A Provençal Picnic

When in France, a favorite thing to do is to gather friends and have an impromptu picnic. It’s so easy there with all the fromageries and boulangeries selling amazing food. Nothing beats the joy of a carefree picnic outdoors. But if you can’t make it to France this year, transport yourself instantly with a Provençal Picnic!

a provencal picnic


You’re sure to capture all the goodness of a beautiful summer day. The best part is that it doesn’t take much to enjoy a Provençal Picnic. Read on for easy inspiration.





We’re so happy you are here. Not only are the three of us sharing beautiful flowers in the garden, we are thrilled to introduce our special floral guest, our friend Jain from ‘ a quiet life ‘ . Our common theme is “outdoors” and you are in for a real treat when you visit Jain. Because her “outdoor” is beyond.


a quiet life


Some of the best picnics we’ve had on our { antique buying trip} travels have been simple, spur-of-the-moment ones with a French baguette, some cheese, fruit and a bottle of wine. Buying things in small stores you’ve never been to before is always a culinary adventure.

It was the French (bien sûr) who started these wonderful outdoor feasts after the revolution.


picnic set with French antiques


On paper, a picnic is basically taking a sit-down meal from the comfort of your dining room table to the inconvenience of having to gather everything you need, setting it up outdoors and then sitting down on the ground to eat. But in reality, the picnic  is so much more magical than that, isn’t it? {What’s not to love about sitting outdoors with friends and family with a hamper of delicious food?}


French picnic


At home, you can have your picnic in your own garden, at a park, at the beach, or anywhere you’d love to go. Picnics are perfect for lunch, but also dinner. {There is something magical about spreading out a cloth or blanket on the ground or a small table just when the sun goes down to enjoy the gloaming.}

Food can be super simple. I generally pick up cheeses, cured sausage, cornichons, bread and treats from Trader Joe’s and vegetables from our local farmer’s stand.


picnic food


Other than the bread, the cheese and the wine, we love to make our Salad Niçoise – it’s the perfect picnic food!

While I am generally a cabernet sauvignon or merlot drinker, a good rose is an excellent choice to serve with this kind of casual French picnic. My French favorite is Whispering Angel, made in Provence.


Whispering Angel Rose


How To Upgrade A Provençal Picnic


If you want to upgrade your picnic here are a few suggestions:


Master a Cheese Board


The French are masters at simple every day luxuries. I suggest you take an easy and personalized cheese board to your picnic.  An antique French wood board layered with two or three cheeses and apricots, a few nuts, and a little serving of French jam is just right for your Provençal Picnic.

Because Mr. FGH and I came back from our little trip feeling a bit under the weather, I set up this very very simple cheeseboard for our picnic on the back garden lawn with baguettes. cheese, organic strawberries and grapes, because basically I’m still making him eat home made chicken soup for every meal! But there are so many delightful things to add to your board, you know what you love.


French cheese board



Upgrade your picnic basket


Using an antique French picnic basket or a vintage English wicker hamper really elevates your picnic .  I am always thrilled to find these in any kind of condition, the antique French basket on the right holding the linens and baguettes has two top swing handles.


antique French picnic basket

A Provençal Picnic
Antique English picnic hamper


Bring Flowers


Flowers always bring beauty to any setting, for casual as well as more formal occasions.

{Ah! You are thinking…finally it’s about FLOWERS!}


picnic flowers


It is so easy to bring the beauty of flowers to a picnic. In your own garden, of course, you can pick a few and arrange in a vase, a wine bottle, or as I did in an antique enameled coffee pot. I picked the pink alstroemerias from the garden, and added statice  in white and purple, and tiny little dianthus chinensis that look like tiny miniature carnations. And because two are always better than one, I arranged the left over flowers in a vintage French glass milk bottle.


french antique coffee pot

French pink and purple flower arrangement


Play Pétanque


Beloved and played yearly at Mr. FrenchGardenHouse’s birthday bash, you will see people of all ages playing this French classic game as soon as the sun comes out in France.  It’s like bocce ball, and while it would be great to say we play with these antique French wooden balls, they’re really just for decor. We play with French sets that are colorful, so our little people, their parents and we can see who actually is the closest to the target ball!  Because there are prizes, and this yearly game is competitive!

