Category Archives: JoylovesParis

Soldes: The best time to shop in Paris

 

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The French sales period, SOLDES, is the BEST time to shop in Paris. Like many things in France, the timing of the biannual sales are regulated by the state. For 2017, the sales periods in Paris are: winter  11th of January until the 21st of February and in summer the 28th of June to the 8th of August (the dates can vary slightly in different regions of France).

During the sales period, products can be marked down 3 times: 1er démarque, 2eme démarque and 3eme démarque.  Each time, the cost of goods can be reduced to up to 70% in the third mark down.

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As a tourist, the best areas to shop would be the Champs Elysées, Rue de Rivoli in the Marais, les grands magasins/ department stores (such as Printemps & Galeries Lafayette) and, my personal favourite, Rue de Saint Honoré in the 1st arrondissement. These areas have a mix of shops with French brands, chain stores, luxury brands and boutiques.

I’ve been lucky enough to be in town during the summer and winter soldes, and the bargains are amazing.  Living in the southern hemisphere is a bonus as I’m able to shop for the upcoming season!  Only con is that the shops are absolutely packed, not just with people, but with shelves and shelves of products.

img_1460edit-copyMy top tips are:

  • Be prepared.
    • Do have a look online to see what to look for.
    • Check for the shop’s opening and closing times.
    • Give yourself enough time (ie don’t be in a rush, there are piles of stuff to search through!).
    • Make sure you have your ID in case of checks in store for your credit card, as well as for the DETAXE (tax refund scheme) paperwork.
  • If you find what you are looking for, take it!
    • If you can’t find it in the store, try looking online to see if another store has it in stock, or if available online, to purchase.
  • Be efficient: lines to the changing rooms are long so make sure you take in whatever you can.
  • Dress comfortably:  flats shoes and an easy outfit to change in and out of are helpful!
  • Make sure you have enough luggage/luggage allowance to fit all your purchases 😃

 

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Soldes By Joy Loves Paris.    Brush lettering by hand, edited with Adobe software.

For more information for dates of Soldes periods around France see: Le portail de l’Économie et des Finances

For more shopping ideas: Paris Info Site officiel de l’Office du Tourisme et des Congrès

Bonne chance! (Good luck!)

Logo_Project

JLP

 

 

Minuit Moins 7

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Minuit Moins 7 By JoyLovesParis. Watercolour

If your classic red soles are in need of some love, Minuit Moins 7 is the place to go. Situated in the quaint Galerie Véro-Dodat in Paris’ 1st arrondissement, it is known as the offical cobbler to Christian Louboutin. Their services include the replacement and repair of the famed red soles and shoes, including the installation of the CL signature rubber red soles.

minuitmoins74Galerie Véro-Dodat joins Rue Croix des Petits Champs and Rue Jean-Jacques Rousseau and is close to the Louvre and Palais Royale.  Inside it is quiet and picturesque, with architecture that takes you back to the 1800s. There are a few of these galeries (indoor passageways) in Paris, each with their own feel and boutiques.  I had visited this galerie a few times before, as our usual accommodation is situated close by, and each time I’ve been in awe of the ambience of the arcade. The flagship Christian Louboutin store is conveniently found next door to the Cordonnerie.

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I have, for some time, been wanting to get rubber soles put onto my pair of Loubi’s to prolong the usage of my beloved shoes, as well as to add grip.  I had purchased my 100mm glitter Pigalles here in Sydney, and was recommended a local cobbler to carry out this service for me.  But alas, I had much preferred to go to the source, so made sure I brought along my glittery pair to be repaired when I left for Paris.

The gentleman who served me spoke English and assisted me with my desired service.  The turnaround time was a month, and as I was unfortunately not staying in Paris for the duration, requested they be sent to me in Sydney.

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They arrived a week or two after the date quoted, but when they did, I was delighted to see they were packaged well and the soles just as I had imagined.

I would highly recommend their service, whether you are in Paris or elsewhere (as you can send your shoes to them for repair).  They have also opened a shop in London, which provides the same services.  Do contact them for more information on their services, your Red Soles (and you!) will be grateful you did!

