Monday, December 28, 2015

The blue rooms - part one



My friend Anthony kindly placates me in calling it "your room" - well, at least he does when I am present - for he knows it is my favorite in the house.

A quick left at the top of the first floor landing and the space opens up like a dove being set free from a cage...out towards the elongated windows whose shadows ripple with the bumps of the original glass... through the French doors and on to a wrought iron balcony overlooking the garden, one where I can picture myself balancing a tea cup on the railing while my other hand clasps a long silk kimono, chin aloft.

If this room were indeed mine, I would line the walls with bookcases filled with every kind of book imaginable and pile up faded Persian rugs on the floors. I wouldn't need much more in the way of furniture than what is already there, save for a matelas for the Empire day bed, a hidden stereo and maybe a tinkling Louis XV chandelier just because the light would be - so - very - pretty. 

Without falling into the tattered traps of Miss Havisham, I could be quite content in such a space and might never need to leave.

But for Anthony, this will not be his "only" room for they found that it connects directly to a smaller bedroom through a door that had been sealed off for quite some time. Wisely, the former occupants left the key for the lock on a peg for future use. Isn't that something? Of course, these days we would have tossed it into a drawer somewhere only for it to be lost for forever. I suppose, when you live in such a house, you tend to think on the long-term.

This little corner of the house also has its certain charms. It wasn't until I leaned in close to the remains of the geometric wallpaper that I realized that it was Cubist inspired and had been of a very fine make. Now, little is left and the wild stripes of the ancient glue have zebraed the walls in somewhat of a mix between Kelly Wearstler and Keith Haring. For now. Something tells me that this patina might not stay and the sad sink centralized between the windows might come down - even while I can imagine someone long ago quietly washing their hands in it while gazing out at the sky.










Today is an imagination day. Or a day to "fill the well" as Julia Cameron instructed in "The Artist's Way." So Remi got out one of his many photography books and I read an article on the life of Ellsworth Kelly; interestingly there was enough overlap in the subject matter so that we were able to have a nice exchange. But I have also been listening to the various birdsong that vibrates through this tiny village and delighted in a lone violet that had been forgotten on the walking path. 

Are you taking time for yourself this week? The year is winding down.


Thank you for all of your interest in Anthony and his partners amazing renovation project.
If you missed the initial post, you can find it: here.

With my Best from Provence,
Heather



45 comments:

  1. Shadows should make us stop and breathe in the essence of a room...indeed you have just done this...lovely. I feel the light of Provence so well!

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    1. This is beautifully put, Kerry. And friends, if you were as intrigued as I was by the idea of her "cruelty free taxidermy" please stop by her super charming shop:
      www.farmlass.etsy.com

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  2. Happy new year Heather. I am longing to wind down and just stop to reflect but up to now it;s been hectic. That room is the stuff that dreams are made of. I cannot wait to see how it all turns out.

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    1. I hope that you get a bit of a breather, Loree...it is so important at this time of year!

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  3. Beautiful description of a beautiful space

    I'd line the floor along the walls with single mattresses, hang gauzy natural linen for the windows, paint the ceiling palest blue and the walls aubergine, hang a real bouquet of branches over the restored to working fireplace, and in the center of the room a low thick glass table nested on a natural gnarled wood base. After its all finished, I'd open the French doors to the balcony, prop a big fluffy woven pictorial pillow against a wall, and day dream myself into a nap.

    This week I am devoting to dreaming.

    Wishing You & Yours the Best of the New Years with Dreams Come True

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    1. Wow, I am still getting caught up here in the comments section but those are some really fantastic ideas! I love the bouquet of branches especially...And it was evident that the fireplace HAS to work, no? :)

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  4. I agree with NAOMI............contact that MAGAZINE RIGHT AWAY..........and see if you can sell them the before and after shots!!!THIS NEEDS TO BE FOLLOWED.
    I am sitting on the edge of my seat!
    XO

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    1. You are a wonderful cheerleader, my friend. :)

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  5. In the true "flavor" of that remarkable space .. how about these two guys to honor the ancient and herald the future .. Oh Yeah !!! Pardonnez-moi Mesdames et Messieurs, que je roule sur les tapis persans!

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uT3SBzmDxGk

    Always a pleasure to enter your world, Heather, thank you for the gifts you've shared in 2015!

    Mahalo et Merci,
    Bill

    www.kauai-to-paris.com

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    1. Wait, what rock have I been living under?! That video has 51 million views and I had never heard of them before! I LOVED it. Thank you so much for such an awesome gift, Bill - perfect to jumpstart 2016!!!!

      Bisous,
      H

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  6. Stunning photography, dear Heather. Yes, we are winding down this week; glad you are, too.

    Kx

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    1. I hope that you had some rest, Katherine. We ate way too much...and it isn't finished yet!!

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  7. At least two spaces on the walls that I want to frame as is - as is being wonderful.

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  8. Hi Heather - here's to your creative 2016 - not sure how you will top some of what you have shared in `15 - but hey it is all magic!!

    This world you share is so full of intrigue - the wall paper!! the colours - so much thought and who were the original dwellers? Amazing!

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    1. Ah, there is more story to come Wyn! And thank you for your wonderful compliment. I thought 2015 was a quieter year here on the blog but that is ok too. :)

      And sending those wishes of booming creativity right back to you!!!!

