THE MYSTERY AND MAGIC OF MISTLETOE
During Christmastime in France, like in the United States and elsewhere, festive sprigs or balls of mistletoe (known as gui in France) are seen hanging above doors or on beams and light fixtures, inviting anyone passing beneath to share a kiss. But why do strangers and lovers alike kiss beneath the mistletoe? Especially the French, who kiss on both cheeks when simply greeting one another. They don’t need mistletoe as an excuse to kiss. But in France, hanging mistletoe is more often a symbol of peace and a promise of good luck throughout the coming year than a reason to s'embrasser sous le gui. And, French people often give mistletoe to friends as a porte bonheur or good luck charm for the New Year.
LOLO'S 2022 HOLIDAY GIFT GUIDE: DREAMING OF FRENCH AND FABULOUS ANTIQUES ET MORE
'Tis the season for gifting, and here at Lolo French Antiques, we love helping bring the magic of Christmas to your home! Our dreamy 2022 Holiday Gift Guide is sure to fill you with l'esprit de Noël when you imagine the sparkling eyes and oohs and ahhs of your loved ones as they find something French and fabulous under the tree on Christmas morning. Lolo's jolly elves have gathered a selection of unique and interesting gifts to suit every person on your list, so come along with us on a festive quest for the perfect gifts that are sure to bring magical moments!
1. 19th Century French Louis Philippe Style White Painted Four-Drawer Commode 2. 19th Century French Spelter Table Lamp Stags Under Tree with Shade 3. Fine Mid-20th Century Maison Jansen French Louis XVI Style Ebonized Bureau Plat or Desk 4. 18th Century French Louis XVI Period Cherry Lyonnaise Enfilade Buffet 5. Jeannie Luxe Crystal Table Lamp 6. Large 19th Century French Louis Philippe Style Giltwood Mirror with Crest 7. Jeannie Luxe Crystal Table Lamp 8. Italian Sunburst Mirror with 19th Century Painted and Giltwood Fragments 9. 1920s Porte-Jambon or Ham Holder on Marble Base 10. Aux Anysetiers du Roy Herbes de Provence in Stone Crock 11. Maxim's de Paris Fondant Chocolate Scented Votive Candle 12. 19th Century Antique French Hand Blown Glass Garden Cloche 13. Vintage 4-Piece French Stainless Steel and Deer Hoof Carving Set 14. Rare Small 19th Century French Pot de Confit or Confit Pot with Green Glaze and No Handles 15. Grand 18th Century French Directoire Period Walnut Draper's Table with Marquetry Band 16. Mid-19th Century Antique French Cruche Orjol or Water Jug with Rare Green Glaze 17. Rare 19th Century French Confit Pot or Egg Pot with Lid and White Ironstone Glaze 18. 19th Century French Terracotta Tian Bowl with Honey Yellow Glaze 19. 19th Century Spanish Backless Leather and Velvet Louis XIV Style Bench 20. Antique French English Setter Hunting Dog Five Piece Fireplace Tool Set 21. Large Antique 19th Century Spanish Semi-Glazed Terracotta Olive Jar with Green Drips 22. 19th Century Large Open Sided French Boulangerie Willow Baguette Basket 23. 19th Century French Painted Trestle Dining Table 24. Grand 19th Century French Handblown Dark Green Glass Demijohn or Dame Jeanne Bottle 25. Early 19th Century French Empire Period Walnut Longcase Clock with Eight-Day Movement 26. Collection of 9 Early 20th Century Italian Herbiers from Florence, Italy Set in Large 9 Paned White Window Frame 27. 19th Century French Empire Period Walnut and Bookmatched Flaming Walnut Commode with Marble Top
"So this is Christmas, for weak and for strong. The rich and the poor ones, the war is so long... A very merry Christmas and a happy new year, let’s hope it’s a good one without any fear." These well-known lyrics from John Lennon and Yoko Ono's 1971 Christmas song ring true once again. We're fighting a different battle now for sure, but it's a battle nevertheless. And though much has been cancelled throughout 2020 and this holiday season because of Covid-19, Christmas has not been cancelled. We may have to celebrate in different places, different ways and break with some traditions this year to keep healthy and safe, but we can still celebrate Christmas in ways that promise yuletide cheer, laughter, and time well spent with loved ones both near and far.
LOLO'S 2020 HOLIDAY GIFT GUIDE: DECK THE HALLS WITH FRENCH ANTIQUES & INSPIRED GIFTS
There's something so magical about Christmastime... when treetops are glistening, lords are leaping, and chestnuts are roasting on an open fire. We may not be mixing and a-mingling in large groups this year, but we can still create plenty of magic for ourselves and our families, for no magic lasts longer than that which we create together. 2020 has certainly been frightful, so we're here to help make your holiday season a bit more delightful!
