love is a many splendored thing

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allo all, how have you been? here’s hoping your spring is in full bloom! for me it’s slowly changing from the winter of my discontent to a new era of optimism. it’s been a long time since i’ve been able to blog, in fact over a month. if not for my mom i may not even have come today. but when your mom wants you to blog, you blog. guess we end up doing what our moms tell us after all. maybe they do know best and i’d do anything for mine. so here i am, and truth is i missed you and all the ways you inspire me.

Full title: Manon Balletti Artist: Jean-Marc Nattier Date made: 1757 Source: http://www.nationalgalleryimages.co.uk/ Contact: picture.library@nationalgallery.co.uk Copyright © The National Gallery, London

first let’s go back to the past blog and announce the winners of the giveaway. i decided to give all 5 fashion plates away and if you’re on this list please send me your address at theparisapartment@gmail.com so i can get them out to you: susanne, terri, fredreika, melissa and beth. i wish i had more but i do have other wonderful things that i’ll share. in fact i’ll see what i can come up with at the end of this post and we’ll do it again! oh why wait? i have these four pretty little boxes i got last time i was in paris. the idea was to have them on my desk but they never made it and deserve to go with those who’ll use them. so each can go individually and if you’re interested, well, you know the drill…

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so what’s been going on? well as you may recall i was working on a self improvement challenge for my business to turn it around over the next year. i tried blogging more frequently, making daily videos on youtube and working more diligently on office and organizational aspects. where has that gotten me? hmmmm…well, i’m still here so that’s one good thing. i’m working on a new angle for the my website so that’s been productive. and i’m collaborating with colleagues on their business and hoping to learn a few things from that which i can apply to the paris apartment. i’m traveling to their store in ashville, nc this week and will blog from there about the goings on.

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so it’s been slow and steady but the reality is that there comes a point when you just can’t do everything alone. i’ve had interns and employees over the years but it always comes back to me in the end. the problems i face are self created and i have to take full responsibility. but if i’m going to keep the paris apartment going,  i want to be the joyful, playful company it’s always been, full of infinite possibilities instead of one filled with dread and drudgery which is what is was becoming. but why was that?

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well, i think part of it was when i started working with vendors and lost control of my brand and vision. so what’s the vision? well, it was originally a brick and mortar store. a place that was sort of a salon, where yes, it was a shop, but also a place where friends gathered in an atmosphere of casual opulence and would converse, share stories, music, their art and just inspire each other. where had my inspiration gone?

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when it became a website it was hard to translate and has ended up being a sort of patchwork of ideas and pieced together over the years by various designers and webmasters. i haven’t had control over the site except the boutique and therefore it hasn’t changed much. it’s at the point where it’s out of control. but little by little, i’ve been editing, paring it down, taking off things that aren’t consistent with the brand or are from vendors who are impossible to work with. getting back to basics, basically, to get to a point where i can enjoy my work.

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so maybe this is a sort of ‘seinfeld’ post, one not about anything in particular, but one just to touch base and get back in the groove. so thanks, mom, for providing the kick i needed. you always inspire me and i just came across these liles of the valley which i know you love. have a super sunday, everyone~

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all images can be found at pinterest.com/parisapartment

April 24, 2016. Boutique, Brocantes, Ephemera, Giveaway, Life, Mom. 29 comments.

the timeless language of feminine fashion

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Fashion can be bought. Style one must possess. – Edna Woolman Chase

bonjour toute le monde et bon weekend. how are you? i hope you’re doing well on this wintry february friday night. i want to apologize to those who were subscribed to the blog. i cut it off thinking that i was going to do a post a day and didn’t want to bombard anyone with that much info in the inbox. my idea has changed now though, i’m going to blog when inspired, not because of any self imposed ideal but because it makes me happy. that said, if you want to re-subscribe let me know in the comments and we’ll get you back up. in the meantime, i’ve been going through my possessions little by little, enjoying the process and taking time to study some of the wonderful treasures i’d forgotten about. on my last trip to the paris flea market (vanves to be exact), i fell in love with these old fashion plates. they date from the 1800s to the 1920s, and are fascinating capsules of a bygone era, a detailed glimpse into the lifestyles and tastes of women in the last century.

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each card is dated and fitted with every detail of a woman’s outfit from the feathers in her hat to the fabrics of her frock.

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the tiny flowers, beautiful silks and velvets were all taken into account when it came to fashion and the feminine mystique.

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some even have perfume labels attached, a possible suggestion that all 5 senses were addressed when dressing

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the little black lacy fabric in the upper left is one of my favorites and so is the vibrant and colorful ribbon above

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i guess i just fell in love with the spirit of these grand dames

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anyway i bought them to frame but then thought that it would be a shame to put them under glass when it’s so much more fascinating to touch and feel them, ponder their exquisite weaves and exquisite design. since i haven’t done them justice myself i think it would be best to pass them on to those who would appreciate them, so what better way than a giveaway?

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in the next few days we’ll draw from the names in the comments and mail them out next week. if there’s a certain one you like best, let me know.

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in the meantime, have a wonderful weekend!

February 20, 2016. Fashion, Fleamarkets, France, Giveaway, illustration, Marché aux Puces, Paris, Vanves Flea Market. 22 comments.

all things bright and beautiful

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bon matin et happy tuesday. how’s your week going? this is kind of a random post, but i took this photo yesterday and it greeted me when i popped the top on my computer just now. i wasn’t sure exactly why i wanted to photograph this covered dish before it shipped but as i sit and write this morning i realize it’s not just cause i liked it, especially after polishing it up (although my hands look like a mechanic’s), but for a couple other reasons too. first of all i imagine it’s going to someone who will use it on their beautiful table settings throughout the holidays. i can see them lifting the cover and their guests gasping in delight over whatever family favorite delectable is underneath. next it was a reason to get my camera out. i’ve heard photographers should shoot something every day. it’s a chance be creative but i never seem to get around to enjoying that aspect of my work. i was happy the background was blurred as that’s a technique i’ve always loved but never seem to capture. yet here it is in one shot! not to keep droning on but actually that was another  yet minor-major revelation…i don’t need to take a thousand pictures. finally, there’s an end result and a bit of comfort in seeing something come full circle. i’m not saving the world but i am trying to build a business, curate products that will become heirlooms, keep up with the daily grind, take technical photos for the site etc. so seeing this simple picture this morning is a bit of a wakeup call. that it’s just as important to loop around and enjoy my business life. to take the pictures of the vignettes, even though my handwritng has become terrible, carefully handwrite thank you notes, wrap packages with bows and send each off with gratitude. take time to truly savor these items, their presence, history and new life. last but not least…i’m thinking of contacting the silver polish company to see how we can work together since i’ve been recommending them (just with gloves from now on :)!

ok by the by…what with the world events going on i never got the chance to announce the winner of the book giveaway, (the paris cocktail book). et alors…let’s take it to the random number generator, hold please….ok that was really random…it hit number one. so, ok! the winner is emma mitchell. congrats, it’s a wonderful book. (i’ll see if i can get the author, doni to send us another).

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in the meantime, since we’re here…i did happen to get yet another book by jennifer scott, a darling little number called ‘Polish Your Poise with Madame Chic’. she has with this one, officially created a series. very inspiring. so, we’re giving it away and if you’d like to enter to win it, you know what to do~

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last but not least as i was thinking of a title for this post, came across this quote from mother teresa and thought it was apropos. have a great day cheres amis!

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November 24, 2015. Giveaway, Life. 20 comments.

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