Holiday Table 2019 — With a Swedish Twist

When we love a pattern, we’ll talk about it all day long. This year’s run away hit is french and from Le Jacquard Francais.  Called Rovaniemi, it is a throwback to traditional Swedish folk tales. And if you love it — its on sale (20% off) through November 17th.

In shades of fucshia, raspberry and honey, each piece is trimmed out in an evergreen velveteen — a very new finish for LJF.  Available in eleven sizes and pieces, there are a number of ideas we have for how you can use this pattern this holiday.

thumbnail 2 (2)

Currently, we have this pattern as a window display in the store.  We have crossed two runners and anchored it with a placemat in the center.  We are using some vintage lustreware in shades of pink and raspberry.  Underneath we have a solid hotel tablecloth in fuschia — but this pattern would equally enhance an all white tablecloth.

If you have a beautiful wood table, use the placemats and napkins.  Or place a runner down the center to anchor the table.  I also have clients who use the 47 x 47″ square and turn it diagonally on the table — on top of the wood or over a solid white tablecloth to add color.

And for the second year in a row, LJF has made a matching Christmas tree skirt. This year’s has a slit to go around the base of the tree.

Rovaniemi Christmas Tree Skirt $109




And if you love Le Jacquard Francais’s kitchen tea towels, you will love their aprons. All woven in their traditional jacquard method, the apron ties in the back and has an adjustable strap for around the neck.  Rovaniemi Apron




And Rovaniemi (which is the capital of Lapland near the artic circle) also comes in neutral shades laced with an antique gold and finished in a dark velvet trim. Shown in a very casual barn setting covering a long picnic like table with benches, it is a fall pattern that will transition all through the long winter months.  And would be beautiful for Thanksgiving. Rovaniemi in Chestnut

Posted in Table Linens, Uncategorized | Tagged , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

How to Measure Your Table For a Tablecloth

We frequently get asked how to determine what size tablecloth to use on your table. First you need the width of your table and then the length.  If you are going to add leaves to your table you need to measure those also.  Formal dining length is 12 to 20″ on all sides. But very few people like the tablecloth to go beyond the seat of their chairs — so that is a good measurement to get also. If you are going to add table pads to your table to further protect it, add two inches to your width and your length.

Determine what you would like for your drop and add two times that to your length and width.  And then choose a tablecloth that comes close to those measurements.

What’s too short for a tablecloth?  Generally we like at least an 8″ drop on the sides.  With 8-10 being what most people will end up with.  On the ends, you can get by with 6″ — because your tablecloth will have points that are longer at the corners of the table — making your 6″ look okay. But 8-10 is generally the best.

On a round table, 8″ can look more skimpy so try and go for something in the 10-12″ range.  You can also go European and use a square tablecloth on a round. In this case, you will have longer points so you can get away with a shorter drop — like 6″, as the points will compensate on the overall look.

In terms of fabric, cotton and/or linen are more treatable for stains. Polyester is hard to get stains out of.  There are, however, a number of poly tablecloths that have some built in stain resistance that make them more user friendly and machine washable and dryable.  One of our favorites is Juliet shown below.  It comes in white and ivory and has a simple, classic damask diamond pattern.



And it is always smart to protect your table from heat and stains.  If you don’t have table pads, you can buy a silencer pad to go under your tablecloth.  It will help prevent scratches and scuffs and keep the dining table pristine and is heat-resistant and water-repellent. Made from cotton and polyester, the table padding can be easily trimmed with a pair of scissors — so choose the size that is slightly smaller than your tablecloth. I use this item under my coated tablecloth to protect our early 1900’s antique walnut table.


Silencer Pads

And don’t forget to have Linen Wash on hand during the Holidays!  Linen Wash

Check out my older blog post called “Cleaning Your Table Linens — Quick Tips”.


Let’s start a conversation — feel free to send me your tablecloth questions and if I can answer them I will.

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

The Scandia Difference

I have a lot of clients that ask me why does Scandia Down cost more than say, purchasing down at Bed Bath & Beyond or Macy’s.  The answer is all about quality. (You know the old adage: you get what you pay for!).  The product you get from Scandia Down is the highest grade of raw materials, starting with the down itself. Goose down is better than duck down and the larger the down cluster (Fill Power) the more rare the down is.  Those geese that live in colder climates (Siberia as an example) will produce the larger down clusters as a result of the level of warmth they need.

