[dropcap]A[/dropcap] stay in the ‘last village of Paris’ provided a nostalgic whirl of shopping, dancing and eating. I’ve only ever been to Paris for the purposes of sight seeing with family friends who delight in communicating with me in French even though I know little beyond, ‘je voudrais le petit chou-fleur’, so we eased ourselves in by way of Montmartre. Fantasy and reality blurred in the vintage clothes shops and cafes that are the backdrop for Joanne Harris’s novel Lollipop Shoes, the follow-up to Chocolat; a time-warp perfectly fitting for the story of Vianne Rocher, running away from her past lovers and witch craft. Le Boudoir De Marie on Rue D’Orsel offered retro pin-up and frou-frou inspired lingerie, designed by Marie Cazenave (below), and just a stones throw from the steep climb to Basilique De Sacre-Coeur. Dipping in countless thrift and fabric shops bursting with sari’s and Willow prints along Rue De Condorcet and Rue Des 3 Frere’s, I came away with floral print vintage dresses, a tonne of fabric and far too many macaroons. The nights events were a meal at La Famille followed by an out of this world party at La Machine nightclub, in the birthplace of the can-can, the Moulin Rouge. I soon found out that Parisians know how to do fancy dress and they know how to party. With five rooms pounding out eclectic noise from gypsy jazz to dubstep, I surrendered myself to the menagerie.
Marie Cazenave in her boutique Le Boudoir De Marie.