April 29, 2012

l'élégance rustique du


Click on photos enlarge details"
Built by Dore Callaway (Me!) The rustic elegance of... My French kitchen

Bird house built from salvaged picture frames, candle stick columns, vintage iron curtain rod corbels and hooks used for their perches and salvaged woods from job site remodels that I will salvage from in my interior design work. A French kitchen is all about treasured objects, here one of my French style birdhouses added to the theme of all things much about handed down, French flea market collected and created with a rustic rural French jardin in mind.

The French are trendsetters, famous for their food, wine and décor. Decorators often borrow from the French and table settings are no exception. In creating a French look, whether elegant or country, a French table must have stemmed glasses even if the guests are drinking water (or any cold beverage), it is served in stemware. The French use several different sizes and shapes of stemmed and stemless glasses provided all are clear. A separate glass for water and wine is a necessity. When arranging the glasses, place them largest to smallest from left to right. The French often serve different wines (one with dinner, one with dessert) which requires more than one wine glass. The idea is to be sure there is a different stemmed glass for each wine or beverage entertaining your meal and desserts.

Cutlery recommendations on knives, forks and spoons lean more towards placement on the table than what to use. Photos of French tables usually feature silver cutlery. Place knives to the right of the plate with the blade facing the plate. Forks go to the left of the plate with a soup spoon on the outside of the fork (if soup is served). If a teaspoon or dessert fork are used, they belong above the plate. In my case I set my French table with silver toned flatware by (Lenox)I love the Fleur De Lis like motif at the ends of their handles.




Plates are the decoration demanding attention. The plates can have scalloped edges or other designs lending an understated elegance as I did here using a pale pattern in a patina that lends to the feel of my rustic rural French home. Stoneware is often a first choice when used on the French country table, a separate plate is a must for each course like salad, soup, dinner, bread, dessert. I used my (Noritake- Memorabilia)Gala Cuisine, and of course the sweet birds make for charming my French table when I am not using my all pale of whites.

The Center (piece) of Attention
Centerpieces add awe to any table. A simple bunch of flowers in a stoneware pitcher is all a French table needs. On my table I used an old vintage bucket filled with ice keeping the French lemonade cooled. The dents and chips added to its worn distressed French flea market brocante feel. The idea is simplicity with the tables design while keeping all things French in its uncomplicated theme.


click on photo large details.

For a casual French slip-covered feel to an odd chair you can cover them with a thrift find or a borrowed white long sleeved shirt from his closet. Then button the shirt onto the chair bringing the arms to the back side tying them in a lose knot with a handmade tag marking your guest seating place along with a snipping of lavender as I did here. You may also fill his front pocket with dried lavender for a calming scent replacing the lack of a floral table arrangement.



Hand painted signs by Dore (me!)
Inspiring the rustic poetry in this French setting.

38 comments:

PURA VIDA said...

I love love love your post. Incredible talent and ideas

Castles Crowns and Cottages said...

Bonjour ma belle!

Ta salle à manger et tes décorations sont si sublimes et jolies. Quelle inspiration pour moi, même si nous avons fini notre décor. Je veux BIEN peintre les murs de mon studio en BLANC et puis, je vais te montrer un photo.

Ah comme j'adore le goût français pour TOUTES les choses, le décor, la cuisine, LA VIE!

Je t'embrasse tendrement. Anita

POWDER GREY said...

They look lovely Dore! Very clever, well done.... x

Ozma of odds said...

...dearest Dore ~
yours, is a world that i could truly melt away into.
your presentation is liken to that of the sea ~ peaceful ~ lovely ~ calm...
yes, to sit upon one of your lovely chairs would be sheer delight!

xo, Rosemary

FleaingFrance & French Shopping Tours said...

Beautiful, soft colors and images....ahhhh.....thank you for sharing.

Zuzu said...

I sigh out loud when I visit your blog, Dore! L.O.V.E. your birdhouses!
Hugs,
Zuzu

d e l i g h t said...

A beautiful post which shows your wonderful creativeness and some excellent information! The birdhouse is marvelous! I am going to try the shirt slipcover today. A great idea! Have a good day.

Beach House Living said...

What a lovely setting to linger over and enjoy with family and friends.

Rosemary@villabarnes said...

Your posts are always a beautiful retreat. I love the idea of the shirt on the chair. The overall atmosphere of your decor is so soothing.

Elizabeth Maxson said...

This is probably one of the most inspiring post! I just love everything about it. I am REALLY inspired by the beautiful bird houses....I just may have to make one...if I do, you will get the credit!

And the shirt idea is a real stealer...love that.

And you are so RIGHT about the table being simple and uncomplicated. That is something I admired and learned when I lived in Europe...those dang Europeans can make a paper napkin look elegant (but come to think of it, I don't remember ever seeing paper napkins over there....). Simple, elegant and very COMFY, never stuffy.


Your home is just perfect in my eyes.

Thanks so much for sharing your talent and gifts.

Love
Elizabeth:-)

Lisa @ Fern Creek Cottage said...

Gorgeous photos (as always!) I just love chippy paint and the wonderful chalky colors. Or shoud I say neutrals? :)
I find myseld drawn more and more to whites with lots of gray. So these photos were a feast for mt eyes!

Christel said...

