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Alert the Press!!! Inès de la Fressange Opens Boutique in Paris.

If you don’t know it already, I am completely obsessed with Inès de la Fressange. She is the epitome of French chic. Before we go any further, let’s take a step back in time to April, 2011… When I met Inès for the first time… Check it out HERE.

Fast-forward to today May 2015… When I met Inès for the second time!

Why? How? Pourquoi? Comment? Where? Où? When? Quand?

Because Madame de la Fressange opened her new shop this week!

Yes Yes Yes! Oui Oui Oui!

So, of course I had to go! Mon Dieu!

This shop is everything that you would expect from Inès! C’est formidable! My friend Yolanda asked me what she was selling at the shop and my answer was… Uhhh, everything including the kitchen sink! Dresses, striped foutas, navy blue embroidered jackets, perfect French flats, gray suede high heels, bedding, candles, wooden cheese platters, sunglasses, jewelry, vases, pillows, purses and yes, even a broom! Like I said, everything… Everything chic that is. The shop is located at pretty much the coolest address in Paris… rue de Grenelle. I don’t think you could get a more patriotic shop in Paris because the entire color scheme was in homage of the colors of the French flag… Inès’ signature colors. Let’s take a look…



I wasn’t 3 feet deep into the shop before she appeared. Yes, my friends, the iconic Inès was actually in her shop… Working. I almost had a heart attack. There she was, swan-like, tending to her flock fussing over this and that making sure everything was perfect. And then, she saw me. I swear to God, I am not exaggerating one little bit… She made a beeline over to me, placed her hand on my arm and said, “So nice to see you. Thank you for coming.” I’m pretty sure we are best friends now. Okay, I’m going to show you a picture but I want to preface the picture by letting you know that yes, I know I look like an idiot. I swear to God I used to be super pretty but today I completely recognize that I look like someone who needs a complete makeover. Note to self: wear more makeup. But, let’s just focus on Inès for God sake.


The shop was absolutely packed with shoppers… Not just regular shoppers… This was the crème de la crème of Parisian chic. They all came out of their apartments just to see what all the fuss was about and they were snapping up everything left and right. My personal favorites were the camel suede ankle boots, the French flag red flats, the little leather coin purses for those extra euros, the blue and white pillows and of course the handbags.


Because my husband is the sweetest man on earth, he bought me a little souvenir... A perfectly French blue tuberose scented candle and of course, it was perfectly packaged. Take a look…


This is definitely a must-see shop and there is something for everyone… Everyone chic that is. :-)

Vite! Vite! On y va!!!!

Inès de la Fressange
24 rue de Grenelle
Paris, France 75007

It's Open! Shop Have Some Decorum Home

It’s open!

My petite online shop is open!

Now a little piece of my France can be yours.

The shop is called Have Some Decorum Home. It will always be open to you by just clicking the “Shop Have Some Decorum Home” icon on the right side of the blog. You can also get to the shop by clicking HERE!

The facts…

I sourced every piece myself.

All items were found in France.

I only adopted pieces that I loved and would have in my own home.

I do not follow fads or trends. I like pieces that have character and will last a lifetime.

I have an obsession for anything chinoiserie or Provence.

I love Ironstone. I love the feel of it and the sound of it.

I believe that accessories make a house a home.

Seaside landscape paintings complete me.

A collection speaks volumes.

I love to decorate a kitchen and the shop has some perfect items to do so.

All pieces are “well loved” (antique or vintage) and therefore might have a chip, bruise or blemish but all of that adds to the character. A worn patina is a happy patina.

I like to find pieces with birds and flowers… But nothing corny.

I think that there is something for everyone. Prices start at $10.
Shipping is what it is… Not cheap. Everything will be handled with extra care, tissued, bubble wrapped, popcorned and boxed. You have your choice of shipping methods… Fast/slow. Pricey/not too pricey. FedEx, UPS, French postal system.

On the very delicate and larger items such as the 38 pieces of ironstone dishes, I suggest using the shipping company that all of the professionals use from the fleamarkets…Camard. They have been doing it for centuries. Like says, “We use the best shippers in the world, because we’re shipping the best stuff in the world.  It’d be a tragedy if something survived a hundred years, but couldn’t survive a trip to your house.” 

