Alice à Paris

Here is yet another gem of a boutique/brand for boys and girls that is a great representation of French children’s clothing style. In this case, without a hefty price tag attached to it!

The brand is called Alice à Paris and has three shops around Paris (funny that, no?).  There isn’t a huge selection, but each piece is fabulously well designed. All the clothes are made out of lovely, simple fabrics with that extra little French flair, which is hard to recreate anywhere else than in this city.

If you don’t happen to be in Paris, you can also have a virtual browse on the online shop.

Coqueliquot et Paprika

There are so many things I would like to write about for Babyccino and just don’t find the time! I have been wanting to write about the great children’s clothes shop Coqueliquot et Paprika for ages and ages.

The lovely boutique is nestled between the gorgeous shops on the rue du Bac in the 7th arrondissement in Pars. It was founded by Olivia Farkas when she first had children and realised how much she enjoyed making clothes for her little ones.

Her style is contemporary and simple with a few classic touches. I love the fact that the clothes are infinitely wearable for all occasions. Apart from her own collection the shop also stocks little toys and accessories which have been chosen to fit in with the Coqueliquot et Paprika style. In French we would say this boutique is “incontournable” (no idea on how to translate that)… (more…)

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Soeur

soeur.jpgThe concept of being chic starts early in Paris. As you can imagine even little girls have an innate sense of style, so their older sisters are off the chart!

Luckily enough there is now a shop just catering to the 10-14 bracket. Soeur was opened by two sisters, one, the co-founder of Bonton and an ex-designer for Bonpoint, the other a child psychologist. As you can imagine from two ladies with such a background, the designs are right on the mark. Tunics, skinny jeans, little skirts and shorts; they have completely managed to capture the style of the Parisian teenagers.

They have a great sale on now, if you happen to be down in St Germain….

- Emilie

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Rue Vavin

vavin.jpgJust south of the Luxembourg Gardens you can find the Rue Vavin, a mom’s dream of a shopping street. Along the rue Vavin and its side street, the rue Brea, you will find some of the best Parisian children’s shops. From the affordable — a great DPAM baby shop– to the more expensive — Jacadi and Catimini both have a branch on this street– there is everything you could wish to get for your kid. Paris’ first children’s hairdresser Simon is based in the rue Vavin (16 rue Vavin. Tél. : 01 53 10 08 12). There are also toy shops, chain shops, shoe shops and other cute, little individual boutiques.

I personally recommend dragging the family for a quick shopping mission around the rue and then heading off to the playground in the Luxembourg Gardens — a great day out for the whole family.

- Emilie

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Le Marchand D’Etoiles

There is something really wholesome and comforting about putting your kids to bed in a nice, clean, and comfy-looking pyjama. I like to think it might help them get a restful night…
The French label Marchand d’Etoiles (literally translated: the Merchant of Stars) is the champion of lovely, comfortable kid’s nightclothes. And so they should be, as the whole label is dedicated solely to making the perfect bedtime attire. They only use the softest material: brushed cotton, velvet or thick luxurious jersey.

Their clothes are so lovely that I actually hesitate putting my daughters in her nighties to sleep; but then who says that night clothes need to be ugly?!

You can either visit one of the lovely shops in Paris, check out the international stockists or check out their (French) website.

- Emilie

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Ladurée Macarons

laduree2.jpgI really could not decide what to recommend as my Parisian try and buy’. It was such a tough choice but in the end I reckon the macarons from Ladurée win!

They are a must try, not only because they are so delicious; but also because they are delicate, beautiful, retro and soo Parisian. You can get imitation macarons in patisseries all over Paris but none of them compare to their Ladurée competitor.

The delicate pastries are made out of 2 crispy macarons sandwiched together with a ganache filling. In other words they are made out of a concoction of eggs, sugar and almonds and a couple of secret ingredients which are only known to the Ladurée pastry chef. The flavours range from the simple vanilla, chocolate and pistachio ones to the unusual Lily of the Valley and Java Pepper flavours. Every season Ladurée invents a new flavour. If you are in Paris in the next couple of months I strongly suggest you try this season’s creation: Mango Jasmin!

There are several Ladurée locations in which these little treats are sold. I hope you enjoy them as much as I do…

- Emilie

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Luxembourg Gardens

It might be the best-known park in Paris, but it is one of our favourite places to go. You cannot get a more Parisian park than the Luxembourg Gardens.

It is so much fun, even as an adult, to rent one of the little sailboats in the main fountain of the garden and push it around with a stick.  Most of the time it capsizes or collides with another boat, but that is part of the fun! (You can rent the sailboats on Wednesdays and on weekends.)

I reckon the playground is the best in Paris and is actually relatively empty as it is the only playground I know of in the centre of the city that charges an entrance fee. There are also pony rides (Wednesdays and on weekends) and swings. The ubiquitous Manege is a beautiful older style wooden affair, run by a lovely lady who does not mind kids taking their time to decide on which wooden animal to ride.

Last but not least, and though I hate being so practical, the Luxembourg Gardens is one of the only places in Paris I have found in which the toilets have a changing table and cute, clean, kid-sized toilets with little hand-washing basins.

- Emilie

(Image found here)

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Berry’s Berry

berry.jpgWhen the girls were in Paris, Esther and I were chatting about the different perceptions we had about Japanese design. Esther, coming from a background in architecture views Japanese style as clean, minimalist, muted colours and general zen-ess, whilst, with my background in animation, I think of Japanese style as bright, funky and crazy. Japan seems to be one of these countries where both of these extremes can exist in perfect harmony.

In the elegant St. Germain I found a little Japanese kids’ clothing shop called Berry’s Berry which definitely reflects more my idea of Japanese style than Esther’s. It could never be described as understated and minimalist! Flanked on the one side by elegant Serendipity, a kids furniture shop and Talc an understated wonderful French kids’ clothes shop, Berry’s Berry is cheap, bright and very cheerful with an twist! (more…)

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Cirier Candles

cirier.jpgThere is nothing better than a good candle to create a civilized atmosphere after a long day with kids.

Some of my favorites are the scented Cirier Candles. CIR is one of the oldest candle producers in France and they produce candles for Guerlain, Cartier, Fragonard and many more.

Our friend Belinda introduced them to me (she bought so many that the owner of the shop thought that she was going to start up a shop)! The lovely thing about these candles is the little shop in the 6th arrondissement in Paris in which the staff take their time with every customer to find the right candle for the right occasion. I love their poetic description of each scent.

(more…)

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Bonpoint Restaurant

bonpoint.jpgSince I have been living in Paris, Courtney has been nagging me to visit one of her favourite shops, Bonpoint. I have always resisted… too far to go I have been saying and just not my style! But a couple of days ago I got my act together, got on a bus, crossed the river and visited the legendary shop. It is quite incredible to visit, even if you don’t buy anything. There are rooms after rooms of exquisite (if expensive) children’s clothing from newborn to teenager.
BUT I am digressing as I actually went to Bonpoint to check out the restaurant in the basement; I have been desperate to write a review about a kid-friendly restaurant with charm. In true French style it is a good restaurant that happens to accommodate kids, as opposed to a restaurant catering to kids to which grown-ups can also go. But for that, it is exactly what you need. (more…)

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