Image Map

Wednesday, November 28, 2012

Holiday Scents from Frederic Malle

Just out- the 2012 collection of collector's boxes from Frederic Malle, nose extraordinaire   Choose from 8, 15 or 18 of the houses incredible perfumes, housed in an oh-so-chic black box.  Available at the three Malle Paris boutiques or at Printemps.

Tuesday, November 27, 2012

News for Hermes lovers

Hermes and designer Rei Kawakubo will reunite for a limited edition collection of scarves, available in February 2013.  The collection will be divided into two mini-collections.  The Noir et Blanc collection will have 5 abstract scarves and will be sold in Comme des Garcons boutiques in Paris, NYC, and Tokyo.  The Couleur collection will consist of 6 patchwork, checkered and striped pattern scarves, and will be available in London and Tokyo.  Mark your calendars- these are sure to be collectors items.

Thursday, November 22, 2012

Vanessa Bruno

Vanessa Bruno has been making her classic canvas totes for years, and yet they never seem to go out of fashion.  This season, she's created an exclusive leopard tote for Monnier Freres [the upscale online bag site], in a limited edition of 200 pieces.  Get it quickly before it is gone!

Wednesday, November 21, 2012

Chic Chocolate Bars

Yes, I'm a sucker for cute packaging....and who can resist a gorgeously wrapped chocolate bar?  The collection includes the Champs Elysees, Notre Dame, and more.  I'm picking these up for stocking stuffers.  

Tuesday, November 20, 2012

Chanel at the Grand Palais

Created by Mademoiselle herself in the 1950s, the little black jacket has become a staple of a modern women's wardrobe, alongside her LBD [little black dress].  King of fashion Karl Lagerfeld gives hommage to La Petite Veste Noire with over a hundred photos, sporting a black Chanel jacket, bien sur.  Hurry to see the expo- that has already passed through NY and Hong Kong- before it moves on.

Vintage ABCs

I've been hooked on vintage sign letters for years- ever since my mom bought me a blue letter "M" with rusted edges from a neighborhood brocante when I first moved to Paris 10 years ago.  I've been slowly collecting them ever since- keeping an eye out at every flea market or sale I pass.  And now I'm afraid my collection will continue to grow ...with the new vintage shop Kidimo, that stocks over 2000 letters and numbers.  What a fun idea to get a giant letter or two....or spell out a whole phrase in a homemade font.    It does get addictive...don't say I didn't warn you!
(Note:  the shop is open by appt only)

Monday, November 19, 2012

Shhhh: CSP's secret shop list

The secret is out....I've been adding all the great boutiques I blog about on a Google Map that is available to all my loyal readers.  Click here to access the map to start planning your next trip!

Friday, November 09, 2012

Christmas/ Holiday Lights & Windows in Paris 2012

It's that time of year- Paris is getting all decked out for the holidays. [Yes, already!]  Galeries Lafayette's holiday vitrines went up this earlier week, with Printemps to follow today.   This year, both grand magasins are being decked out by big names- Louis Vuitton for Galeries [pictured] and Dior for Printemps.  The fashion-forward windows still appeal to kids and adults alike- and fashionistas will adore them, bien sur.

Be sure to stop by the Cinderella's carriage [installed by Disney at Galeries], and check out the special Cendrillon [Cinderella] macarons created by Dalloyau.  Talk about co-branding! 

After all that shopping....continue on for more lights around the city.  Gorgeous lights are to be found on the Champs Elysses, Ave Montaigne, and Place Vendome.  Check here for a listing of all the holiday lights and here for a list of Christmas markets.

Friday, November 02, 2012

chic chloe double header

Attention Chloe fans- this is for you.  First, start by visitng the boutique and picking up one of these great perfume-filled  (60 euros at Chloe boutiques.)  Then take your good smelling self to the Chloe exhibition at the Palais de Tokyo. The expo traces the brands history [since 1952] and all the big names (Stella, Karl) who have made the brand what it is today.

Until Nov. 18, 2012

Wednesday, September 19, 2012

Arts & Antiques Tour with Philippe Starck's Ma Cocotte

It's getting to be that time of year again, when cocooning sets in as the weather turns cooler.  Why not spruce up your maison with some new [old?] treasures from the largest flea market in Europe?  Our Arts & Antiques tours take place on Saturday and Sunday mornings, and are loads of fun- I recommend it as a great tour for couples or families as well, as the puces can be likened to a living, breathing museum full of amazing finds.

And to top it off, we could end your visit with a stop to the cool new restaurant in town: Philippe Starck-designed Ma Cocotte, the hot new address for fall at the flea markets.  On y va!  [Contact Chic Shopping Paris for more info about the flea market tours.]

