Saturday, April 16, 2016

Window Displays and Other Beautiful Things, Paris 2016

This is my last post about our recent trip to Paris, so I'm going to cover a few different areas, and toss in some bizarre, uncategorizable outliers...

For B and me, Paris isn't Paris without food! One of the first things we have to do when we get to Paris, (after breakfast, of course) it find some eclairs. Coffee eclairs are a food group during our vacations!

The patisserie windows in Paris are always beautiful, and there are a LOT of them; seldom do we have an "eclair emergency" that can't be assuaged in just a few minutes. 

This sugar isn't just refined; it's positive elegant!




I love this - it dumbfounded me that walnut meats could be displayed so elegantly!


And those beauties on the top left are Merveilleux....  Oh, how very many of those I could eat, given the chance, and a caloric "get out of jail free" card.



In Chicago, store window displays seem to often be focused on a particular brand, on or some artistic theme that means you're shown a wide-ranging variety of pieces. I would rather see this sort of thing - a capsule wardrobe for the season, ready to scoop up and buy!


These were taken inside the Loft store (not Ann Taylor Loft; a different company). Any grouping of these clothes would have covered someone, literally and figuratively, for quite a few occasions. This kind of display makes shopping much easier, and leads to mad impulse buying!


Unlike the handbags that come from the 4 department store brands (which shall remain nameless) in US stores, there are all kinds of little handbag stores in Paris. Also, many clothing stores will carry a handful of bags from sources off the beaten path.

If that handbag on the top left hadn't cost as much as a month's rent, it would be here Chez Janice.... but I can always admire, and try to figure out what holds so much appeal, so that I might someday replicate the idea within my budget.


These bags were all in the window at Anne Fontaine, which IS available in quite a few countries. I love the rose motif; if you are a flower person, a floral handbag could be a fun touch!


Being the person most in love with packing in the entire world, any time I see shop windows with displays like this, I fall a wee bit in love! The entire outfit, complete with accessories, all folded and ready to tuck into an overnight bag... sigh...


This window just screamed "take all of this to the beach, NOW!"


It was so bright that I struggled to get good photographs of some of the bigger windows, but I wanted to share some great color combinations I saw. Navy, white and mint! Coral and white with a navy-grounded floral accent, and navy with white and yellow! Clearly a lot of navy and white this spring, as I think is true every spring.



The Hermes windows at the main store left me un-thrilled. They were chock full of pattern, and felt cluttered and claustrophobic to me. But even in the midst of all of that visual madness, there are always beautiful individual items:



I thought these bags were interesting, and of course I can always entertain the possibility of an Hermes enamel bracelet or seven...


Ah.... flowers... so many shops with beautiful flower displays...


If you're planning to stop by the Galleries Vivienne on your next trip, you'll want to check on the state of renovation there; lots of shops were either closed completely or operating on reduced hours.

What I wouldn't give to tie into that stack of books in that window, by the way. Straightening up book disasters is in my DNA!


In the middle of all of this beauty, it's good to remember that Paris is also full of history - some of it centuries old, and some of it more recent. Very little is neglected, or forgotten, it seems.


This is a small portion of a very large work of art that we saw in the window of a gallery in the area behind the Musee d'Orsay. I couldn't photograph all of it, and I couldn't find the artist's name. And the gallery was closed...

But this is so cool - simple silhouettes, accented with REAL BUTTONS! What WILL they think of next?


These posters were everywhere. I have no witty comment...


This is the Uniqlo store in the Marais, decked out for their partnership project with Liberty London. The store is tucked into a building off of the street, and they did a marvelous job renovating it. If there weren't a Uniqlo 8 blocks from Chez Janice, I might have been tempted!


And so I leave my Paris photographs, until the next trip (probably in December). In parting, I have to share some of my favorite images, taken in the cafes in which I spend a great deal of time. Convivial AND tasty - what else could a vacationing person want?


love,
Janice


Wolf & Badger US

25 comments:

  1. Display genius in Paris. It must be in their DNA! Now I have to determine the 4 department store brands that shall remain nameless. I really only frequent Belk and Dillard's because of time restraints. I have found the quality to be lacking at Belk lately. I would be happy to buy a capsule wardrobe once or twice a year.
    Karen

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  2. From Margie in Toronto - wonderful photos Janice - love those capsule wardrobe displays - I often find beautiful individual pieces but then I'm left to wander trying to find other pieces that one will work with - it can be very frustrating.
    I am a purse rather than a shoe person so I am drooling over all those lovelies.
    One thing I'd like to ask you to address is women's sizing. Yesterday I was in our Hudson's Bay flagship store and bought 4 summer tops from 4 different manufacturers - each and every one is in a different size! I was also considering a 5th item and if I had decided to buy it that would have been a 5th different label size! I can understand a variation of 1 or 2 sizes but 5!!! No wonder women often find shopping so frustrating! I'd love to hear your comments in a future post. Thank you.

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  3. Wonderful post! Tell us again where you stay in Paris. I can't seem to find the name of the charming hotel. Many thanks for your brilliance!

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    1. We frequent the Hotel des Grands Hommes, at the Place du Pantheon. But I've also stayed at the Best Western hotel on the Rue Sommerard, which was also very lovely...
      hugs,
      Janice

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  4. You have truly captured the beauty of Paris windows!

