To live and enjoy every day to its fullest, use my gifts to help others, I travel to wherever passion finds me.

What Will She Paint?

So many friends I met here...!

Monday, September 07, 2009


Once we lived in a big old house in Scheveningen,
which is now part of The Hague in the Netherlands.
In world War II to pronounce Scheveningen
was the test of the Dutchmen to see,or rather
to hear,whether someone was really Dutch.
It's impossible to pronounce it without any accent for a non-Dutch person,unless he
or she has lived there for a number of years.

We stepped from our back patio right
onto the beach. Only on the sparse
sunny days (on average 60 days per
year, the stats. say), half of Holland
would swarm to the beach to
desperately catch some rays of vit. D.
So living at the beach is only nice when there's no sun!

Of course you would like to know what these
sculpted wood headers are!
When we moved from this stately old big house
to the middle of the country,
we heard that the rule was that everything
that was not mounted on securely,
we could take with us.

Our living room had a bay window. Each part was stained glass, framed in dark wood. In between the windows were these 4 inch wood sculpted headers. Aren't they beautiful? Wish I could have taken the 1930 - 1950 stained glass windows with me, but I still have the headers as a memory.



Whitemist said...

Those sculptures are4 amazing!
I remember seeing an old church about to be torn down, with stain glass windows still in them.
I was able to salvage one. It is beautiful.

Catherine said...

These are pretty amazing - I can't get the idea of their size from the photos- how big are they? I remember when I started trying to speak Dutch hubby getting me to say Zeven Scheveningse schepen...and there was more but I forget it - I think I can pronounce it pretty well, but that's debateable! It isn't the easiest language to get the pronunciation correct and then I often mixed up Dutch and the Zeeuwse dialect of Schouwse from near Zierikzee. So I would say Toon for Tuin and thuus for thuis! much to the amusement of Dutch speakers from outside Zeeland! Nice that you shared this bit of history with us! the window must have been lovely!

Lillie said...

Those wood headers are very unique.

Gaelyn said...

What an interesting idea about taking whatever isn't screwed down. Sure like these headers, especially the first one which looks like a characture of a king from a deck of silly cards. Nice to still have them also for the memory.

SAPhotographs (Joan) said...

Now these are extremely lovely Jeannette. I love wood in all its forms. It is so warm. I used to have some wonderful rosewood things which I really miss. These are definite keepers and a must to display in any home. I see we are very similar in the things we like such as wood and the copper.

jeannette stgermain said...

Wow, you were so lucky to salvage that window. Do we get to see it sometime? I should have lived a 100 years before my time! -not really:)

jeannette stgermain said...

These headers are approximately 4 inches in height. (We had a grand time - we even took out a cast iron mantle for the fire place, but was too heavy to take that to the US)
Did your hubby do that to you?? What a tease he is! You know I am from Zeeland (Zuid Beveland). But after high school I went to Brabant - I never could imitate their accent!

jeannette stgermain said...

Thanks so much - it was a typical style for Holland in that time.

jeannette stgermain said...

It's also interesting, because knowing the history of Holland, it has had a queen for at least 5 generations (and not a king - when queen Beatrix gives it over to her son, he'll be the first king in a few hundred years!). The second one I think represents a politician or government official, then a soldier and a lady.
Yes, it's a nice memory!

The Green Stone Woman said...

It's so typical of Dutch people to take everything in the house that isn't screwed down, even if it obviously belongs to the house. People will even take light fixtures and faucets and shower heads if they think they can get away with it. In a way, it's stealing, ou know.

jeannette stgermain said...

Yes, and than to think that I am the only one in the family who likes the copper, iron and wood! When you brought up rosewood, I suddenly remembered that hubby once mad a door for someone from purple heart wood (from Africa) and the wood was VERY expensive.
Do you have your rosewood collection posted?

jeannette stgermain said...

You are right -in a way it is stealing, but not in this case. Because they tore down the building for a new hotel. I thought that it was common to take light fixtures out - now I can see shower heads and faucets belonging to a house...

gotto go to your blog - haven't been there in a while:)

SAPhotographs (Joan) said...

Unfortunately not Jeannette. It is part of the things I had to get rid of many years ago when I went back to the bush. I had such beautiful things in my house.

jeannette stgermain said...

Am glad you're writing me back - I counted on hubby to know what rosewood was, but he doesn't - so is it a light wood that has a rose cast on it? Sorry you had to give it up:(

DUTA said...

Those sculpted wooden heads are interesting pieces of art.I'm not sure I could feel comfortable with them around me, but I can appreciate something of value.

Carol @ TheWritersPorch said...

Those are beautiful Jeannette! Too bad you couldn't get the window too!

crochet lady said...

Those are definitely some wonderful treasures. I have some wonderful old leaded glass windows that were once a part of the house I live in. I set one in the bay window and I get to enjoy the rainbow display it makes on the walls. Do you have anything planned for those pieces?

jeannette stgermain said...

Duta, it's okay, we all have our own tastes and likes:)

jeannette stgermain said...

Yes, too bad...but on the other hand, I couldn't have shipped them to the US, because at that time we didn't have the funds for it:)

jeannette stgermain said...

Ah, that must be a pretty (rainbow) sight! I have these 4-inch pieces hanging on the hall (it's a wide hall-opening) - so they're still serving as kind of headers

Dick said...

They are very nice and a good thing to remember your life in the Netherlands.

jeannette stgermain said...

Yes, and then to think that at that time I had no clue that we would ever go back to the States for so long LOL
The Hague - probably a very different life lived at Texel! Did you always live in Texel?

Kilauea Poetry said...

Hi Jeannette, you could of simply said that it was important you replace those windows before you left..ha. Seriously, that was a neat story and those headers are beautiful-

jeannette stgermain said...

Kilauea Poetry,
Back then I wasn't as smart yet LOL
Thanks, I think they're beautiful too:)

Sue said...

The heads are wonderful. What have you done with them. Have you mounted them or incorporated them in another piece?

jeannette stgermain said...

we mounted them on a wall, which opens up to the hall. Since we know where they originally come from, it would have to be a very special piece to incorporate them in (and probably means: very expensive!). thanks for asking!

Shaista said...

Beautiful head sculptures - are you going to paint a series of faces? xx

jeannette stgermain said...

Thank you, Shaista, well...let me think about it... (I'm saying this, because in my teens that is what I mainly did, and loved it so much that i did not develop in other areas!)