Monday, July 23, 2018

Summertime Alfresco Dining


 Chloe Crabtree from Celebrate and Decorate is sponsoring another tablescape bloghop this week. The first tablescape hop I participated in was the Alfresco Tablescape hop in 2016.  Bloghops are like being with old friends and also making new friends as some have participated from the beginning and others are new to the group.

Join me for a summertime alfresco evening here in the deep south. I'm on my patio on an overcast day with a nice breeze, perfect for alfresco dining. I've cut flowers from my garden just for you.

Thursday, July 19, 2018

Alfresco Tablescape Blog Hop Next Week


 Join me and a group of talented tablescapers for an Alfresco Tablescape Blog Hop next week July 23-27 sponsored by Chloe Crabtree @ Celebrate and Decorate.

Here is the schedule:

Home is Where The Boat Is
Everyday Living
A casa di Bianca
Living With Thanksgiving
Corner of Plaid and Paisley
Me and My Captain
PMQ for Two
Red Cottage Chronicles
Life and Linda
Bluesky at Home
The Painted Apron
Belle Bleu Interiors
Our Crafty Mom
Celebrate and Decorate
Debbee's buzz
Simple Nature Decor
From My Carolina Home
My French Twist

Sunday, July 15, 2018

Flower arrangements at Château Chenonceau


Travel with me to France to Chateau Chenonceau in the Loire Valley of France and see beautiful fresh flower arrangements in every room. The elaborate architecture, period furniture pieces, and fine art work along with the lovely flower arrangements make Chateau Chenonceau a favorite among visitors.  
 This is Diane de Poitiers' bedroom, King Henri ll's favorite lady to whom he donated Chenonceau. In 1559, after King Henri's death, his widow, Queen Catherine de Medici, had the chateau given back to her by Diane in exchange for Chauont-sur Loire. 
This arrangement in this exquisite vase was my favorite of all the flower arrangements. 
The first thing Queen Catherine de Medici did was to place a portrait of herself in Diane's room. This room had a river view and had great natural light.
The Gallery
Measuring 60 meters in length, 6 meters in width and with daylight from 18 windows, a tufa and slate-tile floor and exposed joist ceiling, this is a magnificent ballroom.

Notice the embossed medallions of historical people along the wall. Also, the
live topiaries prominent in the niches.
During the winter, they still light wood fires for warmth and historical ambience.
This arrangement in the Gallery, even though it reflects the later period of the french revolution, was my inspiration photo for a patriotic post you can view here. All the flowers in the chateau arrangements are grown in a vegetable and flower garden on the property. I did not get to see the cutting garden or the greenhouses but read about them in the guide book. A team of 10 gardeners work this garden, tend the greenhouses and keep the fresh arrangements throughout the chateau.
You might be interested in following Chateau Chenonceau's instagram here. You can see the cutting gardens and flower designers at work and many other gorgeous photos of the Chateau and gala events there. I was thrilled to see many other flower arrangements in some of the same places I had photographed.   It is beautiful decorated for Christmas!
This hall is covered with a series of rib vaults and I wish I had gotten a good picture of the beautiful ceiling in this hall.

The gorgeous textiles on the beds were stunning as were all the tapestries. Note the flower arrangements on the bedside tables.

This is a close up of the matching tables and identical arrangements on each side of the bed.
This is Queen Catherine de Medici's bedroom. I wish I had a picture of the entire room but it was crowded and hard to get a good picture without people in the way.
As shown here, can really see the beauty of the tapestry with good light.

Close up of the flower arrangement. I think you can see how thrilling it was for me to see all these creative arrangements.

All the fireplaces were very elaborate. This is Louis XIV's drawing room.

King Louis XIV Drawing Room.  He visited the chateau once and in memory of his visit years later gave his uncle the Duke of Vendome his portrait in this extraordinary frame.

We enjoyed hearing the history of this chateau and the history of the furnishings and its inhabitants over the years. I covered some of the history in the post, Gardens in France. Today, I am concentrating on showing some of the interior rooms and the flower arrangements I was able to photograph.  There is just not time to cover all the history. However, I did find it interesting that, during World War II, the Chateau was used by the Resistance as a bridge out of occupied France across the River Cher into Vichy. During the First World War, it served the French more conventionally as a hospital.
Now, onto the kitchens with multiple rooms. This elaborate display was beautiful and very fragrant.

The copper pots were impressive and look at that ceiling and the stone walls and floors. 

I would love to talk to the gardeners/floral designers that work at Chateau Chenonceau! They are very talented people. 
If you are planning a trip to the Loire Valley and you are flower lover like myself, plan an entire day for your tour. We saw two other chateaus the same day we toured Chenonceau and I would have liked more time there.  I was in awe of the beauty I witnessed there. 

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