greetings from paris mes amis! it’s beyond cold, in fact it’s downright bone chilling! but not cold enough to stop the shopping and yesterday was an incredible adventure.
we went to visit my friend stephane blanc’s warehouses in a tiny village an hour outside paris. it couldn’t have been more picturesque and even better, full of surprises.
you never know what’s behind big old doors and we were not disappointed when he opened the vaults to the 1750s barns where he and his father have gathered incredible treasures from french châteaux and estates over the years.
stephane brings pieces back to paris and restores them to sell at clignancourt in his tiny, curated booth on rue paul bert. my mystery guests and i were the first to go behind the blue doors. although he was casual about the enormity of his collection, we were blown away.
every kind of imaginable style is stacked up in chilly, cobwebbed rooms filled with furniture, mirrors, doors, chandeliers, artwork and toys.
we must have been there for 5 hours going through every nook and cranny in the cold.
no one left empty handed and at the end of the day we were exhausted and tired but happy with our treasures.
as someone who loves to restore old pieces, i couldn’t help wanting to take it all home and bring it back to life myself.
still, my philosophy these days is ‘no projects’ especially since i’m preparing for my OKL sale in just a couple weeks.
so at least for now, the clocks and tables are safe and sound, sitting quietly in wait.
and until i have the chance to come back (hopefully in warmer weather)!
i’ll just settle for getting pieces that are ready to go like these little treasures we found at the market. we’re heading out again tomorrow and sunday to vanves and clignancourt for a big day of shopping and shipping so i’ll keep you posted and take lots of shots! have a great day and happy weekend!
allo dear friends, how are you? i hope you’re into the fall weather and are getting your autumn on! we’re still running around and no matter where we turn paris is still ful of surprises. the day started with a rainy marche but it warmed up when we got to le square trousseau to meet friends/fellow bloggers, vicki, author of french essence and haleigh, blogger extraordinaire from making magique. both of these girls know how to live and they record it all with the most gorgeous photography! if you’re ever in need of eye candy or to drift off into neverland, just click your heels on over to their blogs. we shared ideas, tips and just had a great leisurely long lunch which i doubt any of us get to do very often! below is a glimpse into haleigh’s world in paris:
and vicki’s in provence
of course we couldn’t leave without lusting after the desserts…
we thought the day couldn’t get any better when on the way home claudia and i took a shortcut. we came across one of the last men working in his studio on the dying art of handmade engravings. when our friend ellen was here she was telling me all about the copperplates, hammering them backward with tiny pins to create the detail we see in so many familiar works of art.
olaf was diligently working but stopped to chat. he happened to have one of my favorite plates, le souper fin (below) which he purchased from a workshop that had recently closed. if you look you’ll see it was all done in reverse. the detail is incomprehensible and so is the idea that this is how so many important events were recorded! it takes black tar, ink, acid and god knows what else to produce a perfect engraving and it’s all done on handmade paper.
souper fin, Jean-Michel Moreau. he did admit he’s one of that last to do this painstaking craft…
not sure what this one was about but his work was stunning. i couldn’t resist getting a couple to bring back!
the day is now coming to a close and we’re nestled snug in our pied a terre, happily fed and another unforgettable day under our belts, but also aware it’s quickly coming to an end. when i get home lots of goodies will be waiting there. in the meantime, it was nice to know we got a little press in the states today! miles redd recommended one of tpa’s mirrored pieces in an article for the home section!
someone here asked me if mirrored furniture was ‘over ‘and i had to think for a minute. it will never be over, it’s a style that’s been around way too long to become passé now!i found this shot from the market last week and it re-confirmed my opinion that mirror is and always will be tres chic. it’s been worked on furniture since the 2os with details we can’t even produce now. how they manipulated mirror is yet another mystery the french started!
ok well this was a bunch of non sequiturs but isn’t that what a journal/diary/blog is for, to remember the details of life big and small? well, it’s time for bed, officially midnight yet again. have a great night!
bonjour mes amis, ca va? we’re fully immersed in parisian life over here, for another week anyway. i’m trying to make it last and enjoy every minute (even if that’s a nap here and there)! paris is like a laduree candy shop with unexpected, delicious beauty around every corner. especially at the markets. we can walk for miles and still only skim the surface.
