Archive for the ‘brigitte & alain garnier’ Category

whether they’re stacked on the floor or alphabetized on ornate custom shelving, books are an essential part of our daily lives…a true reflection of our passions and professions…more tomorrow!

Karl Lagerfeld

Albert Hadley

Alexandre de Betak

Andy Newcom

Bill Blass

Brigitte & Alain Garnier

Bunny Williams

Charles Spada

Christopher Knight and Carlos Aponte

Cristina Azario

David Kleinberg

Dransfield and Ross

Garagnani and Poccianti

Gil Schafer

Greet Lefevre

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This is a busy time of year for art and antique lovers! As I write this post, the 2011 TEFAF, The European Fine Art Fair, in Maastricht is in full swing and in just six days, the 2011 Eurantica Fine Art and Antiques Fair in Brussels will be underway. To whet our appetite, I’ve included seven beautiful images from the 2010 Eurantica Antiques Fair in Brussels featuring antiques from Brigitte and Alain Garnier. Representing the fifth generation of a family that has operated an antiques auction house since 1874, Alain brings a wealth of knowledge and expertise to the business of buying and selling antiques. I hope, someday soon, I can experience this beauty in person. Who knows, maybe 2012?

photos from Brigitte and Alain Garnier

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above, photo from Nest, December 2010, Number 66

To begin today’s post, I thought I’d share with you an odd coincidence I experienced last night…at the time, I was struggling with the Dutch translation of three articles and thought to myself, there must be a story published in English about the Garnier’s and their extraordinary home…just as I was falling asleep, I noticed a google search mentioning the March 2011 Veranda…could it be? I thought I was hallucinating, as it was late and my eyes were weary…to my surprise and cheerful delight, it was true! What a wonderful reward after days of trying to translate Dutch! I immediately read the article in my March issue of Veranda, soaking up everything about the eleven year restoration of this Belgian home. The most bizarre coincidence comes with the title of the Veranda article, “Belgian Beauty”…I had named and re-named yesterday’s post about four times before finally deciding on “a belgian beauty”…hmmm…I guess it was out there in the universe and I channelled it into my subconscious!

If you are a Veranda subscriber and have yet to read the article, no worries, the photos in today’s post are from three different publications and will only enhance your experience. What I will share with you, from Veranda, is the story behind this passionate project! Eleven years ago, Brigitte and Alain Garnier purchased Vaucelleshop, a historic Flemish Estate located in walking distance of the Dutch border outside the medieval town of Damme. The country chateau dates back to 1275 when it became the outpost of the French Cistercian Abbaye de Vaucelles. Today, the Garnier’s look after eleven lucious acres of landscape in the lowlands near the sea, and continue to restore the seven historic buildings dating from the 17th, 18th, and 19th centuries. The kitchen, that I posted about yesterday, was actually a former pig barn! Interestingly, it is linked to the main structure with a windowed passageway! How romantic! The first building to undergo restoration was the 1876 farmhouse where grain had been stored above the living quarters. Stripped down to nothing more than four walls, Alain hired a restoration contractor and they essentially built a house in the house. Within the original brick walls they designed a new foundation, limestone walls and added a third floor. Amazing! One of their favorite creations is the sculptural cement and oak staircase Alain designed for the entrance hall (pictured above). Finished in gray brown chalk plaster, its dramatic curves echo the history of the abbey.

I love this quote from Alain eloquently describing his journey, “We had the patience and the passion to make this house…we put our lives and our souls into it”

below, photos from More than Classic, number 6, 2006

below, photos from Tijdloos (Timeless) number 12, Autumn 2009

factual resource, Veranda, March 2011

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Today’s post features a Belgian beauty, the kitchen of antique dealers Brigitte and Alain Garnier. I came upon this extraordinary interior while researching Belgian design and architecture. I was thrilled to discover the couple and their glorious company specializing in antiques, interior architecture, furniture design and more. With so much to share, I had a hard time deciding what to post first but once I laid eyes on this beauty, I knew this kitchen renovation would be a great place to start…

The article about the project is in Dutch but using Google translate, I was able to understand most of the details. Using historic materials and cherished antiques, Brigitte and Alain Garnier lovingly transformed a dilapidated barn into a one of a kind spacious kitchen. The countertops are 18th century French marble, complete with their original rough edges, and for the wall behind the stove, they choose the most jaw droppingly beautiful black Moroccan tiles. Wow! The rustic floors, original wood beams and natural wood cabinetry blend effortlessly with the aged marble and clean white walls. Please enjoy this thoughtful renovation!

photos from Beta Plus 2007, Bouwen met oude bouwmaterlalen (Built with Old Materials)

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