1. Early 20th Century French Louis XVI Style Carved and Painted Hall Tree by Louis Chambry 2. Nina's Paris L'Original Marie Antoinette Loose Leaf Tea Tin, 3.5oz and Nina's Paris Fete de Versailles Loose Leaf Tea in White Gift Tin, 2.82oz 3. 19th Century French Restauration Period Walnut Settee or Bench 4. Les Anis de Flavigny All Natural Lemon Mints and Ravissant Organic Honey and Beeswax Lip Balm by Apis Cera 5. Antique French Louis XIII Style Bleached Oak Normandy Buffet 6. Favols Strawberry Marshmallow Jam, 9.2oz and Favols Apricot Jam with Lavender, 9.2oz 7. Famille Perronneau Maritime Lavender Honey, 4.4oz 8. 1930s French Art Deco Period Walnut Armchair or Lounge Chair 9. Large 9-Light French Painted and Parcel Gilt Two-Tier Chandelier 10. Laguiole Jean Dubost 3-Piece Boxed Cheese and Wine Set 11. Herbs de Provence Tea Towel by Torchons & Bouchons 12. Antique French Louis XVI Style Painted Medallion Back Side Chairs, Set of Four 13. Ambroise Handcrafted French Beeswax Pillar Candles from Provence, Box of 2 and Faustine 100% Organic Amber Candle by Apis Cera and Lucienne Hand Rolled French Beeswax Alter Candles from Provence, Box of 9 14. 18th Century Painted French Louis XVI Period Commode or Chest of Drawers 15. Aux Anysetiers du Roy Dark Chocolate and Pistachio Fondue 16. 19th Century Country French Louis XIII Style Walnut Side Table with Drawers 17. Famille Perronneau Orange and Lemon Honey Sweets 18. Large 20th Century Handmade French Artis Flora Tapestry
For centuries, earthenware vessels were a standard in French kitchens, especially those in the South of France where the weather was much warmer. Charming, yet utilitarian pots, jars, jugs, and bowls, with their bright, beautiful glazes, were once used to preserve everything from duck and geese to jams and oils; collect milk for the making of cream and cheeses as well as for rinsing vegetables and washing dishes; for serving water or wine in the home and the fields.
Valentine's Day is almost here, and whether you love it or hate it, there's no escaping this day of candy, cupids, cards, and kisses. Restaurants create special menus, bars concoct special love potions, and florists design special arrangements. Sometimes, however, the best Valentine's Day gift you can give (or receive) is the gift of uninterrupted time together — no matter if you're consciously coupled, uncoupled, or somewhere in the middle and it's complicated.
It’s beginning to look a lot like Christmas — parties to host, chestnuts to roast, and so many gifts to buy! We’ve chosen a few of our favorite things to help you check everyone — naughty or nice — off your list this holiday season. Whether you’re shopping for your best gal pals, secret Santa, or that extra special someone, the gifts below will make even the Grinch grin.
1. Families of the Vine: Seasons Among the Winemakers of Southwest France by Michael S. Sanders 2. French Lessons: Adventures with Knife, Fork, and Corkscrew by Peter Mayle 3. La Vie en Rose: Living in France by Suzanne Lowry 4. The French Dog by Rachael Hale 5. Pair of early 1800s terracotta cherub plaques, signed 6. 18th and 19th century French breadboards 7. 1920s porte-jambon on marble base 8. Louis XV style oval bouillotte table 9. Framed antique French oil on canvas of game birds 10. Apis Cera candles, soaps, and lip balms from Provence 11. 19th century French Rococo style red tortoise shell and gilt bronze vanity mirror 12. 19th century Louis XIII style hunting enfilade 13. 1950s French faux tortoise champagne bucket 14. Pair of 1950s Italian lounge chairs by Ezio Longhi for Elam 15. 19th century Baroque style Italian polychrome casapanca 16. Child size bobbin leg chair with rush seat
3 SEATING TIPS FOR THANKSGIVING
The air is crisp and the leaves are turning beautiful autumn colors. It’s almost Thanksgiving and there’s nothing better than having your family and friends over for food, fun, and fellowship, especially this time of year. A little preparation, however, is a surefire recipe for success if it's your turn to host Thanksgiving dinner!
Centerpiece by Barri Thompson Interiors
Begin by planning the menu — make as much ahead of time as possible. Iron your linens. Rinse off your serving dishes, crystal, and silver. Consider making the turkey the day before. Don't be afraid to delegate or ask for help. And always be sure to stock the bar! Whether your guests are sipping and celebrating or drowning in their sorrows over Thanksgiving Day football, a good cocktail will always make things better.
When this self-described Francophile is not reading or writing about all things French, she's dreaming up charming new ways to showcase Lolo French Antiques et More or traveling to France with Lolo to buy delightful treasures for their store. Mimi, Lolo, and their new French Bulldog, Duke, live in Birmingham, AL.
4300 1st Avenue South
Birmingham, AL 35222
Monday - Friday: 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.
Saturday: 11 a.m. to 4 p.m.
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Illustrations by Nan Richards