All measurements are in centimeters because it’s weird, French people don’t measure in inches or feet and I don’t have an American tape measure. You’ll have to do the math.

All payments made easily via PayPal. You will be charged separately for shipping with exact shipping price.

I have started with 22 items today and will be adding new pieces every week. Mostly small items but there might be an occasional grand piece.

What’s my favorite item on the shop today? I love everything but something about the 1950s straw bull from Provence makes my heart swoon. I know it is a bit pricey and trust me I haggled the price down as low as I could get it. The good news is that the dealer might have a collection of 10 available. If you see that it is already sold, just email me and I will see if I can get you one from the dealer.

I hope you like everything. I am a very picky buyer and I have chosen everything with a discerning eye. I hate crap, I hate tchotchke, I hate bric-a-brac. I like unusual pieces that have a little story. I like the juxtaposition of items. I like to layer.

I would like to thank my husband and my caregivers for all of their help. These three gentlemen woke up at the crack of dawn with me, got me dressed, loaded me into the car, got me to the fleamarkets and let me look at every booth for as long as I wanted. They know that this is what I love to do and because of their help, I kind of forgot that I have ALS. So MERCI to them.

A portion of every single sale will forever go towards ALS research. Additionally, my friend Rebecca of B.Viz Design has donated 2 antique Fortuny pillows and the profits will go to ALS research in honor of her friend Elizabeth who unfortunately has ALS as well. Thank you Rebecca!

Happy shopping!

The Fixin's: BBQ Baked Beans

Wow! I didn’t realize that there were so many barbecue loving blog readers! I received a ton of emails from readers who were so excited to share their barbecue stories including one email from a woman this morning detailing how to barbecue a whole pig that involved a bathtub, beer and a truck. These are my kind of people.

Because I live in Par-ee, I didn’t realize that it is Memorial Day weekend back in the states! I wish I had thought of this barbecue blog series sooner so I could share all of my family recipes before the big weekend. Alas, we have a whole summer of barbecue ahead of us so not to worry.

I thought it would be fun to take a few days and share my mother’s, my grandmother’s and my great grandmother’s recipes with you that we have used for generations. These are the recipes we use for summer barbecues. Even though I like to go to dumpy barbecue joints, if we are doing barbecue at home, we still make it a formal affair because that’s just how my family is. Even though my grandmother’s recipe calls for a white trash can of Pork n Beans, it was always served on beautiful china in the formal dining room. Isn’t that funny?
Okay, these next few blogs are all about the barbecue fixin’s… The sides. These aren’t fancy recipes, they are not gourmet… They are real and they are delicious. However, I must warn you… My mother wrote out all of these recipes and with that comes a whole lot of funny. My mother has self diagnosed dyslexia, is a horrible speller and is just overall confusing. You have to have had to live a lifetime with her to actually understand what she’s talking about. I don’t know how she taught cooking classes because I know how frustrated she gets when we mere mortals don’t know what she’s talking about. She just assumes that everyone is or should be a master chef. When I was growing up, 90% of my life was spent in the kitchen with my mother watching her cook. Rarely, very rarely, she would let me stir a sauce but then she would take the spoon out of my hand and tell me that I was stirring it wrong. I’m pretty sure I do the same thing to my daughter, Grace.

My mother is the type of cook who “feels.” She doesn’t really follow recipes, no two meals are the same, she uses all of her senses to cook and the results are… Extraordinary. So, with that being said… I’m just going to let her recipes be themselves… Confusion, misspellings, improper verb tenses, condescension, assumption and all. She will most likely not tell you what temperature the oven should be because she assumes you should just know. And my God, you better be using the proper cookware or heads will roll. Doesn’t this sound like fun? Just kidding, trust me, it is fun because my mother has a wonderful characteristic of being able to laugh at herself.

Today’s recipe from my mother, Anne:

O’Connell Family Baked Beans

This recipe was my Mom's (Ellie’s grandmother) and I have never had a actual written recipe.  It was just as you go!

So here it I go!

