Renovating in France Part 3
A Home Renovation in France
Cognac, France – The final installation of Maisonette Pierre
I was excited to arrive in South West France a few weeks ago to begin the final installation and set up of the Cognac house. The work that had been completed by my builders since I returned to Sydney in mid-November had all been completed and this included the final sanding, filling and staining of the original timber floors throughout, the completion of the bi-folding door system to the hidden kitchen and the final painting works.
Now completed, ‘Maisonette Pierre’ is a warm and inviting house that really is a little touch of Paris in the heart of historic Cognac. It has been fitted with elegant finishes and detail throughout that one could expect to find in the quintessential Paris apartment, giving it an altogether chic and timeless look.
Wherever possible I used local artisans and suppliers for the collection of furnishings and accessories. For example the beautiful velvet window drapes in all rooms were hand-made by Bryce Raffier, a talented local tapissier. I sourced feature lighting from Luminere Saint Jacques and home decor pieces, along with the stunning potted orchids, from Fabrice and Stephane from Jardin Facile. There were also pieces from Olivier at The Ambre Concept Store, Cecille at Casa Cognac and Laurence from Maison de Coralie. The final result is a carefully curated collection which is characterised by luxe fabrics and materials, metallics and porcelains all in restful and elegant shades of silver and grey with hints of black as an accent. The photography has been beautifully captured by Cognac local Stephane Charbeau.
The installation was completed in the middle of the Cognac winter and unusually the city had experienced record rainfalls for a number of weeks by the time I arrived. However, I did experience some beautiful clear days and the bright rays of sunshine beaming into the house were enhancing and very welcome. On other days, the charm and allure of Cognac were always present and it remained the most beautiful city to simply roam, visit the Museum of Art, stroll through the beautiful Jardin Public or to just order an espresso from one of the many local cafes, seated at a pavement table taking in the surrounding activity. It’s interesting the none of the cafes have outdoor heaters as we’re used to in Australia but since the locals are so well wrapped up in their smart winter scarves, coats and hats, these seemed hardly necessary.
On the Thursday evening prior to returning to Australia I hosted an intimate cocktail party to introduce friends, suppliers and others to the work that had been done over the previous 6 months. It was a sparkling evening where we enjoyed beautiful French champagne and entertaining company, all in the elegant atmosphere for which Maisonette Pierre will be always known.
In this picture, the kitchen is cleverly hidden behind the French panelled doors and contains, to the left storage, an under counter refrigerator and washing machine and to the right, more storage and the sink area . When the doors are closed, the central exposed area becomes a smart cocktail bar.
The master bedroom features the wall panelling design characteristic of the complete interior. The stunning artwork is by talented UK artist and our personal friend, Stephen Yardley. Custom cushions, luxe velvet drapery and a 1950’s inspired velvet upholstered slipper chair complete the look.
Of all the spaces within the house, the entry hallway is my favourite. It offers a dramatic sense of arrival with the black and white stairway being the focal point. The elegant light fittings are Italian and they along with the console table, which is almost transparent in the space, were sourced from Luminaire Saint Jacques, a local designer lighting store. The Persian style rug, unusually designed in shades of grey and white, was found at Casa Cognac. The artworks are framed in elegant silver plated frames from Italy which feature two sheets of glass within which to mount the art.
Are you undertaking a renovation in France? Contact us to discover how our interior design and renovation services can help.
View the Cognac, France Gallery
Take a look at our recently completed renovation in France.