To travel is to take a journey into yourself

Bonjour tout le monde, ca va? If you’re here you probably want to talk about our favorite topic: Paris of course! It’s just an obsession for some of us, isn’t it? How is it that Paris never gets old? It’s one of the few places you can go over and over again and never see it all.

If you’re anything like me, you love to think about WHO created Paris…the vision that the people all had to have shared to build a city that would still be the benchmark for beauty and culture. And they did it dressed to the nines. With no electricity, just their imagination and determination they erected a place that we stroll sometimes without a second thought. But there are some of us who still want to see the Paris of the Parisians of the Past and experience what they had in mind for future generations to enjoy.

I’m talking about the Paris where you feel at home. Not going to monuments but instead going to the special parts of the parks, to the homes of artists, visiting the ateliers and workshops where they lived and worked and sweated and created. It’s like going to visit old friends for some of us. Maybe we were there together in a past life!

image: Parc Monceau by Adam Gopnik

What about you? Is Paris on your bucket list? Maybe you’ve gone once, or even twice. I hear a lot of people say they just didn’t get it, that it didn’t resonate with them. Or that it’s changed. That’s because they didn’t get to see the real Paris. The intimate, exquisite, quiet, elegant and usually overlooked Paris. I continue to explore, and it seems the more I do the more there is to discover. Maybe the fact that you can never finish is part of the allure.

Even with my blog there are so many topics to get into that sometimes the vastness of its depth and beauty is incomprehensible. From the parks and gardens and passages to history, architecture, cabaret and follies, fashion, photography, food, shops, cafes, music, galleries, art, perfume, culture, wine, chocolate, cinema, museums, picnics, parks, gardens, ateliers, brocantes and of course the flea markets, there’s so much to see and do and taste and touch it’s like a banquet of beauty. In fact it’s a moveable feast, Hemingway was so right! And the buffet is endless.

And so, once again I’m heading back in September and have been putting together some new adventures, and you’re invited to come along. I like to share a different Paris than the one in the guide books, one that’s beautiful and serene. One that the Parisians of the past knew well and where they went to get away from the crowds to stroll and languish, paint, write and get inspired.

Lately there’s been interest in a lot of activities along with the usual trek to the fleamarkets, including off-the beaten path places like the vineyards of Montmartre, cooking in a private apartment, walking tours, jazz clubs, thrifting for designer fashions, restoration techniques, and lots more! We’re combing a little of each into our trips, creating an experience you won’t find anywhere else.

So take a look at what we’ve got simmering. If you’d like to join us, contact us and we’ll set it up. I want you to experience the Paris you’ve always dreamed about. Our trips can either be booked one on one (flea market shopping) or with a group which includes airport transfers, hotel or apartment, transportation to events, tickets and more. If you’re interested, contact me and let’s discuss your dream trip this fall. Below are the cliff notes and just a fraction of what’s in store. You’ll get a detailed itinerary with specific events and destinations when you book.

Sept 1-6

First Timer’s Trip

Joachim Hiltmann / Getty Images

I can’t begin to tell you what this trip entails but suffice it to say you’ll see a Paris that’s beyond magical. All the little streets you’ve seen IG’d, the picnics, the day trips, the cobblestone alleys and of course the places that can’t be missed, but from an angle that’s unexpected and unusual. 

Sept 6-12

Decor Tour:

image: Connaissance des Arts

This incredible week will be filled with treasure hunting and shopping for home decor. We’ll take you to find everything from mantles and doors to chandeliers and textiles at the flea markets.  We’ll also go to the world famous trade show, the Maison et Objet. You’ll go inside auctions and warehouses in and out of the city. It’s the perfect trip if you’re decorating a home, stocking a store or stocking up for shows and want to find linens, decor and home accessories at wholesale prices. 

Sept 13-19

Artist’s Ateliers & Workshops in Paris:

If you love going into private homes and workshops of artists who lived in Paris, this is the one for you. Parisians have had incredible foresight to keep certain places just as they were when the artist in residence lived and worked in the city. Many of these homes are tucked away right in the center of Paris. We’ll go on our tour to explore these homes and it truly feels like we’re going to the visit old friends and acquaintances from the past. 

