parle vu frances?
Do you “amore’ anything French?
I Love Paris…I love French decor and scouring flea markets.
Shop with me as we decorate my imaginary Paris apartment.
My husband and I have been to Paris three times, but one of those times I can’t count as a vacation. It was literally a 5 hour trip into Paris by train from our hotel that we were being put up in overnight, while we waited for a flight out the next morning. My husband, myself and many other travelers were staying in a hotel by the airport because our flight had been delayed, inturn we had all missed our connecting flights. It was Sunday night of Memorial Day weekend and we were traveling home from Italy. We were thankful that we had the next day off and were not too upset, as long as we could get home the next day. After the initial confusion and let down, we finally realized…We were in Paris!… and we weren’t going to sit in our hotel room all evening. The city was calling our name.
Since we had been to Paris twice before and knew that we were that close to the city, we could take the train in and return on the last one out that evening. It would be a quick trip, but why not be adventurous. While eating a small meal that the hotel provided the travelers, we conversed with other couples who were stranded along with us. After speaking to two other couples and one other gentleman, we all decided we would go into the city together and take a cruise down the Seine River, the best way to see part of Paris in the short amount of time that we had. We had been on a cruise down the Seine once before, but had gone during the day. It is a cruise not to miss if you are ever there, it is a wonderful, memorable experience. We could only imagine how beautiful it would be at night. The seven of us took the train into Paris. After arriving at a stop close to the Eiffel Tower, we ran up the subway steps and looked up at the breathtaking structure, all gasping and in awe. Its enormous size and beauty is a stunning sight to behold. It started to drizzle, so we walked quickly to the river cruises, bought our tickets and before we got on bought some wine and little plastic glasses. We then proceeded to embark on a scenic, romantic and beautiful ridedown the Seine; gazing into the evening sky as we were gently flowing down the magnificent river. The ride was breathtaking in the evening… everything was lit up, the buildings and apartments were glowing, as well as the streets. We looked out as we past Notre Dame Cathedral… a truly magnificent structure that takes your breath away. Looking up into the the beautiful Paris apartments, I envisioned living in one and having this view everyday as I stepped out onto a balcony. The evening was surreal…were we really in Paris? We were suppose to be on a flight home and here we were with people that we had never met before, sharing am intimate evening in Paris with them. We toasted to a spontaneous adventure and new friends. What a remarkable and memorable evening we shared. It is a memory that I will always cherish. .. Five hours in Paris, but a lifetime of memories!
A Foriegn Affair:
I believe our home reflects my love of Europe, and our travels. I love French and Italian decor and you can throw a little English in with it also. How I would love to own an Italian villa in the countryside of Tuscany or a French Apartment along the Seine. I wouldn’t be opposed to a charming cottage in the Cotswold either! Where would you want a second home? Italy, Paris, Ireland, Greece??? I’ll take you along on a decorating trip for my Paris Apartment…let’s go antiquing and shopping.
My apartment building on the Seine River (Just dreaming, of course)
First Stop….the markets.
Paris has many markets, but the most famous is..Saint-Ouen
Paris Flea Market Tips and Hints
Flea Market Hours: Saturday – Monday
Every Saturday from 8h30 to 18h30
Every Sunday from 10h to 18h30
Every Monday from de 10h30 to 17h30
iFYOU ARE IN PARIS…..You can’t miss this market if you have time to go. This famous antique market is a must on your itinerary if you love hunting for antiques, big or small. It is an absolute ball, it goes on and on. We spent a long day bumming and thoroughly enjoyed this antique market on our last trip to Paris. They were filming a Paris Designer shopping in the stalls of the markets and we had great fun watching him. I could have brought so many things home, it was truly fascinating to us. The items that I did purchase, I will always treasure. When we were hungry, we stopped in a little restaurant right inside the markets, sat down and enjoyed wine, cheese and music. My husband and I still laugh about the little three piece ensemble that was playing while we ate…they were singing “I Did It My Way” in French, and we got such a big kick out of an older lady playing the accordian while a gentleman sang the song. Sweet memories!!
