Friday, 30 April 2010

I Spy Part Five

Source Architectural Digest

It seems like most people who collect Quimper eventually have collections within their collections. I have a pitcher, plate, knife rest and porringer collection. I hope I can share them all with you when I unpack! Do you have a collection within a collection?

Happy Collecting ! Katie

Wednesday, 28 April 2010

I Spy Part Four

Source Bon Appetit

We have moved three times in six years with another move going on right now. The one thing that has been constant is the display of Quimper plates in the dining room. Some of the plates have changed but this has always been a sense of comfort. Both my children learned early on what a rooster was because of these plates and of course the french name. These plates are in many a holiday picture as we all sit around the table. These plates feel like “home” even if we are in a rented apartment. I wonder how these children feel about Quimper? Do your children or family members love it or think you are crazy?

Happy Collecting! - Katie

Monday, 26 April 2010

I Spy Part Three

Source House Beautiful

I can be in any store, home, antique show and when I see a piece of Quimper - I zoom in on it! Seeing a piece of Quimper in an unexpected place usually makes my day. How can you not be happy when you see the vibrant French colors. Its like seeing a long lost friend on Facebook! Recently, I went to a children's birthday party and ZOOM right above my head was a Quimper platter. I thought this mother and I could be friends, if ever there was any doubt that was gone the minute I saw the platter.

Happy Collecting! - Katie

Saturday, 24 April 2010

I Spy Part Two

Source Unknown

This is clearly a Pierre Deux inspired kitchen. My love for Quimper actually stems from Pierre Deux. I used to visit the store on Maiden Lane in San Francisco in the early 90's and admired the yellow walls and beautiful pottery. My first Quimper pieces were heart dishes given to me shortly after college graduation by my mother. Apparently my grandmother had a few pieces but we don't know what happened to them.

Happy Collecting! - Katie

Thursday, 22 April 2010

I Spy Part One

Source Traditional Home 2000

This week I will post a series called, "I Spy." Typically when I get my magazines and I see a piece of Quimper I ask the household to find it. The resolution on these pictures is not great but the rooms are beautiful even if you can't see the Quimper clearly!

Happy Collecting! - Katie

Tuesday, 20 April 2010

Quimper Advertisement

The advertisement pictured about is from the September, 193o's Ladies' Home Journal magazine. I wonder how popular Quimper was back then? It would be interesting to know when the peak of Quimper sales in the US took place. Where different decors popular in different decades? Any thoughts? Maybe some of our dealer/collector's have an idea...

Happy Collecting! - Katie

Sunday, 18 April 2010

Calendar Turned Art

This picture has been hanging in my breakfast nook for about 6 years. It has the same pitcher as the one I posted about earlier this week. It was actually a calendar and the mat is covering up the artist's name. Does anyone else recall who did it?

Happy Collecting! - Katie

Friday, 16 April 2010

One of My Favorite Pieces

I can't think of a reason why this little pitcher is one of my favorite pieces. Its not old or an interesting pattern per say. It was made in the 1980's and I purchased it from fellow co-founder Lucy Williams.

Maybe because of its age I am not afraid to use it. It has always been my go to piece when a have a single flower to bring in from the garden.

Here again I like to mix it with blue/white china and silver. I was thinking the other day that it would look great with the majolica green cabbage earthenware. What do you like to mix yours with?

Happy Collecting! - Katie

Wednesday, 14 April 2010

Decor Riche

For a long time after I first started collecting I wanted something in the Decor Riche decor. I waited, I admired and finally I found two small plates that I loved and could afford. The two above are marked HB Quimper. I can't remember who I purchased them from, I wished I had kept a journal of my purchases. I can remember best the ones I received on trips. While some people bring home souvenir spoons I like to bring home souvenir French faience as I imagine most of you like to do.I hope when I get everything unpacked I can blog again and share more pieces especially those that I found on trips.

