Friday, October 26, 2012

Warning! Kitty intensive post!

I've been working on a new corner to take photos for Ebay and Etsy...

Isn't it pretty?

And you would think that wouldn't be HARD....

But then you don't have a new kitty that thinks the world belongs to her...

and she could possibly be right!
Albert Einstein had to get in on the redo...

She's into EVERYTHING!

Nothing is safe...

I keep telling her the antiques are worth more than she is...

she ignores me....

Because we both know it isn't TRUE!

Thursday, October 25, 2012

House opens after 100 years

Maison Mantin. A house in a nearby town. A beautiful house. A lovely house. But what makes this house so special? 

The last owner left the house to the city when he passed away. Under one condition: it had to stay closed for a century and then be opened to the public.

The owner, Monsieur Louis Mantin, passed away in 1905... Meaning that this house is now open for the public!
It opened a couple of years later than Monsieur Mantin would have wanted, but he forgot about one small detail when a house is hermetically shut for a century: decay. It took almost 4 million dollars to get it back into shape...

Monsieur Mantin obviously was loaded. His house was the first to have electricity, had some sort of central heating system and has sterling silver window-closures, just to name a view extravaganzas. Ohw. And of course there is the room with the leather on the walls that has been painted with gold and silver. Real gold and silver. This room is  one of the two leather covered rooms that remained in entire France! Very unique.

The lightbulbs are still the ones that were in there when Louis walked around the house, the papers are still on his desk. The renovators did an amazing job on giving the public the impression to have gone back in time. Fabulous!

Up until a couple of decades ago, these lightbulbs were still produced. Now they're no longer made. So if these lightbulbs break down, they cannot be replaced.

The bathroom has all sorts of nifty features. So there was floor heating and in the middle of the picture you can see a small cabinet? That was were the towels were placed. It was connected to the central heating system, so dear Louis always had warm towels!

The large lamp contains three lights inside the crown: red, white, blue. Protest. Rebellion. But stylish. :)

And let's not forget the impressive Boudoir...

So if you're around Moulins in the Allier départment (région Auvergne), don't forget to go and visit. And if you're as wealthy as Louis was, please, consider closing your house, with all the content in it, and handing the keys to the Mayor as a serious option.

I travelled through time.


There's a wiki-page on 'Maison Mantin'

Featured this blogpost on:

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Sunday, October 21, 2012

Listing, listing, listing...

As said earlier: I'm an addictive person. I really didn't find time to list things on eBay, due to a huge 'Sacha Kay' order with a very tight deadline.

And I really missed the listing! Can you imagine? I have never 'done' something with eBay in my entire life and after a couple of weeks listing things, I just miss it when I can't find the time to do so!


The order is packed and gone...

... and I have tons of GREAT stuff to list on eBay, like there are 1860s books, an 1850s bizz-card with wax seal, an absinthe fountain and silver sugar tongs. And much more! Oh joy. :)

And yay, tomorrow I get to see my linen attic again, for I have this wonderful viscount crown monogramed nightgown, amongst other wonderful linens...

I can't wait to show off everything I have.

À plus, Mes Amies!


Tuesday, October 9, 2012

Addiction: Homemade Sweet & Sour Pickled Cucumbers

I'm an addictive person. Ehm. Not that people get addicted to me, but saying that I'm quite sensitive to addictions, that is.

One of my addictions is 'Sweet & Sour Pickled Cucumbers'. And I'm not the only addicted person: my husband can't stay away from them neither.

So the 'three weeks waiting time' that goes for the cold method of pickled cucumbers, wasn't working for us. We need pickled cucumbers and we need them fast.

If we look at a large pot filled with them, we just cannot stay away. And hiding the pot in the basement or somewhere doesn't really help. There's always one of us knowing where the pot is hiding...

We had to come up with something 'We make it now, we eat it tomorrow'-proof. And we worked out a warm method of making them. And that works! Even the next day they're already good. Of course they get better when 'resting' longer, but we're already happy. :)

Since I figured that we're probably not the only ones being somewhat impatient, I like to share our recipe. It's not higher science, so I don't give exact measures, there's really not much to do wrong as long as you got the vinegar / sugar ratio good.



- cucumbers
- vinegar
- salt
- sugar
- peppercorns (or dried spanish pepper even)
- onion
- garlic (optional)
- mustard seed
- dill
- other dried herbs (or spices) to your liking (like thyme, rosemary, etc. and/or spices like clove, juniper, etc)

Wash the cucumbers and cut them in slices or fingersized pieces. Put them in a container and cover them with salt. Leave them rest to for 24 hours.

Put the cucumbers in a colander. Don't rinse!

Measure out 2 : 1 vinegar and sugar. So if you use 1 liter of vinegar, use 500 grams sugar. Heat up the sugar, vinegar, mustard seed, pepper and herbs in casserole.

Meanwhile peal the onion and garlic and cut. Put the onion and garlic in a thoroughly cleaned (canning) jar.

When the vinegar mixture is boiling, throw a batch of the cucumbers in it and bring back to a boil. As soon as the cucumber gets the typical 'pickled cucumber colour', get them out with a slotted spoon and put them in the jar. Don't leave them in too long, otherwise they'll get 'snotty'. Repeat that batch after batch till the jar is full or all the cucumbers are done.

Then pour the vinegar mixture over the cucumbers in the jar. If all is well, you get to cover the cucumbers. If not, bring some more vinegar and sugar to a boil in the 2:1 ratio.

Close the jar and let cool down. If cool, store in fridge or basement. This mixture should stay well for quite a while (even up to a year!), for the vinegar and sugar are preservatives.

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Saturday, October 6, 2012

Feather Bolster Pillows

French Bolster Pillow

From France:

Sacha has had so many requests for the Feather Bolster Pillows that we are going to list them for you.
We are always surprised when we run into such a cultural difference!
Something so very normal to her, is something very romantic French and unattainable to me.  
Not anymore!  I'll be having one of these on MY bed soon!
These are brand new. Pillow form ONLY.

A bolster pillow case is quite plain and simple, yet an essential item for that perfect French Made Bed. No real French bed goes without a bolster. Even hotel rooms often still have those laying on the bed and to be used, not the 'hard decorative ones'!
On the pictures it's filled with a standard French bolster pillow that has a length of 160 cm (63"). The sides are traditionally left as is: open and hanging down, not tied with a ribbon or something!