Living in France

First plane ride

My First Plane Ride

When I was considering colleges, I choose the college that I went to because it offered a study abroad program.  I wanted to see the world.    This was my first plane ride and being further away from home then I had ever been in my short life.  My international journey started from New York to Iceland (since we were on Icelandic Airlines) and we spent an orientation week in Switzerland with the entire study abroad group.

Tour France

Pastry shop in france Tour France

map of loire valley

I spent that summer in Tours France studying french.   It was a delightful town. Located in the Loire Valley, on the weekends our group went to many chateaus and even one weekend in Paris.  I loved the shops which were an excellent way to practice our french, drinking coffee, eating baguettes , french pastries, and nutella.

Part of the experience was learning to really speak french in the classroom with this crazy french teacher who’d throw chalk at you if you mispronounced.   Speaking with, or trying to with the people in the town.  And at some point, after the three months realizing that I could speak “une per de francaise”.  And I still can to some small degree.

Switzerland 2


For some reason I took slides of my trip and after unearthing them, I scanned them into the computer and found a way to display my photographic memories by making these purses.   They had faded a lot over the years.   And when printing them, the faded images were apparent.

The images I printed onto fabric transfer sheets and then ironed them onto fabric.   These purses are all recycled fabrics that I received from a friend who works as an interior design firm in town.   The size of the purse is determined by the size of the fabric swatch.

Notre Dame

Notre Dame

After ironing onto the fabric, I had to enhance the images.  What is fabric paintNotre Dame PurseDSCN1528

for?   And I used regular fabric paints that you can purchase at Joanne’s or Michael’s.  The sky becoming greener.   Notre Dame acquired some detailing with copper and some more color to the faded stone.

Of course I loved seeing Mont Saint Michael.  Such a fabulous and amazing place to visit.  The remoteness of this place and the inaccessibility from tide to tide was such a contrast to see.

Mont Saint-Michael003

These next purses were  from chateaux which were really fun toscan0005Chateau Purse embellish.

Cheverny    005

My dream now is to go back to France.  Maybe this time I can teach this technique.  One can never tell.


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