Julia Child’s Kitchen

November 28th, 2010
I could have lingered here all day.  My pilgrimage to the Smithsonian American History Museum in Washington to see Julia Child’s Kitchen was one of the highlights of my trip.  Gazing at the homey kitchen made me think of how much kitchens have changed over the last twenty years.  Now we are all about granite and stainless steel.  Julia’s kitchen is all about the woman herself.  The aqua blue cabinets were raised two inches to 38″ tall by her husband Paul to accomodate her 6’2″ height.  The dining table was purchased in Norway when Paul was stationed there after leaving France.  Julia kept the table covered with a bright yellow oil cloth.  The ceramic fruit bowl was purchased in Mousiers when they lived in France.

Every pot in Julia’s kitchen had it’s place.  Paul outlined each pot on the pegboards so that she would know exactly where to return them.  I love her turquoise cannisters.

Julia’s 6 burner Garland commercial range was purchased in 1956 for $429.00.  Some of Julia’s later television shows were filmed in her kitchen.  The table and chairs were removed and an island with a cooktop were installed for filming.  But her wall ovens with the squeaky doors remained.

Julia’s communication corner with phone and pad of paper is so typical of everyone’s kitchen.  Notice her Mr. Coffee coffeepot.  No stainless steel state of the art cappuccino machine here. 

I wanted to hold Julia’s cookbooks and look for the pages with stains on them.  Imagine owning her copy of Mastering the Art of French Cooking.

Other than the fact that this is a horrible picture of me,  I was really happy to be this close to Julia Child’s kitchen.

Kristen, Rachel and Michael on the Mall on Black Friday.  I enjoyed this Mall better than a shopping mall.

We are on Chincoteague Island right now.  This is the view from our room.

We are leaving for Ocracoke this morning and I will not have internet access for awhile but I am looking forward to telling you about the fabulous 7 course dinner that Kristen’s brother David served us at his restaurant, Urbana.

It was one of the best meals I have ever eaten.

17 responses to “Julia Child’s Kitchen”

  1. Kristen says:

    What a treat to visit Julia’s kitchen! In the vast Smithsonian, it would be a highlight for me, too.

  2. Susan says:

    Penny, thanks for sharing. Judging by the picture, is it actually possible to walk through Julia’s kitchen? I would have drank in every second of being there. Be safe and looking forward to hearing about the menu.

  3. Donnie says:

    I loved this post. Enlarged all the pictures to get a really good look around. Fabulous. I couldn’t believe they let people inside the exhibit or did it just appear that way? She sure used every inch of space for her favorite hobby, cooking. I’m sure it was fun sharing it with family. Don had orders to Chincoteague Island but they sent us to Miami instead. We keep saying we’re going to visit up there someday. Have a safe trip.

  4. What a wonderful experience!

  5. Karen says:

    What a wonderful opportunity to see Julia’s kitchen. I would love to make that trip just to see it! I guess the room is glassed in? I would be all over those cookbooks of her’s.
    Thanks for sharing this with us.
    Ladybug Creek

  6. Kate says:

    Thank you so much for the great tour! It was a nice way to bring Julia’s kitchen to us. I agree that you selected the right mall for Black Friday!

  7. Thanks so much for sharing your pictures! I would feel like a 13 year old fan of a rock star visiting Julia’s kitchen. What a great experience! I envy you!


  8. I would rather visit Julia’s kitchen than go to any sale on Black Friday. You are so right – things have really changed in kitchen design.

    So glad you are having fun. Sending big hugs your way.

  9. Pondside says:

    I enjoyed that! It would have been a hightlight of a visit to the Smithsonian for me, too.

  10. What a fantastic post! Thank you for sharing your visit of Julia’s kitchen, I am dying to go there myself:) It is truly amazing how kitchen design and technology have changed. What a special trip – hope you are having a blast!

  11. Donna-FFW says:

    I hope to visit her kitchen as well some day. Thanks for the photos, I enjoyed them so!

  12. Such fun, love the shot on the Mall… have fun Granny Penny

  13. Bella says:

    How fabulous! What a treat, I’m sure. Great photos.

  14. Barbara says:

    How wonderful, Penny! I hope I have the opportunity to see it one day. I loved your photos!

  15. I love Julia! She is my all time favorite cook! The last time we were in DC we didn’t have a chance to get to the Smithsonian, but it’s on my bucket list! LOL!!! Thank you for sharing those beautiful photos of her kitchen. I have been fortunate enough to meet her and have a cookbook signed by her – you should check out my post about her, I think you’ll like it 😉


  16. What fun! Julia’s kitchen is so warm and so much like the lady herself.

    I connect shorebirds with Chincoteague Island, for some reason.

    Have fun on Ocracoke!

  17. Rita says:

    What a wonderful post; I am in awe;; just imagint the thrill of being in Julia’s kitchen.
    I enlarged every photo and dreamed.
    Thank you for sharing; really enjoyed.

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