Gardening may not have been discussed a lot in Sofia Coppola's Marie Antoinette, but visually the director left no doubt that the French queen's days were flower-filled. Using poetic license, Coppola brought audiences into the Dauphine's private realm, indoors and out, even enlisting fleuriste Thierry Boutemy to help create the look. In doing so she piqued younger viewers' curiosity about the real (yet incredibly fanciful) royal gardens. Now a new historical account, From Marie-Antoinette's Gareden: An Eighteenth-Century Horticultural Album by Ēlisabeth de Feydeau, explores the teen queen's passion for nature. Just as scholar Caroline Weber used fashion as a point of departure to share fresh insights about Marie Antoinette and her position in 18th century France, de Feydeau uses flowers.
But de Feydeau's book is profusely illustrated with watercolors by Pierre Joseph Redouté, and as the title suggests, has the feel of a lavish compendium. I'll be reviewing it toward the end of August. For now, just wanted to put the book on your radar. It hits stores in September.