It's that Paris time of year. It's always a little crazy, just when you've got home from your holidays, to find yourself jumping on a train again, and this year more than most, I would have been so ready to stay in England and do nothing at all.
It would be equally true to say that most of all Bridie and I love working with the small, hidden makers, the ones that the big retailers are too big to either find or to work with. But while all of this is true, I have to admit that in our world, you can't quite avoid the big trade shows. Or at least if you do... you are left with a nagging feeling that you're going to be missing a trick here or there.
A couple of years ago I blogged about the delights (or not, depending on your point of view) of 'Maison & Objet', the giant twice-yearly trade show in Paris to which the entire retail world of Europe flocks. It can be absolutely grim. I really am not sure I'd recommend it. This year was no different. The aisles of fake Christmas Trees, the dancing life-size Polar bears, or the many "I'M ABOUT TO DECORATE A SUPERYACHT FOR RUSSIANS" aisles... One day, I'll take photos of all this. It is a spectacle.
But in amongst it, old friends and new discoveries. We placed our orders for kelim furniture and found beautiful new embroidered cushions. We saw some of our suppliers of mercury glass and decorative china. And we found some beautiful new traditional danish cane furniture that will be in store soon. We touched base with our friends John Derian and Astier de Villatte, at their brilliant pop up shop on Rue de Richelieu. A good show.
On Sunday morning, Bridie and I both woke up early having not slept very well. Was our delicious, but, how can I say, heavy? dinner the evening before, with Maggie, at Le Cinq Mars, responsible? Possibly. We are all on a diet of cucumber, lettuce leaves and mineral water for a month.
We had an early breakfast and watched the waking world go by. We debated returning to the Parc des Expositions. But while we were having a lovely walk in the Luxembourg gardens the sun broke through the morning haze. Maison could wait another year. A morning doing nothing in Paris won.