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A French-Inspired Garden and Home by Judith Stringham

Spring Living Room 2014

Monday, March 3, 2014

After a balmy Friday and Saturday 
with temperatures in the high 70s and low 80s, 
the light dusting of snow and sleet on Sunday 
with low temperatures in the teens 
was a shock to the system.  

Where did the warm weather go? 
Bring it back, please.  

When we cannot have the real thing, 
there are ways to bring spring into our houses. 
Many of the ways include plants, 
both real and faux. 
My last post was about bringing spring 
into my kitchen sunspace using small bedding plants.  

The living room mantel last spring 
included faux grape hyacinths and a 
real narcissus bulb ready to burst into bloom. 

Sun streamed into the living room, reflecting the oak tree in the 
print of the Chenonceau Chateau in France. 

Warm weather helped the narcissus bulb to grow, 
bringing spring right into the living room. 

The blue and white creamer's decorations 
of butterflies, dragonflies, and flowers 
were the perfect images for spring. 

The little blue and white creamer's pattern is  
Botanic Blue
by Portmeirion 

and was the inspiration for my seasonal shop 
and blog name, 
Botanic Bleu.

Portmeirion is an English china company, and 
the pattern Botanic Blue is no longer sold in retail stores  
in the United States. 
Replacements, Ltd. offers a few select pieces.  

A large cluster of cut faux grape hyacinths were at one end of the mantel, 
and a single grape hyacinth plant was inside the white lantern 
at the other end of the mantel. 

Spring is in the air in the living room this year, also.  

This spring, the faux grape hyacinths are on the 
coffee table in the living room, 
along with a large faux bird's nest 
nestled in real ivy plants. 

The white concrete urn paired with the 
white ceramic fleur-de-lis add 
a touch of France as well as  
a touch of spring. 

When I found the faux grape hyacinths 
at a local florist, I thought they were expensive, 
but bought them anyway because they are a 
realistic fake and the perfect color for my house. 
The expense turned out to be a good buy.  
The flowers are over five years old and 
still look great. 

The urn filled with the bird's nest and ivy arrangement 
complements the birdcage and bird print at the end of the sofa. 
The urn is easy to fill with seasonal objects 
that reflect the time of the year. 
Moss with ivy and a blue pumpkin are 
recent items that filled the urn. 

On the other side of the fireplace is another 
bird printed on a vintage gardening dictionary page. 
These two bird prints are part of the set 
of four bird prints that I made last fall. 

Snow and sleet may be falling outside, 
but spring and sunshine are residing inside. 
Please join me at these inspiring sites...




  1. Hi Judith, I am a blogging neighbor. I don't think I've come across another blogger so close to me. I'm in Arlington.
    How do you like our 80 degrees Saturday and sleet on Sunday? Stay safe. I love your grape hyacinths.
    New follower.
    Let's Add Sprinkles.

  2. Your mantle looks so lovely and ready for spring.

  3. Oh my! The faux hyacinths look so real. BEAUTIFUL!! :)

  4. So pretty and your pictures are amazing. Love the mantel and the urn is stunning too. Thanks tons for linking to Inspire Me. Hugs, Marty

  5. Very lovely! If I didn't have a writing assignment due, I'd be scurrying to find some Spring things to put out. So far I do have some faux lemons in a large glass container and my bunny pillow out, but not much else. I love the birds nest and faux grape hyacinths! Sorry about the bad weather outside, though that might have changed by now. Have an awesome day! Lois

  6. I love your spring additions. I had to buy some potted daffodils for my kitchen the other day, as we've had the same weather swings here in SC that you've had, and I just had to bring some spring in the house! I love your little bird nest with the blue eggs, that is the cutest thing! -Dawn @ We Call It
    History & Home link party, Tue-Fri, weekly

  7. Your flowers look so pretty, Judith! Love the urn. We are supposed to warm up to the 50's in the coming days and I'm really looking forward to it.

  8. You are so lucky to have had a taste of warm weather. We are just now creeping into the upper 40s and even that feels warm! Your blues and touches of Spring decor are lovely! Thanks for sharing at Fridays Unfolded!


  9. I love your urn with the birds nest so sweet!! I would like to invite you to come share it at Share it One More Time at One More Time Events… Tammy

  10. Pretty ideas for Spring. Love your urn with bird's nest and the grape hyacinths. Hope Spring is here to stay.

  11. Absolutely beautiful! I love the grape hyacinths.

  12. So pretty and nice to know how you came about Botanic Bleu! Love your header pretty! Thanks so much for sharing at Amaze Me Monday...


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