1  large can of Pork n Beans (I pour most of the liquid off) actually, make that two large cans.

about I/2  cup of ketchup

about 1/2 cup of brown sugar

about 1/2 of a green pepper cut in small sizes

about 1/2 of a large onion

a few splashes of Worchestershire Sauce

about 8 to 10 slices of bacon

Pour the pork n beans into a large bowl.  Add all of the ingredients, except the bacon, and mix together.  you might like to add more or less of each of them.  This is just how I start.   I probable add more ketchup and brown sugar and a whole onion and whole green pepper. I probably add more worchestershire because I like it to be a dark color and have a rich taste.  But it does add salt so be careful.  Taste it and see how you like it...a little sweet but a richness to it. I usually double this recipe.  Love the leftover beans the next day.

Now put it in a glass baking dish. Round or rectangle.... any size. It is better to have it in a smaller dish that will give it some depth instead of longer and not as deep.   Now place 4 or 5 slices of bacon across the dish and then the other 4 or 5 across the dish in the other direction to form a basket weave pattern.  Makes it look special!  The bacon is important to this recipe.

Bake in a 400 oven for about 45 to 60 minutes.  Don't let the beans over cook and dry out.  You want them to be moist.  I have burned them many times so be careful.  Put the timer on....Anne

Voilà! My grandmother’s baked beans via my mother. Welcome to my world. Stay tuned for tomorrow’s recipe… My great grandmother’s summer barbecue corn casserole.

Life's Lesson N°12: BBQ

Getting back to the 15 dishes you should master by the age of 30…

Just in time for summer, today we need to master barbecue. This ain’t easy. My first reaction is just to say that if you want good barbecue… Go to the South. Southerners have been mastering barbecue for decades and who are we to interfere?

For the first part of my life, I grew up in Missouri, was born in Texas, spent time in the South, and with conviction I can say that I know good barbecue. My parents and grandparents used to take us “to the wrong side of the tracks” in our little town of Springfield, Missouri for old school barbecue. A tiny barbecue joint that had been in operation for three generations… Crosstown Barbecue. It was a total dump but barbecue only tastes good that way. There’s nothing better on a hot summer day than barbecue ribs, coleslaw, baked beans, corn on the cob, watermelon and an icy cold Pepsi.

One sweltering summer my ex-husband and I drove from Missouri to South Carolina stopping at every barbecue place along the way. Our goal was to experience every type of barbecue… Mission accomplished. I learned that there were different types of barbecue depending on the region. Mustard base, tomato base, vinegar base, ketchup base, molasses base. Different types of wood were used… Hickory, pecan, or oak. Some joints used pork, some used beef, some used chicken. Sauces and sides were equally important and barbecue isn’t barbecue without some white bread, paper plates and paper napkins.


There was some buzz over here in Paris a while ago about a new restaurant… A barbecue restaurant… In Paris! I was skeptical. However, beggars can’t be choosers so without having any barbecue since I came to Paris two years ago, I thought I would give it a shot. The restaurant is called Flesh and is in the ninth arrondissement. I sent my husband for some take out with specific instructions… Pulled pork sandwich, extra extra barbecue sauce, and coleslaw. None of that came home. They only offered barbecue ribs, no baked beans, no coleslaw and offered Caesar salad as a side dish and offered wine as a beverage. What the fuck! You can’t have Caesar salad with barbecue. You can’t have wine with barbecue! It’s not right, it’s just not done. And what about pulled pork sandwich on a white trash bun… That’s the hallmark of barbecue. The owners of Flesh need to spend a solid summer in Memphis, Arkansas, Texas, Alabama, South Carolina, Kansas City, and North Carolina to get some schooling on what real barbecue is. Quelle horreur!


Even my mother who is an incredible cook, doesn’t take on barbecue. She leaves that to the experts and she focuses on the sides. We usually order the ribs, the pulled pork and the brisket and we make homemade sides of corn casserole, potato salad, baked beans, peach cobbler, strawberry shortcake, cornbread and sweet tea. So, that’s what we are going to do over the next few days to get us ready for the summer. Fasten your seatbelts… It’s hillbilly time.