Labeling of down products in the U.S. is also confusing. To be labeled down, the product must contain at least 75% down.  Your more superior and hence more expensive products take the down through a cleaning process multiple times to extract as much of the dust, dander and feather quills as they can — resulting in a product that is not only cleaner and more hypo allergenic, but closer to 95% down.  The other thing about down is that it is a natural product which is subject to break down over time. When your product is only 75% down, the other contagions that are not extracted will cause the good down to break down faster — resulting in your pillow or comforter going flat in record time.

Then there’s the tick that covers the down. Many manufacturers skimp on this as well.  Thread count on ticks is probably not as relevant in a down product as it is in a sheet.  But the better ticks will not leak.  And if you want a light weight tick, you want a cotton batiste. It can make that down comforter feel like sleeping under a  feather and I find whenever I have a designer in, they go immediately to the cotton batiste. And a superior down company will warrant that tick from leaking — like Scandia does.

I invested in the Scandia Vienna down comforter (which was called the Versaille at the time) and 14 years later, it is still in great condition — fluffy and light. And I wouldn’t sleep under anything else! And when I amortize the cost of that comforter over that timeframe it cost me lass than $100 a year. And my son got his twin when he was 10 — we used it for a few years and then he changed to a larger bed. But we kept the twin and it served him well through 4 years of college and now is in his apartment closet and he uses it for guests.

During the month of August, all of our Scandia Down is 20% off for our annual back to school sale. Click here to visit our website: Scandia Down Comforters & Pillows

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

The Delorme Gardens in the South of France

One of my favorite was the hostas in the pots!

The house sits high on a hill and looks out on the valley for miles all around.

The all glass in front is where the updated kitchen was located — looks out on the valley!

The front of the old farmhouse — note the espalier trees!

From the garden side.

A pond that has its own ducks!

Another view of the espalier trees that cling to the side of the house.

A close up of the espalier tree.

They still have a small area for hanging wet clothes and linens outside — and I loved the colored clothes pins!

Along side the house in the back.

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

The Real Thing — A French Country Farmhouse

Located in the countryside around Belmont, France, the old farmhouse of the DeLorme’s has been a part of their lives for over 40 years now. We visited their wonderful home about 12 years ago, so it was exciting to go back. Some spaces were the same, but many have been redone.  All new bathrooms, a new kitchen with a glass front looking out over the valley and mature plantings have taken over.  It is clear that Ann Marie’s passion is gardening — and although it was a light rain when we were there, this did not hamper me from taking the garden tour! First, I’ll cover parts of the house.

We were greeted by a nine year old lab and a 9 month old weimaraner!!!! 

Only in France would your dogs also be on Iosis pillows!!!

One of the areas where you can really tell this is an old farmhouse is the fireplace in the living room.

Another view of the living room — modern leather chairs are anchored by lovely old bookcases and a small table and chairs.

One of about 4 or 5 armoires through out the house.

A corner working desk in the living room.

Another antique drop down desk in a corner of the living room.

Behind the fireplace, (which floated in the room) was a daybed looking out the picture window to the valley below. It was adorned with pillows in old Pierre Frey fabrics!

I think this was an old jade tree in a wonderful large pot planted in front of a large picture window.

Check back tomorrow for more on this wonderful house!

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

French Food is Fabulous!!!!!!

It almost became a joke — my constantly taking pictures of the food before we ate it. But, we were served up some mighty good looking food throughout our 5 day visit and I thought I’d share some of the highlights!

On our first day, about 2:00 in the afternoon, we all declared that we could not walk another step without food.  We ducked into a little bistro not far from the Lover’s Bridge and had the best brunch ever!

This was what I ordered — an egg over easy on a hamburger with pomme frites!

And if you want to get served fast — always order the special of the day — in this case is was the roasted chicken!

Thanks to JB, each of us got this lovely dessert plate with a small sampling of a number of wonderful desserts — including a pistachio macaron and a cup of Cappucino!

All we took a picture of from Sunday night’s dinner was the dessert — and it was fabulous! I guess we were just too tired from our first day in Paris!

Following our wonderful visit at Evelyne’s Studio, we went to Versaille for lunch!

Our first course was this polenta salad layered with roasted red peppers and a french cheese — scrumptious!

And dessert was a beautiful apple tart.

The outside of the restaurant at Versaille.

It is a converted barn of some sort — notice the original stone flooring, the hay bins on the side wall, the contemporary glass hanging lamps and in the distance, a marble statue!  I highly recommend it and riding bicycles around the lakes at Versaille after lunch.