Hello Dore, what a beautiful setting. To be a guest at your table would certainly be a honor. I too love the bird house! So clever, and refined. The elegance you bring to rusty old iron, and weathered wood is purely stunning!So glad I saw your post today just before I sat down to create a dollhouse doll, you always inspire me. I have been wanting to create a tiny dancer for my theatre, but have not found time...yet! So many ideas swirling around for the theatre setting, I will be sure and send you a message when I finally do post a featured doll for the theatre, thank you again for such a beautiful creation. xoxox Christel

Ashley said...

Dearest Dore, this setting is perfect in every way, you continue to inspire me, with your design and you forever kind words....I wish you a week of warm wishes!! Xo ~Ashley

Shanon at Vintage Sparkle Chic said...

I love it all! Especially the birdhouses. I love all of the detail you included. Beautiful setting for a lucky guest, or just your family.

~Shanon

Angelsdoor * Penny said...

Dear Dore
How I would to be a guest at your table.. What a beautiful setting.. The birdhouses... They are magnificent!! When I look at them I can just see your imagination twirling around in the creation process. I just love your pieces.. So clear, the thought and work that has gone into each piece.
Wishing you a wonderful week ahead.
fondly,
Penny

Mrs. Sutton said...

What an INCREDIBLE post! What you have just described is EVERYTHING that I wish to achieve through my dining and entertaining experience - and you make it sound so simple - I can see that it's like second nature to you! You must be the most DIVINE hostess (If the table is that good, I can only imagine what the food must be like!). And such beautiful styling, colours and photography - I LOVE it ALL! xxx

Petite Michelle Louise said...

what a lovely..lovely table setting...i would so enjoy breaking bread with you there dear dore. i just adore every petite touch....merci for sharing...sigh...

A Cottage Muse said...

Oh Dore I love that birdhouse! I would love to try and create one, thank you for inspiring me!
The table you have set is beautiful, could you save me a seat?

VERBENA.... NESTED TREASURES said...

Dore to think of such a simple but inspiring post first of all most woman do not know how to set the table so you are giving a sweet little lesson...and..your eating area is beautiful...you know how much I love you & I think all the special nooks you created in your home need to be published for all to see. You not only have exceptional taste but such an serene & wonderous style. Thank you always for all your support dear friend. xo Laura

Burlap Luxe said...

Laura, you have to make a trip back to Calif, and stay with me we will shop the beaches like crazy.
You are a dear sweet inspiring friend and I can not wait to see your feature in R/P

lots of love
your soul sista!
xoxo
Dore

Heaven's Walk said...

Oh Dore....you simply amaze me and totally inspire me. What beautiful birdhouses! I love that you used all salvaged pieces. :) And I learned so much from your French setting photos. Thank you for being who you are and for being so beautifully creative! ♥

xoxo laurie

kerrie of sea cottage said...

Serene.elegant.beauty. You really know how to create a peaceful setting to linger in for hours over candle light. Stoneware is my favorite..but your bird china sings quietly to the heart.

WhiteWhispers2u said...

Simply Beautiful My Dear Friend! Such a clean, fresh space.Thanks for all the info always love to learn something new~Cheers Kim

Linda Leyble said...

Hi - very beautiful. Each vignette is lovely. I do love how you tied the shirt to the odd chair!! Very creative.

Linda

Elizabeth Eiffel said...

As usual, you post never cease to inspire. The French are masters of understated elegance - so appealing.
Bonne semaine.

Vintage Home said...

I am sure I could spend a wee bit of time ( a lot really!) at this stunning table..the finish is wonderful! But your dishes are the sweetest what a delightful pattern!Thanks for sharing and inspiring!

Vintage Home said...

p.s. the bird houses are CASTLES!

BonjourRomance said...

Dear Doré,
How I've missed the beauty I always fuind on your blog. Love all your kitchen details.
Yes, you must wander over to France and stay a while.
Talk soon,
Mimi

It's me said...

What a beautiful blof you have....thanks for visiting mine...love Ria....xxx..

kerrie of sea cottage said...

French Friday greetings to you Dore`

I do actually have french lavender growing directly across from where my daybed sits. Four lavender plants and chippy terra cotta pots in between, along with my tiny herb garden of English thyme, italian oregeno, sage, and rosemary. I have plans to replant mint in two of the pots to set bedside the bed and a table of some sort would be nice next to the bed for my tea and books! Have a lovely weekend. ox Kerrie

BellaRustica said...

Ever soothing. I closed my eyes at the end of a long week and just listened to the music.

starsfault said...

Beautiful, beautiful photos and rooms.

Blessings ~ Eileen @ Starsfault

Karena said...

Dore I must thank you again for all of your loving friendship and support. It means the world to me!!

I have featured an Interview on my site with Tina from The Enchanted Home...

xoxo
Karena

Art by Karena

Rayanne said...

You have created a lovely peaceful blog, dear! I love coming here and looking at all your beautiful designs! Blessing to you, dear one!!

Aimee said...

Hi:) It's been a while! I've been trying to e-mail you, but it's not going through! I have some news I want to share. Can you try e-mailing me? Maybe it will let me "reply" back.
Aimee
Garden Adornments
AzariaRaven@aol.com

Leslie said...

What a wonderful idea to use a men's shirt as a slip cover! I like the simple, uncomplicated look in these images.

leslie

Cindy said...

Oh how i love your blog posts... you just take me to another place. Your dining area is everything good... I was in heaven listening to you talk about the table... and the stemware, and the casual french elegance... it's all so pretty, sigh...

Cindy

Roberta said...

A simply beautiful idea to wrap and tie and white shirt to the chair! Lavender in the pocket? even sweeter!