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The one where I become my own cliche - or is that the cliche?



“A woman who doesn’t wear perfume has no future.”— Coco Chanel


I am at risk of rolling out too many life-affirming cliches as part of this great adventure, so it is time to show the other side of life in Paris., What else but le shopping?

No, this is not a guest post from Emily. Sarah Jessica Parker is not in Paris, and I haven't bumped into Villanelle yet (which is no bad thing!) After two years of lockdown and a UK high street on its knees, I have been overwhelmed by the sights, sounds, colours and abundance on the Paris high streets (yes, that is plural). I've been transported to a nirvana, a paradise, a veritable cornucopia of....


OK, I'll stop there before the cliches really take hold.


There are four major department stores in Paris:

  • The Galerie Lafayette, with its incredible view across Paris from the seventh floor and its Tiffany glass ceiling ( truly beautiful)

  • La Samaritaine, opposite Louis Vuitton and a huge, unique and jaw-dropping installation. by contemporary artist Yayoi Kusama,

  • Le Bon Marche, the first department store in the world and a place where art and fashion collide. Over the years, the store has passionately pursued its commitment to contemporary artists by giving them carte blanche..

  • BHV Marais, the iconic department store long known as Bazar de l’Hôtel-de-Ville.

One thing they all have in common is that they are all as hot as Hades inside. I suspect this is to deter the hordes of tourists. who fill every floor, marvelling at the designer brands they are unlikely to buy, Yes, that includes me. I am in Paris after all. But life is about balance and I can't spend all my time pursuing cultural experiences...



Credit: Musée de la Monnaie de Paris. Exposition: L'Art-Gent


Well, not every day. Just most days. My preference is for the quartiers with a bit more character, where you can wander the winding streets, stop at a local cafe, photograph the incredible architecture, find a museum or gallery you have never heard of and shop. Le Marias, La Rue Vavin and “la Mouffe”, are all areas worth checking out.



I'm sure this post is not complete, With eight weeks to go, I'm certain to have some updates and edits.


Villanelle: Yeah, but you got some really nice clothes out of it, so...


A bientôt.




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