On this Valentine’s Day

A reprint to warm your heart…

For those of you newly engaged or seasoned in marital bliss, take heart of the love in Paris or on the streets in Florence, Italy.

Have you ever noticed that attached to the metal rails on many of the Paris ponts were locks? And I mean thousands of them. Each had a heartfelt message, initials or a date. What a wonderful way to leave a little of your love behind.

This bride had the same idea. However, her love was to be caught on film. Isn’t it wonderful? And what a beautiful dress.

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It must be contagious – that is – love. Here is a bride and groom-to-be in front of Notre Dame.

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Or how about at the artists’ enclave at Montmartre just a few steps from the Basilica of the Sacré Cœur.

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Heart-warming pictures of some very stylish brides.  Send your pictures to stylespotter@aol.com.

Please note this will be my last posting for a while as I recharge my (camera) batteries on future trips to Europe.  I will respond to comments that are forwarded.  Thanks for reading The Style Spotter.

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Lost in Bliss and Other Suggestions for Gifts

Can’t afford Vionette or Cartier, Prada or Lalique well here’s the answer… a BOOK!

Jump into the history of designers, jewelers, crafts people and furniture makers while enjoying the eye candy popping pictures that can be had in a book.

The Musée des Arts Décoratifs located at 107, rue de Rivoli (75001) is just a stone’s throw from the Louvre. This is a fabulous museum filled with collections and exhibits to delight any Style Spotters’ fancy. Several months ago an exhibit of the stories of Louis Vuitton and Marc Jacobs ended. Not to fret, there is usually something wonderful on the horizon. But I would like to bring to your attention their gift gallery aptly known as 107 Rivoli, The Boutique. They have a fantastic collection of gifts and their book collection, well, you could spend hours, perhaps days looking.

So, if you are in Paris, drop by. There are usually no lines to get in. Not in Paris, get to your local museum, book shop or library.

Have a title to share? Love to hear.  Happy shopping!

My Corner of Paris

Okay, who would turn down a stay at the George V (Fours Seasons) in Paris? Not me, such a beautiful elegant hotel with exceptional staff, but if I am paying for the stay my little corner of Paris as well as my heart is in Saint Germain. I just love this arrondissement (6th). It has everything a Style Spotter desires – style, energy and culture.

There is exceptional shopping, relaxed crowds during the week with increased energy on the weekends, a fabulous park (Jardin du Luxembourg), and patisseries. I can just smell the apple turnover at Poilane. It was a tough decision but I just could not polish off a 4 pound loaf of their magnificent bread. The gentleman in front of me purchased an apple turnover and immediately turned around and handed it to a fellow standing near the doorway. What a good samaritan! And take my word, it was worth the calories.

Or what about a fantastic chocolate baguette (yes, you read that right) at the bakery on Rue du Dragon (mid-way up the block) or the best Parisian salad of warm roasted garlic potatoes on top of a chilled salad with roast beef (located on Rue du Four opposite from Pataugas Shoes). I should have taken a picture of this work of art but consumed it before the idea came to mind. And yes, I ate there several times on both my solo trips. It’s worth the hunt for these two shops even without their names (sorry).

You have your pick of shopping establishments – from a unique boutique to Le Bon Marche from known brands (Hermès, Prada, etc.) to boutiques with a few stores. On my first day in Paris this past summer, I happened into COS at 3, Rue de Grenelle. What a gem. The store is bright and airy inviting a long browse throughout. And the prices were great. Well worth a visit and I am sure you will leave with a bag in hand like me.

Let me leave you with my some of my favorite streets to meander in Saint Germain – Rue de Grenelle, Rue du Cherchi-Midi, Rue de Sevres, Rue Bonaparte and Rue Jacob.

Happy browsing! Got something to share. We’d love to hear

Approach Avoidance

Do any of you Style Spotters ever have approach avoidance after you have purchased something new? Now, I am not talking about buyer’s remorse, but a purchase made with clear conscience only you are reluctant to wear it. Or the painful thought of having to wear new shoes in the rain? I would almost walk barefoot before subjecting them to adverse conditions. Much like one of my favorite sleuths Hercule Poirot, I’d do almost anything to maintain the pristine condition of new shoes. I had a laugh when I viewed a recent program when he inadvertently sloshed through a big puddle. I cringe the same way.

Perhaps this is the opposite of the person who lovingly dons her new purchase only to throw it to the floor when taken off.

What the heck is this about?

Bye Bye Baby

Question of the day, Style Spotters… have you ever had remorse for anything you gave away or sold?

Recently, I separated from my car of 17 years. It served me extremely well but after blowing the head gasket (I really don’t know what it does except it’s an expensive repair) and likely needing a new engine, I decided it was time to give up repairing it. I watched it being loaded onto a tow truck and after saying sayonara it went onto its new owner (who by the way got a great car for a very cheap price). I really should not complain or have remorse, I got a great sports car in its place, and it’s red if you must know! But the memories… family outings, carpool to schools, trips from here to there. It’s like a journal or photo album, a family record. Well, I guess I just need to jump into my new car and head out, the start of a new chapter.

Please feel free to share car stories, but this was more an entree to clothes, shoes or accessories that you may have parted with and that were an extension of you. Let’s hear. Perhaps someone can help you get reconnected!

The Feeling of Freedom

The feeling of freedom… a cross body bag. 

It feels awesome to have both hands free. I had been using a handbag for several seasons, like many of you, which hung from my forearm. Give the cross body a try. With the onslaught of structured long-strapped bags, I’m sure you’ll love the feeling of freedom.

Autumn is here and summer a memory (though today is 70 degrees).  Fashion Week is over and the designers and professionals are espousing for spring. But let’s enjoy fall and reminisce for a moment about the happy memories of summer before we think about spring.

Where have you, my Style Spotters, vacationed (at home or afar) this past summer? What fabulous styles have you seen, items have you purchased for yourself or have received as a gift?

Do tell!

It’s All a Matter of Mindset

During my recent trip to New York, I had a conversation with a good friend. She knows I’d never spring thousands (or many hundreds for that matter) on a handbag, but she was making an analogy between herself and her partner.  She was just saying everyone has their thing. He likes spending on the house, she likes spending on bags and shoes and I like spending on value. We’re all happy.

The panache of a designer label diminishes its appeal to me when everyone sports a similar bag. In Manhattan, Louis Vuitton’s were plentiful. I recently sold a Louis Vuitton cosmetic bag which was large enough to use as an evening bag. I bought it decades ago but I just could not bring myself to wear it public. I also have a Chanel Patent handbag (Pochette) staring me down in my closet. No, I did not buy it myself. Anyone interested – ha! These types of bags make a statement. I guess just one that I cannot make.

As a loyal Style Spotter, you know it doesn’t have to be expensive to look great. I had many compliments on an orange handbag that I bought in Israel (after my trip to Paris). I purchased it in Tel Aviv at Londoners on Shenkin Street. It cost about $70. It is made of composite materials (supposedly including leather) but it looks just like leather or as good as orange leather can look.

Like I said, style can look great at any price, and it’s all a matter of mindset.

Style Spotter, what’s your mindset?