Road Trip: Provence

Surprisingly, it’s rare that David and I fight on a road trip. It’s also rare that David and I don’t fight. We can fight about everything including the proper route from our Right Bank Parisian apartment to our favorite grocery store, La Grand Epicerie, on the Left Bank of Paris. He likes to remind me that he has lived in Paris since he was 17 and that he knows every street by the back of his hand and I like to remind him that I have a better sense of direction than him no matter what city we are in. Our fighting tactics are always the same: David likes to yell in French and I like to bring up things from the past into every argument. It works for us. We usually end every argument with, “Well, it looks like we’re going to have to agree to disagree.” What this means is that we both think we are right yet we are too tired or hungry to continue so we like to wrap up our argument with a sandwich and a nap.
However, on a road trip, we miraculously see eye to eye. We both don’t mind getting up in the darkness of the early morning, having the car totally organized and starting our adventure. Such was the case yesterday for our petite road trip to Provence. David does everything in his power to make sure my comfort is a priority so he basically transforms my seat in the car into an Air France first-class cabin complete with reclining heated massage chair, beverage, light snack and a movie. David’s favorite part about a road trip is stopping at French gas stations. He loves them and I hate them. David looks forward to his noisette café and his weird ham and cheese baguettes. He asks me what I would like at the gas station and my response is always, “Something American.” I think it’s unnatural not to have a Slurpie, nachos and a powdered doughnut on a road trip.

David always says that the reason why we continue to bear each other’s existence is because we both enjoy doing the same thing, going to flea markets being one of them. We work well together at a flea market, perusing at the same pace, showing each other equally aesthetically pleasing items and only rarely do I have to say, “Put that down, David, it’s ugly.”

David is slightly more relaxed than I am at a flea market. He likes to stop for a pre-fleamarket coffee and I like to dive in like an obsessed barracuda right into the thick of it. I like to be the first one at a flea market and if I am not, I spend the rest of the day wondering what I missed.

No worries yesterday because we arrived at exactly 9 AM to the L’Isle-sur-la-Sorgue Sunday farmers market and brocante. We arrived just as the vendors were setting up… Just the way I like it. However, our first snafu occurred… My wheelchair was squeaking. Not just a light squeak, it was a heavy duty, ear piercing obnoxious squeak every three seconds as the wheel turned. It was driving me mad. The good news is that I am a complete MacGyver when it comes to “situations.”  ( I have used a meat cleaver for a hammer since before Gracie was born.) Considering we were at a farmers market in Provence, I knew the best thing to do was to buy the local olive oil at the first booth we saw. With our €12 bottle of olive oil, David poured it with a heavy hand onto the right wheel of my wheelchair and presto, “situation solved.”

I was both easily impressed and equally not impressed by our first day in Provence but I thought I would be totally honest with all of you with my observations.

First things first, L’Isle-sur-la-Sorgue is shit for antiques. It’s also shit for little brocante accessories. When I first went to L’Isle-sur-la-Sorgue in 2007 to shop for our antique store, I literally wanted everything in the entire town. Every vendor had something unusual, remarkable and well priced. Yesterday all I saw was ordinary, boring and overpriced. To put it quite simply, the town was definitely picked over. We can blame the Americans. They came, they saw, and they conquered. This town was dry. I have to say, Paris is still the best for antiquing. There, I said it… And it’s true. The vendors in Provence are grasping at straws to showcase anything extraordinary. Over the course of the five hours that I was in L’Isle-sur-la-Sorgue, I only purchased five items. Only five items! The good news is that I did find one item that is one of my most favorite pieces that I’ve ever bought, so not all was a loss. Don’t worry, I bought one for all of you as well and it will be available on my little online shop. Hint: Ancien taureau.

To be fair and not punished by the law, I had to give my caregivers a little break after the first three hours. We found a super chic little café/deli right on the main road of the village called Le Jouvet. Don’t you love when a shop just gets it right. This little place certainly did. They had me at the vegetable tart in the window and sealed the deal with the fruit tart. We selected a perfectly Provence sandwich of roasted peppers with pesto on soft bread. Delicious. I also spied a whole refrigerator filled with gelatos in little glass jars. On our way out of town in the late afternoon, my caregiver popped out of the car and bought me a gelato of refreshing cassis with Moroccan mint that I ate all to myself and didn’t share a drop because I can be a real peach like that.

With what the town lacks in quality antiques, it certainly makes up in charm. A beautiful river runs through the village with crystal-clear water, healthy moss, shaded with overgrown fig trees. The buildings are typical Provence… mustard yellow, pink salmon, milky ivory with (for lack of a better word) perfect shabby chic shutters. What I really liked about the town is that there was no Newport Beach style cutting back of anything overgrown. Weeping wisteria, sunny forsythia, those pink shrimp colored fluffy plants that remind me of Sonja Rykiel’s hair texture… It all just grows at its leisure and there is not one site of some asshole with clipping shears.

