Tuesday, October 12, 2010

~ French Pitchers and Seashells ~

Unbeknownst to me, I somehow suddenly have a collection.
I haven't the foggiest how this happened.

I've never really had a collection of any sort in my life.

Well....maybe wristwatches.
Oh, and purses. Yes, purses.
Ummmm.....do shoes count?
Ok - definitely seashells.

I do know that sometime during this summer
I fell in love with 
French body pitchers.
(Or "jugs" as they're called across the pond.)

(I think I have Maria at Dreamy Whites to thank for my new obsession love.) 

I wanted to know more about the history of these unique pitchers, but couldn't uncover a lot of information. I did learn that "French country farmhouse style decor evolved from the beautiful hamlets of the south of France to become one of the most widespread styles of interior design around the globe. It embodies the rustic nature and charm of old French farmhouses and country homes." 
French country style decor imitates the treasures you might find in a cottage in rural France and when you think of the French countryside, don't we all envision lavender-filled meadows, bicycling down a country road, and sparkling sunshine?

These pitchers remind me of those things.

A scratch or a ding in the enamel becomes part of the beautiful French history.

I find myself constantly on the prowl for another one to plunk a fistful of flowers in.
Or a pretty vintage linen teacloth.

On the other side of the French country table in our kitchen is part of my seashell collection in a vintage-looking wire lobster basket.

It's filled with gifts from the sea washed up along the shores of Sanibel Island, 
Caye Caulker (Belize), and Anna Maria Island -
a couple of large shells purchased at a unique little shell shop on Sanibel, 
and a gift of some beach treasures sent to me from my sweet friend, Debbi
at Love of the Sea  
(who is blessed...and I mean reeeeally blessed to sink her toes in the sand whenever she wants.)

In my favorite book, "Gift from the Sea", Anne Morrow Lindbergh wrote:

"For it is only framed in space that beauty blooms...
...even small and casual things take on significance if they are washed in space."

She called her collection of seashells her "island eyes".

I like that.

French pitchers and seashells.
Somehow, they just belong together...

...washed in space.

{ Hugs }

~ laurie

(See you at Faded Charm for White Wednesday!)


  1. I love your pitchers! And the sea shells in the lobster basket are awesome! What a great collection!

  2. I love your obsessions..beautiful room, lady. I love your blog.

  3. hi laurie! i love the pitchers and the shells. thanks for your comment, i am still tring to get current on blogging and ommenting.



  4. Both collections are so pretty! And yes, I think they go nicely together too. ::Jill

  5. Hmmm...love that line...Washed in space. Do you suppose that is what the first space travelers dreamed about? Being washed in space? Can you iamgine what THEY went throu....oh never mind...I got side tracked there for a moment!

    I LOVE that you have a collection! Seriously, I knew you were a collector from the get-go. You just hadn't realized it yet. Now, if you are VERY nice to me-I will post a picture one day of MY pot...sigh..alas, it is NOT a French pitcher.it is a huge old white porcelain on tin pot that my father swore he used to make coffee when he set up housekeeping as a single man-back in the 1930's. It has a couple of chips in it but I love it! And...I love YOUR collection of pitchers...AND your collection of seashells...Heck..I just plain old love YOU~You goofy girl!

    PS. We did NOT take The Pearl with us. She is not quite ready for her maiden voyage. That will happen come Spring. Gotta go-2 more days of VAY-CAY-SHUN left...and then it is back to the basics of life! xxoo Diana

  6. Your dining room is taking on the look of a real French farmhouse....LOVE the pitchers, and your basket of shells reminds me of the sea.

  7. Why thank you so much for you sweet comments :) and I'm loooooving these pitchers and shells!! How beautiful and charming! You're just the greatest decorator :D

    Happy hugs to you sweet pea!
    ~Terrell @ Frou Frou Decor~

  8. I LOVE enamelware, but don't have any French pitchers. I'm drooling over your collection Miss Laurie!! I can see this is something I'll be on the hunt for now thanks to YOU! ;-)
    Happy WW!
    Big HUGS ~ Jo

    P.S. Love that bead board wood ceiling! It would look so gorgeous painted white! :)

  9. The French pitchers and seashells just seem to go together after reading this post, and I do love both. I love "Gift from the Sea" too. It's one of my favorites. I have it up on display right now though, because it's also a very pretty book to look at :-)

  10. There's something so Calming about Sea Shells ~

  11. I love your dining room! The pitchers are gorgeous.I could see why you would want to collect them,and i love your basket with the shells.....Kathy

  12. The pitchers are a great collection and look great on top of that cabinet!

  13. Hi Laurie
    I love your pitchers... we call them jugs over this side of the pond also... and those sea shells are wonderful... Funny how collections sneak up on you.. today I realised I have 5 jugs/pitchers myself..

    Have a lovely week xxx Julie

  14. I love your collection and how you displayed them... would love to find some myself (pitchers)... love your photos! HWW!