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JLP

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Minuit Moins 7

Website

Paris

10 Passage Véro-Dodat
75001 Paris
Tel : +33(0)1 42 21 15 47

London 

163-165 Whitecross Street
LONDON EC1Y8JT
Tel : +44(0)207 6082330

Travel changes you

Travel changes you – By Joy Loves Paris. Brush lettering, watercolour

The hardest part of a trip away is coming back home and almost feeling like you had never left.  But I seem to always feel… different.  Everything is as it was when I had left it, yet not.  As I unpack my suitcases I’m reminded of all the experiences that I had just come back from: the different surroundings, the aromas, the sounds, the people.  The memories remind me that I am but a tiny part of this world.  It reminds me that there is so much out there in the world yet for me to discover, that there are so many possibilities.  And it reminds me that the world is a beautiful place, that there are so many kind people out there.  In effect, I return home inspired with a sense of hope, possibility and confidence.

For travel isn’t just learning about the world, but learning about yourself.  And discovering these things about yourself, whatever they may be, is the best part of the journey.

JLP

I love to create: an update

The last 8 months have come and gone, but in that time I have learned so much.  Not just the technical skills one learns when doing a graphic design course, but more about myself.

The one thing that became clear to me after all this time was that I love to create.  It has always been there, and in one way or another I had known it all along.  From making invitations, to planing parties, baking, and even this blog,  I enjoyed doing all these things because it gave me the freedom to create something out of ideas.

Now with this newfound knowledge and energy, I have this urge to create.  I am not sure where it will lead, if anywhere, but I know that it will keep me content knowing that I am doing what I love.

This blog has always been in the back of my mind amongst all the chaos of study and life.  When I had originally started it, I thought I knew what direction I wanted it to go, that I would use my love of Paris to write articles on Paris.  I had many ideas but they didn’t really inspire me.  So I thought hard about why I loved Paris. After some time, I finally realised that it was because Paris inspired me.  Thought it was about all the beautiful landmarks and boulevards, but it was really about the way that I had felt every time I was there, and what keeps me coming back for more.

So with these realisations I decided that I wanted to change the direction of the blog.  I want it to be an outlet of my inspiration and creativity. I have rediscovered my love of calligraphy and art and want to revive these skills by using them here.

I started off by creating a logo with the lettering done by hand, and by using my new skills on the Adobe Creative Suite I developed my new identity.  I tried to create a unique, off centre design that gives the feel of something hand made.

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Joy Loves Paris Logo.  Brush lettering by hand, edited on Adobe software.

My new tagline is: Lifestyle. Art. Design. Inspired by an insatiable love of Paris.  I hope to be able to post some new creations with every article, whether it be a  painting, hand lettering or photography, taken or edited by myself.  Not every article or piece will be obviously Parisian based, but inspired in one way or another by Paris or by my experiences.

I am ecstatic to share that I will be in Paris again in the coming week!  To be able to reinvigorate my love for the city that inspires me is exciting.  I will be seeing Paris in a different light to my previous visits, as when I gather inspiration I’m sure that I will notice things that I hadn’t noticed before.

I look forward to sharing my experiences and inspired creations with you very soon!

JLP

A new creative beginning…

So it’s done. I applied for a diploma in graphic design at a design college a few weeks ago and in two weeks will embark on something I’m excited, yet apprehensive about.  And yet the creative journey has already begun.  I had to submit some artwork for the application, and although perfection was not mandatory, I still gave it a good go.  I surprised myself with how natural it felt, and when asking myself ‘why, oh why had I not been doing this all along?’

 

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Chanel Chance By JoyLovesParis

For the drawing part of the submission, I chose the photograph of my Chanel Chance perfume bottle (as seen in my previous article The Scent of Paris) as my subject.  I really liked the texture of the bottle, as well as the character from the wear.  My first attempt was in pencil as I’m more at home with the medium.  But then I decided to move out of my comfort zone and did one in ink, then watercolour.  I had much preferred drawing over painting in the past, as I felt I had more control. When I picked up the paintbrush, however, it felt like I had been doing it for years.  The whole process woke up a part of me that had laid dormant for such a long time.  I stayed up that night til the wee hours of 2AM finishing my work and feeling energised and inspired.

