Tag Archives: vintage

House tour: The secret Paris apartment of Madame de Florian

10 Jan

The story of Madame de Florian’s home seems almost too far-fetched to be true, but the discovery of her glamorous Paris apartment – which has been locked behind closed doors since 1942 – is evidence of a life and style too fabulous to be fiction.

Paris apartment of Madame de Florian time capsule

Abandoned Paris apartment of Madame de Florian

taxidermy in Paris apartment of Madame de Florian

Paris apartment of socialite Madame de Florian 1942

Portrait of Marthe de Florian by Giovanni Boldini

{Getty images via AnOther}

The apartment belonged to Marthe de Florian, an actress and socialite who lived in swirl of fine gowns and love affairs with important men, from Prime Minister Georges Clemenceau to painter Giovanni Boldini, who captured her beauty in the radiant portrait above. She lived in this decadent apartment on the Right Bank with her own portrait in pride of place until she died, leaving her home to her grandaughter, Madame de Florian.

In 1942 at the age of 23, Madame de Florian was forced to flee Paris as the German troops drew ever nearer. She locked the doors and moved to the South of France, never to return, although she continued to pay her service charges until her death at the age of 91. It wasn’t until 2010 that auctioneers opened the doors to the apartment once again and discovered the incredible time capsule that lay gathering dust inside.

Amongst the elegant carved furniture, moth-eaten silks and dulled cut crystal the auctioneer came across Marthe de Florian’s portrait alongside ribbon-bound love letters that confirmed the identity of both the artist and subject, who was only 24 when it was painted. The painting recently sold for an astonishing €2.1 million… the apartment however remains in the hands of the de Florian estate, back behind closed doors and just as it was the day Madame de Florian left.

Ps – If this apartment captivates you too, you must visit Dennis Severs’ House in Folgate Street. It’s the closest you’ll get to the magic of an abandoned home.

CLOSED Last chance to enter our screen print giveaway!

12 Nov

Our fantastic giveaway to win a hand-pulled A2 Campfire screen print (worth £60) ends at 10pm tonight so don’t miss out! Designed by illustrator Double Merrick exclusively for Decorator’s Notebook, this is the perfect present for adventurous types.

Double_Merrick_screen_print_60_Decorator_s_Notebook_1024x1024

To be in with the chance of winning just CLICK HERE TO ENTER plus there’s a BONUS ENTRY for everyone who shares a link to this giveaway on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram or Pinterest. Remember to tag @DecoratorsNotes so we can keep track.

For more information please take a look at the original blog post.

CLOSED Giveaway! Win our exclusive Campfire screen print

5 Nov

UPDATE This giveaway is now closed – good luck to everyone who entered! The winner will be contacted by email later this week.

It’s one whole month since the Decorator’s Notebook Shop opened its virtual doors and to celebrate, we’re running a fantastic giveaway! In a slightly tenuous nod to bonfire night we’re giving away an original Campfire Screen Print to one very lucky blog reader.

Win this exclusive Campfire screen print at Decorator's Notebook

The Campfire screen print is one of our personal favourites… it was designed exclusively for us by Double Merrick, a brilliant illustrator who lives and works in France.

Together with den building, homemade catapults and Horlicks; campfires are the stuff childhood memories are made of. We created this nostalgic print for adventurers young and young-at-heart, who know the irresistible draw of flickering flames and a warming meal at the end of a day in the great outdoors.

The print is hand-pulled in Britain using three colours of ink, each printed with a separate silk screen. It is printed on thick archival-quality A2 paper.

Win an original screen print at Decorator's Notebook

Want to win?!

All you need to do is sign up to receive our newsletter, where we share offers, updates and news from the Decorator’s Notebook world (with a 100% spam-free guarantee).

ENTER HERE >>>

Please make sure you complete all fields in the form for your entry to be valid.

