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French Chic: Decoding the Secrets of Paris Fashion

French Chic, fervent-adepte-de-la-mode, Flickr 16

French chic.

Those two simple words have taken on such mythical proportions that they’re practically their own literary genre. Take a stroll through any big bookshop and you’ll inevitably come across a how-to section devoted entirely to helping us hopelessly style-challenged North Americans attain the elusive je ne sais quoi that our sisters across the pond seem to possess by birthright.

French Chic, fervent-adepte-de-la-mode, Flickr 12

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Posted in Fashion, Parisian Living | 4 Comments »

Les French Desmoiselles: Ethical Fashion Made in France

HiP Paris, French Desmoiselles, Florie Berger

A mysterious event invitation showed up in my Facebook feed a little while back.

“Secret Christmas / Vente Très Très Privée Mode et Beauté” (“Very, Very Private Fashion and Beauty Sale”), it announced, presumably so exclusive that just one “very” wouldn’t do.

The invitation went on to reveal that somebody named Laurence would be welcoming shoppers into her cozy Paris apartment that Saturday, enticing invitees with the promise of treats, holiday fashions, and personalized beauty advice.

“If you wish to participate, email us so we can send you the address and door code for this secret rendez-vous”, the invitation instructed, stopping just short of adding, “Your mission, should you choose to accept it…”

The pre-adolescent Nancy Drew fan in me was intrigued.

French Desmoiselles, a chic new Paris fashion brand, on HiP Paris

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Posted in Fashion, Shopping | No Comments »

L’Instant Parisien: Chronicling the Eclectic Lives of Real Parisians

HiP Paris Blog, L'Instant Parisien, Chronicles of Parisian Lives

It’s 3:00 p.m. on a bright, crisp Paris afternoon and I’m sitting in the recently restored dining room of the Hotel Pigalle in Paris’ 18th arrondissement, waiting to meet Laurence Guilloud and Fabrice Le Dantec, founders of the new magazine, L’Instant Parisien. I sip my café crème and try to look cool, but I’m secretly a little nervous at the prospect of interviewing two people who have built a career out of, well, interviewing people. (Will they be silently judging my technique? Will they find my prepared list of questions uninspired?) I’m also not entirely sure who I’m supposed to be looking for, as Laurence and Fabrice prefer to keep a low online profile, which means that my standard pre-interview Googling turned up very few photos of the journalist-photographer duo.

The door to the restaurant pushes inward and I spot them—he is sporting a jaunty fedora and a 1940s-style brown blazer that brings to mind images of newsroom reporters and detectives from the film noir era; she is in a striking vintage-inspired print blouse and a bold statement necklace that could be a fanciful showpiece from one of Paris’ petits créateurs, or a treasure unearthed from one of the city’s antique flea markets. Their quirky indie style instantly sets them apart from the cookie-cutter crowds dressed in the city’s “tasteful-yet-understated” dress code. The pair make their way over to my table, greeting me with big smiles and breezy kisses that quickly dispel any apprehensiveness on my part.

HiP Paris Blog, L'Instant Parisien, Chronicles of Parisian Lives

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Posted in Parisian Living | 2 Comments »

Demain: Hope, World Change & How We Can All Make a Difference

Demain, The Film by Cyril Dion and Mélanie Laurent

I wrote this post in October, before November 8, before the world turned upside-down for the seemingly umpteenth time since 2016 began. It seems even more apropos now.

As someone who calls two continents home, I have watched anxiously in worry and fear as places close to my heart have become increasingly polarized by divisive politics. Things I never thought possible even five years ago have happened, and continue to happen. At times, I feel overwhelmed with despair. How did we get here? Is there even a way out of this mess?

Now, more than ever, it is important not to lose sight of the fact that there is hope in the midst of chaos. It’s easy to forget because voices raised in fear and hate tend to drown out those around them. But we need to remind ourselves that quietly, all over the world, there are men and women who get up every day and continue to fight the good fight. They are the everyday warriors and the more we share their stories, the more power we give them. And perhaps, through sharing their stories and showing what is possible, we can find the strength and courage we need to effect change too. – Darlene

“There are solutions. And if we give it everything we’ve got, if we all join our forces and hearts, we can all start to change the world. Demain.”

Demain, The Film by Cyril Dion and Mélanie Laurent

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Posted in Reader Tips & Reviews | No Comments »

The M Word: From Mademoiselle to Madame in France

Going from Mademoiselle to Madame in Paris

Ronel Reyes

The first time it happened, it caught me off guard. I paused for a microsecond, then shook it off as an isolated incident and continued on with my day. A few weeks later, though, it happened again… and then again… until one day, it just became the norm.

I am talking, of course, about that two-syllable word that is an inevitable rite of passage for every young woman living in France.

“Madame.”

Going from Mademoiselle to Madame in Paris

Chris Goldberg

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Posted in Parisian Living | 16 Comments »