Tuesday, September 18, 2012

fall trends: the jacket

This fall, once again, it's all about the jacket.  Fall is a great time of year to get them out- put a few layers under it if it's cool, or just a simple t if not.  Add some great fitting jeans and ballerina flats and you are good to go nearly anywhere in Paris.  Upgrade to heels and you are ready for evening.  Thought I'd give you a brief lesson on French jacket names and styles, as the style names are so different [i.e., Franglicized versions of our names!].

Above:  Le Smoking [French for tuxedo, or just the jacket in this case]; the one pictured above is from chain shop Mango

Veste boucle:  this is a Chanel tweed knock-off style, and in this case knock-offs are okay!  A classic wardrobe staple; this one is also by Mango

Le Spencer:  I have no idea why this is called a Spencer, but it consists of a jacket with tails in the front.  This cute tweedy version is from Sineanquanone

Le Perfecto:   Love this name for our motorcycle jacket.  This one, in amazing red leather, comes from Paul & Joe Sister.

Monday, September 17, 2012

chic shoes

Who needs another pair of black shoes?  That is exactly what French designer Patricia Blanchet thought when she created her line of shoes in 2009.  She designs colorful shoes with great heel heights that are easy to walk in.  The shoes are carried in several unique boutiques throughout the city [each shop carries separate models and colors]...and now Patricia has opened up her own boutique, with the entire collection displayed in an all-red boutique.  Vive la coleur!

bring some home: amazing jams

I've always considered luxurious pots of interesting jams or mustards to make amazing little gifts- what more could one want than a taste of France?  [To make the gift extra special, pair it with a little spoon from Sabre or a vintage silver one from Les Puces.]  Here are a few nouveautes for fall:
Henri le Roux makes amzing flavors like Pomme Tatin [apple tart with salted carmel], Fraise Poivree [peppered strawberry] and ginger orange.  Beware- this shop is also filled with chocolate goodies!  

I've always had a soft spot for these Bonne Maman minis.  Why not serve them individually for your next brunch [or your little girls tea party].  Trop mignon!

Boissier will woo you with their label and then with their flavors.  White chocolate- mango, anyone?  Or maybe dark chocolate- raspberry, which is a definite upgrade from Nutella.

Bonne Maman
available at Monoprix all over Paris

Thursday, June 28, 2012

Vite, un chignon!

Those in-the-know know that this is the day to run to the Courreges boutique to be perfectly coiffed by an up-do expert.  The 60s-style boutique is hosting hair stylist Christophe-Nicolas Biot this week, with a special bar a chignons Thursday night.  A free chignon is offered to all who come by, from 5pm to 8pm.  Hot pants and go-go boots optional.

Bar a chignons chez Courreges
40 rue Francois 1er

Wednesday, June 27, 2012

Best Ice Cream in Paris

It's finally warm enough here [at least for today!] to warrant going out for a I thought I'd put out a list of the chic-est spots to get a cornet [cone] in the capital

Pierre Herme- famous pasty chef that turns out intriguing flavors, such as La Milena [fresh mint ice cream and red fruits sorbet, together] or try the Gla'Gla collection- ice cream sandwiched between to macarons.  Yum!  (Available by the pot- 140 ml for 6.60euros)

Mini Palais Bar a Glaces- the Mini Palais [aka the restaurant the runs out of the back of the Grand Palais museum] has opened an ice cream bar for the summer on its lovely terrace.  Around 20 flavors of sorbet and another 20 of ice cream, the menu combines classics and unusual flavors as well.  [Lemon-thyme, anyone?]  (3euros a scoop, in a cup or cone.)

Hugo & Victor- another famed pasty shop that has come up with some delightful glaces for summer.  Eat in it the carton, get a big carton to share, or try their original take on an ice cream cake, ice cream served with a financier crust.  [Pictured above, the lemon cheese cake ice cream sensation.]  (5.50 euros for an individual pot, 6 euros for a slice of cake.)

Martine Lambert- originally from Deauville, the tea shop in Paris now has quite a following as well.  They pride themselves on quality ingredients, with sorbets made of a whopping 70% of fresh fruit.  Unusual flavors [China nights- Szechuan Peppercorns and chocolate truffles or Gingerbread and candied peel of lime] and classics round out the list.  (Around 3 euros a scoop.)

Berthillon- the Parisian classic, all the others owe their start to the great, quality glace that comes from Berthillon.  Fresh pasturized milk delivered each morning to make their concoctions, on site.  Note- they are closed Monday & Tuesday, so make sure you take a visit to Ile St Louis on another day!

Summer Sales [Soldes] Start Today!

