Random Thoughts: Thursday Market Vs Thursday Garbage by Ginevra Held

The Farmhouse....

The Farmhouse....

So yesterday (Thursday) was Market Day.  Now depending on how you receive this blog, yesterday may now be Friday, but for our purposes here, it was Thursday.  This is called suspension of disbelief.  My apologies if you are in California or Australia.  Fine, I wrote it yesterday and am posting it today.  Just go with it...

Anyway, I may have mentioned I am currently stationed, yeah, lets say stationed, that sounds formal, in the Southwest of France, an area known as the Dordogne.

The house, that would be the 9 bedroom farmhouse and grange owned by my lovely mother, is situated in the bucolic french countryside.

Not sure if I mentioned, but I don't drive.  I have a liscence as a formality but I don't drive.  This means, to get to Market day in our closest town, which is called Eymet, I have to walk. Not a biggie, its a 25 minute walk, a little awkward on the way back from market with a lot of heavy vegetables.  But you know, that is cardio and lifting mixed with shopping so I am not complaining.

Moving along, my whole point in starting this discussion, aside from mentioning that Eymet's Market Day is on Thursday, and has been since 1270, just so you know, Thursday is also garbage day.

Now, when I got home on Thursday and literally dropped my bags, and well then I put on some shorts and got a drink of water, and maybe had lunch and then I kind of hung out in the grass for a bit.... After all that I went to get my garbage can and to my dismay my garbage was still there.

I was pretty miffed.  I mean, was I being descriminated against by the garbage men?  Like did I not put my garbage can close enough to the road? Was it clear in my placement of said can that I am American?  Was it not done in a French enough way?  What the heck?!

So I marched over to my neighbor's house to find out.  He was in his garage fixing his lawnmower as you do.  When I mentioned the affront, he told me his had not been taken either.  Relief. But why? "C'est les vacances." Its vacation. When I asked what kind of vacation happens on a Thursday, he got up, looked at the calendar and said it's Ascension.

Of course!  How could I not know? Ascension.  You know when Jesus was taken up to heaven. 39 days after Easter. Duh. Hello.  

This is what I dig about the French.  It's a Catholic country in holiday only.  Most young people live together, aren't married, do a myriad of things you are not supposed to do as a Catholic, and yet, hell yeah they'll take off time from work to celebrate the Ascension.

So next time your garbage doesn't get collected, or stores are closed or the trains aren't running, just remember to go out and get yourself a Catholic Calender.  It's probably a holiday.  That, or the French are on strike.  Holiday or Strike people, that's what's up.

This has been Random Thoughts with Ginevra Held

The Garbage Can....

The Garbage Can....

Area at end of drive where Garbage can was expertly and very Frenchly placed and yet curiously not collected....

Area at end of drive where Garbage can was expertly and very Frenchly placed and yet curiously not collected....

One Room Challenge: Southern France Farmhouse Guest Room by Ginevra Held

This morning I was perusing One King’s Lane’s Style Guide, as you do and I came across this lovely designing couple of Pencil and Paper.  I went to their website, clicked on their blog and saw that they were participating in the One Room Challenge.

I had seen this mentioned before, but had never really read the details.  It is a design competition that is much as it sounds: a One Room Challenge.  Founded by Linda of Calling it Home , 20 designers/bloggers participate in the challenge of re-designing one room over 5 weeks and share their progress on their blogs.  You can also “guest participate” so if you go to the guest participation area you will see bloggers/designers from all over participating in this challenge.  It's fun to look at the rooms they are challenging themselves to overhall.

Anywho, it started on Thursday, April 7th.  So I am technically not allowed to linkup, but I thought I would put this up as my start date and then post every Thursday like the rest of the participants.  I am a little late to the party, just a couple of days, and Woody Allen said 80% of success is showing up, he didn’t say you had to show up on time.

At any rate, this seems like the perfect framework for which to discuss one of the rooms I am going to re-decorate for the french Farmhouse.  The competition runs from April 7th through May 12th, and therefore, so will my re-design.  I am starting today by sharing with you pictures of the guest room I will be “challenging" myself with.  


Here she is:

View to outside private patio area.

View inside to back wall.

View of two beds and toile curtains.

This room has gorgeous architecture, beautiful stone walls and I love the blue and white toile!  She just needs some pop!

Ideas for the room:

I want to add some vintage pieces/objets to make it more lived in

I want to up the bedding area, adding more sumptuous bedding

Color! I want to add color. Bold color. As you may have realized, paint is my jam baby, so I am going to decide on a color scheme and the wall treatment will be paint.

