Not having had my fill of it in the previous post [or, let’s face it, ever] I continued to gorge myself on glorious decadence by watching Sofia Coppola’s jaw-droppingly beautiful feast for the eyes, Marie Antoinette.
Indeed, the film contains so many scenes of outright decadence in the truest sense, that it produces quite a hypnotic, dizzying effect on the viewer – has a film ever contained so many scenes of cake-eating? Of course, this served as inspiration for another collection of gorgeousness from Etsy sellers, which you will find below. I was particularly inspired by the seemingly endless tea-parties, and by the rural idyll known as Hameau de la Reine, or ‘Queen’s Hamlet’ built for Marie Antoinette in a secluded section of the Trianon gardens. Here the ladies of the court would dress as shepherdesses and frolic with lambs to their hearts content. Anyway, for further information, and lest I embarrass myself with my lack of anything but fleetingly gleaned information on this subject, gathered hither & thither; I shall refer you to someone who I regard as an expert on all matters Antoinette, my dear friend Melanie (who earlier readers may remember from a post I devoted to her, along with a collection of Marie Antoinette-inspired goodies).
And now, my dears, let us feast once again…
Direct links to items shown:
Yes, I know I shouldn’t have the same shop twice, really – this wouldn’t be allowed in an Etsy treasury featured on their front page,for example) but really, Zebra Cakes’ shop epitomises this style so well that I simply had to use both of my choices!)
Incidentally, if one were to wish for a Marie Antoinette-ish rural idyll themed tea party (and really, who wouldn’t want one of those – the very thought unleashes the inner five y ear old in a party dress with a balloon, just THRILLED with licking the frosting from cupcakes then dashing madly around until you fall over. Oh who am I kidding – this is pretty much still my behaviour at parties…)
Ahem. Anyway. If one were to have such a party, I think Bakerella is an excellent inspiration for a wide selection of seriously fabulous looking baked goods. This excellent blog has many mouth-watering recipes and fantastic ideas to fire the imagine,as well as whetting the appetite. Don’t blame me about the pounds you put on just looking at it. Entirely your own faults, my dearies.
Whilst watching Marie Antoinette – even though they are not at all of the same era – I always find my thoughts turning to the supreme Ladurée – King of all the tea rooms in Parisian history, and still making their exquisite macaroons to this day…
The Ladurée story
“The history of Parisian tea salons is intimately tied to the history of the Ladurée family.
It all began in 1862, when Louis Ernest Ladurée, a miller from France’s southwest, created a bakery at 16 rue Royale in Paris.
During the same year, the first stone of the Garnier Opera was laid, and the area surrounding the Madeleine was rapidly developing into one of the capital’s most important and elegant business districts. The most prestigious names in French luxury goods had already taken up residence in this neighborhood.
In 1871, while Baron Haussmann was giving Paris a ‘‘new face’’, a fire made access to the transformation of the bakery to a pastry shop. The decoration of the pastry shop was entrusted to Jules Cheret, a famous turn-of-the-century painter and poster artist. M Cheret sought inspiration from the painting techniques used for the ceiling of the Sistine Chapel and the Garnier Opera.
By incorporating them in his work, he added depth and relief to the ceilings ornamented with cherubic children.
Under the Second Empire, cafes developed and became more and more luxurious. They attracted Parisian high society. Along with the chic restaurants around the Madeleine, they became the showcases of the capital.” [Read more from Ladurée’s history].
If you haven’t been to one of their shops, I urge you to seek them out – they are always stunningly decorated and look like something one might find in a fairytale or a dolls house brought to life.
Oh yes,and they also make cakes… Even Marie Antoinette inspired ones, by way of a cyclical ending to this post:
I am feeling slightly more sated, now, and shall let you alone to revel in the links above.
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