  15. Your collections are lovely! Love your enamel pitchers ~ I've been on hunt for one this entire summer, to no avail. They're so very difficult to find here ~ even at the big antique shows! Have a great day!

  16. Oh Laurie...I love the room in the first photo...so lovely! And the pitchers...perfect treasure to collect!!

  17. Your collection of white French pitchers are divine! Your kitchen/dining area is so frenchy and love your collection of seashells in the wire basket.

    BTW, I'm having a gift raffle. Hope you can stop by and enter to win some cutesy things. Stopping by from WW.

  18. It's interesting how collections start. I have a penchant for silver plate and way too much I think at the moment.
    Your white pitchers are so nice. I like the look and of course and displays of seashells always catch my attention.

  19. Your wire basket display is just wonderful!!! And those lovely pitchers..., they do remind me of a country trip through the Provence I took a long time ago!

  20. I also have a French pitcher. Mine has a blue rim. I'm popping over to Love of the Sea for a look now. Blessings

  21. I adore the French pitchers! I have only a few and they are perfect for flowers! Your hutch/cupboard is gorgeous and the pitchers look perfect perched on top! I love love love your basket of seas treasures!!! I love collecting special sea things from my favorite places! I even "stole" sand from up north and made letters out of it :) Beautiful home my dear friend!!

  22. Love the French pitchers...and of course, you know I love the seashells...thank you for mentioning my blog! So sweet of you. I am going back to Sanibel next month - so stay tuned for more!! :)

  23. Hi Laurie, this is one of my all time fav posts! The vintage enamel pitchers and the incredible armoire
    are superb! I just love visiting your page, you've always got something cool going on. Very well done, the add of shells make it so beachy,clean and crisp! tami from the high street cottage

  24. Oh my gosh, Laurie - your home is GORGEOUS! Yes yes yes - what a collection to have! Love the French pitchers! And your seashell collection and driftwood is just perfect. I also love that large armoire and your ceiling - love it all!! Yes, Blogger can be a bugger at times! haha... Donna

  25. Laurie,
    What a beautiful space. I love your collection. When I find something I really like I buy more than one. I do that even with clothes. That must be the start of a collection. Love it when you quote "Gifts From the Sea." Always so wonderful to hear the words. Thanks for stopping by. It is so peaceful here at your blog.

  26. gorgeous Laurie... I love the drift wood.

  27. Those pitchers are fabulous! Love them and would love to find some for myself. Lucky you!

  28. I have yet to own a french pitcher...but always have my eye out for one...I love their rustic charm...and as for your lobster basket...I totally love that...the wood just makes the basket.

  29. I stopped by to thank you for visiting my blog and I've discovered your lovely blog, it's so nice to meet you! I will certainly be visiting again and again:)


  30. I'm right there with you with love of pitchers or jugs(like sarah of a beach cottage calls them). I've got a tiny collection too. But my collection includes white water pitchers too and white creamers(you know the kind that look like mini pitchers). Anyhoo, I adore your french countryside style dining room..it is so cozy. I would feel right at home there.

    Now for your Question? Do you know that I am fairmaiden?? fairmaiden of the sea??? is moi! so all poetry written by fairmaiden is by me. Maybe one day I will compile a little book. Books I've been reading lately~ anything by Thomas Merton.

  31. Hello Dear Laurie...Your pitchers are great! Love them. Of course, Gift from the Sea is one of my favorite books of all time. I always get extra copies to give as gifts.

    Thank you so much for visiting my blog and commenting. I always love hearing from you.

    You have a lovely way with words, Laurie. Take care and have a peaceful, happy Sunday. Susan

  32. Laurie, thanks so much for coming to visit me. I LOVE your pitchers, but then you probably guessed that already. How beautiful your home looks! love it. xo Lidy

  33. Laurie,
    You have captured the soul of your room with those beautifully displayed french pitchers.
    I too love them so, not being one to really collect a certain piece. Yet like you letting it collect me and taking its place in my heart!

    I love the room and that space you have created for yourself is a space to love.

    Thank you for your visit to my peaceful place of inspiration.

  34. I LOVE your French pitchers and you displayed them so well.


  35. Laurie, Thank you for the encouragment. I will let you know if/when I ever put a book together. I've always wanted to write a cookbook too with original recipes, simple wholesome ideas, and a bit of nutritional tips(my B.A is in Food & Nutrition). I would do the artwork in the book too.

  36. Your pitcher collection is beautiful!
    You asked about my roses . . . they did have black spot through July since it was sooo wet here and they do have eaten leaves. The secret . . . tear off the bad leaves if they're in the photo. Our roses finally started looking healthy in August.
    Have a great week!
    ~ Julie

  37. I adore those old enamelware pitchers, too. I just picked up my fourth one this weekend, it's a beautiful pale blue.

    Yours are just lovely!


  38. I have a thing for white pitchers, so I love your collection. The seashells look stunning with the driftwood. Such wonderful pictures. Thanks for sharing them with us!

  39. I love your website. It was so relaxing looking at all the different way you create new life to things. I cant wait to start my own creations!
    Love the music too!


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