Monthly Archives: April 2012

Shopping the Paris Flea Markets: Les Puces de Saint-Ouen

Hello there. How was your week? I hope it was lovely! So, I promised I would share some shots from my shopping experience at the famous Les Puces de Saint-Ouen – so here you go…

Oh, but first a little background. This expansive market is actually an entire area made up of several markets – each one, having its own personality and specialties. The entire area encompasses over 3000 vendors, so to say it’s large is an understatement. I recommend picking out a few of the markets within to focus on rather than trying to do the whole thing at once. We visited Marché Vernaison, Marché Paul Bert and Marché Biron. We may have stumbled into a few of the other areas too…but at least we tried to stay focused. One could truly get blissfully lost, meandering the alleyways and admiring the sheer variety and beauty of all the treasures to be found. A big tip…get this book!

It was a wonderful help planning this trip.

Okay on to the photos…

Almost every vendor had a little scruffy dog. Most of them had as much personality as their owners and it was quite impossible not to smile when we got the pleasure to meet these beloved French pooches.  This guy was perfectly content perched up on his antique chair!

Here are some of the amazing treasures I unearthed on that day…

All in all, it was another amazing shopping day! I have to thank my friend, Annie again for documenting our adventure with her trusty camera!

Have a fantastic weekend!

xo,

Les Puces de Saint-Ouen

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Inspired: Amy Sia

It’s been a while since I have shared any art with you all. As you may have noticed, I’ve been utterly consumed by life in general…but I do yearn to create again and I know I will, when the time is right.

In the meantime, I thought I would introduce you to a London based, textile designer that creates some truly beautiful work! Some of her pieces actually remind me of Monet’s Water Lilies, which I had the honor to view while in Paris, at the Musee de l’Orangerie. Her colors are more vibrant but the energy, pattern and luminescence is similar. A modern impressionist, Amy weaves colors together effortlessly, creating shimmering hues that seem to vibrate and shift before your eyes. Here are a few of my favorites…

Her entire portfolio can be seen here. Check out the fabulous iPhone cases and laptop skins featuring her gorgeous designs too!

Have a lovely Thursday.

xo,

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Filed under Art, favorite things, Shopping

Shopping the Paris flea markets : Porte de Vanves Marché

Okay, so I haven’t been holding out on you…I just haven’t had much time to process everything from Paris! So many photos! The images I’m going to share with you today were taken by my dear friend, Annie. She so graciously documented our Parisian shopping adventures for me. Overwhelmed and completely giddy, I knew I couldn’t shop, barter, attempt to communicate with the vendors AND take pictures so I will be eternally grateful to Annie for capturing these.

This was the first market we hit – Porte de Vanves Marché – in southern Paris. This market has been around since the 1920’s and is one of the best! Smaller and less intimidating than the famous Marché aux Puces St-Ouen de Clignancourt, I felt this market was a good place to get my feet wet.

It was a beautiful, crisp, clear morning. We arrived a little before eight. Vendors milled around, unloading their little white vans. Smoking cigarettes and sipping coffee while they set up folding tables and began the process of displaying their wares. Piles of linens, stacks of ancient looking books, jingling mounds of old French silverware, tired chairs, wearing their original velvet attire, gigantic mirrors, rows of earthenware dishes and bowls, vintage postcards, photo albums, bowls of skeleton keys, sparkling chandeliers – all these magical items unfurled as the sun rose and warmed our backs.

I got to try out my French…although most of the vendors spoke a little English and were happy to bridge the gaps in our communication. I wanted to buy all this gentleman’s dishes! What a treasure trove he had!

That cake plate went home with me and sold in minutes after listing it in the shop…pretty isn’t she?

More shopping…

and a little live music…courtesy of this guy…

By mid morning, our accumulation of goods was becoming rather heavy…but nothing was stopping us! I look so serious in this shot, as I scan the tables for precious items, while my friend Sherry (behind me) looks completely blissed out – and she was carrying the really heavy stuff! She’s a brilliant shopper, such a trooper! And my thanks to my fabulous flea market photographer, Annie! Thank you girl!

It was an absolute delight to shop this market and a successful outing – I managed to come home with many gorgeous items that are listed in the store now…

Getting back to our flat was another story…after attempting to lug our caravan of treasures back to the train station, we gave up and hailed a taxi! It was SO worth it.

