La Cressonnière: Studio

April 11, 2011

I thought it would be fun to start this week with a tour of the studio (sometimes we call it the atelier) at La Cressonnière. Just outside the half bath, at the bottom of the staircase, is the entry way to the studio. Here is the door:

art studio french farmhouse

I’m sitting in this room as I type. It is where I spend a good chunk of my day. And when the kids are home from school, if it’s not warm enough to be outside, they are in here too. It’s a wonderful room. The light is gorgeous. I can hear the birds outside and there’s plenty of room to spread out, even if I’m working on a big project. I love being in here.

Come on in!

art studio french farmhouse

art studio french farmhouse

Straight across from the door, you’ll find the paint bin — tubes of oil color organized in cubbies. On the right side of the paint cubby, is a sink for washing up. On the left side is a statue that looks like it once had a religious life, but has now dedicated itself to painting. : )

art studio french farmhouse

Used pallets hang from the ceiling and down the bookshelves.

art studio french farmhouse

The bookshelves are packed with art books, art magazines and interesting objects.

art studio french farmhouse art studio french farmhouse art studio french farmhouse art studio french farmhouse

Below the bookshelves are cupboards so you can tuck away supplies.

art studio french farmhouse

In the center of the room, with plenty of space around it, is an old desk made for four people. I don’t know the history of the desk — it seems too high for a school desk. I wonder if it was used by draftsmen? Whatever the history, it is one of the main gathering places in our house.

art studio french farmhouse

Each section of the desk lifts up and inside we keep art and craft supplies, coloring books and other odds and ends. The homeowners had kid-friendly supplies waiting in the desk. So kind!

art studio french farmhouse

On one wall, there is a working fireplace. Thank goodness! Because this room can get chilly — I imagine it has something to do with the 2nd door that leads outside, plus 3 large windows — so it’s nice to build a fire and make the space cozy. (This past weekend was so warm, we left the door wide open and the kids ran in and out all day.) Above the fireplace hangs a large mirror. (It’s reflecting the painting I mentioned here.)

art studio french farmhouse

Here’s a closeup of some of the pretty objects on the mantel:

art studio french farmhouse

Between the outside door and another window, sits the table where I work, and where Ralph makes movies when the computer is free. Below the table, a huge stack of paper is stored.

art studio french farmhouse

Sometimes, I’m in here all alone. Other times Ben Blair works next to me at the table. And still other times, the whole family is in the room, drawing or painting or making a watercolor calendar.

art studio french farmhouse

June likes to sit on her comfy sheepskin rug and hang out while we work.

art studio french farmhouse

And that wraps up the studio tour. How do you like it? Do you think you would you enjoy working in this space as much as I do?

P.S. — You can find more La Cressonnière photo tours here.

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{ 67 comments… read them below or add one }

1 eve April 11, 2011 at 5:52 am

This house is more and more amazing with each “tour”! This is pretty much my dream workspace.

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2 TN April 11, 2011 at 5:52 am

Awesome! Who are these owners who own this manor…they must be awesome people ;-)

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3 Susan April 11, 2011 at 5:56 am

You had me at the door. ;)

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4 Wendy McSwain April 11, 2011 at 5:58 am

Question for you, ma’am. How do you keep the kids from destroying all that beauty? I’m sure it’s because yours are exponentially better behaved than mine. :)

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5 kelleyn April 11, 2011 at 6:05 am

With each room you show it seems almost impossible that a house can be so perfect. I hope some day I can get to that feeling in my own house. Right now we are on the market for a sofa, but I am having committment issues.

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6 Chris April 11, 2011 at 6:07 am

fun!

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7 Jessi April 11, 2011 at 6:17 am

S0 lovely!! Wish I could justify having a “studio”. Oh well, next house!

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8 Kholisa April 11, 2011 at 6:26 am

Love this room! Love that the kids can work in there too doing something creative. I’ve been trying to convert our playroom to a space for playful learning ala Mariah’s Atelier over at Playfulearning for ages so this is fresh inspiration thank you! June on the rug is ADORABLE!

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9 Kelsey April 11, 2011 at 6:42 am

Absolutely love this space! Favorite one yet… I love having a workspace for the kids within the adult workspace. And I like wondering what little trinkets your family will leave behind for the next renters of the house. :)

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10 Liliart April 11, 2011 at 6:44 am

I love your work!!
Congratulations!

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11 JourneyBeyondSurvival April 11, 2011 at 6:48 am

I love Ralph’s foray into the videographer realm. Fantastic. I’m sure his classmates will be impressed, and that he fits right in!

You and this house were made for each other. I’m surprised that the two of you made it this long without connecting. Soul mates. Oh, and how delightful are the homeowners? I’m sure this home will be spoken for for the next hundred years!

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12 Monica April 11, 2011 at 6:54 am

Wow, it’s beautiful!

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13 Meagan April 11, 2011 at 7:01 am

How is this place real?? It’s like something from a dream!

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14 the mrs April 11, 2011 at 7:13 am

I don’t think I’d be able to leave after one year if I lived there.
Thank you for sharing with us!