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  9. oh my gosh...it's like a dream...finding a room that you didn't know was there when you unlock a door long closed. Thank you for fueling my imagination with your blue room rhapsody! And here is one of the sexiest voices I can think of to sing this classic Rogers and Hart song...the first one is Chet Baker singing this song acapella, the second is him playing it on his trumpet. Not sure which one I like better....

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_TZtwexOeC8
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GQ2vkX4HI2A

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    1. Oh wow, I haven't heard that acapella version in years! Thank you so much for both of these links...dear me how I love Chet...that probably isn't a big surprise to you is it? ;) But I would never have thought to have put this together with my post. Maybe (with due credit) for the part two?
      Gros Bisous,
      H

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  10. These rooms are just what they need to be, with the winter sun casting the shadows. I agree that the day bed with some rugs would be quite adequate, if one had a nice stack of books & a pot of fine tea.

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    1. Absolutely! Those would be non-negotiable. :)

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  11. This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

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  12. Heather, you said you had 500 photos.....I can't wait

    Ali

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    1. This absolutely made me giggle, Ali, thank you for that! But I think that you and I might be the only ones in seeing so many. I am really, really trying to edit them down to the essentials...we shall see how I do. ;)

      Sending my Best Wishes to you for this new year...

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  13. What a house Heather, the first picture is magical, love it!
    How splendid to have come across a "secret" room.
    I'm looking forward to see Anthony's progress with this gem of a house.
    What am I doing with my quiet time between Christmas and New Year? Reading, I could read forever!
    Happy New Year
    Susan.x

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    1. I could too, Susan - yet another thing that we have in common. I don't know if you will see this (especially as I am so late in responding) but I would love to hear what you are reading right now?

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  14. Absolutely beautiful and charming!!!!
    xo
    Greet

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  15. Ooooh - love seeing more of this beautiful house! Love the idea of a secret bedroom, and love the windows and the bit of deco wallpaper - you've captured it all beautifully! I didn't know there was a magazine called "World of Interiors", but I'm with La Contessa - contact them immediately to sell them this amazing story!! As for the year winding down, I'm feeling anxious - I wanted to reminisce and think of where I want 2016 to go but practical things keep getting in the way - I guess that's what happens when you have a small business that restarts on Jan 5th!! (lots of scrambling and panicking). Maybe I will schedule some quiet time for today!! Thanks for the respite with your beautiful post!

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    1. Anything that brings you a bit of a breather or some happiness makes me feel great Sister. I love you!

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  16. Such beautiful photos. You are outdoing yourself. That last photo of the scratches on the wall, should be made into wall paper or a painting!

    Sandra Sallin

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    1. Isn't it amazing Sandy? I am glad you think so too, Madame L'Artiste!

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  17. I’m glad the secret room is not for the woman in the attic. Renovation is the enchantment ater discovery. Anthony and his partners should be having one of the fun times of their lives.

    May you and Remi have a safe and healthy New Year. I have too many books to read on top of my eCourses assignments.Well, it's a new year.

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    1. You are always, always learning something (and often many things) new, Edgar. I admire it so much...
      Safety and Healthy to you and Mrs. Abstract too...Plus of course more discovery!

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  18. What dreamy, other-wordly, images. Just beautiful. I hate the thought of redoing any of this, but it will happen! The walls, the light, the views, and the photos are just enchanting. Looking forward to following more of the renovation!

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    1. Libby, you will see that they have the best taste and all intentions of honoring the patina and history of the house...just not yet as I still have so many "before" photos to share!

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  19. An imagination day. My, but we do need those... Elsworh Kelly. Have you seen his exquisite line drawings of flowers? Not what he's famous for, but so sensual.

    Wishing you all a wonderful new year.

    xo

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    1. Oh my gosh, I had to google them and I am so glad to discover them - how gorgeous and yes, sensual. It makes me see the rest of his work differently - thank you so much for the suggestion.

      Much love to you.

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  20. HAPPY NEW YEAR DEAR HEATHER! I wish you and Remi and the doggies a very happy and successful year 2016. May all your wishes come true!

    Beautiful post, beautiful images and a great project that you document here. When I saw the overview images of the last few posts on my cellphone version I thought immediately: Those last posts, "Like pearls on a string. So precious"!

    In fact, this documentary is precious. (Worth to be kept!) And I love to go slow all the way!

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    1. Silke. :) You are so wonderful. Thank you so much for this and know that I am sending a huge balloon bouquet of Wishes to you and R so that you have a really wonderful New Year!
      Gros, gros bisous and an American style hug. :)

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  21. That sumptuous green surrounding the fireplace...wow! I have spent the last 45 minutes just taking in these photographs. You are such a talented and sophisticated visual artist as well as writer and, I'm sure, performer, Heather! I rarely am able to delete any of your posts, as I want to keep them at my fingertips. Merry belated Christmas to you, Remi, Ben and Kipling on this ninth night of Christmas, Leslie in Oregon

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    1. Thank you so much Leslie for the wonderful compliment of your time, which is precious! And for your continued support and kindness...I know I have said that already but I mean it every single time. I am so glad that you are enjoying this. It was my favorite subject that I shot in 2015 (with our Magnolia tree in 2nd place!)...
      xo

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  22. Heather, I love the photos! Fabulous.
    Judy

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