Holiday Window Displays (Part 2): Dior & Printemps

Printemps

Inaugurated by the marvelous French actress Marion Cotillard, the Dior Parisian-inspired window displays for Printemps are the essence of French glamour.

Watch this incredible video on the creation of the dolls, their clothes, and the window scenes. You can also watch the grand opening ceremony and ribbon-cutting for this year’s window displays at the French department store Printemps, as well as a mini interview with Marion Cotillard.

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Dior window display at Printemps

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Dior dolls – Printemps

Dior scene at Printemps Vitrines decembre 2012

Dior scene

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Dior elegance

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Dior dolls at the ball

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Dior Ball

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Inspirations Parisiennes by Dior at Printemps

64, bd Haussmann
75009 Paris – France
Tél. : 01 42 82 50 00

Holiday Window Displays (Part 1): Louis Vuitton & Galeries Lafayette

“It’s the most wonderful time of the year!” croons Andy Williams.

I love December. I love everything about it! The cold, the holiday spirit, the carols, the winter attire, the advent calendars, The Holiday, Love Actually, the mulled wine or Glühwein or vin chaud, or whatever you may call it, the beautiful trees, the bûche de Noël, the Champs-Élysées lights, the marchés de Noël, (now) the mincepies, the Christmas crackers, the posadas, and, of course, the decorations.

If you are in Paris for the holidays, you must add “go see window displays” to your Parisian to-do list.  Let me clarify; these are absolutely NOT your ordinary window displays. When Dior and Louis Vuitton are involved, you don’t just get beauty, you get magic. And if Vogue raves about it, you know it’s good.

In this three-part blog series, PatriciaParisienne will take you on a tour of this year’s vitrines.

 Galeries Lafayette

The department store’s theme “Christmas of the Century” (Noël du Siècle), along with its Disney Princess addition, makes this a fairy tale holiday all month. The gorgeous Louis Vuitton window displays will be available for your sight-seeing pleasure through January 1, 2013.

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Galeries Lafayette Disney Carriage

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Swarovski tree in Galeries Lafayette ~ There are over 5,000 Swarovski crystals on this tree.

Louis Vuitton Dancers in the Galeries Lafayette Window Displays noel vitrines paris 2012

Couples dancing at the ball ~ Galeries Lafayette Homme window display

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Panda dancing in the window

Galeries Lafayette

40, Bd Haussmann
75009 Paris

A Full English Breakfast: How It’s Done

What is an English breakfast?

You hear about Continental breakfasts, American breakfasts, petit dejeuner, but what is an English breakfast?  A novice but very curious student of all things English, I finally had my first English breakfast.  John and I went to The Mashed Swedes Cafe in Royal Leamington Spa, an adorable little eatery in town. What we had was delicious.

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Full English Breakfast

A traditional, or full, English breakfast consists of the following items: fried eggs, bacon, sausages, fried red tomatoes, baked beans, fresh salted mushrooms, fried or roast potatoes, with the options of black pudding, fried bread, or toasted and buttered bread. To drink, we had the option of tea or coffee and an orange juice.  The Mashed Swedes Cafe serves breakfast all day, as do many establishments that have this on the menu.

According to Market Kitchen, there are 40 or so interchangeable ingredients to a full British and Irish breakfast! There are also different versions of the meal, depending on where in the UK you have it.  There are Cornish, Scottish, Irish, Welsh, and Ulster Fry alternatives, which incorporate regional foods into the breakfast. Fun fact: In Ireland, this full breakfast is also known as a “Chub.”

This meal, though extremely tasty, is not for the small-stomached, the faint-hearted (black pudding is actually a type of sausage made by dried pig’s blood with a filler), or for anyone on a diet. However, if you want to treat yourself to a hearty, traditional English meal, I highly recommend this delicious breakfast.

When in England, do as the English do.

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PatriciaParisienne and a delicious English breakfast

The Mashed Swedes Cafe

39 Russell Street
Leamington Spa
Warwickshire
CV32 5QB

01926 430 599

Follow them on Twitter at @MashedSwedes

Blenheim Palace: An English Paradise

Last weekend, I had the pleasure of visiting beautiful England.  I fall more in love with this incredible country every time I go. Though, it is impossible not to feel this way, especially if you get a chance to visit to the magnificent Blenheim Palace.

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Blenheim Palace

My handsome Englishman had the brilliant idea of taking a drive over to the palace, and I could not have been happier!  I am a huge Downton Abbey fan, so visiting a palace like my beloved Downton was a dream come true! To be honest, Blenheim Palace is even more beautiful than Highclere Castle, I think…and that’s saying a lot. I will have to visit Highclere this spring in order to confirm, though.

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Blenheim grounds

It was a crisp, gorgeous day; we got so lucky with the weather! The lawns were a bright green that I am convinced can be found only in England.  Walking around the palace and the grounds made me feel like I was in a movie or a dream. It turns out that the house is actually where Sir Winston Churchill was born and where he spent a good part of his life growing up.  There was a fascinating Churchill Exhibition, which I really enjoyed. For those interested in English history, Sir Winston Churchill, and/or World War II, this is definitely a place to visit.

Blenheim Palace Queen Pool Lake England Castle Nobility Royal

Queen Pool and Lake

The palace grounds are also the location of the Blenheim Triathlon, which takes place this coming year on June 9 – 10, 2013.  The park and grounds are open year-round for visitors.  It’s a lovely place to walk, run, and take your family  (dogs, too!). There is a little train that kids will love, though the picturesque setting and open fields are more than enough to keep everyone happy and entertained.