A Provençal Picnic

A Provençal Picnic

A Provençal Picnic


{ps.our antique wooden Pétanque balls make a fabulous statement to frenchify your interior!}


Up Your Drinks Game


If champagne is more your thing, up your drinks game for your picnic by making the famed French 75. Using our deluxe cocktail cubes, it couldn’t be easier!


Make an Elegant French 75 Cocktail


A picnic is one of life’s simple pleasures. It’s a relaxing way of savoring the great outdoors, and appreciating the beautiful good things in life!


French picnic


Ps. I’m showing off some of our favorite “bloomers” in the garden right now. June is such a perfect month in the garden here at FrenchGardenHouse…and while I can’t take credit for these beauties {I just buy them, and Mr. FGH does the rest} I do love to share them with all of you.


french country garden


There is nothing I love more than this fresh bright green color of the boxwood hedges at this time of year.


eden rose in a french garden


The last of the Eden roses, aren’t they ethereal?


french fuchsias

ballerina fuchsia in a French pot


My father in law in Europe loved fuchsias. I know that Mr. FGH does as well, so each year I try to buy him a new one. The pink and white one is called Annabelle, this bright one is called Dark Eyes, and does have the most amazing ruffled skirts in deep purple.

I hope you have enjoyed your visit today! If I could, I’d invite you all over for a Provencal Picnic here in our back garden. I’m not sure how I would manage to get you all over here, but that we would have a grand time I’m sure of!


Shop French Kitchen >

Shop French Garden >

Please be sure to visit all my friends for their outdoor flower therapy this Monday.  Mr. FGH and I are back on the road, for a small buying trip for antiques – of course! Hope your Monday is bright and shiny dear friends!

strawberries and roses
Jain at a quiet life

summer table setting in potting shed

Mary at HomeIsWhereTheBoatIs

hydrangeas on a summer table

Pam at Everyday Living

a provencal picnic
and me

Lidy at FrenchGardenHouse






Shop for the best in French Antiques, furniture with the patina of age, vintage accessories to delight you and your family & friends, and French Country utilitarian pieces. Treasures that make your home fresh, beautiful, inspirational and above all uniquely yours. Visit our shop FrenchGardenHouse.com

28 thoughts on “A Provençal Picnic”

  1. Lidy, Your garden is the perfect spot to picnic with your backdrop of blooms! I have French picnic basket envy and your antique enameled coffee pot makes the perfect vase for flowers with your alstroemeria, statice and dianthus. I know you must be sad to see last of the Eden roses, they are beauties! Pétanque sounds like fun for all ages and I could see how it would be competitive! As always it’s a treat to share blooms with you. Thank you for the beautiful start to my morning. Happy Monday. <3

    1. Mary, barring being in France, a picnic in the garden {or on your landing by the lake!} would be divine. Wishing you a beautiful week ahead, with a little less heat! Xo Lidy

    1. Thank you so much! Picnics and flowers always make for a bright beginning, don’t they? Wishing you a beautiful week! xo Lidy

  2. My goodness, Lidy, your garden is beautiful! Love your picnic feast! You have taken me back to Provence this morning as I remember an exciting picnic we had there. You transport me to France quite often in your posts.
    Your delightful french picnic basket and lovely flowers in the antique coffee pot are so charming. Your photos are lovely.
    Your Eden roses are ethereal and the fushias and maidenhair fern are gorgeous.
    I hope your husband is well now. So sorry he has been under the weather.
    Enjoy the week ahead.

    1. Bonnie, thank you – there is something special about a picnic, isn’t there, whether it’s in France or in our own back yard! Would love to have you join me. xo Lidy

  3. Would love to be enjoying this picnic right now! I adore fuchsias and getting a new one (or a few) is a great idea.

    Your lovely posts take me back to France; not to Provence, but to the Perigord. Brantome is my favorite town and a picnic by the river ….. a dream come true.

    Thanks Lidy!

    1. Oh, that river side picnic does sound magical, Mary! I hope you choose a new fuschsia, a new flirty plant always makes us happy!

  4. Such a beautiful spot for a picnic! First, thank you for including me as a guest this month, it was a honor to join you all. Second, is there room for me to crash your picnic?! Such a lovely lay about, I instantly feel calm and rested sipping my libations watching balls roll around! Beautiful picnic baskets set the mood and of course flowers are a must! Love seeing your garden, one can never have too many flowers!