They aren’t exact replicas of the original photo, but then I don’t think I am that sort of artist (nor am I that skilled / practised!).  It was a challenge, but one that I enjoyed. The angles and textures were difficult but I liked that each interpretation was different.

I am ecstatic to be starting my course, but I am even more excited about this new creative journey that I have commenced.  I’m booking in to some watercolour and modern calligraphy classes over the next few months to sharpen my skills, invigorate myself some more and to get back to what I had left behind so long ago.  I’m getting closer to what I’m supposed to be doing, I can feel it.

JLP

May 2016 be the year you make your dreams happen

  
One of my favourite Positive Thoughts for this year. Stop thinking about doing something, go ahead and make it happen!

May 2016 be the year that you make all your dreams happen. Here’s to new beginnings and a year filled with light, laughter, travel and Paris of course!

See you in 2016!

JLP xx

Peonies & Paris: An update

As the year comes to an end, chaos usually ensues.  The past couple of weeks have been quite hectic, but I’m happy to have been able to find time to post at least once more this year.  Other than the usual Christmas events and taking care of a teething toddler, here is what else has been happening in my world:

  • Peonies.  On a whim I picked up a bunch to spoil myself, and from the moment the petals opened up and I smelled its scent, I fell in love.  I pulled out my camera and took a few shots to practice my photography.
  • Overseas travel was not something I was expecting for a while, but there is a wedding in Toronto that my husband wants us to attend, so attend it we shall!  We worked out a route that will get us there via Hong Kong, Paris and New York.  It’s all set, and I’m ecstatic that I will get to see my beloved Paris again!
  • I’ve got my heart set on changing careers, so will be starting a course in the new year. However in the last month or so I’ve been toing and froing about which one to do.  I have finally decided (for real this time!) to do the graphic design diploma then, if I still yearn for it, will pursue further study in fashion.  Et voilà.
  • Another thing that I have been wanting to do for many years is to move and work overseas.  My efforts for making this happen have somewhat waned of late, probably due to the lack of response from applications, as well as anticipation of upcoming plans. In its stead I would now settle for a career that would allow (either through the job or by giving means to) travel regularly (perhaps annually?). I’m not exactly sure how I’ll find such a job/career, but I’m hoping putting it out there in the universe will allow to happen, somehow 🙂
  • I started Blogging 201 to try to tszuj up my blog a little, but alas, my time has been limited and I have yet to complete all the assignments.  It’s going onto the To Do list.

Things to look forward to in the New year:

  • So Frenchy So Chic in The Park.  The lineup looks good, the food amazing, and a family day out surrounded by French culture is always a good day in my books!
  • I signed up my 18 month old daughter to a weekly French class/playgroup. It will be interesting to see how they go about teaching babies (from 6 months!) and toddlers another language. It’ll also be a good refresher for me.
  • Planning the details of The holiday. Side trips, accommodation, transportation etc. I love this stuff.
  • The start of my journey to a new career. It’s scary but who knows where I’ll end up! My next mission is to get my art pieces done to submit for course entry.  I’ve started a few sketches, but I’m hoping to do something I’m totally happy with during my time off this holiday season. Watch this space.

Happy holidays to you all! Joyeux Noël à tous!

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JLP x

 

 

Savoir, penser, rêver. Tout est là.

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Le penseur, Musée Rodin. ©JoyLovesParis

Savoir – to know.  Knowledge is power. Not just of facts, but also of oneself.

Penser – to think. At times going with your head over your heart has merit.

Rêver – to dream. Life has endless possibilities. Dreams can come true.

Tout est là – It’s all there (literal translation).  You need nothing more.