This week I will share some more images from the famous Marché aux Puces St-Ouen de Clignancourt!

Have a beautiful Wednesday!

xo,

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Filed under Etsy, Paris, photography, Shopping, Stories, Thoughts, Travel, vintage

Paris streets…

Hello there. Happy Friday!

How has your week been? So far, so good over here. Got my family coming in today to celebrate Grace’s upcoming 6th birthday. Can’t believe she’s turning 6! I haven’t had much time this week to edit my plethora of photos but I wanted to share a few with you today.

While walking the streets of Paris it was impossible (at least for me) to watch where I was going…it’s a bloody miracle I wasn’t run over by a mini or ran face first into a local Parisian! I did almost walk into several poles, however – but it was all worth it – my eyes were on the absolutely gorgeous architecture all around me. Doors, windows, gates, cobblestone alleys, gas lamps, scrolling ironwork. It was a visual smorgasbord and my camera couldn’t get enough…

Okay…that’s it for now but more to come. :)

Have a beautiful weekend!

xo,

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Parisian Sweets at Ladurée

image via

On the second day of my trip to Paris, we met up with my friend and she escorted us to the famous Ladurée bakery for a decadent afternoon of tea and macarons! This is no ordinary bakery.

image via

This is home to the original Paris macaron – those treasured confectionery creations, done in a rainbow of beautiful colors and inventive flavors.

Check out this lovely little video to get into a Ladurée mood…

With a line out the door for the bakery counter we slipped on by the crowds and were seated in their tea room. Decked out in shades of pistachio green with accents of red and an overall Chinoiserie theme, we were served with silver tea pots and pastel hued cups. I managed to capture a few images before we devoured our treats…

Unable to decide which macarons to order, we let our waitress bring an assortment…aren’t they lovely?

Delicious too! Being pregnant, I ate more than everyone. It was only fair that the baby get her fair share of these Parisian delights, right? I think the salted caramel one was my favorite but it was a close call with the raspberry…

xo,

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Filed under Food, Paris, photography, Stories, Travel

Home sweet home

Bonsoir my friends! Happy Easter! I hope you all enjoyed the holiday weekend.

I returned from Paris on Monday and I’m starting to get back into my groove. Forgive the delay in posting pics! I do have over 300 images to edit and it’s a rather daunting job, not to mention the mounds of Parisian treasures unearthed at the flea markets that need to be photographed and listed on my Etsy shop! It’s been a busy week but I couldn’t be more satisfied.

Paris was…amazing, dreamy, surreal, inspiring, overwhelming, breathtaking, exhausting, life-changing and incredible. I could go on…but I think you get what I mean.

We arrived at 2 pm. Dropped off by a friendly, somewhat amused (at us) cab driver in front of our Paris flat on Rue de Grenelle in the 7th Arrondissment. I felt like I had landed on a different planet. Jetlagged, pregnant and stupefied, I was overcome with how surreal it felt to actually be in Paris. My head was swimming as I took in our surroundings – beautiful old buildings with ironwork filigree, a quaint cafe across the street bustling with locals, a fruit vendor rearranging bunches of white asparagus, the aroma of fresh bread and flowers and the ever-present, gentle hum of the French language buzzing around us. I must have looked like a deer in headlights. I was in Paris. For real.

After settling into our apartment, we headed over to the corner bistro. Terrified, I approached the gentleman at the door.

“Bonjour?” My voice was barely audible. This whole language barrier was freaking me out…even after all my French practice.

He smiled and said in English, “Table for two, for lunch?”

I must have sighed rather loudly, because he chuckled. I nodded and he seated us at a sidewalk table and handed us English menus. Were we that obvious? I guess so.

With shaking hands, I managed to wolf down my first Parisian meal. Roasted chicken, scallop potatoes and a salad. Not that interesting but it did wonders for my blood sugar.

With a full belly we decided to stroll over to the Eiffel tower, ten blocks away.

Here comes that surreal feeling again. I stood in awe, gazing at this beautiful structure – the one seen through out my home on coasters, prints and pillows. There it was before me. Let me tell you, it is truly stunning!

As night fell, we headed back to our flat to (hopefully) sleep! I have never felt more exhausted and giddy all at the same time.

Here was the view from our bedroom window…

Sleep came quickly but I awoke at 11 pm to this sight…


Pure magic.

xo,

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