bonsoir à tous
it’s hard to believe that a month has flown by. this is officially my last night and the packing’s done, stomach full and lids are heavy. i’ll miss paris but love miami too and although my heart breaks for the oil spill, i’m looking forward to getting home and seeing what’s ahead.
packing artwork was the last thing to do and i just thought you may enjoy some of the pieces from the markets that are coming home with me. these are pochoirs by lucien victor guirand de scévola (meaning they’re hand painted over engravings). i fell in love with them cause they have the playfulness of paris’ sensuality combined with gorgeous colors, set in the backdrop of luxe paris apartments.
i love the tryst going on in the salon while the party is just outside the door…
i always wonder what went on in these apartments before our time, the fires that burned, who hurried home as dusk fell with treats from the markets to faire that famous french cuisine, and after, embroider, read, write and play and love. what could life have been like in this mysterious city for so many centuries? and to think it was all done by candlelight, with no running water and little heat. still so much was accomplished with such exquisite detail.
it looks like they were having a grand old time in spite of any hardships though. it’s because of those days that the fleas remain as fascinating as they do. how did people create such lovely things without the technologies and advances we have today using just their imagination and bare hands?
this oil is from the 20s and as a peony lover i just had to have it.
i didn’t get her (above) but love her just the same. but i did get these little books. the colors are still vibrant and the books are sweet lessons in love. the french have a way of making love so adorable and romantic!
and even though her hatbox is british, it’s still a bon voyage message to paris, i’ll be back soon (when the weather’s better hopefully)! it’s always bittersweet to leave but knowing this solid and magnificent place is here keeps me content. happy memorial day to you at home and see you on the other side!
my name is claudia and i’m a flea-aholic.
hi all! hope your weekend is winding down well and you had a good memorial day! guess it’s no surprise where i ended up on the last full day to myself! my girl christine and i went to the markets to pay for the things on hold and celebrate a great day in the sun with friends.
i’ve been meaning to introduce you to one of my dear flea friends, stephane. he has a stall at paul bert and was the perfect host, as usual, with a ton of guests, wine and cheese.
i wasn’t sure who’d want to be photographed so just stuck with the man himself. it’s funny cause you just never know who’s who at a place like the flea market. steph has a place close to me in the marais that was phtographed for a french magazine. he gave me a copy and i thought you may like the tour as much as i did.
some of the furniture is now in his shop, funny where things end up!
and we were hosted by another friend where we polished off an incredible homemade and gâteau more wine…
which led me to splurge and purchase these chairs!
of course, i had to choose carefully but it was so hard
how can you not love a place who upholstered everything in satin back in the day?
these were hard to resist
and even when we tried to do something other than the markets, the streets laid out more goodies before us at a brocante!
you never know what is going to be just ahead, guess that’s the magic of this ridiculously magical city.
here upon closer inspection were the relics of so many men who fought to protect it this dear place.
and their arms. how things have changed.
and i probably couldn’t leave paris without seeing a daybed on the street,
or a chaise for that matter!
i still have my heart set on this one but don’t think it’s gonna happen. i don’t have a store anymore and really not even an apartment. how’s that for the cobbler with no shoes?
the color combination is killing me! (thanks, mom, for saying i should get it. it would look good in my old room ;p
anyway, back to work tomorrow to restring the chandeliers with my clients so i’ll bring flowers and take pics of the final result. till then, have a great night and extend your weekend as long a possible!
bonjour toute le monde!
i hope you’re having a bon weekend and le soleil is shining. i’m winding down my trip and just wanted to share this little handpainted card on parchment i picked up this morning for a euro. my french is far from parfait but basically it says that to be happy with myself, i need my friends. it made me think of you and how much it meant to have you along on the trip even if it was from afar. your notes and comments mean so much to me and without you this wouldn’t be half the fun, so thank you for being there and i hope to share paris with you one day soon. i’ll be back in september, so check for flights!
anyway tomorrow is another early morning, i’m shopping for a sweet pâtisserie in california so lots of goodies are headed west. monday i’m back with my clients to make sure their chandelier crystals are all in line ;p
for now it’s close to 3am and i’m ready to drop so bonne soirée with love from paree!
bonjour chère friends. i’m in a romantic mood tonight. after taking over 300 photos today i’m narrowing it down to the highlight of the day. as usual i was digging through papers in old boxes and stumbled on over 100 love letters written by a prolific jeune homme to the object of his affection, mademoiselle gabrielle. she must have been some special lady. or a femme fatale.
the letters span from 1898 to 1909 (so far, i haven’t even checked them all). everything about them is incredible from the stationery to the handwriting, to the few he seemed to write in code with criss crossed precision, making them a little hard to read. claudia II thinks maybe this was a clandestine romance. one thing is sure, he was creative and devoted. maybe they’re a little risque? i can’t read them well and want to have a french friend translate.
