Wednesday, 11 April 2012

One word with Vicki of French Essence.....

A quick update on Mr. Teddy who is now home (big smiley face here) I am enjoying taking extra good care of my buddy,  giving him little massages, showed him his new bed, the kids lavished him with a few new toys (but you just know he went for the old ones)  and we are enjoying giving him lots of special and much deserved attention. It is BEYOND GREAT to have him home. I cannot thank you enough for all of your prayers and kind wishes for his recovery......they worked! He is officially on his road to recovery (me too after a harrowing week) and I am sure in a short time, I will be posting pictures of him doing what he does best...being the man of leisure that he is:)

So how do I introduce someone that needs virtually no introduction? A grand doyenne in the blogging world is one way to describe her.  One of the blogging pioneers and a fashionable and venerable force to many...Vicki Archer of French Essence, an author, taste maker, Australian born living in Paris and raising her family, fellow blogger, major style maker, queen of stylish French living..... someone whose blog I followed well before I even knew I was "following a blog". That term in and of itself would have seemed foreign a year ago! Yes, all these things describe Vicki, who to me  is the poster child of grace, elegance, beauty and culture. Visiting her beautiful blog, French Essence is truly like stepping into a day in an elegant French life, whether it be visiting a quaint cafe in Provence,  sampling that seasons truffles at the local truffles market ,hearing her take on a new recent book on French lifestyle (and I have purchased and enjoyed a number of her recommendations), her accounts and visits to the French countryside, it is not difficult to get caught up in her wonderful world ( and its so much fun)! We should also not overlook her own two fabulous books, French Essence and My French Life. Both wonderful books that capture what is unmistakably French, that Joie de vivre that seems to be ingrained in their culture by birthright.

I especially enjoy and gobble every up every word when she talks about French culture, it is fascinating and captivating and with her talent for writing, her savvy and detail oriented  flair lures you right in. Vicki has an absolute gift to reaching out and grabbing you and  luring you right into her French Essence world. And there are times I don't even want to leave her blog because I am entranced by what I am reading or seeing! Yep...its that good! So naturally I was over the moon thrilled when she agreed to come aboard for my One word enough of my talking, let's hear from Vicki! If by some chance in a million you haven't heard of French Essence, by all means do click here to be transported to a fabulous place you will want to visit again and again...............Bienvenue Vicki!

 Vicki of French Essence

One quality I love in people is...Generosity.
And I mean generosity of spirit. A person who has time, who can make time… a person who has a big heart, who lavishes kindness and is interested in others before themselves… That is my idea of generosity.

If my house could only be furnished in one color it would definitely have to be....Greige.
Greige… a cross between beige and grey, which sounds so dull when described but actually there are many ways to mix these shades and create a wonderful palette. I think that spending so much time in southern France has corrupted me… ‘greige’ is a part of the ‘côté sud’ style of decorating here and a hard one to escape. The neutrals work well with the landscape and also are restful during the long hot summers…

One luxury I cannot live without...Flowers.
Flowers make me happy when I’m not and even happier when I am. Roses, tulips… especially tulips, lilies, peonies, ranunculus, sweet peas or pansies… a bunch of blossom, an orchid or a potted plant… I love them all and I believe that flowers are one of the most important ingredients to making a home feel like a home…

Both images Vicki's gorgeous flowers!

If I had to have one designer decorate my entire house with 0 input from me it would have to be Suzanne Kasler

If I had to choose coffee or tea it would be...tea 
Green Tea in particular…

One place I have been that I would love to go back to....Tswalu Game Reserve in the Kalahari Desert
This game reserve in South Africa, on the border with Botswana, is one of the most beautiful and atmospheric places I have ever visited. The natural landscape combined with such magnificent animal and bird life makes it an unforgettable destination…
Rhino Africa Safaris

One place I am longing to visit is....Antarctica… 
‘March of the Penguins’ already had my interest but after watching ‘Frozen Planet’… My bags are packed.

One talent I wish I had was....The ability to draw and paint. I would love to be able to paint what I see… to illustrate some of the scenes that I witness in my daily life… to turn words into paintings....

I think most people would agree I am very....Intuitive.
I would hope that I am a keen observer of life and an equally good listener…____________.
And I am keen and observant enough to see that you are one beautiful lady, Vicki!

