I never realized the impact of writers block until I decided to write my own blog. I have over thought the process, struggled with the subject matter and worried that I wouldn’t deliver helpful, useful and interesting tidbits of creative, practical design ideas. I live on the white sandy beaches of Ocean City Maryland; I love the water, the beach, and everything that a rural coastal town has to offer. Writing about the beach and the water seemed expected. I also love to travel. The light bulb went off! And out the window went practicality. Out the window went helpful and useful design ideas and in came every girls dream……Paris, yes, I will write about my 12 visually (and gastronomically) luscious days in Paris.
This past March my husband, two daughters and I spent 12 marvelous days traipsing across the city of Paris. We rented an apartment in the Center of the St. Germain District, on the boulevard St. Germain to be exact. We had great walking shoes and a pedometer that I attached to my hip (as if my kids and husband weren’t enough!) and off we went. (Not the most up to date gadget but it works and I know how to use it, that’s paramount). Every day was an adventure, at least one landmark was visited everyday and we made sure we never ate in the same bistro or café (Brasseries) twice.
I found Paris to be almost larger than life; I couldn’t take it all in fast enough. The architecture, the landscape, the parks and gardens where all so intricate and beautiful, yet ironically, Paris was very simple. Life in Paris is slower, the people more relaxed. Unlike the Parisians, we woke early every morning, usually around 9:00! Of course I am being sarcastic. (When we are home we are lucky to sleep past 7:00). We would walk to our favorite spot for coffee and the streets were as quiet as if it were 3:00 in the morning. It wasn’t until around 11:00 that the city would stretch its limbs and start to wake up, dogs would begin to bark, sounds of children’s laughter in the distance, the hum of the subway underground, and the beautiful men and women of Paris started their day.
Everything in Paris was grand. The Palais de Garnier,(Opera House) Notre Dame, the Eiffel Tower, The Louvre, the Musee D’orsay, Les Invalides, but like the beautiful and unassuming women you see, Simplicity and sophistication seeps out their pores. Typical Parisian women might be seen wearing a dark pair of jeans coupled with a crisp white blouse, stilettos and one incredibly awesome scarf. Her hair is twisted at the neck and a little tousled, and she has just the right shade of red brushed across her lips.
This sense of style was everywhere you looked. Our apartment, just one of the many examples, was a restored 18th century building, with a massive hand carved painted wood door that was bejeweled with a large brass knocker. Upon entry, a simple oversized crystal chandelier hung from the ceiling in the tiny foyer. The large plank wood floors were set in a herringbone pattern. The living room was adorned with handsome moldings and 14 foot ceilings with windows that spanned from the floor to the ceiling. An intricately carved fireplace surround was flanked by bookcases. Facing the fireplace was a large incredibly comfortable beige velvet sofa, a coffee table filled with books and lovely candlesticks and beside the sofa are two chairs, comfy, curl up and sleep kind of chairs, that made coming home after 8 miles of walking and a delicious meal, not to mention a couple glasses of red wine, so very inviting. This was where my family and I rested our heads and hung our hats at the end of every fun adventure filled day.
Paris gave me variety and diversity in design. I love different colors, textures, and textiles. In Paris velvet couches in dark rich reds, burgundy’s and navy is a staple as are silky supple leather chairs. No room would be complete without a large shimmery, glistening oversized chandelier. Marble floors and wall to ceiling windows complete this fabulous old Paris look.
Paris sums up my design mantra. elegant but never overdone, sophisticated yet simple. Less is more and every now and then, throw a piece or two in the room that screams WOW! And like a great city or beautiful Parisian women, you’ll never be forgotten.
Until we “Talk Turquoise” again...
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