The glorious pink rose on top of the stool in the photo (from the page “The essence of Atelier Jeux d’esprit) is a reminder to me of the day I went to visit Basia Zarzycka’s magical shop on Sloane Square in London, which has to be the home of whimsical trifles.
knew from an article in Country Living magazine that Mme Zarzycka is an astonishingly skillful embroiderer and craftswoman, far beyond anything I will ever hope to aspire to. I can however be encouraged that I am not alone in making the kind of thing you will find at Atelier Jeux d’esprit .
After a lot of careful browsing about in a shop even fuller of treasure than mine, I chose a very grand artificial rose in shade of green and violet. It went off out the back to be packaged up in a box that fully reflects the workmanship of the flower, I paid, and went back to my cousin’s house, where, good New Zealander that I am, I was staying.
When I opened up the box to show off my purchase, the flower was not in the least as I had remembered! I stewed over this for a day or two, and then went back to the shop, to find out what had happened! I had barely walked in the door, when the staff and Mme Zarzycka herself cried out how glad they were that I had returned: they didn’t know how the mistake had happened either, but they were distressed that I had gone off with the wrong item, leaving them with no way to get in touch with me. The pink rose was added to my purchase, as a sigh of relief and an apology all at once.
Go there if ever you get the chance! In the meantime, there is now the website, for when you need a little magic!