In February of 1997, I met and fell in love with a Frenchman, Gérard Masson, while he was on vacation in Canada. Soon after, I was off to Paris, France to follow my heart and my man! Our relationship blossomed and so did my love of France and the French culture.
Travelling together around the romantic French countryside, we discovered the beautiful areas of southern France. While in the Bouche du Rhone area, Gérard introduced me to the beautiful cotton fabrics particular to Provence. The history, the rich colours, and the excellent quality of these fabrics impressed me. I wasn't going home without some for myself and gifts for friends.
Soon Gérard and I realized we were onto a great business idea! Why not import these delightful Provençal inspired prints into Canada? Why not share with Canadians our love of the Provençal countryside and French culture? I had studied textiles earlier in my education, and was an avid sewer. I knew that the variety of textiles was limited in Canada, and that to find the so-called, "french country" look was almost impossible. Gérard set about laying the groundwork for the business in France. A couple months later, he followed me back to Canada, and our company, L'Art de Vivre was born!
We began importing our Provençal fabrics into Canada in late 1997. From our home-based studio, Gérard and I began transforming these fabrics into elegant table and home decor accessories. Beginning with tablecloths of all shapes and sizes & coordinating napkins, our collection has grown to include placemats, cushion covers, table runners, valances, seat cushions, and a variety of custom works.
L'Art de Vivre's collection can be seen by appointment, at various Canadian craft and trade shows during the year, and every Saturday at the Old Strathcona Farmers' Market in Edmonton's historical Whyte Avenue area.
Experience the beauty and colours of Provence...
Gérard & Selena Masson, Owners