Happy Collecting! - Katie

Tuesday, 13 April 2010

A Piece from My Travels

This is a Desvres clock I picked up in 2000 on a trip to London. My mother and I somehow stumbled onto a Country Living Magazine Holiday show in the outskirts of London. Near the train station I spotted a store with this inside. It was possibly my quickiest purchase - no time for decisions.

Monday, 12 April 2010

If I Had My Life Over - Quimper Style

My breakfast using Quimper EVERYDAY

Who didn't love Erma Bombeck's column?! When she learned she had a fatal disease she wrote the poem below.

So with that my friends I challenge you to use your Quimper everyday - new or old. Get it off the display shelf and set the table, use it as a center piece, let your children use it, bring a piece into your bathroom so you can enjoy it everyday while you get ready.

As I mentioned previously we are moving. This Saturday we move to Nashville. Most of the kitchen is packed but what you see above. Everything is new Quimper. The sugar bowl (and matching pitcher - not shown) and I believe butter knife were from a store called La Lavande in Walnut Creek, California. The border luncheon plates was from Phairs in Orinda, California. All of these were a gift from my mom at separate times. I think Quimper looks especially good when mixed with blue/white - Blue Willow style mug from The Museum store. Another things I have started collecting is Aplico (lions head bowl) and this white porcelain also goes great with Quimper.

Hope you enjoy the poem, it gives me a little reminder of why I am moving! I thought it could apply to many of us.

Happy Collecting! - Katie

If I Had My Life Over by Erma Bombeck

If I had my life to live over, I would have talked less and listened more.

I would have invited friends over to dinner even if the carpet was stained and the sofa faded.

I would have eaten the popcorn in the 'good' living room and worried much less about the dirt when someone wanted to light a fire in the fireplace.

I would have taken the time to listen to my grandfather ramble about his youth.

I would never have insisted the car windows be rolled up on a summer day because my hair had just been teased and sprayed.

I would have burned the pink candle sculpted like a rose before it melted in storage.

I would have sat on the lawn with my children and not worried about grass stains.

I would have cried and laughed less while watching television - and more while watching life.

I would have shared more of the responsibility carried by my husband.

I would have gone to bed when I was sick instead of pretending the earth would go into a holding pattern if I weren't there for the day.

I would never have bought anything just because it was practical, wouldn't show soil or was guaranteed to last a lifetime.

Instead of wishing away nine months of pregnancy, I'd have cherished every moment and realized that the wonderment growing inside me was the only chance in life to assist God in a miracle.

When my kids kissed me impetuously, I would never have said, "Later. Now go get washed up for dinner."

There would have been more "I love you's".. More "I'm sorrys" ...

But mostly, given another shot at life, I would seize every minute... look at it and really see it ... live it...and never give it back.

Saturday, 10 April 2010

First Trip to Quimper

In the Fall of 1999, shortly after the first meeting my family (mother, father, and one brother) decided it would be fun to take a trip to Quimper. Judy Datesman was a great hostess and the trip was very memorable.

I remember my awe when entering the HB Henriot factory and having a tour. I didn't want to leave, I could not leave. As I mentioned before I have a really hard time buying things especially when there is an abundance. My mother insisted that I had to buy some Quimper. I would regret it later if I came all this way and didn't buy anything.

Most people would rejoice in this kind of decision. For me it was kind of painful. So many choices - which direction should I go. I would have these pieces me entire life (except for the one that broke in the story below)! Big decisions.

So what did I decide to buy.

Fish platter and complimentary plates.
Nativity ( I have since added more pieces)
6 Dinner Plates (Pictured in the post below)

Do I have any regrets, no except I wish I had purchased more!

Happy Collecting! - Katie

Thursday, 8 April 2010


Plate rack circa 2006 - Plate rack circa 2002

I think this has happened to many collectors especially those living in earthquake country, California. Although my big crash occurred in Colorado – twice. The first time was because of improperly hanging a display cabinet due to lath and plaster. Oh the joys, of a 1940’s cottage. Thankfully some things bounced off the hardwood floor and well the others I just glued back together and told myself “they are still beautiful.” After all don’t we all get “fine cracks” while we age….

