Monday 28 December 2009

I'm Dreaming of Broderie Blanche

Every year about this time I manage to hide myself away in the South of France to unwind amongst orange trees, blue skies and the antique markets of Nice, Menton, Aix and L'Isle sur la Sorgue. There are always lovely textiles to be found and I never fail to fall in love with white linen diligently embroidered with white monograms. It is beyond me how families can part with these items passed through the generations...but they do. Is it the lure of money? Is it because no-one remembers who exactly MM might have been? Is it because they take up too much space in a modern house? Or is simply because the family rarely gathers around the table for the polite ceremony of taking dinner? I remember when I was at school in France, there was always immaculate linen in the evening for supper, I can smell its freshness even now. And always there was the silver gilt little table-sweeper for hoovering up those delinquent crumbs of baguette.

Here you can see some clippings from vintage broderie blanche magazines I acquire every year - and every year my resolution is to stitch just one napkin with one initial. Maybe this year...

Here is the lively market of Isle sur la Sorgue where sometimes in winter the Mistral slices fingers and noses like a cheesewire. Bargains are hard to find these days, though the joy of looking and small purchases provide a store of pleasure for the year to come.


  1. I wish I could be there with you. It all sounds truly wonderful. I have been to Ile sur la Sorgue and agree that there are no bargains ! But looking is a great pleasure too. I also remember the little table sweepers, used in Germany as well and hung on a hook on the wall next to the dining table !

  2. Hey,hey Jacqueline if you 're in the South of France,please tell me so that I manage to meet you.I'll be so pleased!!My house is open to you!Love.Couson

  3. How wonderful to be able to spend time in such a beautiful place! I love monograms too...I will stitch one someday!