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News from R.H. Ballard Shop & Gallery

Lions, Tigers, and Bears! Oh my! Product Showcase

Lions, Tigers, and Bears! Oh my! Product Showcase

Lions, Tigers, and Bears! Oh my!

Colder weather is knocking at our doorstep here in the foothills of the Blue Ridge Mountains. October comes with gorgeous autumnal hues that inspired our showcase collection. From Vases and Pitchers crafted in England to Le Jacquard French Linens, this showcase remembers warmer weather and channels our inner animal, inspired by fall colors and the wildlife around us. 

Handmade Pitchers

From the heart of the safari and hand-crafted in England, this Lion Pitcher could be the perfect addition to your pride. The iconic color of the lion is exactly what draws us to its friendly warm face, hand-painted by artisans. Sturdy and durable, the pitcher is chic enough for display and tough enough for everyday use. The collection has seven different animal friends for you to collect such as the Black Bear, Fox, Zebra, and more.  These stoneware pitchers hold a generous 13.5 fluid ounces and are a perfect match for any juice, cream, or syrup. No matter which you choose to take home, these are sure to put a smile on your face. 

Deer head Utensil Holder and Vase

One of the more show-stopping sights you can spot while out for a walk during the fall is seeing a stag in the woods. Now you can have a stag of your own right in the comfort of your home. This Vase and Utensil Holder elevates the mundane into a fun, but elegant, addition for any kitchen, dining room, living room, or guest room. Guests are sure to love the numerous ways to make antlers for your new addition. Try pairing the ceramic head with flowers, twigs, or even pasta. The possibilities are endless and it’s so easy to make this piece your own. 

Planche Animaliere Safari by Le Jacquard Francias 

Since 1888, Le Jacquard Francais has been a staple for quality in linens and this 100% Cotton Kitchen Towel is no different. Inspired by Scientific Illustration, the Plance Animaliere Safari series offers realistic renditions of African Wildlife. The colors remind us of warm cinnamon, crisp fall leaves, and the warmth of the African Savanna. The Planche Animaliere Kitchen Towels come in Orange (pictured), Sun, and Sand. These are easy to clean with the capability to be machine washed and dried, for a soft, fluffy almost terry-like texture.  As you hunker down for the fall, carry a touch of the wild-side with you with these Le Jacquard Francis Planche Animaliere Safari Kitchen Towels. 

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SPRING SALE 30% OFF Le Jacquard Francais Coated

SPRING SALE 30% OFF Le Jacquard Francais Coated

The SPRING SALE is on! All Coated Products and Matching Cotton Napkins are 30% OFF, while supplies last. No coupon or code needed. Allow 2 weeks for delivery. 

Shop All Coated Tablecloths, Coated Placemats and Matching Cotton Napkins Now! Click here to start saving:




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Planning the Perfect Dinner Party

Planning the Perfect Dinner Party

Group of friends enjoying home dinner party in brick loft

Home cooked meals aren’t as common as they used to be, but they are still very well loved and appreciated. Although it helps, there doesn’t need to be a special occasion to make and enjoy a good meal. Gather your family and friends and host a good, old-fashioned dinner party.

The Preparation

Once you’ve decided to host a dinner party, it’s important to get started as soon as possible. Make a guest list and send out invitations. Handwritten and mailed invitations are classy and fun, but an email or a phone call work well too! Avoid sending and invitation via text, though, as it will downplay the importance and atmosphere of the party.

In the invitations, be sure to ask guests if they have any dietary restrictions you should be aware of. When the RSVPs have been received, the fun can begin!

The Décor

While you wait for responses to your invitations, plan a party theme if you want one. Even if you don’t choose to go with a theme, you should choose a color scheme to stick with when planning decorations. Our Le Jacquard Francais linen collections feature beautiful, quality linens perfect for entertaining or to simply make a statement.

Dishes should also be considered when planning décor. Whether you have the perfect set of china or are looking for new statement pieces like our Vietri Lastra White to add to your collection, dishes can play an important part in the overall look and feel of your dinner party.

When it comes down to party time, set the table the night before (even if you’re planning to serve buffet style). This will help eliminate extra and unnecessary work for the next day when you’re busy cooking and prepping the meal’s courses.

The Food

The moment the RSVPs are received, you should start planning the menu. It’s important that you go shopping within a week to three days before the event to ensure that you have all of the ingredients you need and that everything is fresh.