September 21-26

Parisians of the Past – Salon Hostesses:

“Portrait de Juliette Recamier, femme de Lettres Francaise”. Francois Gerard 1805

We’ll visit the homes and haunts of the women who made Paris the center of the universe in the Age of Enlightenment. When there was nothing but dirt and oppression, these women decided they’d create a new world for themselves filled with beauty, culture, manners and etiquette. They designed clothing and interiors and gardens that are still the benchmark for good taste today.

Together we’ll walk in their footsteps enjoying the homes and salons that still stand in commemoration of their epic legacy by day and have evenings in our own modern salons that include cooking, music and dance.

Well that’s it for the moment! Bottom line is there’s a Paris that’s just for you, not a cookie cutter tour but an adventure that’s full of fun and discovery. A journey and experience that will leave you with a new appreciation for this truly magical place that’s just waiting to be rediscovered…by you!

If you’d like to schedule a day together in July, email claudia@theparisapartment.com. Et alors, ciao for now…à bientôt!

June 23, 2019. Ateliers, Auctions, Brocantes, Carnavalet, Clignancourt Market Paris, Day Trips, Decorating, Design, Design Show, exploring, Fashion, flea markets, Fleamarkets, French Chocolate, French Interiors, Friends, Furniture, Gardening, Going Green, Green, Hotels, Interiors, Paris, Paris Trip. 6 comments.

battling the elements

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bonjour dear friends! it’s my last day in paris although i fought and lamented the bitter cold, eventually i fell under the spell of the snow that dusted the city.

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i spent the day visiting my favorite museum, musee carnavalet which is just down the street from the apartment. it draws me in every single time i’m in town.

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it’s one of those places that’s pure soul food, full of inspiration. i must have shot 600 pics!

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but what stood out in the edits today were not the interiors (i’ll share them tomorrow) but instead, the snowy shots. it seems to be a rare and disarming occurrence according to taxi drivers, locals, weather reports and airports.

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and once i got into it, saw that it did cast a magical spell on just about everyone and everything.

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looking through the paintings it’s obvious that a little snowfall never stopped this city from  celebrating grandeur even on the bleakest and most overcast and snowy days.

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painters were inspired to capture the elements and capture the moments of silent, white winter streets

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i march through the city slush and sometimes take for granted what it took to build and protect it

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before photography the painters were the historians, giving us a glimpse into a difficult but marvelous time

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somehow without heat, running water and electricity the women were still able to look chic

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and even bundled up were the essence of sophistication

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i honestly don’t know how they did it, i couldn’t have made it without my uggs

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i guess that’s why paris has always been the benchmark for elegance despite the weather

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now it’s all about the right gear; duck boots, down jackets, hoodies and hand warmers

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but the eternal beauty of the city will never fade and that’s the magic of paris i guess! well, see you on the other side, sweet dreams and stay warm!

January 22, 2013. Carnavalet, Museums, Paris, Paris Trip, Salon Hostesses of France. 25 comments.

same stuff different day

hey guys, happy sunday!  we spent it with a lovely guest and hit the markets to give her the lay of the land. she asked me if it ever seemed the same each week.  i had to say no even though it really IS the same things over and over in a way. i but t never ceases  to fulfill the promise of something wonderful around every corner. i didn’t get a chance to take a lot of shots today but we were really focused.

i did pick up something for myself in a pile of books out back at clignancourt. it’s an old version of letters written from a  mother to her daughter that chronicled an era in paris in a way that was both literary and a sort of diary.

anyway i always wanted to know more about madame her since she lived in one of the most fabulous places in the city, hotel carnavalet.

and i couldn’t resist a 200 year old book…

sadly carnavalet is closed on mondays and we did vow to do something cultural.  maybe the musee des arts decortaif or the boheme show at the grand palais.

but if you know me,  ask monument vs market  and i’ll always choose the latter. turns out clignancourt is having another one of it’s famous fetes all weekend.

these old pics are from the program. crazy to think how many times this stuff really does go round and round!

i’m supposed to spend the next couple days writing about the markets for my book while i’m here. i realize now that you have to be obsessed with your subject to write about it.

and thankfully i am! tomorrow i’ll head back for one last day of fleaing till spring. ok well i’m off to bed. have a great night!

October 21, 2012. Carnavalet, Marché aux Puces, Mme Sevigne, Museums, Paris, Paris Flea Markets, Vanves Flea Market, Vernaison Market. 7 comments.