Side Table Vignette styling - Probably going to go with one table between the two beds, it needs a different lamp and a few objets.


Stay tuned as I will attempt every Thursday to update the blog on what is happening in this space!!!


I am going to leave you with 2 things: Me, in case you are new here and don’t want to click on About (and I get that):

This is me, Ginevra Held, in the Dining Room I designed.


And this photo of my Mom and my friend Rafa, they are at the de Young Museum in San Francisco, (without me!) at the exhibition of Oscar de la Renta.  Next week I will let you know how this photo is going to play into my redesign. 

Rafa on left, Mom on right, and the Oscar de la Renta designed dress that Kirsten Dunst wore for her Marie Antoinette Vogue shoot.  (Basically my dream dress).

Interior Design: Styling a Vignette, creating a Sleigh Bed by Ginevra Held

French Country Styling

Perusing the internet as you do, or as one does, I came across this photo of a sleigh bed:

Into my head popped the fact that at Mom's place in France, many of the wooden headboards have not been attached to the mattresses, and therefore and hence, one could put a headboard as a footboard, and voila! You have a sleighbed.  Now, if and when you think about unattached headboards, if you think about them at all, and you are not immediately inspired to create a sleighbed, well my friends, that is the difference between you and me.  It may also be accounted for by the fact that you are thinking of other things, and, dear reader, I will give you the benefit of the doubt in this case.

I am now going to take you on a step by step of how I got from two twin beds to one adorable sleigh bed avec canopy.

French Country Beds

Bedroom "before" with 2 twin beds as you recall.

Secondary 'before" view showing curtain and curtain rod that will serve for the canopy.

The Canopy begins to form... Here you see I have attached by overlapping the curtain that was formerly for the doorway.  

The bed gets moved into place...

The second headboard is moved into place.

Now we have a sleigh bed/ day bed. The coverlet is tucked in to show off the striped bedskirt.

Curtain draping: the bottom curtain is swagged and draped over the right of the bed, the top curtain is draped to the left.

A secondary view to show you the top of the curtain rod.

Finally!!! The fun part! Pillows!!!! This is when it really becomes a day bed!

"Objets" are added for styling and to create a lovely vignette!

A more free form pillow arrangement....

A detail shot of the canopy experience...

French Country Bedroom

And my favorite vignette, using the jet de lit as side table....

So that is how I created a sleigh bed/ day bed with a canopy.  Now I strongly believe that this process is applicable in your own home.  I have shown you how a curtain rod attached to the wall with overlapping curtains can be turned into a canopy.  I have also shown you how two headboards can be made into a headboard and footboard to create a canopy bed.  So I believe this look is completely diy-able for your own home.  

A day bed is a wonderful spot for reading and relaxing and with a canopy and pillows makes for a gorgeous addition to any room.

In case you were wondering what exactly to do with your day bed, I recommend this:

What do you think? Do you fancy a daybed in your home?



Interior Design: Tiny Decorating Tip by Ginevra Held

Feel like sugar on the floor, bud dum dum da dum dum dummmm….. sugar on the floor….. (just sing it in your head…)

What do Etta James and interior design have to do with one another you might ask?  Nothing and EVERYTHING.

Basically Etta said she felt like sugar on the floor, and well, as a designer, I like putting things on the floor.  So there you go!

Alright alright, that's totally pushing it.  And please know that I deeply respect and adore Ms. Etta James, so all you bluesy types out there just calm down.  

The fact is when I was at college taking a ton of English classes at UC Berkeley (this was before I decided to major in Architecture) we were told to start our essays with a hook or a quote.  So there you go, thank you Etta for my hook.

Now to what we came for.  The tiny decorating tip: like sugar on the floor, put things on the floor. What things? Paintings! Prints! Posters! Empty Frames! Lean those suckers, layer them, stand back and enjoy.  I employed this little trick for this vignette I did and I rather like the outcome.

Now Etta feeling like sugar on the floor was not a good thing, at first things can be sweet like sugar, then you are tossed aside, wasted on the floor, sugar on the floor.  But when you put your paintings on the floor, it is a good thing and don’t worry they will not be wasted.  (again sorry to the blues fans, and please excuse me Etta, but you know…)

Also, just because things are on the floor does not mean they shouldn't be on the wall too!


Do you lean anything against the wall and on the floor in your house?  Are you ready to try it? Turn on some Etta James and get going!