The other time was when my then toddler (pictured above) decided to “touch” the plates on the plate rack and two bounced off and crashed onto the not so soft hardwood floors. Again I just scooped them up and preserved the shards in a box. Someday when I have time I will make a mosaic planter or something.....

Have you ever had a crash? Isn't it the worse feeling at first and then slowly you feel better.

Plate rack circa 2010 - No temptation.

Happy Collecting! - Katie

Tuesday, 6 April 2010

Birthday's - Quimper Style

This is one of my favorite plates (on the left). Two years ago my husband took a picture of it to a cake lady and she created this to celebrate my birthday. It was such a wonderful surprise.

I also love this birthday card that has a Quimper-ish plate in the background.

My Nancy Brackbill notecards are perfect for writing birthday thank you notes.

When you love something like Quimper its always nice when the people around you take notice.

Happy Collecting! - Katie

Saturday, 3 April 2010

Pain Au Chocolate

These always disappear quickly! Little ones loves to help with the chocolate chips. What do these have to do with Quimper....serve on a Quimper or French faience platter, of course!

2 Ingredients:
1 package Pillsbury Crescent rolls
chocolate chips

1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Unroll the crescent rolls and separate. Place on a nonstick cookie sheet.
2. Place approx. 6 chocolate chips on each triangle of dough. Roll up each of the crescents.
3. Bake as directed.

Bon Appetit - hope everyone has a wonderful Easter weekend! Katie

Thursday, 1 April 2010


I really really like NEW Quimper. There I said it. It may make me unpopular in the Q Club world. Most members have magnificent collections that focus on old, antique, and other French faience. But truly I love seeing the new stuff just as much as the old.

I also must confess that even thought I am a co-founder of this wonderful club I would say I have a very simple and small collection. Could be because I am very cautious when it comes to buying ANYTHING or it could be because I never had the means to spend big bucks.

You will see a little glimpse of my collection here but since we are in the process of moving much of it has been packed away. Also, I live with two small children and we have already had one Quimper related accident which I will post about later.

So for now, I would like to share with you some Quimper that has been seen in one of my favorite magazines, House Beautiful.. A great article titled 101 Plates" - a plate for everyone. Quimper is featured in the Fleuri Royal pattern, available at Pierre Deux. To me this pattern, shouts SPRING and also how cute would some of these plates be hanging in a little girl's room! Another thing I like about this pattern is its not typically Quimper meaning there are no peasants depicted, so its a great pattern in that it could appeal to both Quimper and Non Quimper collectors.

For a while Pierre Deux stopped carrying Quimper and started carrying another brand that to me screamed, FAKE! Now it really wasn't fake it just wasn't to my liking, the colors were muted and the peasants just didn't "speak " to me.

But back to House Beautiful, they also did an article called, A Collector's Fantasy in Nantucket. The homeowners have lovely blue cabinets to display their collections. The Soleil pattern featured was described as contemporary. Readers what do you think, contemporary to you? Anyway, I do have a couple of pieces of this pattern. My first purchase of the Soleil pattern I believe was at the Long Beach Flea Market in Southern California. There was a large scalloped bowl with a hairline fracture and I am thinking I paid around $100 for it. Lucy Williams (the other co-founder) and I used to love this market and she taught me to always ask for the "best price".

Another reference to Quimper in House Beautiful was back in 2007 in an article The Best! For the Kitchen: "English and French pottery, a German silver don't have to leave home to bring European countryside into your kitchen." This article also pictured the Soleil pattern.

I love feedback, stories, pictures, etc. And since I have not been involved in the club for quite a few years it would give me the chance to meet the new members and get reacquainted with the old. So tell me collectors, do you like the Soleil pattern? Do you prefer a mix of old and/or new?

Wishing you happy collecting! Katie