|The Marquise de Pompadour.|
Ed. Note: Once again my darling Marsi is back. Today she is musing about France. She asks us what have we been doing lately that has us “in a French state of mind.” Clearly, I’m living a French state of mind, but I thought I would answer her question more specifically.
The other day I was talking with my brother-in-law, a curator at a major museum in the United States, about paintings of Madame de Pompadour, thus the oeuvre above by François Boucher (ca. 1750) which hangs in the Louvre.
Just sharing a few French things that’ve caught my eye this past week while summer winds down and we head into my favorite time of year ….
Farewell, My Queen
A behind-the-scenes look at the fall of Versailles, starring Diane Kruger as Queen Marie-Antoinette, Léa Seydoux as her devoted servant Sidonie, and Virginie Ledoyen as her duchess friend Gabrielle de Polignac. Filmed on location at the Palace of Versailles, there’s only one word to describe it: sumptuous.
A precious friend supplied me with a tube of Avibon, a Vitamin A-rich ointment available in French pharmacies. Vitamin A is, of course, the skincare code word for “retinoid,” which is used to treat everything from acne to wrinkles. Every night, I’ve been melting just the slightest dab of it between my fingertips, smiling in the mirror, and touching it gently to the outer corners of my eyes and into the smile lines that whisker toward my cheeks. It’s super-moisturizing and feels so comfortable … and yes, I think it’s softening my lines.
Into a Paris Quartier
Two nights ago, I finished rereading Le Divorce, a favorite novel on the ways and means of Parisian society. Diane Johnson’s vivid prose left me in awe. Now I’m moving onto one of her nonfiction works, Into a Paris Quartier: Reine Margot’s Chapel and Other Haunts of St.-Germain. She brings the cobbled streets of St.-Germain to life through her enthralling research into its former habitués, such as d’Artagnan of the Three Musketeers and Queen Margot, among others. It stirs my imagination and makes me long to return to Paris (even more than usual).
Earlier this summer, I received a sample of Coromandel when I replenished my supply of Chanel No. 19 at the Chanel boutique in San Francisco … and just fell tête over heels for its dark, sweet scrumptiousness. Coromandel’s blend of incense, benzoin, and amber will be delicious for the cooler season right around the corner. I can’t wait for the scent to haunt my cashmere sweaters and wraps when I bundle up to keep winter’s chill at bay.
I’d love to hear what you’ve been doing lately that’s had you in a French state of mind. Tell me!