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How to Shop Like a Parisian: Personal Stylists to Make You Fab

Paris fashion personal stylistsPhotos: Liuwencheng, Charlyn W, One & Only Paris Photography

In Paris, the fashion trend of the moment is having your own personal shopper. From the city’s grands magasins to independent fashion advisers, there’s no shortage of creative alternatives to traditional shopping.

Many Paris shops are offering personal shopping services to their clients, including the big department stores, who offer individual sessions by appointment with a stylist. At Galeries Lafayette, for instance, a fashion adviser guides shoppers to the most fashionable brands after a private interview, showing the newest items and helps while their clients try on clothes. Printemps also offers the services of a private stylist by appointment, who will accompany shoppers throughout the store, guiding them in their choices. A personal room is made available to try on the clothes at leisure.

Independent personal shoppers, a concept that originated in the United States, are also on the rise in Paris. Continue Reading »

Posted in Shopping | No Comments »

Apartment Makeover: Before & After in Erica’s Montmartre Studio

Hip Paris blog friend and fabulous resource on all things Paris, Parisien Salon, recently stayed in our little Montmartre studio and published this article about our very own Erica Berman and her amazing job renovating Pilleux, Haven in Paris’ cozy Montmartre studio. We are pleased to share the story and the before-and-after shots here.

Paris Pilleux Montmartre Studio ViewView from Pilleux Montmartre Studio


Erica Berman has a gift. She can look at a crumbling shell of a hovel and see its potential as a beautiful apartment. This gift has served her well over her 18 years living in Paris, as she’s renovated upwards of 15 apartments that started out as “blah” (at best), only to be transformed into “wow.”

Pillexu far wall after renovations
Pilleux Wall before renovations Pilleux Studio – Murphy bed with antique doors, after and before

Her most recent project really put her abilities to the test, as she and her partner Alain renovated a small studio overlooking the Cimetière de Montmartre. Having stayed in what is now a fantastic apartment, I was stunned when Erica shared the story of its evolution.

“There was nothing there but the bones when we bought it,” explains Erica. “Just a shelf.” Looking at some of the “before” photographs also reveals peeling walls, unremarkable floors and an enclosed bathroom that cut the space dramatically. “There was nothing in there we wanted to keep,” she adds.

Erica and Alain worked with an architect to determine the best way to use the space. Once they agreed on the layout, they got to work with a contractor. Continue Reading »

Posted in Design, Homes, Parisian Living | 13 Comments »

Paris Fashion Showrooms: The New Way to Shop


Last winter, I was strolling through the Place des Vosges, when I came upon a seemingly endless line of women snaking around the walkway. I wondered what could possibly inspire these women to wait patiently in the cold. Was Johnny Depp offering free massages inside? As it turns out, a designer had opened her showroom to the public, and these fashionable females were simply waiting to get their hands on the fine frockery inside.

In a city known for its fashion sense, designer showrooms have become the new temples for shoppers, offering a more exclusive alternative to the well-groomed Parisienne. A cross between a designer’s workshop and a boutique, these showrooms give the shopping public access to the latest lines, where they can make purchases and maybe even meet the designer. Here are just a few designers who’ve opened their showrooms to the public:


Swedish jewelry designer Viveka Bergström is at the center of haute couture, and

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opens her showroom on the canal Saint-Martin from Monday to Saturday and by appointment to present her new collections. (23 rue de la Grange-aux-Belles, Paris 10th, Tel +33 (0)1 40 03 04 92; Monday to Saturday, 11am-7pm)

Médecine douce welcomes fans of trendy accessories to its bohemian-chic workshop on rue de Marseille. (10 rue de Marseille, Paris 10th, Tel +33 (0)1 48 03 57 17; Monday to Saturday, 11am-7pm) Continue Reading »

Posted in Shopping | 7 Comments »

Paris in July: Don’t Miss These Events

Luxembourg Paris July EventsLittle Brown Pen

If you happen to find yourself in Paris this month, you’ll be delighted to know that there are quite a few wonderful things to do. Richard Nahem has been kind enough to compile a list of these events to make it easy for you to plan your stay.

Voyage Dans Ma Tete

Does anyone still wear a hat? Apparently Antoine de Galbert thinks so. His astounding collection of over 400 hats, headpieces, and headdresses are from the tribes of Africa and South America. The exhibit explores the cultural and practical aspects of one of man’s oldest garments.