The big, semi-annual sales start today in Paris!  Check out my previous blog posts about tips for navigating the soldes like a pro.  Bon shopping!

Friday, June 22, 2012

Hermes 4th of July Sales!

This year's special Hermes sale takes place on Independence Day- although I am positive that it has nothing to do with its American fan base :)  The sale will take place at the Palais du Congres at Porte Maillot again this time.  Check out a previous post on tips for the sale, and Vain & Vapid's post about scarf tying tips to get you in the mood!

Thursday, June 21, 2012

Sexy Stillettos at Versailles

After amazing expos by Koons, Murakami and others, Joana Vasconcelos is the first woman artist to be invited to represent the contemporary art world at the Chateau de Versailles.  The Paris-born Portuguese artist uses her feminity to provoke a look at the status of women in today's society.  The giant sculpture Marilyn [pictured], is made entirely out of pots and lids and is displayed in the Hall of Mirrors.  The installations are full of energy and humor, making a fun addition to the famed Chateau.  Until September 30th, Chateau de Versailles; online tickets available here.

Friday, June 15, 2012

Tsumori Chisato for Petit Bateau [encore!]

Tsumori Chisato and Petit Bateau have teamed up for a second time this month, turning PB's classic stripes into love-ly waves.  Check out the French PB website for the whole collection.  [It doesn't appear to be available stateside- so it's another great item to pick up when in France this summer!]  Here is a list of all the Paris boutiques.

Tuesday, June 12, 2012

BHV [Bazaar de l'Hotel de Ville]

It's been a while since I've popped into BHV, and when I went this week, I was once again amazed at the selection of home decor items.  BHV [or, more formally, Bazaar de l'Hotel de Ville] is a cross between an old-school JC Penney store and Target- i.e., you can get everything from a toaster to a dust pan to a chic swimsuit or handbag, all in the same store.  One of the most unusual departments is the basement bricolage [DIY] department- with everything from cow hides to enamel French signs and wine storage options.  I love the huge selections of things like knobs and lampshades, pictured above, and always wind up walking away with more than I'd planned on.  Check it out if you'd like to give a French touch to your maison.

Magnifique Mustard

This Maille mustard is absolutely stunning, non?  One might buy it just to have on the table for a chic pique-nique....but the best part is that is tastes as good as it looks.  The entire trio is amazing looking- green herbs, blueberry/violet [shown], and garlic/red pepper- but get them quickly, as these fab flavors are limited-editions.  [Although at the Boutique Maille, you can always find a great array of mustards/ oils/ vinegars- great gifts for gourmet friends back home.]

Monday, June 11, 2012

Sexy new summer scent

It's rare that I'm drawn to a new perfume- I've been faithful to the same one for years, never feeling the need to change...but when stuck in a long line at the pharmacy the other day, I gave this one a sniff, and I was blown away!  Maybe it has something to do with the dreary weather we've been having in Paris this spring, but the Nuxe Parfum instantly smelled like sexy summery days to me.  Not some icky coconut/ sunscreen scent, but something more subtle and definitely sunny.  The fragrance was developed after the phenomenal success of Nuxe's huile prodigieuse, and is only available in France for the moment, so be sure to put it on your bring-back-home list if you are visiting this summer. [Around 40 euros, available at most pharmacies/ parapharmacies.]

Sunday, May 20, 2012

Free Hermes bag!

Ever dreamed of owning your own Hermes Kelly or Hermes Birkin bag?  Well, this is the latest bag from Hermes- and it's free!  Go to the Hermes website, to download your very own Jige bag.  What's the catch?  Just a little DIY- you have to print it and put it together.  Available in 6 models [including one white one to create your very own design], all free, all fun, and certainly collectible.  Trop chic from the makers of bags that can be trop cher!  

Friday, May 18, 2012

A simply classic bag

Sometimes a girl gets sick of all the bells, whistles and logos on a bag.  That's why I love the look of this sleek tote from Un Apres-Midi de Chien.  Simple, smooth leather, with an attached pouch, in a variety of fun summer colors.  Simply chic. Available online or at La Cour, 60 rue Tinquetonne, 2nd.

Thursday, May 17, 2012

The Sun King's new bag: Louis Quatorze purses

Louis Quatorze [Louis the 14th], a "vintage" [i.e., 1980s] French brand is making a comeback. After gaining a following in Asia, the brand has decided to relaunch itself in France with a line of scarves, bags, gloves, umbrellas....Inspired by the Sun King himself, the bright and fun boutique in the Marais is filled with the wares alongside colorful vintage furniture [also for sale.]