The night before the party can be used for prep work or to make any dishes that can be stored overnight. Avoid making anything that will need to be reheated, though. Any cold desserts, raw vegetables, or salad can be prepped the night before (just leave off the dressing).

Good luck and bon appétit!

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New & Noteworthy @rhballard

New & Noteworthy @rhballard

We've always made it worth your while to travel to our unique shop & gallery in Little Washington, VA. Spring is probably our favorite season as the air has a crispness and the trees and flowers are starting to bloom in glorious colors. AND the shop is overflowing with fresh finds.

For the past few months Robert and I have been scouting, buying, researching and discovering anything new and unique. Our two floors are bursting with an artful mix of old and new. Scroll through the images below to get a taste of what we discovered for you, and let us know what you think!

A little load of vintage finds from a recent trip down south.

This metal folk art piggy was a fun discovery. We were able to score a few of these.

We are always on the lookout for authentic vintage Hungarian Dough Bowls to bring into the shop. We found several beauties. Contact us for information.

 This is a one of a kind handcrafted lamp created from an Art Nouveau gate section, found in France. Our vintage lamps are not posted online so please contact us if interested.

These new Mango Wood Fish Bowls were a fun find. Perfect for nuts, dips, chips, really any food item. Cleans up in a snap, and we love the natural wood finish.

Our teak salt cellars are both functional and so cute. They make a great hostess gift when paired with any of our fine selection  of French Sea Salts. 

La Baleine Sel de Mer is the finest in French Sea Salt. And the cute container doesn't hurt either.

We've been carrying Le Jacquard Francais Table Linens for many years, and their new designs never fail to astonish. This is called "Seville" and is a luscious spring shade of yellow. 


We love scarves and wraps any time of the year. These are handwoven in Turkey and India and come is stunning designs. Light and airy, casually elegant, a spring essential.

Colorful Canvas Totes are the perfect bag for spring and summer outings, beautiful and durable. They also work great for groceries and farmer's markets.

The BEST unbreakable dinnerware in heavy, triple-weight melamine. Love the variations in design of this blue and white stunner called Heritage. We have 3 styles now in the shop, perfect for outdoors, pool-side, and every day kitchen use. Dishwasher safe!

Our friends at Skeem Design created soy-based candles in divine scents. The laser cut wood top, and reusable glass, makes this such a pretty gift. 

Ever heard of special hand soap just for chefs? This has ingredients of essential oils that  remove food odors like onion and garlic. It smells great.

Our Apothecary section  is stocked with favorites like LAFCO, Antica Farmascista, Kala Style, Pre de Provence, Skeem, Naturally European, Beekman 1802 and much more.

"A pig, a rabbit, a goat and a cat walk into a bar..." Big latte cups hold enough for soups, desserts, and of course a big splash of coffee.


New John Derian handmade decoupage paperweights from NYC have arrived, with more trays and objects on their way.

Our new designs of Art Trays bring spring into your home. These make great wedding gifts and we ship these all over the US.

Yes, there is actually an Avocado Soap and Coffee Soap that refreshes and rejuvenates the skin.

A large selection of artful stationery from Rifle Paper Company is now in. Our favorites are the Monarch Writing Pads, beautiful cards, colorful pencils, and the cute notebooks that are easy to slip into your purse.

We've expanded our gourmet section and have added Brooklyn-based TIN Mustard to the mix. For mustard aficionados this brand rocks. 

Hard to find Truffle Honey from France sits among the other truffle products of oils and salts. It's actually an Oprah favorite.

Cocktails anyone? Your library of cocktail recipes awaits. We have a large selection of new cocktail manuals and cookbooks to help you put a personal touch to your summer parties.

BEEKMAN 1802 has landed in the shop, and the natural Honey Grapefruit line is our favorite. 

All Francophiles will love this book of Laduree Recipes, beautifully displayed in a pretty box

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Our Picks: Le Jacquard Francais 2015 Winter Tablecloth Collection

Our Picks: Le Jacquard Francais 2015 Winter Tablecloth Collection

We love all that autumn brings to us in air, colorful leaves, lots of social events around the county with family and friends. It also means more beautiful linens from Le Jacquard Francais are arriving in the shop. You can purchase the new 2015 collection here on our website. Here is a sneak peek to get you going!



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