as a hopeless romantic this was a goldmine to discover and i can’t help but imagine who these lovers were and why they were separated for so long. mlle gabrielle must have kept these letters for years and i wonder how this treasure ended up in a box at the flea market.
maybe there were no children to treasure them (that would make sense if they were separated ;p
but i’ll keep studying them and see what i can decipher. for now, i knew you’d enjoy them as much as i did and will keep you posted when i get a few translated and try to put their love story together. have a wonderful weekend with the ones you love!
allo everyone, it’s another bright and sunny day in paris! what a difference it makes when it’s warm here, it’s a completely different experience. just two weeks ago i had to buy a coat, gloves, scarf, boots and sweaters. it’s going to be 73 degrees so traipsing through the brocantes and the boxes of dirty papers and letters will be a lot more fun than doing it than with gloves and runny noses.
claudia II and i love to sift through all the papers, letters, etchings, watercolors, postcards and documents that are taken for granted by the french. wonderful ephemera from the 18oos, handwritten agreements, original sketches, music scores, grocery lists, menus and paintings can be found in folders and boxes if you spend time to go through each one.
some i can understand and others can’t be deciphered but who cares what they say? it’s so much fun to find a treasure and see them all together at home. the handwriting, seals and creativity is endless! it thrills me and i’ll never get enough!
most tourists skim the surface at markets but the trick to finding treasures is to take your time. it’s so worth it!
anything paper is magical and has so much information and detail in the tiniest space. you really get a bang for your euro and it’s not heavy to transport back.
original water color above, probably a detail for a wallpaper sample in the 20s.
these are the kinds of folders you’ll see along side merchant’s tables so look underneath at the stuff that hasn’t even been unpacked or displayed.
well, these are some of my personal secrets to finding le diamonds, and for those of you who have asked for my resources, i promise to share all that with you with the launch that’s happening any day now. (we’re at the last stage, it’s just a matter of time and will have all the info in one place)!
ok well there are a couple brocantes and vide greniers (antique shows and attic sales) happening today and we’re itching to get out in le soleil so off we go! more soon!
bonjour everyone! hope your week is going well! having free time really gives me the chance to enjoy the details of the city. i get obsessed with little things like shooting windows, doors and lately, letters. i’m trying to get the whole alphabet but here’s the collection so far.
the rare and elusive w
some are just pretty swirls and god help me if i start with numbers! but for a font lover like me this is heaven! have a great journée!
hi gang, happy monday! i hope your week has started off right. we spent yesterday once again at the markets in paris (i know, i may have a problem). but the marche aux puces are little living museums, filled with the people keeping tradition alive, both in showing up each weekend for centuries to sell their wares, and also in the little things they do during the day from hosting gala lunches to working their craft in their stalls.
Création de rideaux façon ancienne
Restauration de linge
Cours de dentelle aux fuseaux
these first two pics are from a woman who was in her stall working on the lost art of broderie. i’ve always wondered what you do with these little wooden spools! she was moving them like braids in intricate ways to create the most gorgeous patterns.
today i was drawn more to the soft little things as opposed to hard core furniture, and enjoyed snapping shots of all the remnants and swatches of hundreds of years of design and innovation.
every detail is amazing when you look closely
this is the front and back of a book cover i picked up.
the markets have hundreds of tiny scraps like this
journals from merchants who kept the most beautiful records of styles and color ways. these are from chantal who has an incredible stand at vanves. she has quite a few tables, one has stuff for 3 euros, another for 10, one for 20, and a yet another for 100. truth is you can get just as interesting stuff on the 3 as the 100.
and there’s plenty do dig through. i indulged my passion for linen and picked up some pretty little sets. these are for a baby’s bassinet, a demi lune pillow and tiny sheet.
j’adore the needle work on big linen sheets too. today we’re headed out now to montreuil which is a great monday marker where you can get tons of this stuff for next to nothing.
i’d like to surprise mom with some pretty fat quarters for her quilting.
when i shoot i often think of you, my blog friends, like sande from a gift wrapped life, who i’m sure would be right next to me digging in old boxes of ribbon.
and mande from a la parisienne who would no doubt love this batch of old flower accents. what little fleurs the ladies must have been, parading around in all these fine things!
last but not least after a wonderful brunch with erica of haven in paris in her montmartre apartment (merci encore, mon amie), we had one last stop to pick up something very special. i asked one of the bastille vendors to hold it since i’d spent every centime the day before, so we trudged all the way back to pick up this little feather. it’s still got the tag so it never made it onto one of those fine ladies’ hats but i’ll put it on the site and maybe it will go to someone who will give it a brand new shot at life. well, we better make that hay while the sun is shining, it’s beaming down so off we go, more tout de suite, bonne journée!