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Wednesday, November 7, 2012

Quimper Style

You have to make an effort to visit this
lovely corner of France, the northwestern most corner of Bretagne, north and west of Paris

You have to be driven, as I am, to see and investigate every major ceramic region in the world.

And lucky for us, nearby, we found the beautiful
Manoir de Kerlédan a luxury French Bed and Breakfast.

The salon, where we had cocktails by a roaring fire at precisely 7:30 p.m each evening.

Followed by a gourmet dinner prepared for us by the very talented and lovely Penny, the proprietress of this 15th century Manor House.

Penny and Peter Dinwiddie dedicated many years of their young lives to the rebuilding and restoration of this neglected old stone chateau.

The beginning, 1964. 

Every part of this old Manor House was lovingly restored over a period of many years  by Penny and Peter.

Formal Gardens were laid out and are judiciously kept by Peter.

beautiful bedrooms await the visitor.

We must go back and see what plans Penny and Peter have for this antique treasure.

 About an hours drive from Carhaix-Plouguer, the home of  Karledan Manor House, the town of Quimper (pronounced kem-pair) holds a very fine ceramic museum, the Musée de la Faience,
Quimper, Bretagne, France.

Throwing pots has not changed much over the centuries.  The flywheel was used then, an electric wheel has made life easier today. 
Established in 1690, the Quimper factory is still producing fine hand painted ceramics.  You can visit the factory from Monday through Friday.

Quimper Faience designs feature Men and Women in traditional Breton Costumes, celebrating their Celtic Heritage. 

Have  great remainder of the week my dear
Blogging Friends,



  1. Gina, I am also a Quimper fan, and have a few old pieces, and have visited that part of France, too. (I remember traveling around Europe seeking out Vermeer paintings in each place I stopped.)

    I do like the look of that chateau! I must make a note of it for future reference.


  2. Hello dear Gina,
    Your trip to France looks and sounds absolutely exciting...honestly I have a fondness for the Loire valley because this is where my parents live,near Tours and I adore your post about Azay-Le-Rideau... but wow this manoir in Britanny...is just stunning ! I can imagine how divine it must be to sip quietly your cocktail by the fireplace.
    Gina, I applaud your ceramic-oriented trips..so informative and I must say you are quite changing my view on the Quimper faïence for instance. Can't wait to see your next pics...Normandy is it ?
    xo Lala

  3. What an enchanting place to stay Gina.. You get to visit some wonderful places while travelling seeing all the ceramics.
    Great inspiration for you.
    I love Faiance.. You know that we have it here in Portugal too.
    I do not know the work from this factory..but its gorgeous..
    I enjoyed the tour Gina.
    I am sure you are planning your next.
    Happy week to you too

  4. I enjoyed your post Gina.

    Hope your week is going well


  5. Dear Gina = I was drawn to that plate with the snake decoration because my initial perception was that it was a cicular lattice design of actual cut-outs! I'm guessing you saw some new designs that inspired you . . .

  6. I love these Quimper photos! MY favorite is the very first shot, upper left corner. The bed and breakfast is incredible, but that boar sculpture is pretty fabulous!

  7. Dear Frances, Are you save? Staten Island was hit really hard. I feel so sad for all the misery that you have had to endure.
    You would love Manoir de Kerledan.

  8. Dear Lala, I'm so happy to see you here again. Have been reading, with interest, your preparations and showing of your beautiful fashions. You are an amazing artist. ox, Gina

  9. Dear Val, you are so right about your countries' beautiful Faience. I have admired it for years and am lucky to have a few special pieces which I hand carried home.
    We truly enjoyed Manoir de Kerledan...it is a very special place.

  10. Dear Mark, Every time I visit another ceramics Museum I can't wait to get home and start painting. I was surprised to see so many different styles of Quimper in the Museum. The "Snake" plate is also one of my favorites...the tender tendrils and the fat coiled snake are quite attention getting.
    All photos were taken through glass, not the best way to get sharp detail... but just enough to get the brain churning.

  11. Dear Theresa, you would be so happy in Manoir de Kerledan. It is a feast for the eyes. That boar statue is huge. I saw a few pictures of how they installed it. It took a giant crane. The gardens surrounding the Manor House are spectacular, in a French sort of way but there are also areas that are more casual (the vegetable garden and the clothelines for hanging out laundry).

  12. Hello Fiona, So glad you liked this post. Traveling is so much fun, doesn't matter where to.

  13. Dear Gina,
    Thank you for another beautiful post-- I think that you've discovered real teasures both in Manoir de Kerledan and the Quimper ceramics! What we see of Quimper in my area is very limited... I shall have to make the effort, as you suggest, to go to the source!
    Warm regards,

  14. Quimper has always been on my list - I love that variety of faience showcasing the Breton costumes. The snake missed my attention, the elephant caught my eye, though. But, the plate I love is the man playing cards with the 3 devils (?) - really fun!
    How nice that the gentleman even grooms his garden - and what a garden that must be - that Boar statue does make a statement!

  15. Dear Gina - somewhere before I have seen something about Penny and Peter Dinwiddie and the restoration work they have done on their wonderful home. It looks a magical place to have stayed.
    I am sure that you have returned home with lots and lots of ideas buzzing around in your head for new designs on your own wonderful ceramics.
    I noticed that one of the Quimper designs has 'cut outs', and wondered whether that is something that you have ever done yourself.

  16. Dear Gina, Such a treat to be back and savor your beautiful posts. This one is especially delightful and inspiring. France bears revisiting rather endlessly, it seems. We so enjoyed our time in Picardy and Normandy and would love to explore this area.

    Wishing you and Gene a lovely weekend! xoxo

  17. Dear Parvum Opum, Visiting this corner of France is definitely worthwhile. The countryside is beautiful and the Museum in Quimper was a very pleasant surprise.

  18. Dear Christine and Steven, Next time you'll have to come with us.

  19. Dear Mary, I was so suprised to see so many different designs at the Museum in Quimper. For myself, I enjoyed the photographs of early Quimper manufacture.

  20. Dear Rosemary, It was Sharon of My French Country Home who introduced us to Manoir de Kerledan in one of her posts of last year. You have an amazing memory.

  21. Dear Georgianna, Normandy was such a surprise, especially the area around Honfleur. No wonder so many artists painted there (and still do). It is something about the light they all talk about. I know that you and your camera would have a splendid time. ox, Gina

  22. Gina, thank you for sharing the link to this post on my post today. I missed this one! Yes, traveling to Quimper is an effort, but one that is richly rewarded. I've visited four times over the years. A good friend lives there. This is a beautiful post, and the chateau looks so inviting. I have made a note of it for future reference should we get back to the area. Sadly, our travel to France is more and more infrequent as the years pass by. We last traveled extensively by car for a month in 2011. I was there again in 2014 without my husband. Hope to get back at least one more time before I move into the next decade of my life. ;-)