Wednesday, August 12, 2015

Seeking inspiration at the Louvre

Being part hermit I don't travel much but last week I made an exception to that rule and headed off with the family to Paris, France. The main reason I wanted to go Paris.... The Louvre!

The Louvre (photo from Wikipedia)

I have always loved Museums and The Louvre is the worlds most visited with many, many thousands of items on display (380, 000 objects and 35, 000 works of art) over what can only be described as a immense and stunningly opulent setting.

Inverted pyramid in the underground lobby
Some of the Many Treasures
There really is a vast and overwhelming amount of information I could type about the rich history of the Louvre, from it's original use as a fortress, it's many redesigns including that of the glass pyramid, the numerous famous residences including artists that lived there, The many famous works of art including "The Big Three," and a million and one subjects in between (check out Wikipedia if you really want to know any of this information, make sure you have a large cup of coffee and some chocolate), but the reason I wanted to visit the Louvre.... the ancient antiquities, beads and jewelry!!!

Ancient Lapis and Agate Beads
Now I would love to give you lots of wonderful information about the beautiful pieces that I managed to see, thier age, how they were created and there meanings but at this point my two year old had woken up from his nap and had decided that we should not stay in one place for too long (also all the information was in French and my French is VERY limited), so instead I shall show you some of the photos that I took and let you in on a little secret!

Louvre - Ancient Egypt
As you can probably tell I ADORE (a word included in my limited french skills) ancient jewellery and beads, as do many of the Art Jewelry Element team (AJE's talented Lindsay Starr co-hosted a wonderful Beading Back in Time blog hop with the fab Sherri Stokey)! How could you not love and be inspired by these beautiful hand crafted treasures...

Ancient Egyptian Gold Rings and Stone Amulets
I really do want to make some of these amazing seal rings and just look at that Eye of Horus, think of all the wonderful things you could do with that!

More Egyptian rings and beads, check out those seals and the scarabs
Now for the secret! Something that I did not know about until I stumbled on it, even tho I spent a whole week reading information about the Louvre!
Amongst the gift shops that sell your normal junk and the high end shops that sell all that expensive junk, in the underground shopping mall, Le Carrousel du Louvre there is this little gem....

Photo Taken From Les Mineraux Website
Les Mineraux, a shop filled with minerals from around the world, jewelery and objects made from natural stone! I LOVE this shop, they have every mineral and stone that I have ever heard of and many more....

A selection of the minerals in the shop

The walls are lined floor to celling with display cabinets, packed full of stunning fossils and sparkly minerals and amazing stones.

Celling to Floor Display Cabinets
Photo from
I could have stayed here for the rest of our holiday but again I had to give in to the wishes of the two year old and head off to find dinner, but not before drooling over these pretties.

Selection of Opals
And managing to purchase a few little treasures to make something to remember the trip (unfortunatly not the gold nuggets I was designing with in my head or even the large chunks of tourmaline crystals that would have made beautiful necklaces, but lovely shinies never the less).

Treasures From Les Mineraux
Now I have No idea what any of these lovelies are and would love to find out if anyone knows? 
The coins and post cards however were brought in a wonderful flea market we found, there were even a few very well stocked bead sellers there too. Now I have a million and one idea's inspired by some of these ancient treasures and I can't wait to get making!


  1. Lucky you! Sounds like a wonderful trip!

  2. Wow this places sounds like a real "treasure trove"

  3. Thanks for sharing your amazing adventure. The stones at the top left are called Desert Rose. Good luck on the others.


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