Friday, December 30, 2016

John Constable, Painter and the Pink Transferware

I began this post intending to discuss 
just about this set of china 
I have found instead 
that I am more inclined to talk about this 
china pattern's inspiration: 
that being the famous 
British landscape painter 
from the Romantic period, 
John Constable.

The Constable Series Bicentennial ~ 1776-1976
series of china by J. Broadhurst Potters
was based on a painting by John Constable
"The Hay Wain"
located at the 
National Gallery in London, England.

This is the painting seen below.
If you click on the painting,
making it bigger brings out the details more.
He tended to paint stormy/cloudy skies and
a lot of his paintings were on the darker side
but they had
amazingly striking photographic qualities.

"The Hay Wain," 1821, downloaded courtesy of The National Gallery, London.

John Constable (1776-1837) was born at East Bergholt, Suffolk County, England who seemingly grew up drawing and painting everything around him.  He was intended to take over his father's business and did go to work for him for a year (transporting corn and coal up and down the River Stour), but his father knew this wasn't his heart and he lovingly allowed John to bow out of the trade and to attend the Royal Academy in London to study painting.  

Constable's vivid paintings were influenced greatly by how he saw landscapes and life as well as by a painting by Claude Lorrain titled "Hagar and the Angel." Constable was fortunate enough to see this painting upon a chance meeting with Sir George Beaumont, an amateur painter himself. Beaumont apparently carried this painting wherever he went {he was considered to be rather eccentric, perhaps because of this} and would share this painting with anyone and everyone.

John Constable wasn't much appreciated at the time by the art world of London.  Realistic landscapes were not en vogue as mythological landscapes and portraitures were the rage then, but Constable kept on with his paintings.  His oversize large canvases (6 footers) were painted displaying life very realistically. Their large size helped them to be noticed.  

An exhibition of several of his works in 1824 at the Paris Salon, including The Hay Wain (the one above), caught the attention of the French judges and he won a gold medal. His body of work was eventually recognized by the Royal Academy and at the age of 54 he was elected into the academy, he being the first to use classical brown tones and for painting in this realistic manner. Today John Constable is noted as one of Great Britain's premier landscape painters.

"It is the soul that sees; the outward eyes 

Present the object, but the Mind descries. 

We see nothing till we truly understand it."
 John Constable

For further information on John Constable, please visit these websites/essays:

1.  John Constable ~ an Essay, Elizabeth E. Barker, The Metropolitan Museum of Art

2. The Biography of John Constable, The Victoria & Albert Museum, London.

3. John Constable, essay, Artble

I hope you have enjoyed this little biographical information about John Constable, as I have enjoyed learning about him and his life and sharing this information with you!  

I left out pertinent information, such as his marrying and having seven children, as it wasn't relative to talking about the pink transferware china and how this china pattern came to be.  He created many, many paintings, sketches and drawings that he used to create his masterpieces and all of that can be found in the sources listed above.  The Victoria & Albert have the most extensive collection of Constable's paintings and other art work  (over 350) donated by his youngest daughter before her death. 

I realize that my own drawings and photographs are greatly influenced by the romantic painters, although it has been up to now unconciously.  I am sure that I must have seen some of Constable's paintings when I went to the V&A back during my trip to England in 2005.  Part of my quick Seven Hours in London... :)

Hopefully you will forgive me for not going into greater detail about his family life.  It is important as I always feel that family plays such an important role in who we are and how we create our artwork.  

And, I hope you have enjoyed my short writings
Blessings to you,
Barb :)

Thursday, December 29, 2016

French Ethereal Recap ~ My Favorite Posts of 2016

1. Boxing Day Boating Adventure

Well, it's pretty obvious that my favorite
posts are really ALL of them
{being the author of them, naturally}
However, that being said here are my 
Top 12 Favorite Posts for 2016.

I have really enjoyed sharing these places and stories with you!

The above photo and post shares a couple of hours out 
exploring nature at its finest!
Who would say no to this gorgeous guy?!
He was one of the park rangers at
Riverside County Park ~ Lake Skinner
and my instructor learning how to check people
into the park
{my weekend job for a year in 2015-2016}.

2. Living in Small Spaces

Creating a gorgeous home wherever you may live!
Kind of a theme throughout late 2015 and all of 2016,
it's fun sharing these ethereal romantic tiny homes!

3. Burning Through Atlanta
Monsieur Rabbit Comes to Tea

I have two favorites from the 
month of March:
I shared about my three day trip to the
Design Bloggers Conference 
in early March 2016.
Soooo much to see and learn!
I hope to go again this year ~ it is in 
Beverly Hills, California
and is linked above.

And, here is Monsieur Rabbit sipping his tea and enjoying
a muffin or two
{or three!}...

