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A Souvenir of Paris: Posing at Le Bon Marché

Have you seen Le Bon Marché’s latest window display? Not only is it fun and original, but this upscale department store is definitely promoting what they do and how they do it. Pictures of their famous gourmet store, La Grande Epicerie, as well as the different departments: beauty, women and men’s fashion, the bookstore, among others, adorn the outdoor displays on rue de Sèvres. Up until a couple of weeks ago, there were also life-size wooden people cutouts, acknowledging that monsieur/madame Tout-le-Monde can shop here. Luckily, I took some pictures of these cutouts before they were removed.

On one of the side streets, they have displayed Ines de la Fressange’s La Parisienne. It is a light read for those wanting to learn more about how the typical French woman lives, her style, where she shops for herself and her children, where she eats, and suggestions on where to sleep when in Paris.

I interpret the overall theme as “very Parisian/rive gauche”, and I find it quite intriguing. Let’s not forget that during the summer months Paris is handed over to the tourists, while the French are busy basking in the sun along the Mediterranean coast. So, who are they really reaching out to: the everyday Parisian or the Parisian tourist?

Happy shopping!


Paris: A Few Of My Favorite Things

As in “The Sound of Music”, here are a few of My Favorite Things to see and do in Paris. I am always on the look-out to discover new places, so feel free to send them along.


If you are planning on being in Paris for more than a week, I suggest that you buy a weekly metro/bus pass – good savings. Investigate when you get here.


  • Don’t forget to drink wine and champagne, well priced, so enjoy it while in the land of grapes!
  • Tip is always included, from taxis to restaurants – up to you if you want to leave more.
  • Pick up a basic French book to help you out… just in case!


I love art and I’ve been to a lot of museums in Paris. My two favorite museums to visit are:

Musée D’Orsay
Go on a rainy day or Thursday evening as they are open late – don’t waste a nice day indoors!

Musée Rodin
Great museum and the gardens are an absolute must see – go on a nice day.

Parks and Gardens

Les Tuileries (across from the Louvre)
Bring a book and sit in a chair by the big water fountains, people watch and enjoy a nice glass of cold white wine at one of the outdoor cafes! (White wine suggestion – Pouilly-Fumé). I recommend that you go from the Tuilerie to Place de la Concorde and straight on to the Champs Elysées (very touristy) take the Line 1 metro to L’Arc Triomphe if you get tired, as it’s a long walk.

Luxembourg Gardens
Check out the “Fontaine de Medicis” – take a good walk around the park – the trees are trimmed quite neatly. Again, chairs are located around the park and there’s some great people watching. Note: do not to sit on the grass, it’s a big no-no. There are designated areas for this.

Les Buttes Chaumont (in the 20th)
It’s a French Central Park. Gorgeous, but it’s a bit out of the way.

Neighborhoods to hit and walking about

1. St-Germain des Pres (the 6th) – BEST people watching area.

Café de Flore or Les Deux Magots
These are the two most popular cafés in Paris – extremely touristy, but well known for famous patrons such as Hemingway and Picasso, etc.

Le Germain
Great people watching and hip.

Best Gelato!! A must!

Les Editeurs (Carrefour de l’Odéon)
Great people watching and hip.

La Grande Epicerie
The most impressive and renown grocery store… if you need one…

2. L’Opéra (the 8th)

The opera house is located in this area as well as some other great architecture, but  the area is well known for…

Galeries Lafayette and Printemps
Two big famous department stores

3. Le Marais (3rd/4th)

Tons of cool boutiques, nice to walk around and good little eateries.  If you like Falafel, stop in at L’As du Falafel (34 rue des Rosiers, in the 4th) – don’t go on a Saturday as it’s closed.

4. Trocadero (the 7th)

Champs de Mars and Eiffel Tower are located in this area. Best view of the Eiffel Tower at night!! Expect long lineups at the tower during the day. For an AWESOME view of the Eiffel Tower at night you have to go the Cafe de l’Homme for either a drink (good champagne) or dinner (reservations recommended).

5. Montmartre  (18th)

Sacré-Coeur Basilica and lots of cool little places to check out.

6. Les Quais

Take a nice long walk along the river and enjoy the views and bridges!

River Cruises

If you feel the need to jump on and off a boat, then I suggest that you do it at night. The city of lights is quite impressive from the water.


1. Ladurée – check out locations and stop in while out and about
An absolute must! Famous for their “macarons” and pastries – you have to try one!! Everything is just Die-licious.

2. Paul – check out locations and stop in while out and about
Need a good sandwich?! Stop at one of the many Paul’s for a yummy baguette sandwich on the go – I recommend the Camembert cheese on a sesame baguette.

3. Le Grand Colbert (in the 2nd on rue Vivienne – make reservations)
A very French Brasserie, and renown for it’s role in “Something’s Gotta Give”.

4. Da Carmine (rue des Martyrs in the 9th)
If you’re in the Monmartre area go for pizza here. I absolutely love the Buffalata pizza!

5. Vin de Bellechasse (in the 7th – make reservations)
If you’re a meaty kind of person, you’ll definitely like this place.

Happy touring!


Adding Style To Dessert: Sugarplum Cake Shop

I love cake. It is as simple as that. I cannot tell you how happy I was last weekend when I stumbled upon Sugarplum, an amazingly creative cake shop in the 5th. If you are dreaming about Pollyanna-style cakes for your next special occasion, then this is a shop you do not want to miss out on.

