We often talk about how relationships are the basis of our trips to France, whether it’s with our vendors in France, or our soon to become BFF clients on the trips, or even our shippers who get everthing back to us in one piece.
Today we’re going to share a treat with you that is the outcome of one of these nice relationships: We’re taking you for a visit to the lovely home of Mathieu Leclercq, so that you can experience a taste of 18th France through the eyes and in the home of one of our favorite dealers – and marvel at what we would call the ultimate “le mix.”
Those of you who have been on trips with us will recognize the blend of 18th century antiques from Mathieu’s gorgeous booth at the Chatou fair that is always one of our favorite destinations. So as you step into his home, as we we were fortunate enough to do on our last trip, you will not be surprised by the elegant surroundings.
But here’s the rub (aka le mix) … and it’s so wonderfully Mathieu, it doesn’t surprise us one bit. The outside of his home is a stunning and stark black box, as modern and edgy as anything you’ll ever see!
But step through the modern metal doors and into the front hall, and ta da! You have now traveled in time several centuries, to the finest period of Louis XV elegance.
Before we take you through Mathieu’s gorgeous home, and let the pictures speak for themselves, here’s a little background on this lovely man. Great taste and a love for design run thick in his veins, with an architect father and interior designer mother. Artistic as a young man, Mathieu was accepted to the prestigious Ecole des Beaux Arts in Tournai (which he proudly pointed out to us on our last trip to Belgium), and went from there to Paris to continue his advanced studies. One of the mandatory requirements in the curriculum was to work for an antiques dealer in the afternoons. He met a wonderful “antiquaire” in Paris who specialized in 17th and 18th century furniture and decor, and became so passionate about this period and learned so much from her that he finally gave up his studies and went full-time into the business. Needless to say, this lovely father of three, with a beautiful wife, a thriving business and a stunning home (designed by his father) on a lush piece of property close to the Belgian border, has never looked back.
Enter the world of Mathieu Leclercq and be prepared for a wow!
When Mathieu and his wife hosted us for lunch, we sat on this lovely terrace dining on fresh salmon sprinkled with olive oil, juicy cherry tomatoes with Burrata and some of the freshest fruit sorbets we’ve ever tasted. We looked at our surroundings and marveled at how the play of modern and old and the treatment of architectural elements for functional usage was simply poetic. But of course the best part of all was getting to know our favorite 18th Century “antiquaire” and being welcomed into his beautiful home with his family. This is the joy that we often talk about that comes out of our buying trips to France. Thank you, Mathieu, for opening your home to us … and to you!
We’ll be back …
PS: Our buying trip to in September is booked up but we’re just about to release the dates for next March. Let us know if you’re interested! (We’ll be sure to introduce you to Mathieu.)