Louis Quatorze
Hôtel Mégret de Sérilly
106, rue Vieille-du-Temple, 4th

Tuesday, May 15, 2012

Best Brunches in Paris

Over the past few years, the concept of brunch has been taken to a whole new level here in Paris.  Parisians spend a good part of their Sunday morning brunching on delictible goodies, in a way that only the French can.  Here is a resume of 5 new brunch hot spots:

The Trendiest:  Le Dome du Marais [pictured]- recently redone by a duo of trendy restraunteurs, this former auction house-turned-restaurant is oh-so-Parisian.  Menu?  Hot drinks, pastries, scrambled eggs [or benedict], salad, fresh fruit.  Or order off menu [salads, burgers].  Time:  12pm-4pm, 25 euros

The Most "Made in USA":  Livingstone NY Steakhouse- US- style steakhouse.  Menu?  Juice, American coffee, pancakes, muffins, popovers, strawberry butter, burgers, bagels & lox.  Time:  12pm-6pm, 24 euros

The Most "Dangerous Liasons":  Hotel Daniel- a boudoir/ hotel setting where one expects to run into the Marquise.    French pastry chef Sebastien Gaudard puts back the Frenchiness in brunch, a forgotten tradition of the 17th century.  Menu?  Finger sandwiches, eggs to order, ham, fresh yogurt, salad, pastries, cakes. Time:  10am- 3pm; 43 euros

The Most "Strickly for Taste":  Alain Milliat- the top-notch specialist of fruit and veg nectars has opened his own tea salon/ juice bar.   Menu?  brunch/ buffet with cakes, compotes, tartes, homemade jams, breads & pastries, cereals & yogurts.  Also cheese plates, omelets, hams.  Time:  11am- 3pm, 28 euros

The Most Seaside:  O restaurant [above]- in order to forget the dreadful Parisian weather, check out this freshly redecorated barge restaurant.  Menu?  Large buffet with Beef bourguignon, cheeses, beef tartar, pastries, salmon, salads, oyster bar, etc.  The Plus?  A clown that looks after the kids while you sun yourself on the terrace.  Time:  12pm- 3pm, 38 euros [15 euros for kids]

Article translated and modified from

Limoges porcelain in Paris at countryside prices

When I visited my friend Emilie at her country house in Limoges two summers ago, I loved visiting all the cool Limoges factory shops.  [By the way, did you know that Limoges refers to any hard-paste porcelain made in/near Limoges?  It is a common misconception that there is only one exclusive brand, when in fact anything produced in that region can carry the name....]   I picked up interesting pieces [a berry bowl with draining holes for subtly draining your precious berries; a double-spouted sauce pourer, etc.], in the classic white porcelain....and I've always wished I'd gotten more!  

I had remembered spotting a similar place in Paris years ago, and happened upon it this morning.  Porcelains MP Samie has the same sort of stuff- piles and piles of every sort of dish, serving plate, or bowl you can imagine, all produced in their factory in Limoges, all available at very reasonable prices.  

Porcelain MP Samie
45 av General Leclerc, 14th

Balenciaga & Comme des Garcons: new neighbors

I finally got around to checking out the big green caterpillar of a museum, also know as "Les Docks" [or the Cite de la Mode et du Design], the big lime colored squiggly building that floats on the docks of the Seine in the 13th. The space, which is to host artists-in-residence, a few design/ fashion shops, cafes and bars, and an upcoming roof bar, is currently hosting exhibits from the Musee Galliera, while it is under renovation.   A very interesting choice to have both Balenciaga and Comme des Garcons expos next to one another, the contrasts are too many to you'll just have to check it out yourself.  

Les Docks - cité de la Mode et du Design 34 quai d’Austerlitz 75013 Paris
Until October 7, 2012 

Sunday, May 13, 2012

Happy Birthday, Disney!

Hard to believe it, but it was 20 years ago this month that Disneyland Paris opened it's portes.  I still remember all the fuss about it, way back then.  What's new for the big 2-0?  A  new parade [at 5pm every night], a huge new Disney Dreams fireworks show [every night at 9.30pm], and seven new attractions.  What's nice about Disney Paris is that it is small enough to do in one day. [Although, if you are here for just a quick trip, I'm be apt to leave it off the list.]   And bien sur, you can get loads of trinkets with Mickey and the Eiffel Tower.  

Saturday, May 05, 2012

spring stripes

I'm a huge fan of stripes, and have always loved the pattern to pep up your wardrobe.  This season, the classic marieniere t-shirt has brought in its cousins, for a fresh take on fun, colorful stripes.   From top- Dehry dress [146 euros], Naf Naf short stripy dress [49 euros],
and Petit Bateau [70 euros]