Sunday, October 19, 2014

Alaia Clothing and Serendipity

 Serendipity is one of my favourite words.  I like both the it's meaning and the way it rolls off my tongue.  Last winter while I was in Paris I felt that I had a moment of Serendipity.  I was in La Bon Marche and spotted these lovely dresses.  I told my husband about the designer and about the cost of the dress.  Azzedine Alaia was the designer.  I must confess, before this trip to Paris I was not familiar with him.  He does not believe in advertising.  The dresses were lovely, but definitely out of my price range.
 A few days later I was having tea and a pastry at Les Deux Abeilles and ending up sitting with some Italian journalists.  One of the journalists wrote about food, the other one about fashion.  The service at Les Deux Abeilles was horrendous however my company was delightful.  The fashion writer told me about this wonderful exhibit at the Palais Galliera. Alaia was on exhibit.  
 The museum had just opened and the exhibit was wonderful.  My Italian fashion writer was a wealth of information about exhibits on display in Paris.  I thought this was serendipity that just days earlier I discovered the designer and here I was having tea and dessert with an Italian fashion writer who was telling me about the exhibit.
 This is a collection of Alaia's dresses from 2013.  I do not have any photographs from the exhibit and photos were not permitted.  However at Galerie Layfayette they had the dresses on display.  Who is Alaia?  He was originally from Tunisia and initially studied architecture.  At age 17, while in Paris he worked for Guy Laroche.  His story is quite interesting.

I may not have come home with an Alaia dress but I have wonderful memories of the exhibit and tea with the Italians.

This is my contribution to Dreaming of France hosted by Paulita at An Accidental Blog.

Thursday, October 16, 2014

Orange you're Glad it is Friday: Brugge

As I was walking back to to the train station in Brugge I came across this lovely restaurant.  I wonder if it was a bed and breakfast.  It is hard to believe that it was a December afternoon when the photo was shot.  The sun just illuminated the lake.

This is my contribution to Orange You're Glad it is Friday hosted by Maria at Lifes' Sweets and Spices.

Sunday, October 12, 2014

Cafe Life Paris

The French truly love the outdoors no matter what the season.  It always amazes me that I live in Southern California and we would never think of sitting outdoors in the winter.  For the French it is "de riguer"  Just give them a seat and a cappuccino or glass of wine and outside they go.  Of course if I had a quaint cafe like this in my neighborhood I would always find myself seated there with a book.
This is my contribution to Dreaming of France hosted by Paulita at An Accidental Blog.

Saturday, October 11, 2014

Painted Pumpkins

I was not sure what I was going to post about today-the options were limitless; there was the Asian market I went to last night with coconut waffles, waffles from Liege, pho tacos, rice burgers and potted ice cream.

And I will tell you about those just not today.  Instead I am going to share the pumpkins that I painted with you.  I must confess that my idea is not original.  I was on pinterest or maybe googling chalk paint and saw these elsewhere.  Original or not it was fun.  I do not do crafts often but highly recommend it.  Very highly recommend it.  For me I find crafting very relaxing.  I am not sure why I do not do it often.

This past summer my dad and I were at an arts festival and there were live demonstrations with booths were you could make your own.  A lady convinced my dad to participate and I joined.  We spent about an hour doing crafts.  It was great fun.  We talked about how my mum would have enjoyed this and how creative she was.  It was nice to talk about her in the positive as opposed to remembering her death.  We both did a craft for my nephews which they were delighted when a present arrived for both of them in the mail.

I used a combination of craft paint along with gold glitter and a gold rub on these.  I think on the blue ones I am going to give them a glitter splash also.  I have my nephews coming to visit so I am decorating the house for Halloween.  They are still quite young and the three year old does not like skeletons or witches so I have been warned.  Friendly decorations only.  

Even little boy wants to participate in the decorating.  He is my Halloween cat.  

I think he looks so regal here next to the vase and pumpkin.  In addition to the pumpkins I also found a haunted gingerbread house at Trader Joes.  There will be plenty of crafts for them to do.  

Even though I am still going to the ocean for a swim,  yes I was in the ocean at 5:30 after work one night this week.  It is still that warm here. There is nothing that says fall is in the air.  I am still wearing white and tank tops but I love everything pumpkin. So who says I cannot enjoy a little pumpkin at the beach.   Sheila at Book Journey has a recipe for pumpkin butter that I am going to try.  

I think I am going to buy some more little pumpkins and paint them for my hurricane lamp.  Have any of you ever painted pumpkins?

This is my contribution to Weekend Cooking hosted by Beth at Beth Fish Reads

Monday, October 6, 2014

Maria Loca Paris

I wish I could say that I stopped in for a bite and returned at night for a lovely cocktail.  Mais, alors, non.  No,  I cannot say such a thing.  I just happened to be walking past MariaLoca and  liked how they had the couch sitting outdoors.  I think I would have enjoyed myself had I sat down for a bite or drink.  The reviews on the internet are quite lovely.  Located on boulevard henri iv, MariaLoca is not too far from the Bastille.

Maybe next time.

This is my contribution to Dreaming of France hosted by Paulita at An Accidental Blog.

Sunday, September 28, 2014

Le bonbon au palais, Paris, France

Le bonbon au palais is as much a candy store for children as it is for adult.  I adore the apothecary jars in the window.  Located in the 5th at 19 rue Monge, the store is in a lovely neighborhood that is filled with delightful surprises.

The sign in the store tells you that life is good and beautiful with candy.  For you these are the best artisan sweets in France.  How delightful is the sign.  The jars filled with sweets look like a spring garden full of blooming flowers.  The owner George is originally from Brazil.  He came to France at the age of 4 and by the time he was 8 he dreamt of owning the most beautiful candy store in the world.  Looking around the store I would say that he has achieved his dream.

 I could spend hours inside the store admiring and sampling all the candy.  What makes Au bonbon du palais so unique is that George as a potpourri of confections from all over France.  In France each region has their own confection that is unique to the region.   If I remember correctly there are over 200 types of candies in the store.  In the photo below you can see a map of France outlining the different regions,  If you want a lesson on the geography of French confections this is the place to come.  You have to realize that unlike the United States many times in France you can only find an item in the region of its origin.

Perhaps you have a goal to savour confections from each region in France.  Or maybe you quite simply like France.  Either way this is the place to come.  These fruit pate are one of my favourite.

Of course one must remember that being France the store is closed on Monday and Sunday.

Le Bonbon au Palais
19, rue Monge (5th)
Tél: 01 78 56 15 72
Open Tuesday through Saturday, 11am to 7:30pm

This is my contribution to Dreaming of France hosted by Paulita at An Accidental Blog.

Friday, September 26, 2014

Cafe Life Paris

Every Paris street has a shop or business that adds to the quaintness of the street.  Odette on Rue du Galande  is just darling.    If you click on the link there is a you tube video of the street.   The bakery sells la petite choux.  

So what are petite choux?  They are delightful little cream puffs with the loveliest of flavours.  Can you imagine passion fruit, Madagascar vanilla, mango, salted caramel, lime and lemon.  They are a burst of taste.  You bite into this wonderful light fresh pastry that has a little icing on top to be treated to the flavoured cream inside.

A few years back I had stayed two door down from here.  Unfortunately Odette's was not there at the time.  I would have been their best customer.  I would have enjoyed some tea and a petite choux each afternoon.  I love the orange stools and these two customers.  Life is lovely when you see people enjoying it.

This is my contribution to Orange you are glad it is Friday hosted by Marie's Life's Sweets and Spices and Weekend Cooking hosted by Beth Fish Reads.

Bon journée.
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