Armed with our five little treasures, we had to get to our reservation for our late afternoon lunch. My friend Heather from Lost in Arles, recommended a restaurant that she knew I would love… And she was right. Definitely check out her blog regarding the restaurant, Le Jardin du Quai, HERE. Not only did I want to have lunch at this restaurant but I wanted to live there as well. It’s the house and environment that I’ve been looking for.… Old charming house, pea gravel, carefree garden, shade trees, fountains, hidden statues, creeping ivy… A hidden gem. We were seated at the perfect stone round garden table under a beautiful old tree. First things first, a glass of rosé wine was in order. The menu was prix-fixe… Appetizer of salmon with onions and vegetables, main course of a beauty of a roasted lamb leg with onions and mushrooms and finishing with a dessert of juicy blueberries with lemon meringue and crème fraîche. What I also loved about this restaurant is that everyone seemed to be genuinely enjoying themselves and had a fortunate look of, “We are so happy to be here.” The only drawback to this restaurant were the chairs. This is the only time I considered myself lucky to be sitting in a custom wheelchair which was 20 times more comfortable than the chairs at the restaurant. The owners definitely need to do something about this… I suggest wicker with ivory cushions.


After lunch, we took one more walk through the town and then decided that it was time to go. Even though I didn’t get to see as many antiques as I would like, I was just happy to be out in the sunshine of the South of France with my husband. When you get to this stage of my life that I am in (near death :-)), you learn to appreciate what makes life grand… The trees, the sunshine, the river, chirping of the birds, strawberries, vegetable tarts, farmhouses, and an occasional antique.

So that’s it for my first adventure this summer to Provence. Our next trip down south will be to Aix-en-Provence where my friend lives and has expertly described (and promised) the following… “June is one of the absolutely very best months in Provence. The weather will be summery warm, the many dozens of white, pink and apricot coloured oleander bushes will be in full bloom, trying to compete with the elegant roses in the rose garden. But, of course this won’t be easy … To give the oleander a head-start we planted them a bit everywhere on the property, while the roses are concentrated in the rosary.

The swimming pool is heated, of course, and we can splish splash for hours, which is best to be done with a cocktail in our hands.

The best hours to stroll around the narrow streets in Aix are late morning and early evening. I suggest a tour through the farmers’ market to start with. We’ll sample our way through the freshly cut melons from Cavaillon, the sweetest Mara strawberries and the white peaches Provence is so famous for, until we have elected our merchants and fill up our baskets. For cheese we have found the absolutely number one address, our fromager is originally from Corsica, is capable of eating a whole truffled buffalo mozzarella by himself and knows all about cheese. We’ll then stop at the stand that sells all kinds of salami, from tiny to quite amazing in diameter, flavoured with nuts, black and chili pepper, mushrooms, truffles and other interesting ingredients. David will have fun trying them all, especially when we sip our mojito in the evening, enjoying the sunset from our terrace.

We’ll sample our way through C.’s specialities and we’ll show her some new recipes. She has reached excellence in paella and her spaghetti with homemade pesto Provencale have gained reputation all the way to Lugano! I’ll prepare Wiener Schnitzel, thin, crispy, and light and topped with fresh ruccola.

J.C. will make you discover some rosé wines from the region and fuller Italian red wines. J. will shake up new cocktails and of course, there is no way around a real pastis with olives at the Les Deux Garçons.

We’ll share a million little joys while we walk through the garden, enjoy the views, watch the birds and the butterflies, pick the fraises de bois … directly into our mouth, sit next to the fish pond and keep the breath when Adorable comes to nibble on our fingers, talk and chat for hours, laugh when one finishes the sentence the other one has just begun. Love, S.”

I’m mean, c’mon, am I the luckiest girl in the world or what? I don’t have time for ALS, I have a whole summer of Provence ahead of me and I invite all of you.… But you’ll have to put up with David as well. If I have to, you have to.… He may be loud and bossy but at least he’s French, endearing, handsome and dresses well. It could be worse, he could be passive and wear a fanny pack. So, summer in Provence here we come.
A toute!