Sugarplum is headed by three women, two Americans and one Canadian. I had the opportunity to sit down with Krista Juracek, the head decorator at Sugarplum, who was so enthusiastic about what she does as a designer. Their concept was born where they initially met and worked together at a cake shop in Aulnay-sous-Bois. And as good things come to those who wait, it took them about a year to get the project off the ground, and opened their first storefront in March 2010.

They specialize in cakes for all types of events, from weddings to birthdays to baptisms. As for the design, feel free to come with your own ideas, or better yet let their inspiration run wild! I mean, who would not want a one-of-a-kind stylist cake at their next special occasion?

As would be expected, everything is made from scratch, and all frostings have been toned down to appeal to the local palette. Not such a bad thing in my books. And the two most popular flavors right now? Carrot and chocolate. I was really surprised to discover that carrot cake is a top-seller. I guess that is where my palette differs from the French: I prefer the traditional chocolate and vanilla cakes I grew up with and that to me defines cake.

If you do check out Sugarplum, know there are a bunch of goodies you can indulge in on the spot or to go: cookies, squares, apple pie, scones, brownies, carrot cake and even rice crispie squares. Oh that rice crispie square was so good! The space is open and airy, and seats about 20 people. So, next time you are in the 5th, think about stopping by Sugarplum where you can have your cake and eat it too.

Sugarplum Cake Shop
68 rue du Cardinal Lemoine
75005 Paris

Tues-Sat 9am-7pm
Sun 10am-5pm

Also, check out their Facebook page where they have posted more pictures of their masterpieces!


Jüli: A Boutique Housing Unique Brands

Well, this seems to be the multi-brand boutique week, as I visited Jüli, a local clothing store just off busy rue de Rennes in the 6th. This boutique houses a lot of Danish brands, as well as some French and British ones. The owner’s motto is to bring forth niche brands that you won’t find everywhere in this city. And that she does! There was not one brand that I knew or had even heard of in this store, which I found most intriguing about this place.

At Jüli, which has been around for about a year now, you will find everything from tops, dresses, pants and skirts to jewelry, purses and shoes. Upon entering the boutique, expect to be greeted in friendly Parisian fashion and be faced with an impressive amount of trendy, flirty and unique clothing. Some of the talent to be found here includes French designers Anse, Sessun, and Le Mont St Michel, Danish designers Rützou, and D.Co Copenhagen, among MANY others. They even carry a small selection of Un Jour Un Sac’s purses and handles.

My fave item at Jüli was definitely the trench coat by Designers Remix Collection, another Danish designer. Its simple lines accentuated by the girly ruffles are a match made in heaven! If you are looking for a unique item for your upcoming night out on the town, consider passing by Jüli cause you never know what you might find!

20 rue d’Assas
75006 Paris
Open Tuesday to Saturday, 10:30am-7pm

Happy shopping!


A Hidden Gem: Boutique Binôme

Having spent a lot of time walking around Paris, I’ve come to know a lot of the boutiques in my neighborhood. Or so I thought until a couple of weeks ago. As I was strolling along, I was happy to see a new kid on the block. To my surprise, this latest boutique find has been around for the last 4 years! How come I had never seen it before?

Hidden on rue Condé in the 6th, boutique Binôme is owned by two creative “Delphine’s”: one an inspired jewelry designer, the other a talented purse designer. And you will naturally find both collections, B1 delphine bijoux and Delphine Conty Sacs, in store. Since Binôme is also a multi-brand boutique, expect to find a selection of goodies from Hartford, Bella Jones, Des Petits Hauts, among other brands.

Casual chic clothing is what you will find at Binôme and in an array of colors: strawberry colored tops and dresses, bright yellow cardigans, as well as your basic blacks, whites, and blues. You will find a large selection of Delphine Conty purses, as well as some really cute ballerinas and boots by this same designer in black, moka and taupe – perfect colors for any spring wardrobe!

Happy shopping!


Glam It Up With Aruna Seth Shoes

During Paris Fashion Week AW 2010, I had the opportunity to not only meet, but also preview Aruna Seth’s beautiful AW 2010 shoe collection.

Simply put, these shoes are stunning. Adorned with Swarovski crystals, beautiful bows and glittery butterflies, I’m sure all of womankind would not disagree with the fact that these shoes are elegant and feminine. And I can definitely say that these two words are synonymous with this brand.

The details alone are incredible! I particularly loved the Orfea black leather peep-toes with a simple yet tasteful button in the front. But it’s the back of the shoe that caught my attention: lined with buttons, the back of the shoe reveals a certain je ne sais quoi. Just love these shoes!

Designed in the UK, and made in Northern Italy, these shoes can be incorporated into your daily wardrobe quite effortlessly. Take the Josie black patent heels, another one of my faves, which can easily go from day to night. How great would these look with this season’s must-have pencil skirts? Everyone at the office will be oohing-and-ahhing over them! And for your night out on the town, why not pair them with your favorite jeans? They would be the perfect final touch to glam up any outfit.

Aruna Seth has a wide selection of shoes and a must-stop for brides-to-be. You’ll find everything from ballerinas, pumps, and wedges, to boots and booties – in leather, patent, satin and lace. And maybe you will find a pair in my closet soon!

Happy shopping!


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