Style Court

Textiles, Art History, Gardens, and a Little Mental Traveling with Courtney Barnes 2006-2016

2.02.2009

Mental Traveler

Recently I asked a few of my friends (and admired artsy acquaintances) to pretend they had time to go through an old trunk of memories. "If you could be whisked away by private jet, just for a day, what old haunt would you return to? Inspiration, not shopping, is the purpose of the adventure."

First I'll share my friend Cameron's picks: classic spots in Europe.

"During the year I lived in Paris, I frequently went to Sainte-Chapelle to see the amazing stained glass. During World War II, every single piece was removed, catalogued, packaged and stored in a safe house so that the bombings would not destroy it. There is no place like it...gives me chills every time."

"If I could only visit one museum, it would be L'Orangerie. It is tiny but has a great collection of Cezannes and Gauguins. There is also a beautiful installation of Monet's water lilies in the basement."

"I applied a few times to go and see the original cave of Lascaux, but was not accepted. Really only French scholars and PhD level archeologists or art historians ever get to go. I think it would be so cool to visit."

"You know what else I would really love to do? Be the only person in the Sistine Chapel. It is jammed with tourists, and I'd love to have it empty and just lay in the middle of the floor and stare at the ceiling. But probably what I like the most is simply touring down random streets anywhere in Europe. Every corner seems to hold little gems...well, back to reality and more laundry..."

BTW: The textile-covered trunks above are from Guinevere in London. They are yet another thing I read about going through all those back issues of Selvedge. According to journalist Beth Smith, the textiles expert, Heather Weaver, sources antiques such as Indian dhurries (heavy flat-woven cotton or wool cloths) that are used to cover bespoke steamer trunks.

Credits:
View of Paris, courtesy Mary Laura
Sainte-Chapelle images are from the site linked here

Monet's Water Lilies courtesy Allie Caulfield

Lascaux image is courtesy the French Ministry of Culture and Communication

18 comments:

michelle said...

I love the diversity in your blog...I'm adding you to my favs!

Style Court said...

thanks michelle!

Things That Inspire said...

I visited Paris for the first time last year, and as the line was so long for Notre Dame I went over to Sainte-Chapelle, where the line was not so long. You enter through the ground floor, which is fine, then you go up some curved stairs to the main area. I truly almost burst into tears when I entered the main area, it is so unbelievably beautiful. I think it is one of the most beautiful places I have ever been in my life. And, it ended up being one of my favorite places in Paris!

I did not visit L'Orangerie, and did not have time for Sacré-Cœur, but isn't is nice to leave a few things to look forward to for the next trip?

Style Court said...

Sainte-Chapelle seems to elicit a strong emotional response. Sara, yes, it's wonderful to have a place to dream about visiting on the next trip!

Karena said...

I have not visited France-Paris, and it is the top of my list. I want to see all of the wonderful places mentioned as well as the Louvre.

Style Court said...

Hi Karen -- I hope this list will inspire people, whether they are planning a future trip or just want to pick up a library book :)

kelly said...

I am definitely going to try to recreate that trunk as a diy project. I LOVE the way that looks... Great post, Courtney!

Style Court said...

Kelly -- you will have to share if it works!

Paul Pincus said...

i so enjoyed this!

Style Court said...

oh good paul!

Laura said...

As wonderful as those destinations sound, I think I'm longing most for those trunks!

The Peak of Chic said...

I agree about l'Orangerie- it's a gem of a museum!

Style Court said...

L -- I know! I've asked Kelly to give us the scoop on how she plans to tackle the DIY version.

Style Court said...

And Jennifer would be a great judge :)

Emily Evans Eerdmans said...

Cameron's wish to be alone in the Sistine Chapel reminds me of a story of Mr. EEE. Apparently he and Matthew Broderick were the last two people in the Sistine Chapel in a staredown, each clearly with the hope to be alone in the room. can't remember who won!

Style Court said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Style Court said...

Emily, we must know! Please ask.

Anonymous said...

This post reminds me of a trip my best girlfriend and I took right after high school in the middle of my freshman year in college. Just meandering the Paris streets, and walking everywhere, staying in this rinkidink backpackers motel and going to blink-and-you-miss-it restaurants. It is funny we didn't know how lucky we had it then. The trip only lasted two weeks but it was the trip of a lifetime.