    1. Jain, it was such a pleasure to have you join us this day. Your garden is beyond magical! There will always be room for you to crash my picnic – how fun would that be?

  5. Lidy, what a great treat to enjoy a Provençal picnic in your garden. Your post had me dreaming of a return trip to Provence. The French have a way of making the ordinary, extraordinary. Your picnic spread is so lovely and oh how I love the French picnic basket! Your antique enameled coffee pot is the perfect vessel for your garden flowers. The Eden roses are breathtaking and the fuchsias are stunning. It is always a pleasure to join you in the garden! Happy Monday xoxo

    1. Pam, thank you, how can one not be blessed in a garden with flowers and birds? Always such a treat to join you for our Monday Morning Blooms. Wishing you a sunshine filled week. xo Lidy

  6. Sharon

    Love love you and this! I am moving into a small apartment but am taking everything French! Darien, Ct.

    1. Oh good, Sharon! That sounds like a perfect plan, surround yourself with the things you really love.?? Thank you for your visit.xo Lidy

  7. Barbara C

    The photography in this post is just beautiful and inspiring! Thank you.

    1. I’m so happy you loved our garden Barbara! Wishing you a beautiful week ahead! xo Lidy

  8. Shirley @Housepitality Designs

    Your French backyard oasis is the perfect place for a French inspired picnic…you have all of the details checked off….fabulous picnic basket filled with wonderful dinnerware and drink…the fruit and bread to enjoy with your exquisite wine from Provence and then the amazing backdrop of your gardens filled with the most beautiful flowers…..I too love Fuchsia….saw some at a garden center and going back soon to obtain some…Your vintage coffee pot filled with summer flowers are the perfect compliment to your Provencal picnic…so beautiful Lidy!! I wish you a most wonderful week filled with great things and beautiful flowers ?

    1. Shirley, those flowers of the fuchsias are like little ballerina tutus, aren’t they? I think hanging baskets on your front porch would be amazing! Thank you so much for visiting dear friend, wishing you a beautiful and sunshine filled week!xo

  9. What a delightful picnic Lidy! It all feels very French and fabulous! Wine, food and flowers, who could ask for anything more! Love the vintage picnic basket~ have a wonderful summer!

    1. Jenna, thank you! Whenever the sun is out, it’s a good time for a picnic, isn’t it? I wish you a beautiful week ahead, friend. xo

  10. Marion

    A lovely picnic surrounded by a garden of gorgeous flowers.
    Marilyn,Joan and Marion

    1. Thank you so much for your visit, a garden is such a treasure, isn’t it?

  11. Oh my, yes, I thoroughly enjoyed my visit today! Although it’s mid-week, I saved catching up my favorite bloggers’ posts until I had time to really enjoy reading and going over all the lovely details. Lidy, your picnic is so picture perfect, and your garden as backdrop is stunning in early June. The walnut pentanque balls are so charming! I would so enjoy spending time in your French outdoor space, sipping wine and munching on your cheese board. The flowers (I almost forgot!) are fittingly inviting in the enamel pitcher. The fuschia plants are wonderful! Thanks for MMB.

    1. Thank you so much Rita! I would love for you to spend time in my garden, too, because that would mean we would see each other! I am very happy to know that you once again have a garden to love of your own, friend. xo

  12. Lidy, you know I’m a long time fan of the French countryside and the leisure lifestyle. Oh, how I adore your style. Your garden is so inviting with the abundance of blooms, and your picnic setting is sheer delight. My husband used to play bocce, and I have fun memories of watching pétanque in France. I do have an antique pétanque ball. It’s fun to mix in with things in a dough bowl or on a shelf. I always enjoy your wonderful posts, Lidy. I apologize for arriving late. Happy Summer.

  13. Thank you so much, Sarah! I am always so happy to see you here, dear friend. I love that your husband played bocce, it really is a fun sport I think! Our family enjoys it in the garden in summer time.
    I hope you have a very happy summer too!! xo

  14. Alice Genzlinger

    This post is a keeper plus I’m Forwarding it to a friend. It’s beautiful and delicious. Oh to be at your picnic. When I’m Finally able to have a picnic I’ll revisit your post to help me pull mine off. Love love love this.

    1. Thank you Alice! I hope you have a few wonderful picnics this summer. You can have tiny ones for two! Hope you are having a beautiful week, friend. xo

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