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  5. Fabulous photos. We don't have an Anne Fontaine in Carcassonne, but some years ago I took a trip to Lyon with a bunch of colleagues--four women plus one guy. We ducked into an Anne Fontaine and left him outside. He was astounded that four women could spend an hour and a half in a small shop that sold nothing but white shirts.
    Ah, Anne Fontaine is that good. Didn't realize they have bags now. And of course they are beautiful.
    FYI, there's also a French film director named Anne Fontaine, and she brought us "Coco Before Chanel," which I loved!

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  6. How did your three-dress Paris packing plan work, speaking of you, a packing person?

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    1. Oh, it worked wonderfully! I wore one dress the evening we arrived, and then one each day, so that each dress that I took was worn twice. My flats are particularly comfortable, and I found that I really enjoyed being in a dress!
      hugs,
      Janice

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  7. I think your pattern of short frequent visits to Paris is very appealing. My problem is that there are so many places to visit in the world and I am fortunate enough to be able to stretch my legs every couple of years that Paris becomes a very infrequent destination. So, thank you for sharing its loveliness . I really like the stores with the capsule collections. I find small individually owned stores are so much more fun than department stores.

    Deb from Vancouver

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    1. One of the many reasons we return to Paris so often is that we're seriously considering retiring there. When we're walking, we're always mentally "test driving" neighborhoods for the future! That makes it pretty compelling to keep going back! But I understand what you're saying, and I agree completely; it's a tough trade-off.
      hugs,
      Janice

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  8. I, too, am curious about your "three dress" packing idea. How did that turn out? Please report. Also, I want to thank you for always mentioning money and budget - it seems this oh so practical side of wardrobe and shopping sometimes gets brushed under the rug, as if we all had unlimited resources! I love it that this is not a taboo subject for you.

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    1. It worked perfectly - I'm going to have to write about it more detail in the near future!
      hugs,
      Janice

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  9. Janice,
    Thank you for the marvelous photos -- I feel as if I had been there with you !
    How wonderful to see COLORS in a wardrobe capsule in a shop window ! As I haved perused YouTube for wardrobe capsule ideas, I have come across a mindset that the current concept of a capsule is limited to a certain number of pieces -- 10, 33, or 37, and that it's basically black, white, gray, and some chambray blue. Yours is the only site that offers the versatility of examples in various color schemes, even though you personally might never wear any of them. Thank you again for your creativity, and unlimited mindset !

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  10. I agree that dresses, especially easy-to-wash and drip-dry dresses, can be the very easiest way to pack for travel. I always smile when I remember my long-ago first-trip to France--back in the early 70's: I threw three mini-dresses into my knapsack, an extra pair of shoes, a couple of changes of underwear, a sweater, and a raincoat--and went for a month. Of course, I never wanted to see those three dresses again...

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  11. Such a lovely array of displays...I can sense how much you love Paris. It is a harming place to visit and one can dream of living there...I am currently reading My Paris Dream by Kate Betts...and thinking if wishes were horses then beggars would ride! I would love to test drive an apartment in the 6th!

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  12. Thank you for the photos Janice. Paris is so satisfying for window shopping, whether the displays are showing art, clothes, patisseries, fromages, even charcuteries, jewellery, furniture, stationery ... Everything so beautifully arranged, they appeal to so many senses. Which brings me to a question: are the shops noisy inside? Here in Australia we are blasted with music everywhere, even in small specialty shops, let alone cafes. Often I can't wait to get out of the shop, and coming home is a big relief for the quiet. I don't remember this about French shops at all but perhaps have just forgiven and forgotten?

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    1. I remember it being beautifully peaceful... not even music, that made any impression on me at all. One would think that shopkeepers would want us to linger, rather than rush through the absolute minimum shopping necessary so that we can escape the bedlam. Alas, apparently not so!
      hugs,
      Janice

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  13. I rarely comment but I read your blog faithfully. I've greatly enjoyed the pictures you've shared from your trip. If my fairy godmother ever shows up, she and my pumpkin are whisking me off to Paris.

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  14. I rarely comment but I read your blog faithfully. I've greatly enjoyed the pictures you've shared from your trip. If my fairy godmother ever shows up, she and my pumpkin are whisking me off to Paris.

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  15. Thank you for sharing all these beautiful window displays.

    As I recall, you're petite. Did you find clothes, purses, etc that were proportional for you? In Europe, everyone seemed so tall, I gave up.

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  16. Love this post. We were in Paris this past Christmas. I didn't even think to take window pictures. Only at the Chanel store> these are great, thanks for sharing !!.

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  17. Love all the window shopping you have given us! So many lovely windows in Paris! I have to agree with Deb from Vancouver, there are so many places in the world I want to see that returning to Paris seems unlikely for me. It was my favorite place to date though!! I could so see myself living there! Thanks for taking us along Janice!

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  18. This is Parisian genius! As you said, "I would rather see this sort of thing - a capsule wardrobe for the season, ready to scoop up and buy!" or "The entire outfit, complete with accessories, all folded and ready"...

    If stores would display their wares grouped like this, I would gather up a collection in my size and be done with it. A personal shopper created wardrobe/outfit for those of us without the talent or desire to do it for ourselves. My absolute dream come true.

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