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A beautifully decorated Blenheim Palace

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The Gardens at Blenheim Palace

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Water gardens at Blenheim Palace

After a fascinating tour of the castle, take a stroll around the water gardens. Finish the day by treating yourself to a glass of champagne and a delicious mince pie, and enjoy the view.

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A marvelous end to the day at Blenheim Palace

Blenheim Palace
Woodstock
Oxfordshire OX20 1PP

http://www.blenheimpalace.com/

PatriciaParisienne has had over 1500 visitors! Thank you!

We’ve had over 1,500 views on the blog!!!!

To all of my readers: Thank you, merci, gracias, danke, grazie, ありがとうございます。Спасибо, dankie, شكرا, Obrigada, 謝謝 , Dík, dank u wel, Kiitos, გმადლობთ, ધન્યવાદ, תודה, Makasih, Go raibh maith agat, 감사합니다, Ačiū, takk, مرسي, ਧਨਵਾਦ , Mulţumesc, Хвала , Ďakujem, Hvala, tack, ขอบคุณ , Mālō, Teşekkür ederim, Cảm ơn ông!!!!!

xx PatriciaParisienne

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La Maison du Chocolat Advent Calendar & More Holiday Goodies

It’s officially December!

That means warm coats, scarves, cuddle weather, winter solstice, and – Advent calendars! I love that little daily piece of chocolate as a way to countdown to Christmas.

Advent calendars seem to be extremely popular in Europe! Every main chocolate brand has their own.  Kinder, Milka, Lindt, and Cadbury – you can find their cute little designs everywhere. I was recently gifted the Cadbury one below by a lovely Englishman; it’s quality chocolate. I learned that there is a game that goes along with it; the person who correctly guesses the shape or design of the chocolate that day gets to eat it!

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Cadbury Advent Calendar

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Kinder Advent Calendar
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Lindt Advent Calendar

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Milka Advent Calendar

If you are looking for a truly French advent calendar, you only need to look no further than one of the best chocolatiers in the country: La Maison du Chocolat.

Nicolas Cloiseau, Master Chef of La Maison du Chocolat, “Meilleur Ouvrier de France”, has created some delightful and unique collections for this holiday season. The beautiful Advent Christmas tree is the most delicious way to build anticipation for the 25th.

Or you can choose a Christmas Star Coffret, for the day of, and pick from the following options:

Dark & spicy – Praline with crunchy slivers and Christmas spices (cinnamon, ginger, clove, nutmeg) 

Dark & sparkling – Ganache sphere with Champagne Blanc de Blancs (100% chardonnay, very fruity)

 Sweet & nutty – Almond paste from Provence with walnuts from the Périgord and honey from the Morvan forest

Dark & acidulous – Pure origin dark ganache from the Dominican Republic with full, round chocolate notes and crisp, acidulous flavours of candied fruits

Dark & fruity – Duo of ganaches with coconut and lime.  White chocolate ganache with coconut, dark chocolate ganache with lime.

I would have to get all of them!

For mouth-watering and gorgeous decorations, bring home the Celestial Tree, the Christmas Star, or for the most French touch to your Christmas, the Constellation Bûche de Noël. Looking forward to seeing what will come home with me on my next trip to La Maison du Chocolat!

Happy December!

xx PatriciaParisienne

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Celestial Tree from La Maison du Chocolat

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Christmas Stars from La Maison du Chocolat

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Constellation Bûche from La Maison du Chocolat

La Maison du Chocolat

225 rue du Faubourg Saint Honoré – 75008 Paris

52 rue François 1er – 75008 Paris

8 bd de la Madeleine – 75009 Paris

19 rue de Sèvres – 75006 Paris

120 av Victor Hugo – 75116 Paris

Printemps de la Maison 2ème étage – 75009 Paris

Carrousel du Louvre – 75001 Paris

Orly Ouest – Hall 2 Porte A – Paris

Galeries Lafayette Maison RDC – 75009 Paris

Roissy CDG Terminal 2A-2C – Paris

Roissy CDG Terminal 2E – Paris

Roissy CDG Terminal 2F – Paris

The way to travel is with Trussardi

Jetsetters have the best travel gear.

It is important to make traveling as simple and glitch-free as possible. For all of you airport fiends, I have found the perfect travel accessory for you, thanks to The Blonde Salad by Chiara Ferragni.

Trussardi’s Document Holder makes any trip easy. With tabbed pockets for tickets, passport, documents, currencies, boarding passes, and even an “other” section, Trussardi covers all of the travel bases. Absolute jetsetting perfection!

I wish I had one for my trip to England next weekend! I’d be sitting pretty, stress-free, at Charles de Gaulle. Another addition to the PatriciaParisienne Christmas Wish List!

xx PatriciaParisienne

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Dempsey & Carroll “Hello Darling” Card is on PatriciaParisienne’s Christmas Wish List!

Dempsey & Carroll “Hello Darling” Card is on PatriciaParisienne’s Christmas Wish List!

Is this not the cutest card? I am the biggest office supply/stationary lover, and this little Dempsey & Carroll gem has just captured my heart! (Click on the photo to see the rest of the collection.) Looking forward to sending … Continue reading