 

 

The future

Taking Writing 101 & Blogging 101 has definitely been a great experience. It’s given me a lot of ideas and inspiration on writing, something I had forgotten that I enjoyed. It’s also opened up my eyes to this new world of blogging, and its amazing community.  I discovered how much work is involved in starting up and maintaining a blog (a lot of work!). I enjoyed the experience of posting daily, but half-way through the course, it became a little overwhelming. Balancing blogging with work and my family life was difficult when posting daily, but after a break and limiting my posts, I’m finding it much more manageable.

So as for the future, I’m not sure what it will hold. But if I had to make some wishes for the next 5 years, it would look like this:

  • Keep up the blog, build an audience, and find many more (Frenchie!) things to blog about
  • Find/stumble upon my ideal creative career or work /study towards it
  • Fit in at least a trip or two to Paris (I have planned so far in a few years time)
  • Finally finish my French language course/diploma and become fluent (I have been on an intermediate level for many years)
  • Buy a house
  • Have one more baby (yikes!)

Hopefully I will see some of you during my journey of making this wish list a reality.  I look forward to writing all about it!

Joy

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Writing 101: Day 20

The future

Congratulations! It’s the final day of Writing 101. We hope these prompts have encouraged you to brainstorm and write in new ways and introduced you to new tools and resources.

As we wind down the course, let’s look forward. What’s next? Some prompts to get you started:

  • Next month, I plan to . . .
  • What does the remainder of 2015 hold for you?
  • I believe that my future looks . . .
  • In the future, I could do without . . .
  • 5, 10, 20 years from now . . .

Thanks so much for joining us this month! As we wrap up the course, stop by the Commons to ask any additional questions and see what fellow participants are up to next.

When I’m not writing I am…

When I’m not writing I am:

  • Working part time as a medical scientist. It sounds fascinating, and it is. But it’s now become more of a source of income than my main interest.
  • Being a Mum to my beautiful one year old. Every day brings a new challenge but I wouldn’t change it for the world.
  • Internet shopping. I’m kind of on a ban for now, but browsing through websites is a past time of mine. Though browsing is half the fun, the real rush is when you click ‘CHECKOUT’ and the package arrives a week later…
  • Doing chores. The usual boring stuff.
  • Watching TV. I love trashy TV, there I’ll admit it.  From reality to really bad daytime soaps, if it’s mind numbing I’ll usually give it a go… It’s not all bad viewing though as I also enjoy drama, a bit of comedy and occasional documentaries. I am a bit more selective nowadays, as my time is limited!  I’m really looking forward to the return of Downton Abbey, Mr Selfridge, Scandal and Once Upon a Time.
  • Indulging in something sweet. Chocolate mainly. I’m trying to cut down a bit though as I’ve been over indulging way too much lately…
  • Thinking. About what to get at the supermarket. About what to have for lunch/dinner. About what to wear. About what to blog about. About a career change.

I wish I had more time for:

  • Reading. I try to get a few pages read of magazines, books, blogs, anything really.
  • Yoga. I haven’t had the time in so long. My body and mind are aching for it. I must make time.
  • Baking. I love baking, but it’s so time consuming, well the recipes that I like to do are. I occasionally get the chance to throw together some brownies or cupcakes, but it’s not as satisfying as spending a few hours making macarons.
  • More sleep. Blogging and being a mother seems to decrease the likelihood of this.
Macarons By JoyLovesParis ©JoyLovesParis
Macarons By JoyLovesParis ©JoyLovesParis

Feature photo credit: M. Evangelista

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Writing 101: Day 11

Writing and not writing

As much as we love to write, it’s important to take breaks — to live your life and have new experiences, and to reflect and recharge so you can come back to your desk, ready to hit the keyboard again. Not writing allows you to gain the distance from your words, and thus perspective, which are both needed when it’s time to edit.

What do you do when you’re not writing? How do you reset and return to this dashboard, refreshed? What do you need in your day-to-day life to maintain balance: Running? Yoga? Gardening? Painting? Cooking?

Today, publish your post in any form you wish, as long as you focus on one or all of these questions.