To market to market…….From the market, I’d pick up lots of accessories for my apartment– Pictures, frames, candlesticks, china, glassware, crystal, ceramics, kitchen ware, garden statuary, mirrors, rugs, slipper chairrs, fabrics for reupholstery, lamps, urns, books….and much more.
alhambra antiques—I’d have to have a collection of crowns, since my nickname has always been, “The Queen.”
A french chaise would be just perfect for resting after a long afternoon at the markets. (alhambra antiques)I love these …I would have to find several busts to scatter around the apartment. Some to hold jewelry, others for display.I’m starting to see my color palette with blues come together…I am fond of the color and it just started to call out to me. (alhambra antiues) Doesnt’ this look comfy? The fabric is gorgeous and the blue/gold is so rich against the dark wood/Wouldn’t this chandelier be beautiful over a table or in a foyer? I love the blue vase feature in the center. (french accents.com)
Something like this in a smaller entry with a mirror and accessories would create a welcoming entrance.I would love this mirror over my mantle…Isn’t it just beautiful?A few side chairs to scatter here and there would be needed… (alhambra antiques) Adding some pillows would make them even more inviting.The bedrooms would need some great armoires for storage…something like this or a painted one would be the ticket.
A French apartment wouldn’t be complete without a birdcage?
A lovely settee like this for extra seating or in an entrance is a beautiful addition. I would find some beautiful antique needlepoint pillows to enhance it.
The markets will be full of artwork for the apartment, what a great place to hunt for pictures that call out to me.
These antique upholstered chairs with original gilt and fabric would be wonderful in my bedroom along with this bed upholsterd in a vintage fabric, loaded with tons of antique pillows. (From the Shops at Malleries)I have a thing for sconces so I would have several pairs located in my apartment, don’t you love these reversed etched ones form Shops at Mallerie?
These beautiful marble top tables would be wonderful in a bedroom or in a living area. I love the colors in the marble and they would be wonderful along side my bed with lamps for readng, and a place for my books and magazines and morning coffee and pastrie.
Sculptures like this women in wood or plaster would add such drama to the spaces.
When company comes to visit, this bed be wonderful for the guest room. When can you come for a visit?A French Pastry table in the kitchen would be a lovely piece, wouldn’t you love to learn how to make some of the delicious and beautiful french pastries? My mouth is watering right now!
Every Parisian Apartment has to have a screen. (shops at Malleries)I love this diplay table for a foyer or living area, mine would be filled with items collected from the markets and travels. Maybe some porcelain boxes, antique postcards, tickets stubs to famous museums, shells from the ocean sand, pictures of family/travels/adventures and more. An antique lamp to sit on the top and a few stacks of books and it’s set.
My interior doors would look something like this. The gilding is stunning as is the carvings.
Rome wasn’t built in a day….
There is so much more to do…I’m missing my dining table and chairs, cupboards, and much more furniture, accessories, linens and lighting etc. But, there will be many more trips to the markets to make, antiquing and shopping to do, so my apartment will evolve over time. Can you help me find some pieces that would be wonderful additions to my new place? Send me some of your ideas and pieces that you think would compliment my selections for my Paris Apartment. Help me fill it up with luscious finds and fabrics. Happy shopping! Since I’m dreaming, their isn’t a budget!! So find me something incredible… please!
Maybe a trip to the South of France will be necessary to pick up some wonderful pottery and dishes. Can you get away for a long weekend of bumming? Oh, the thrill of the hunt!
(Before you go, pick up books to help you “shop til you drop” in Paris… Hear from professional shoppers where the great buys are, where the outlets are and listings of your desires and wishes.)
The Riches of Paris By Maribeth Clement
(Go to slow.travel.com for a weatlh of information and help in any area of travel, restaurants, lodging and shopping) If you go…the must see day trips are..Verrsailles, Monet’s Garden, and Normandy and the D-Day beaches. They are all worth the trip and the memories. Bring your walking shoes and discover Paris on foot, or take the subway to different neighborhoods and be adventurous.
Off to bed to dream..I’ll be decorating our apartment in Paris in my sleep.
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