GET AN EXTRA ENTRY by sharing a link to this blog post and the first image via Facebook, Twitter, Instagram or Pinterest. Remember to tag us @DecoratorsNotes (Decorator’s Notebook on Facebook) so we can keep track of your bonus entries. Here’s the shortlink: http://bit.ly/17BGNfh

T&Cs: Giveaway closes on Tuesday 12th November at 10pm when the winner will be selected at random from our mailing list subscribers. The prize will only be sent to UK addresses so please do not enter if you live outside the UK. The winner will be contacted via email.

Visit Decorator's Notebook Shop

Surprisingly fabulous Frome!

2 Sep

I have to admit to being a tad depressed this weekend as my brocanting chums began posting photos of heaps of vintage wonderment at this year’s Braderie de Lille. However, on Sunday I picked myself up, wound on my scarf (it was the 1st of September after all) and drove over to Frome where the monthly Super Market was in full swing.

Now, growing up a Westcountry girl, it has to be said that Frome used to have a reputation as, well, a bit of a dive. Recently though, I keep hearing people I know to have impeccable taste talking about Frome wherever I turn, so it was high time I cast my preconceptions aside and checked out the transformation for myself.

And I am so glad I did!

Frome flea vintage market

vintage stall at Frome Flea market

vintage enamel Frome flea market

vintage telephone and kitchen storage jars Frome Flea

vintage antiques From Flea market Somerset

Frome Super Market is actually six mini markets wrapped up into one on the first Sunday of each month. I’m afraid I was dashing around so excitedly that I was overcome by a huge case of #bloggerfail and didn’t take any pictures of much beyond the first few stalls of the Frome Flea, but you’ll have to trust me that the Artisan Market and Farmer’s Market were also brimming with creative and tasty wares. While some towns might’ve been tempted to eek out all their events over the course of the month, the stroke of brilliance here is that instead they all happen on the same day with the whole town centre overtaken with stalls, live music and special Sunday opening of the many independent shops so there’s a definite festival atmosphere in the air.

Talking of shops…

St Catherines Hill shops Frome

{all Decorator’s Notebook}

The cobbled streets around St Catherine’s Hill have gained a reputation as Frome’s artisan quarter and drawn a wonderful array of independent vintage and craft shops with hipster levels to rival the coolest parts of Shoreditch (and thankfully much higher friendliness levels too). I didn’t have time to visit everyone, but here are some highlights from my first visit.

Frome’s Top Shops…

Make & Mend Vintage: a beautifully curated and displayed vintage clothing boutique with everything from ’30s crepe flapper dresses to lace wedding gowns. The colour blocked rails are especially pleasing.

Assembly: an intriguing mix of men’s clothing and homeware… although as a girl who loves utilitarian style, the Welsh floor rugs and Duralex glasses could have easily found their way home with me.

Owl: a contemporary art gallery run by six artists working in paint, ceramics, wire, felt, glass and printmaking. Gladys Paulus’s stunning sculpted felt animal headdresses have to be seen to be believed.

Millie Moon: haberdashery heaven – this gorgeous little shop will make you want to fill your pockets with buttons and ribbon and instantly dust off your sewing machine.

Seed: between the Frome Flea and St Catherine’s Hill, Black Swan Arts Centre is home to this lovely collection of work by British designer makers. If you’re into handmade jewellery, you’ll definitely want to stop here.

Have you been to Frome recently too? If so please do jump into the comments and let me know what I’ve forgotten or missed. I’m already looking forward to a return visit – can’t believe the transformation of this creative little town!

3 best upcyled lighting ideas

20 Aug

upcycled colander wall lights

upcycled bowler hat wall lights

upcycled metal bucket ceiling light{all Decorator’s Notebook}

All spotted during my recent trip to Yeo Valley Farm with the lovely crew from This is Your Kingdom.

Join The Room Debate!

9 Aug

Friday again… how time flies when you’re having fun / working your arse off!