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15 Cindy April 11, 2011 at 7:43 am

What a great room! I can see why you spend so much time here. Oh, and I totally love the pallets that hang in this room. Art created by creating art-that’s pretty cool!

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16 christine @ leapfroglane April 11, 2011 at 7:46 am

OK, that’s it. I want to move in next.

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17 amy j. April 11, 2011 at 8:03 am

It’s not as historic or charming, but we have an “art room” in our home that is a wonderful, daily used room. It has built in floor to ceiling shelves for all our books and other things, a two sided work table with shelves for art and crafts, a big closet to hold all sorts of things, a antique cabinet for art supplies, my desk with computer and a credenza for office supplies. We use this room every day. It is a small room, but holds alot of useful things. I will never not have a space like this in my home.

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18 robyn April 11, 2011 at 8:10 am

wow…what a space…i’m trying to achieve an attractive shade of green right now.
and look at how big June has gotten. craziness.

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19 Genevieve April 11, 2011 at 8:12 am

I absolutely love the painting of the guy in red on the wall! What an awesome space!

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20 juliagblair April 11, 2011 at 8:14 am

Such a LOVELY tour! The children were most beautiful of all!
Are the children in school this week? We’re cheering for you all the way.

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21 Mary April 11, 2011 at 8:35 am

Love seeing the character of the house. It is as though the different aspects of the home (as seen in your various postings) provide a unique and different insight into the beautiful personality of the house; almost like meeting a wonderfully interesting person.

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22 Nicole April 11, 2011 at 9:22 am

How are you all ever going to leave????

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23 Kristen E April 11, 2011 at 9:40 am

Love it! I swear, when my husband and I buy our little farm (that’s our 5-year plan), I’m going to dedicate a room as our studio. I’m a fiber artist and he writes music, so we could really use a space like that! Right now we just work wherever we can, but dedicated creative space is a wonderful thing. :)

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24 LeeAnn Balbirona April 11, 2011 at 9:51 am

I want that desk! I would guess it is either a drafting table, as you suggested, or a reading table from a library, perhaps from a college library. Like we have study carrels, you know? Living with all that art must be a challenge…my kids would be constantly rearranging, moving, and playing with it all. Maybe you are more comfortable with putting it all to rights or the risk of breakage than I would be! Or maybe the owner is not too worried about things being precious? A lot of thought and love went into designing and decorating the place, that is for sure. :)

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25 Lindsay April 11, 2011 at 10:03 am

It is gorgeous and I would love to work from home and this space would make that dream just right!

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26 Karyl April 11, 2011 at 10:13 am

This is soooooo inspiring! What a wonderful way to get the family creating together! Love that table for 4 to work on projects together. Just looking at it makes me want to work on my paintings and craft projects……..

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27 Liliana April 11, 2011 at 10:15 am

This to me is a perfect room, starting with the door. I especially love that huge key inside the door. And the curtain on the side. And everything else.
Enjoy!

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28 Denise Laborde April 11, 2011 at 10:27 am

I would love it! My favorite is that it opens to the garden – awesome for the warmer months.
In our current home we have a craft/work/play/tv room and I love the fact that everyone can be doing their own thing…together.

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29 sarah, rsm April 11, 2011 at 11:00 am

i am soooooo loving “our” workspace! :-)

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30 Tawnee April 11, 2011 at 11:35 am

LOVE THE OLD WALLS!! SO much better than my very out-dated wood paneling. I love the used pallets. I hope i’ll have a collection soon!

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31 Mona Keegan April 11, 2011 at 11:41 am

I think I see the ghosts of monks transcribing biblical text at that desk. Wouldn’t that be amazing. So happy to see you and your family enjoying and truly living with all of this historical loveliness.

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32 Heather April 11, 2011 at 12:03 pm

that is a dream space. I just decided that my house needs a studio.

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33 Amy April 11, 2011 at 12:27 pm

How charming! Love the pale blue door!

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34 Robin April 11, 2011 at 1:09 pm

Another amazing room! Love these tours!

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35 bdaiss April 11, 2011 at 1:11 pm

How beautiful. I must say, you are making me dream of living in an old house “decorated” by it’s long time residents. It would be fun to learn the stories behind so many objects.

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36 Rebecca Blythe April 11, 2011 at 1:18 pm

That house is magical. How will you ever live anywhere else!?

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37 ellenpatton April 11, 2011 at 1:33 pm

I would love that red paint bin!

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38 meredith April 11, 2011 at 1:33 pm

that desk is KILLER. my kids would LOVE that. the house is truly amazing.

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39 vanessa @ silly eagle books April 11, 2011 at 1:53 pm

I love that table! Such a great workspace for the kids. :)

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40 Miranda April 11, 2011 at 1:56 pm

LOVE IT!!! So jealous. My favorite part is that the family comes together and works together :-)

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41 Brenna April 11, 2011 at 2:12 pm

Charming, charming, charming! Your total living space does not disappoint. So fun for you all to experience this and have these photos to keep the memories with you.

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42 Meghan Beutler April 11, 2011 at 2:19 pm

I fall more in love with this house with every new tour you offer. It is so fun to follow your experience in France!

