’s over 5000 square feet…it’s double everything…including stairs. Here two stories of windows oversee the vegetable garden terraces as the stairway descends to the children’s rooms.

Northern California real estate

My sister and I, being design hounds, had lots of staging suggestions. But, in the end, with a home with such great bones, it was best to keep it simple and let the house speak for itself! My brother’s home office never looked so clean!Northern California real estate

So…if you are looking to move to our charming little town any time soon…the property website is here and you can find out more about the home here

Ross California

As I am already an empty nester, I am thrilled to be traveling with both kids and my husband for two lovely weeks. I just need to find that bathing suit! Back soon!

Magical French Summer Market


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French Kissed French Summer MarketI had an absolutely magical time in Santa Barbara at Jermaine Chastain’s lovely Italian Villa for the first French Kissed and Trouvais French Summer Market. The water fountain outside the open double front doors gurgled, the breeze flowed in past sentinel Italian cypresses…outside a gravel courtyard was all old world grandeur with aged iron armchairs and birdcages and baskets…and wine crates laden with old silver and vintage porcelain.

French Kissed

French Kissed

On every table and past thrown open cabinet doors there was gold edged porcelain and silver..silver…silver..Jermaine’s treasure hunting specialty..

French Kissed

 The gamut of price ranges…but each and every piece fit for a queen…

French Kissed

Hostess gifts and wedding gifts and gifts for…ourselves!

French Kissed

 As always…the best part of these events is meeting the stalwart new and old friends that made the short and long trips to attend! Susan from A Blooming Rose Musings was there to help, and Jermaine and I loved meeting the fabulously charming Rié of the brand spanking new blog Portobello Design. Check out her latest post and you can see more photos of the event. Though being somewhat too far away to attend, my wonderful friend Karin of La Pouyette in Perigord, France wrote an informative post on some of the antique linen I brought to sell that is rare if not exclusive to the US market. Karin sources these wonderful uniquely woven white, indigo and azure striped linen towels from the Basque region. Both Jermaine and I appreciate all the support, far and wide! 

It was a lot of work and pure joy!

French Kissed

Jermaine and I were separated at birth…but you can see who has the ballerina genes…as she modeled a so, so very flattering pair of antique bloomers…

French Kissed

Much, much more to come….

The French Summer Market


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antique textilesJust a quick hello! A week to go before Jermaine and I stage our French Summer Market at her lovely home in Santa Barbara. After four years of blogging…there will be many “Trouvais” style items…lavender sachets and dyed linens and antique 17th -18th century textiles. My best sachets are made with 18th c silks, backed with Wendy Lewis (Loody Lady on Ebay) hand loomed 19th c French linen. A press of the sachet and the scent of Trouvais Lavender Hill 2014 crop lavender will infuse the air.

French Flea dyed linens

 I am wedging one of my antique mannequins in the back of the car, bringing a 19th c French campaign trunk, that 19th c red French linen ticking mattress from my antique dealer friend and fellow blogger Karin Jansky in Perigord. I’ve got Carolyn Quartermaine pillows and textiles, architectural salvage pieces, copious amounts of Bella Notte bedding, c. 1920 feathers and trims and ribbons. Various and sundry French flea market items.  There will be all the color palettes I love…the neutrals…crisp white to stone to inky grays…

dyed antique linensCarolyn Quartermaine

Blush colors with gold…

Quartermaine dyed script pillow

Initials and script and floral..

I’m looking forward to showing off some of my favorite antique textiles. My home is a haven of neutrals…but this is where I like to have fun with color and pattern.

I’m bringing as much as I can fit in for the drive down to Santa Barbara! Jermaine and I are looking forward to meeting all of you that are planning to come. I am sure a few items will be making their way back and I will offer them on Coup d’Oeil later. And we will definitely take lots of pictures!

Have a wonderful weekend!

The French Summer Market