Till September 26, La Maison Rouge, 10 Blvd. de Bastille,12th arr. Metro: Quai de la Rapee, Bastille. Open Wednesday-Sunday 11AM-7PM, Thursday till 9PM

Paris Cinema Festival 2010

The annual Paris Cinema Festival honors Japanese cinema this year with over 100 films. Charlotte Rampling is the chairperson and special guests include Hanoi Jane Fonda and filmmakers M. Night Shyamalan and Eugene Green.

July 3-13. Screenings are 5€ each, or get a Paris CinéPass for 30€ for unlimited access.

Charlotte Gainsbourg

Charlotte Gainsbourg, daughter of the legendary singers Serge Gainsbourg and Jane Birkin, has carved out quite an acting and singing career in her own right. Her whispery voice can be heard at La Cigale and the set list includes Dylan’s Like a Woman, Jamais, and Cafe de Artistes.

July 8 & 9, 7:30PM, La Cigale, 120 Blvd. Rochechouart, 18th arr. Metro: Pigalle Continue Reading »

Posted in Events | 2 Comments »

PS Privé: Your Ticket to Paris’ Hidden Secrets

Hip Paris friend Linda Donahue, behind the wonderful site Parisien Salon, just launched PS Privé – a collection of boutique tours and workshops  intended to “give you a glimpse behind the closed doors of Parisian restaurants, fashion houses, artists and entertainers.” Since Linda’s talent for discovering and keeping abreast of the latest Parisian happenings is impressive even to the most jaded Parisians, we trust her new project will soon be just as successful as her wonderful website. Here she gives us a first-hand account of how the inspiration came about.

Paris Market Tours

When we launched back in May 2009, we were hoping for a positive response. We got that and more. In fact, the feedback we received went well beyond anything we expected. One response we didn’t expect was, “When are you going to start doing tours in Paris?” So many of our wonderful readers asked this question, and we just didn’t know what to say. After all, there are so many great people already doing tours in Paris, and we  didn’t know what else we could possibly offer.

But one day, over a few glasses of wine in a Paris café, we realized that what we had been doing since our launch – offering insider access to the French capital – was also something we could easily build upon. We knew people, after all.

Macarons Tours Paris PS Prive

So, after months of head-scratching, brainstorming and strategising, we’re pleased to announce the birth of P.S. Privé. This “Paris experience company” will offer classes, workshops, excursions and special events in the City of Light. Continue Reading »

Posted in Tours and Classes | 2 Comments »

Totally Seine in Paris – Getting Around by Boat

As sunny days gain hold in Paris, an excellent, and somewhat secret, transportation alternative shines through. Linda Donahue, HiP Paris friend and founder of Parisien Salon, details a sun-and-scenery-filled metro substitute: Paris by boat!

View of the Seine - Erica BermanPhotos Erica Berman

A few years ago, during one of Paris’ notorious strikes, the metro and the buses were shut down for nearly a week. After a few days of going à pied, I realized I needed to figure out some alternative transportation to get across the city to the Marais. That’s when, after years of getting around Paris, I discovered the Batobus. It was a revelation.

Batobus Paris is a hop on, hop off shuttle service on the river, offering eight stops along both the left and right banks: Tour Eiffel, Musee d’Orsay, St-Germain-des-Pres, Notre Dame, Jardin des Plantes, Hôtel de Ville, Louvre and Champs-Elysees. You can buy a one-, two- or five-day pass that lets you get on and off the bus as many times during operating hours as you’d like. There are no guided commentaries offered, but it’s as good a way to sightsee as any other. Continue Reading »

Posted in Parisian Living | 1 Comment »

In Paris, Still American – More Rules for Eating, and Living, in France

Linda, our friend and guest blogger over at Parisien Salon, shares her entertaining insights into being an American and dining in Paris.

VintageParis21-1all photos:

Like any other fashionable woman, I try not to let my roots show in Paris. Only I’m not talking about those of the follicular kind. The roots I refer to are the things that make me stand out as an American.

Besides the fact that I just can’t seem to master the effortless style of the Frenchwoman, there are certain characteristics that make me stand out like a baguette at an Atkins support group. Continue Reading »

Posted in Parisian Living | 6 Comments »