While, globalization has impacted our world for the better in many industries, it has certainly taken some of the fun out of shopping overseas. I have been spending every Summer vacation in Paris for over 24 years, ouch I am old, and I have to say, global cheap fashion is killing my inspiration. Luckily, I put in some extra time and discovered some new brands and a few of my favorites
that keep their European style. One of my favorite neighborhoods to explore is Marais. I had one mission really, a black bag small enough to keep my keys, metro card, iphone, and a little cash. Karl Lagerfeld boutique
had the perfect petite quilted cross body bag and it was on sale for just under $300. With no stores open in the states yet, I was very happy with my find. The boutique was glossy and chic. Along with a friendly sales staff and a women's collection that was cool and edgy with incredible fabrics. I feel in love with Paris all over again.
Next stop was my favorite fast fashion store since my first trip to Paris in the late 80"s.
, is a French fashion
label founded in 1983 by Jean-Lou Tepper, Jacques Nataf and Philippe de Hesdin. It has a simple philosophy: "to supply young women with affordable apparel for their wardrobes. I found a navy knit and black chiffon dress on sale for $50. I believe the company sold their collection to boutiques in the early 90"s for a few years but they no longer do. I always pick up at least one new piece and they last years in my wardrobe. Plus, its still the only place to find more navy than black, keeping them very French.
She attended Tokyo
's Bunka Fashion College
. She began work with Issey Miyake
in 1977 and started her own line in 1990. She took her work to Paris in 2003. Her aesthetic focuses on prints and has a "healthy dose of manga/bohemian cuteness". 20, rue Barbette 75003 Paris, France. I found the dress below , again on sale for under $200. I did find a bargain, her line is not on the affordable side but it shouldn't be. Her distinct style mixed with luxury fabric and ingenious cuts are what makes this line special. She is building a cliental in the States but, no stores of her own yet.
Next stop is Eleven Paris
, this time for my kids. Although not just a kids store, they the store for trend tees with the words "Obama", "Kravitz", "Miley", "Mandela" on the back with a number. My son picked the "Louise" tee, as in King Louise. Both kids found great back to school knits, on sale.
With several locations in France and 2 showrooms in the States I am sure this concept will start making a strong impact here. But, it the moment we are still inspired to see something fresh in tees.