In the mid-18th century Quimper sprang to nationwide attention as a pottery manufacturing center. Normands, whose distinctive Rouennaise faïence was already famous, imported the techniques. But the Quimpérois customized them by replacing the pottery’s usual blue-and-white patterns with brighter Breton scenes depicting local life. Today's colorful designs, based on floral arrangements and marine fauna, are still often hand-painted. To understand Quimper's pottery-making
past—and see more than 500 examples of "style Quimper"—take one of the guided tours at the Musée de la Faïence.