Elizabeth Pash, designer and owner of Elizabeth Pash Interiors & Antiques, will be sharing one item you should be on the lookout for when shopping for antiques. Get to know our Girl on the Ground, just in time for your weekend shopping!
I have been smitten by these adorable ceramic hens from the moment I first spotted them on one of my trips to Paris. They are hand-painted ceramic hens created by the Ceramiques de Lussan. This studio was founded in 1968 in Blauzzac, a charming village in the South of France, Blauzzac, by Heidi Caillard and her husband. These guinea fowls were born from Heidi’s childhood memories of real hens wandering about the garden in her family’s home. After founding her studio, Heidi decided to create a stylized sculpture of one of the hens. After long hours of drafts, and trial and error, these charming hens came to life! The studio is now in Lussan, a charming walled village in the Languedoc region of France.
The creation of the hens begins with red clay, found near Aix-en-Provence. Then, a hen must be made by hand, as with any piece of sculpture. Once the form is ready, a plaster mold is made and prepared for casting. When the molds are ready to be emptied, the background color (engobe) is applied with a ladle. The colors created by Les Ceramiques de Lussan are their own creation, reflecting unique combinations of clay and oxides.
Then comes the decoration. This is always done by hand, either with a paint brush or with a secret “spotting” technique. Enamel is applied to each piece, and they are fired for approximately 8 hours at 960 degrees. Each guinea is made with time, personal attention and love, and each is unique in its own way.
There is something so pure and appealing about these hens. Not only is the form simple and elegant, but the glazing and colors are exquisite. They add a story to a space, without being corny or cliché. When collecting, one can really have fun, grouping by color and/or size.
For example, one could do a color story in greens:
I am so taken with these charmers that as soon as I opened my own shop 11 years ago, I knew they had to be part of my inventory. We have had such wonderful feedback, and clients come to add to their “families,” or buy them as gifts. Sometimes clients purchase one for each family member and make a grouping that way.
How cute is this “family” of three little hens?
I did a group of four in my own kitchen for my four children.
I love how these hens are displayed by Designer Missy Calvert in a Los Angeles home:
Ceramiques de Lussan also creates ceramic quail in fabulous colors. Here is a favorite of mine:
These charming creations can add a bit of color, charm and personality to any room in a home—whether formal or just a family gathering place. I needed a bit of color and interest to an etagere in my room in a Hamptons Showhouse, and I knew that the hens would do the trick:
Without being “corny” or “kitchen-y,” these adorable hens are super chic!
Follow House Beautiful on Instagram.
You Might Also Like