Rêve d’Automne

I know that we are in the hottest part of summer. Granted, we’re just a five weeks away from the beginning of September -and the beginning of my own very favorite season.

And pumpkin spice everything.

This is the time of year that I shoot our Autumn photographs of antiques from France, think about Autumn features on our FrenchGardenHouse blog, and more.

And get really, really excited about all the autumn deliciousness to come.

It is the summer’s great last heat,
It is the fall’s first chill: They meet.
–Sarah Morgan Bryan Piatt


I get through the hot summer month of August by dreaming of fall. Our FrenchGardenHouse studio is filled with the colors and textures of fall, and a whole container filled with French antiques.

{I won’t make you really crazy by mentioning that all my antique articles for magazines are due in the middle of August – it’s already been Christmas in my studio!}

Autumn doesn’t officially begin until September 22, the autumnal equinox. The word equinox means “equal night” – night and day are almost the same length of time.

During the equinox, the Sun crosses the “celestial equator” {the line that marks the equator on Earth extending up into the sky} from north to south.

Until it does, I’m living in autumn splendor already at FrenchGardenHouse, and thought you might want to join me, visually, at least!

I am so excited about the antiques I was able to bring from France for autumn  you.

Not just for fall, one of my personal favorite finds are these old, old hemp aprons from a now-closed cooking school.  My imagination goes in overdrive about what students learned there, how many tarte aux pomme they made, and tasted.

How many of them actually went on to fulfill their dream of opening their own bistro, restaurant, or became head chef at Le Meurice?

{obviously I’m a romantic, it’s why I am an antiques dealer, every single thing I buy and sell has stories, mysterious, and have been touched by human hands and hearts.}

Each one of the 20 or so I was able to bring to FrenchGardenHouse has history. Some have hand sewn mending, some have stenciled numbers, some have carefully removed stichting that used to be a student’s monogram, ready to be used by next year’s class?

None are perfect. They have some weathering here and there, and slight areas that show when Maurice spilled a pan of hot abricot confiture all over the floor. That’s precisely what I adore about them – they’ve lived!

Little intact antique French gardener’s sieves like this are getting so difficult to find, that I rejoice when I find one! Made of bentwood long ago by village craftsmen, each is hand made of bentwood and fitted with a screen.

At harvest time, when the summer garden had spent it’s luxurious blooms and was preparing for autumn, a French gardener would “sift” flower heads with one of these, catching the small seeds below. The seeds were then categorized and placed by variety in its own paper envelope to use for next year’s garden.


Autumn has caught us in our summer wear. –Philip Larkin, British poet


I could go on and on about the autumn, the French antiques that have arrived for our favorite season here at FrenchGardenHouse.  For now, it’s enough to know that fall is happening in our own little FrenchGardenHouse studio…soon to arrive layer by layer in the shop.

Here’s a preview of our Rêve d’Automne in Garden and Kitchen departments.

The Rêve d’Automne Gift Collection is coming together beautifully. I can’t wait to share it with all of you in a few weeks!



11 thoughts on “Rêve d’Automne”

  1. Claire

    Fall means college football, football, football! It will stay warm to hot here on thru October but we just gather pumpkins, corn stalks, and scarecrows and decorate anyway.

    1. Claire, I can’t wait!! Welcome to my circle of fall lovers and autumn kindred spirits.

  2. Oh, Lidy, this post was scrumptious! I woke up to a surprising 65° this morning (it’s been 10° warmer, and so humid), and this post was the perfect one to read. Your images, those finds (!!). You have me visualizing all the stories you’ve spun. It’s the cooler, crisper mornings and evenings of Fall I love best, with warm hours & blue skies in between. Perfect weather!

  3. Lidy, your autumn inspiration is so beautiful. Do you know that my heart flipflops a little this time of year when others begin to post photos like this. Here in Texas the calendar may turn but we won’t feel a twinge of autumn until October. It will remain hotter than hot here for a long time. We can dream though. 🙂

    1. Stacey, thank you! My heart does the same, August is a hot month even here by the ocean in southern California.
      Oh! I can’t wait for fall….I join you in dreaming.

  4. Thomas Mann said, “For really in my experience, there is a sympathetic relation between ourselves and the season that produced us.” Perhaps that is why fall is my favorite season as I was born in October.

    1. Lisa, I love that! I adore fall, although I was born in February…but it’s close enough, right?

  5. Good Tuesday morning Lidy! I feel cooler just reading your lovely post about autumn. (It was 99 degrees here yesterday!) Here in Colorado, fall is spectacular with quaking golden aspen and even a bit of snow on the mountain tops. Ahhh. Am looking forward to seeing more of your French fall goodies. Stay cool my friend. Hugs, Pat

  6. So stunning! I’m in awe of your styling, Lidy. Sharing on my FB page this week 😉
    Hugs, Jamie xo

  7. Denise

    I want to say thanks for the opportunity to win the magazine one layer cakes! You were right, I might have gained a few pounds looking through it. can’t wait to try my hand at making a few. It’s very generous of you to have these awesome give aways I received it in the mail today.
    thanks again,

    1. So glad you loved it, Denise! There are so many delicious one layer cakes in there to try, I bet each one is a huge success!

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