Today’s pick for our Room Debate has quite an unusual style so I’m intrigued to know what you make of it. I suppose it’s two rooms really, so there’s double the choice of elements to love or loathe!

If it’s your first time joining in, simply take a good look at the photo below then head to the comments with your answers to these two questions:

One thing I like most about this room is…

One thing I like least about this room is…

open plan living room and dining room Lizzie Orme for Style at Home{Lizzie Orme for Style at Home}

Have fun debating guys and I wish you all the loveliest of weekends. See you in the comments!

Join The Room Debate!

19 Jul

Happy Friday everyone! I hope this light and airy room captures the mood of the moment for you and has plenty of elements to discuss for The Room Debate today.

Everyone’s welcome to join in of course. If it’s your first time, simply take a good look at the photo below then head to the comments with your answers to these two questions:

One thing I like most about this room is…

One thing I like least about this room is…

white vintage living room

There are plenty of things to love about this room for me… but a couple of things that irritate me too! Looking forward to hearing what you think…

Have a lovely weekend – I’m off to Art in Action in Oxford and really looking forward to it.

A pretty bedroom (sage and gorse again)

22 May

sage and yellow vintage bedroom ideas{Sean Fennessy for The Design Files}

I still can’t get enough of this colour combo so this delicate bedroom scheme immediately caught my eye. There’s more of this vintage-inspired home at The Design Files.

House tour: butter factory turned toasty home

20 May

Originally built as a butter factory and most recently used as a candle maker’s workshop, owners Greg Hatton and Lucy Marx had to melt an inch-thick coating of candle wax from the walls of their future home with boiling water before their renovation could begin. And I thought stripping wallpaper was bad…

red brick factory conversion

vintage dining room with rough plaster walls

vintage living room
relaxed vintage interior
row of vintage chairs
vintage house tour
vintage bedroom ideas
vegetable garden Australia
Maybe the interior is a little too rough and ready for everyday living, but as a place to visit I think this home looks idyllic. I love the relaxed vintage vibe and the way the patina of the building has been retained in the peeling plaster and chipped tiles, not the mention the dream vegetable plot and homemade honey.
Not sure I’ll be copying the marrow centrepiece idea though!!!

House Tour: not your usual Finnish home

28 Mar

For reasons I won’t dwell on, I spend a lot more time than the average Brit reading Finnish interiors blogs. Despite having  the most incomprehensible language imaginable, I can usually spot them from a mile off because they almost all the homes have a remarkably similar style. Black, white, big Marimekko prints and a hit of bright yellow.

So when I came across Maria’s blog Diagnoosi Sisustusmania (Interiors Mania) I was pleasantly surprised by the welcoming vintage vibe of her lovely Finnish home.

vintage Scandinavian style living room

vintage style kitchen with exposed brick wall

Maria’s blog mainly tracks the restoration of her house and her flea market finds. I like the relaxed, non-try-hard vibe, mixing vintage bits with inexpensive high-street accessories like the cushions from H&M home. Her style feels achievable and real somehow. Styled, yes, but not contrived.

vintage dining area with painted floor

cream painted vintage kitchen unit

Maria’s clearly a dab hand with a paintbrush and there are some really cool things going on with the floors in her house. Check out the checked floorboards in the living room and this pattern in the hallway. If I’m lucky enough to have original boards in my new flat I’d love to have a go at something like this…

hallway storage painted entryway floorboards

vintage hallway storage ideas

Upstairs the bedrooms have that magical mix of warm and inviting and fresh and calm.

vintage antique bedroom furniture

cosy vintage country bedroom

And tell me… what teenage boy wouldn’t want to have an old VW campervan embedded in their bedroom wall?

teenage boys bedroom decorating ideas

vintage wooden crates as wall display storage

{all Diagnoosi Sisustusmania}

Follow the renovation diary and soak up more inspiration by clicking through to the Diagnoosi Sisustusmania blog.

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