If I could change one quality about myself it would be....Not to be such a perfectionist

One career I could see myself having would be....As a film set designer. This would be a dream come true for me… I could indulge my love of history, my enthusiasm for film, my pleasure in styling and my passion interiors… 

If food is therapy, when stressed I indulge in....Chocolate
and maybe a caramel or two…

One of my favorite brands for clothing is.... Lanvin 
In my dreams

If my life were a book, the title would be...."My French Life", I had to say that
(How gorgeous)!

My favorite flower is..... A rose
My garden is a great source of joy and our roses bring so much pleasure… Each year as I wait for the blooms it’s like welcoming long lost friends… The anticipation is wonderful.
Vicki's picture and roses.....breathtaking!

I would love to have coffee and a chat session with this famous person... Meryl Streep. I admire her talent, her commitment to her craft and her integrity in an often difficult business.
Humm...I think you two could pass for sisters, Vicki!

A favorite TV show...Gossip Girl
I probably shouldn’t admit to that…but… love the fashions…love the dramas… love the city.

Hollywood is....Unfamiliar 

Tuscany or Provence? Provence.

The next presidential election will be....Great viewing and even better conversation

The one best thing about blogging is.....
 Through blogging, I have met so many like-minded people who share my love of all things French. I feel that as a blogger I am part of a greater community and that means that I have made friendships with people from all over. Blogging has opened up my world and changed my life in so many ways… and all for the better… I can’t imagine a day without FRENCH ESSENCE….

A guilty pleasure for me is....
Staying in bed very late on a Sunday morning

A clothing designer I think that has great style Miucca Prada.

My strongest quality would have to be...Loyalty.

The best restaurant I have ever been to was....Oustau de Baumaniere in Les Baux de Provence_
My all time favourite and a restaurant that holds special memories for me.

If my life were a documentary, I could see this actress playing me.....Diane Keaton…
Why did I choose her? Wishful thinking?... I have no idea!

One thing I like about my appearance is...My hair
When it’s done!

One thing I can honestly say I love about myself is...My energy and enthusiasm.

Town or country.....A little of both…

One person I admire...My husband.
We have been together for longer than we have been apart and he is the person I most respect. He has always provided me with the wisest council and loved me unconditionally. 

Pick a decade to live in, any decade...Right now.
I believe in living in the moment, enjoying the now and worrying about the future when it happens.

My favorite room of my house is.....The bedroom
_My bedroom has a wonderful view; the room is light and spacious yet cozy at the same time. I like nothing better than curling up with a good book and lazing an afternoon away…
(Vicki's home)

If I were an animal I would be...Our dog Apache
He lives a charmed life in Provence.
(Apache..tough life)

A book I would recommend to everyone would be....The Count of Monte Christo. France, rollicking adventures and one of the greatest love stories of all time… This is an all time classic and one of my most loved books.

If I were planning a huge family reunion, this is where I would want to have it...Mas de Bérard, our home in Provence
This is where we have celebrated many special occasions and where I hope we will celebrate many more to come…

One thing I wish everyone could be more of is... Patient

In one word life is.....Fleeting
Life must be treasured and never, ever be taken for granted… each and every day must count.

Wow was this a home run or what!! So interesting....I am totally captivated! I  was mentally making a list of all the things I need to try and look into.....Vicki you are as fascinating in this interview as your blog makes you out to be! I truly lost count on just how many things I found myself silently agreeing with you on. We love all the same flowers and I too believe in their "healing and beautification powers"! Chocolate and caramel...oh yea! How many people tell you that you remind them of a younger Meryl Streep? I would love to crash your family reunion in Provence, I can see it now!  And that Apache.....looks like he leads a rough life:) Vicki, this was fabulous and I truly enjoyed it as much as I know everyone else will too. Hope you will stop on over at French Essence  and say hello  and if you love her style as much as I can get her fabulous books, French Essence and My French Life  which are just incredible by clicking here. Need more Vicki? You must visit her beautiful and oh so impressive website full of magnificent French inspiration, click here to visit.

And finally had to throw in one last "teaser" is her beautiful patio from their home in Provence. Now pick your jaw up off the floor (mines still there)  and hope you have yourself a fabulous day!


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