the fleas are full from the vendors’ summer finds and we’ve been getting up early to make the most of it.
i definitely have a thing for chairs and have been getting sofas, slippers, vanity stools and bergers…
sad for the ones that got away…
but n love with what’s coming back to the states! thought you might enjoy a preview.
and we know you can’t get it all. but we sure try! we’ve been to the maison objet (a little uninspired this year but i’ll post the pics from it. then again everything pales in comparison to the fleas for me!) instead of heading back we went to the markets with our client for the past few days. she’s been shopping for her store, shed home and tomorrow we’ll be packing her goodies up to ship.
the photo above is dave bloom’s of sophie atlan’s booth in clignancourt at vernaisson. we spent a couple days shooting together for the new book.
the detail in this country never ceases to amaze me
the closer you look the more you find
even a tiny powder puff is still as pretty as ever.
well tomorrow is our last day together, and i believe a good time was had by all.
thought you’d enjoy a shot of cindy’s room at caron de beaumarchais. amazing what you can do with 4 little walls!
we’re invited to a big party at clignancourt on friday eve and a concert tomorrow. we’re hoping to get to the show above if we can squeeze it in! well it’s minuit, so more soon, have a great night!
hi guys, happy tuesday. i hope you had a good day and are about to have a great night!
strange but good timing around here. i’ve been working on the flea market stuff and when i googled jules valles, and discovered that the article i wrote for the girls guide to paris has gone live. not sure how i missed that but it’s a publication i really admire so thank you to the editor, doni for the opportunity to write a flea market article for them.
it’s funny how looking back things can be so surreal. it was only a couple months ago but don’t think i would write the same article today. at the time i was determined to write the about the gritty, dark side of the market when she asked for the article. i wanted to expose the not so pretty part where you have to get dirty, dig and sleuth around. but in the end you always will uncover buried treasure. i wanted readers and passionate flea market excavators to know that over priced and polished fleas are the norm but that if you don’t mind using a little elbow grease, you can go a few streets over and shop on the DL. but it’s not a pristine scene and i don’t know what possessed me to send her these crazy pics. girls guide is such a glamorous mag that of course after i sent in the shots and text and just of the brutal cacophony of this area, i wanted to re-do it. make it pretty. but doni went ahead with it, god bless her! anyway here’s the article. if you like it say hi on the her and let her know you came by!
this is something between a scrap yard and well, it’s pretty much a scrap yard of french things
this is a closeup of the above
there’a a lot of everything
she must have thought i was nuts! anyway i hope you enjoyed the back alley stroll~ have a great nuit!
hi guys what’s happening? it’s way late but i wanted to get here before turning in and share a little of what i’m working on. starting to anyway. i’ve been meaning to go through my pics from paris and organize them for a book about the city’s flea markets. so tonight i had the time and busted in to the jules valles folder. jules is one of the sub-markets at clignancourt in and a little off he beaten path but definitely a market to be reckoned with.
it’s an affordable, two aisle covered market brimming with good loot. i was hoping to get back this month to grab a few things for the big event coming up but i just can’t see getting on another plane right now.
the as of yet undisclosed event is on march 22nd. it takes 4-6 weeks by container so chances are i could miss the boat if the stars don’t align.
but it is tempting, this little marche! i thought you may enjoy a stroll down memory lane with me~
a couple of really dramatic booths amid lots of good chaos
an abundance of textiles
tassels and linens
that aforementioned chaos
and french moderne
so maybe i won’t get back for awhile but at least there are the shots to remember it by! well, have a great night mes sweetpeas, a demain!
hi guys, how’s life at home? c’est tres grand en paris but my days are numbered and flying by. every minute is jam packed and the moments in between are when even more can happen. it’s hard to keep up!
some of that magic happened unexpectedly when i met a soul sister my first day here. neither of us completely understand what the other is saying but we totally get each other. so i’d like to introduce my new bff, sophie atlan. her boutique is at the marché aux puces at Clignancourt, in Vernaison specifically. her dad was once a merchant there too, so the winding, tiny alley streets were her playground. years later it’s a family tradition that she radicalized with her bold and chic shop. she’s very private and never allows pics but we became real friends over the past few weeks and she let me shoot a couple real quick. i couldn’t help but share her with you.