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43 r8chel April 11, 2011 at 2:26 pm

That craft desk is great! Well, if you can ignore the whole slant factor. I love that you can stash the supplies right where you’re working… and they’re totally obscured.

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44 Lori April 11, 2011 at 2:50 pm

I would love a huge area like that to create art and stretch out in. It would be so nice not to have to clean up at the end of the day. I can see my family spending time creating great things together in that space. Count your blessings. :)

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45 kalanicut April 11, 2011 at 2:50 pm

That piece of red & white art behind the statue, stopped me in my tracks. I love it! Trying to think how I could create something similar since I don’t have a fabulous French flea market in my front yard .haa-haa….hmmmm….thank you so much for sharing your glorious adventure with us all!

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46 Julia April 11, 2011 at 2:53 pm

Oh my goodness, this space would motivate even the most curmudgeonly individual. I have recently been re-working my office space & this has given me new inspiration. Thanks!!! Julia

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47 Abby April 11, 2011 at 3:25 pm

i’m amazed at your house. I look forward to each new post with pictures of a new corner of La Cressonnier! I’m so intrigued as to how you found this house… I’ve read all your posts (regarding the house) and I know you found on a home rental site, but it seems to fit your family and your interests so intently… as if meant to be. Did you know the house and it’s contents would have such an artistic flair when you read about it online? Did someone suggest the house to you? Just wondering, because I’m 1. living vicariously through your experience abroad :-) 2. hope to one day do the same and would love to know how you came across such a gem!

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48 redmenace April 11, 2011 at 4:26 pm

I LOVE it. I would get so much done in such an inspiring room!

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49 aimee @ paging supermom April 11, 2011 at 4:59 pm

I’m in love with that desk!! But really, the whole space is just cool. It would be hard to get me out of that room… well, maybe not–between the flower-filled hills and markets you talk about, I’m not sure where I’d spend my time. So much fun!

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50 heather m April 11, 2011 at 5:21 pm

Wow what an awesome room! I’d likely spend lots of time there too. You are so lucky to be spending the year in such a beautiful part of the world, in such a perfect house. I love love love reading all about every detail. Makes my normal-crazy-busy- in-the-same-little-house-for-15-years-in Arlington-VA seem quite pedestrian and simple. But I keep telling myself I have it good. Because I do. It would just be so much more interesting to spend a year in that house in that part of France. :)

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51 Marta April 11, 2011 at 6:23 pm

I Just love it!

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52 ChantaleP April 11, 2011 at 7:06 pm

Oh wow! What a space to create and be inspired by! Or just sit and take it all in.. gorgeous.. I’d never want to leave.. unless it got too cold. lol! Your little June bug is so sweet!

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53 Jennifer (Savor) April 11, 2011 at 7:40 pm

The light is perfect for food photos – no more artificial required

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54 Suzanne Stewart April 11, 2011 at 7:48 pm

Raising 6 children never sounded so relaxing!

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55 the sleepy time gal April 11, 2011 at 8:09 pm

beautiful! can you take some visitors?? :)

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56 Doss April 11, 2011 at 8:47 pm

The worktable in the middle is great. The whole workspace seems like it invites creativity. We have a worktable in the woodworking room of our house that we usually spread projects out on. The bulk of our design work gets done in our home office though.

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57 Petra Morvay April 12, 2011 at 1:59 am

my dad was a enamel artist/painter/graphic designer of the serious sort:) and I grew up loving the smell of art supplies and paints… it still means home to me!!

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58 miggy April 12, 2011 at 8:33 am

This place is a dream. Big enough for the whole family, but cozy enough just for you…perfect. I’m jealous.

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59 Sara April 12, 2011 at 9:22 am

This house is so completely amazing, I think it qualifies as truly magical!

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60 Sarah Williamson April 12, 2011 at 10:23 am

I would ADORE a space like this! Somewhere where the whole family can be creative and together. So very special :)

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61 Kathleen April 12, 2011 at 2:12 pm

So lovely. The desk looks like something Dickens’s clerks would have worked at, only painted over a few times in the past century or two.

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62 brooke @ claremont road April 12, 2011 at 3:12 pm

What an amazing space! You must love working in there… I don’t think I’d ever want to leave. (The room, or France.)

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63 Ainsley April 15, 2011 at 7:12 am

I would live in there! What an amazing space to have in your home.

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64 nike April 16, 2011 at 11:33 am

So nice again!
Desks like this were used in monasteries. The monks would write and/or copy manuscripts on these tables.

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65 naPaapa April 25, 2011 at 2:14 pm

Wow, I love your working space, so huge. And enough room for the kids to join the fun. Love the antique desk. You should give us a tour of all the gorgeous old books you have up in your bookshelf.

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66 jeri May 24, 2011 at 3:50 pm

Delightful details! Thanks for the tour . Love the kid’s rooms too!

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67 Erin February 8, 2013 at 1:16 pm

I absolutely love it!! That’s great the children have the big workspace, too. That must be very inspiring for them. Love it!!

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