Saturday, December 10, 2011

Color Me Provence - La Première Partie

While we were in Provence in September, we encountered color everywhere. 

Orange and Chocolate in Gordes

Un marchand de fruits called Orange and Chocolate.
Photo by Dianna Cramer

Des fraises. We bought them and ate them on the spot.
Photo by Dianna Cramer

Where Picasso Shopped in Avignon

Picasso wore Souleiado shirts. His picture sits on a shelf in the Souleiado store in Avignon.

Souleiado is a French brand of clothing and home decor with roots firmly planted in Provence.  They create the most gorgeous printed cotton fabrics. The process goes back to the mid 17th century when the Compagnie des Indes Orientales began to ship colored, printed fabrics from India. These intricately printed patterns became fabulously popular and were called "indiennes". 

Soon the French learned the secrets of the color-fast dyes used in India, and began to print their own cottons using local flora, herbs and vines as inspiration. These patterns were called "les bonnes herbes". Napoleon liked patterns of milles raies (pinstripes), pois (dots) and petits circles (little circles).

I purchased the deep-violet velvet coat hanging to the left on the rack. I think it's very Paul Poiret.

A coat by the French designer, Paul Poiret.

I wore my Souleiado coat to lunch at Le Gigot on Cornelia Street in New York City.

The gold sequin hat and scarf are from Souleiado too. 

The linings are very beautiful.

Me in Seward Park on Essex Street, New York City
Thanks to Richard Cramer for the photos of me in my coat.

Richard is wearing his new Souleiado shirt with an orange pashmina loaned to him by the restaurant, Le Vivier in Isle sur la Sorgue.  Photo by Dianna Cramer

It was a chilly evening, and we were sitting on the deck overlooking the river Sorgue.

Dianna knows color too!

Lunch at La Cour du Louvre, Avignon

After shopping in Avignon, we had a lovely lunch at La Cour du Louvre in Avignon.
 It was in a quiet courtyard.

These meringues were as delicious as they were pretty.
 Meringues are made from whipped egg whites and sugar.
 Photo by Dianna Cramer

Avignon Illuminated

Avignon is still ringed by its stone ramparts giving it the aura of a secret city. It has many tiny, cobbled streets to explore and it was the base for our travels in Provence.

It has a fascinating history as a city of popes and anti-popes. From 1309 to 1377 it was the seat of the papacy, instead of Rome. The Papal Palace looms over the city -- and I'm sure it has a lot of seats, as popes need to sit down quite a bit. Parts of Avignon are run-down, but now that the TGV train makes travel to Avignon from Paris both easy and fast, real estate has nowhere to go but up.

Photo by Dianna Cramer

Sycamores or plane trees (as they are known in Europe) are everywhere in Avignon.

Aix-en-Provence Through a Candy-Colored Lens

La Confiserie
Bremond Calisson in Aix en Provence is a beautiful candy shop. They specialize in the diamond-shaped marzipan-like sweets called calissons.

A Bientôt!

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1 comment:

  1. Oh la la! The cakes and treats look so yummy, and those strawberries were the best I've ever tasted! I now understand why Provence was so inspiring for artists.
    The color everywhere was incroyable!