Monday night we had a wine tasting before dinner at a small bistro in our neighborhood.  It was a lesson all about Burgundy (or was it Bordeaux?)! Note the small slices of salami and the radishes — delish!

We traveled to Guy and Ann Marie DeLorme’s house between Paris and Lyon for cocktail hour!!!! Will be posting pics of her wonderful house and his great wine cellar next.

This was my neighbor’s salad — I wish I had taken a picture of my foie gras, which was served with toasted spice bread and a pear sauce!!!!

Dessert after dinner!

Another great appetizer — this time on a dinner cruise on the Seine!

Veal medallions and fresh vegetables — with a presentation that the sauce really makes!

My dessert trio is a little melted as we went to the upper deck to take pictures! But it was great none the less!

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

A Real Wine Cellar —

We were all the guests at the home of Guy and Ann Marie DeLorme located in the countryside in the middle of France.  This is the first in a series of photos of their lovely country home.  Guy’s wine cellar needs no side points — it shows the age of the house and how wonderful it is!

Although I will comment on the entrance to the wine cellar –which is down a few steps off the first floor. Look at the wonderful black and white photos on a dusty rose wall!

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

A Few More Shots in the Studio!

I just received a couple of pics from Melissa who took some good shots while I was video taping at Evelyne’s studio.  And thought I should share them with you.

Mimetisme — new for 2012 — is printed with thirteen colors (the maximum) all of which can be seen on the strike off above.

Evelyne walked us through how she got her inspiration for this pattern — which first started with the orchids of Marcel Lecoufle (with the orange tiger lily like orchid being the driving force). She then visited the taxidermy shop of Deyrolle of Paris to look for further inspiration — resulting in her purchase of the butterflies shown in the picture.

Evelyne maintains thousands of pictures on her computer which she also uses for inspiration and coloration.

The tools of her trade — along with the butterflies!

A potential pattern of the future — with yarns shown for towels.

All materials are archived for long term reference. Evelyne was kind enough to get a few of the old books out of storage for us to peruse.

A final piece of inspiration!

Posted in Uncategorized | 1 Comment

Evelyne’s Lovely Home

A modern structure, Evelyne’s home combines a contemporary structure full of light with a classic collection that is French to its core!  I could move in tomorrow if she’d let me!

A classic Yves DeLorme patterned tablecloth is on the table — called Vetiver (no longer available) — doesn’t it add spark to the room?

All of Evelyne’s children have a musical bent and the youngest one plays the harp.

A classic french juxtaposition!

One view of the house from the outside.

This is a new addition that was just finished — with classic slipcovered furniture all around. Some in light weight linen, some in classic white sheeting.

I love this settee!

Makes me want to go out and buy an ottoman and slip cover it in linen — I think I could even sew this.

Another view of the new addition with two bedrooms down. What a treat to be at this beautiful house!

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Yves DeLorme Designer Evelyne’s Studio and Gardens

Living in the city of Versaille, Evelyne Julienne keeps her studio on premises amid lovely gardens and trees. She hosted us at her home during our Paris visit and we learned how she is inspired to develop her annual collection of prints for Yves DeLorme. Evelyne has been the designer for Yves DeLorme for 29 years. Her studio is housed in a glass house amid her gardens — giving her constant light and inspiration!

Evelyne walked us through the production of a collection, from the found objects that she develops into patterns to the hand colored water colors that the engravers then transfer to screens to print the strike off cloth.  Each strike off, once approved, then is printed in different color combinations until the right coloring is found.  Monthly design meetings in Paris review the collection and approve the patterns and colorways as they progress.

It was interesting to learn that there are maximums involved — no more then 13 different colors (as the design will be translated to no more than 13 rollers that print the fabric) and there are maximum and minimum repeats to the pattern. In an era of computer aided design (CAD) the only thing Evelyne uses the computer for is storage of pictures of her inspirations and copies of her final designs.  The process is largely creative and labor intensive — which is one of the reasons why Yves DeLorme stands out amongst the crowd!!!!

As Evelyne discussed her process, I videotaped her — hopefully I’ll be able to edit it and post it to you tube for all to see.

Walking Evelyne’s garden, it was easy to see some of the many flowers that she has created patterns around in the past — including the Lenten Rose “Hellebores”.

I think I could move into the studio!

Every one has a memo board!!!!

This peony (peonia) was the inspiration for a pattern two years ago that is currently on my bed — see the picture below!

Tomorrow I’ll post pictures of Evelyne’s lovely house!

Posted in Uncategorized | 2 Comments