*Sophie Atlan, Vernaison Market, Alle 8 Stand 163*
she invited me to a red carpet event that the market is hosting the evening of october 14th. all the dealers will hold soirées in their booths with hors d’oeuvres and champagne. if you’re going to be in town let me know cause i have 2 extra invitations.
i couldn’t leave without taking a piece of sophies’s world home so got a bunch of wallpapers to play with. i’ll show you the patterns when i get back. i thought it would be fun to put them alongside the armoire, on the back of the shelves, stuff like that. well i’m working all day tomorrow so will dit bon nuit. hope to get back here at a reasonable hour to post a un petit peu plus de paris. a tout a l’heure!
bonjour encore! i love sharing pics with you guys cause no one appreciates them like you do! paris is full of old monuments and museums that never change, (old and cold and settled in its ways as joni mitchell would say). that’s just not the paris for me. i love the one that changes every weekend.
of course the fact that the fleas have been happening every weekend for hundreds of years is certainly a constant that shouldn’t be overlooked. in fact, the persistence of the people who come together each weekend to make the magic happen is staggering feat in itself.
i love that you can count on these guys being here, playing cards or dominoes, laughing and listening to music every weekend.
but the real fascination is with what they bring in cause although it’s always a variation of a theme, the theme never gets old. (for me anyway)! like, i’ve never seen a mirrored radio. suffice it to say there are always one-of-a kind treasures.
same steets, different stuff! i know i should mix it up and should leave paris for the outskirts more often but she holds my full attention every time.
what a labor of love to head to the outskirts of france and shop for goodies to bring back to us. a dealer friend was telling us how he spends his time traveling 55o kilometers each week gathering treasures from around the countryside to display and sell. i could go for a life like that!
wouldn’t these be magical in a garden?
anyway this is all totally random. i have taken a million shots as usual and just opened a file and let it all hang out.
just thought you’d enjoy the tour and a little daydreaming with me.
i wish i could buy it all! i guess that’s the beauty of shopping with clients and i love when they get something wonderful!
ok, i better wrap it up. one more day to entertain the gang and we’re going to hit a market in the city, marche d’aligre. it’s a good little one that looks grimy from a distance but there’s of course always a gem if you’re willing to get down and dirty. it’s rainy and cold so it’s back to de rigeur paris. more later!
allo all! after a long day, we’re about to have a long night! we moved over to a new neighborhood and it and the new lair are as completely opposite from the last one as can be. the hood is beyond lively, as it’s the heart and soul of st. germain. the new apartment is 400 year old open and majestic aerie with enormous windows overlooking all the action but incredibly quiet. this is just another of the incredible collection of places put together by the inimitable erica of haven in paris. she’s really becoming my superhero.
the beams that look like they’ve been here forever and the furniture and curtains are all finished in patrica guild fabrics another testament to the attention to detail of erica and the owners is in everything from the state of the art kitchen and electronics to the silky cotton embroidered bedding.
genevieve called the room with the major view but it’s all good, there’s really not a spot in the place that’s not astounding! we’re about to go out and taste a little saturday night life and enjoy it all.
real quick we did hit the flea today with jean and found some fabu pieces for her apartment in the 7eme. i fell in love with these old coral sconces with beads made of wood.
of course i could furnish an entire building with what i fell in love with. but as i’ve complained, taking pics can be more of a hassle than it’s worth. there’s no sound more beautiful than the french language unless it’s a woman screaming at you!
anyway i tried to be slick with my camera but really haven’t mastered it. still, i know you appreciate my efforts and am going back tomorrow and promise to try to do better!
finally, i got a really surprising email from caroline taylor the other day, a writer for the financial times. she wrote a fascinating article on the the power of blogs and let me know that she included this one in her top pics! if you get a chance to pick up the FT today, it’s an incredible read. what blogs have become is nothing short of revolutionary!
the writers she interviews are breaking stereotypes and making real livings, bringing together communities and changing the face of publishing. she mentions places you can list your blog to get more exposure and tomorrow i’ll list some of her highlights. (gen’s restless)! it was inspiring cause if you have a blog you can really reach for the stars if you’re motivated. so keep on keeping on, blogs are the future and the future is now! bon nuit!