4. Spring Blooms: Color Inspiration

Need I say more?  The pictures in the post share it all.

5. Bridal Shower Tea

Having our son and daughter~in~love's wedding this year
really was inspiration!

6. White and Silver Daydreams

Daydreams and ethereal thoughts and reminiscings...

7. Shopping at Magnolia Farms!

Really called Magnolia Market at the Silos, I still think of Chip and Joanna Gaines'
beautiful marketplace here as the farm.
Find inspiration and some goodies you might want to buy!
Please also visit their website at:
Magnolia Market at the Silos

8. Antiquing at Second Impressions

All kinds of wonderful things can be found at
Second Impressions
like these door escutcheons and door knobs!

9. Jouyeaux Anniversaire

Sharing the love my mom and dad had...
<3 p="">

10. Super Easy Fabric Pumpkins

This has a companion post in November sharing 
a whole bunch of pumpkins
made and given out to friends ~
A Little Toile de Jouy Table Styling.

11. An All~Hallows Eve Table Styling

A fun collection of photos shot in the evening's twilight.

12. A Pink Christmas Tea Photoshoot

Finding this transferware was definitely my Christmas present
for the year!

Well, I hope you've liked this little tour 
through the year and please feel free to 
read at your leisure.
It has been my honor to write these up for you!

If you missed
Your Favorite Posts
for 2016 
please click on the above
and it'll take you there.

Looking forward to sharing more
decorating, crafting and places
with you in 2017.
Blessings to you, always,
Barb :)

Wednesday, December 28, 2016

Classic Cream Scones Recipe

Today I'm sharing a little 
cream scone recipe
I received from a friend
some time ago.
This recipe reminds me of 
wonderfully rich scone I had with 
clotted cream and jam
in England 
about 10 years ago...

Tuesday, December 27, 2016

French Ethereal Recap ~ Your Favorite Posts of 2016

"The Girls" feature quite a bit in this ole blog!  They are my favorite decorating pieces, to be sure!

Alright... Where to begin? 
{so much has happened!}
This has been quite an eventful year for our family 
with our son marrying his lovely bride 
this summer then our daughter 
moving out and out-of-state
then our own move to 
our daughter's new state, 
which I truly feel
God had planned all along.

It has been a good year and a reflective one for us.
We've learned to live in very tight quarters, learning to cook, live, 
and blog/work in a super small area
{or not cook as the case may be!}
my hubby and I are looking forward to an even better 2017
we are MUCH wiser for this time past and are very grateful 
for these new beginnings...

Sunday, December 25, 2016

Merry Christmas! ~ Christmas Around Town

Just a quick post to share a few favorite
Christmas time photos ~ just call it
a little Christmas afterglow.
Some of these I found
around town.

Hopefully you've had a lovely time opening gifts
this morning with your family and now the 
turkey or ham or tamales
are in the oven 
{or on the stove} 
are cooking away.

Enjoy these photographs...

A sweet outdoor setting here at camp.

A serene nativity in a shop window at the
Golden Triangle Mall in Denton, Texas.

Everyone's wish wrapped up in a sparkling
ornament ~ from Sears.  Also, a little taste of Paris...

This nativity found at church ~ the reason for the season...

“Therefore the Lord himself shall give you a sign; Behold, a virgin shall conceive, and bear a son, and shall call his name Immanuel.”
Isaiah 7:14 KJV

from our old home...

May your family be so richly blessed this
Christmas season,
Barb :)  

Saturday, December 24, 2016

Two Simple Christmas Place Settings

This has been a crazy week with shopping for
last minute gifts, making baked goods to share 
with neighbors and waiting for deliveries. 
And, if your week has been crazy, too 
with work, 
holiday parties, gift and cookie exchanges 
and all the merriment that 
goes along with the season...

Sometimes the last thing we want to do 
when family or company is coming over for dinner is 
to set an elaborate table.
Instead, plan on just putting out a few simple china 
and crystal pieces that look well together.

This table setting pairs a simple gold charger 
with a festive wintertime plate and 
jolly red napkins gathered with sparkly napkin rings.
Add just a few gilded nuts or ornaments to your table,
a nice centerpiece, a few candles and call it good.

These two table settings took under five minutes to create.
If you have some leftover garland or tree clippings
add those to your holiday table
as they would make a lovely addition.

Create as much of your meal as you can in advance.
One big trick I like to do is to bake any cakes 
I plan on serving on the weekend before and then freeze them.
The morning of the party, just pull out the finished cake and thaw.
By the time of the party, the cake will be ready to serve.
Cookie dough can also be made up, rolled into balls and 
frozen too to bake on the day of your party.

Two simple settings and a couple of easy ideas
to help make your party more enjoyable
and give your more time with your guests.


Happy Christmas Eve!
Barb :)

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