As with London, I have a few must areas: Saint-Germain, Passy, Le Marais, and Rue Saint-Honoré are top of my list. There are also some areas I really dislike, one of them being Les Champs-Elysées (constantly filled with tourists and tourist traps... très peu pour moi).
If I am in Paris only for a week-end, I try to go to rue Saint-Honoré early on Saturday, so as to visit a couple favourites, such as Philippe Ferrandis. This is my go-to place for big jewellery pieces such as this gorgeous necklace. A lot of the pieces are unique but still relatively affordable compared with big jewellery brands. I first bought an amethyst and quartz necklace here and it is a huge conversation piece every single time I wear it. The sales manager and staff are extremely nice and helpful; you can stay hours and try on loads of pieces, they are devoid of the Parisian haughtiness you can sometimes find elsewhere, and will happily encourage you to try pieces you wouldn't necessarily have noticed at first. I once brought back a broken necklace I had bought here to get fixed (it had fallen on the floor), and they fixed it for free in two weeks.
346 rue Saint-Honoré
01 42 96 36 95
From here, cross the street and walk west towards the Goyard boutique. Created in 1853, this brand is all about French quality handmade luggage and handbags. In the past, Goyard's iconic travel trunks covered in the unique Chevron canvas were highly sought after by aristocrats and nowadays fashionistas fall over each other to secure one of their handbags. My favourite remains the ever practical Saint Louis. I own a GM in orange, which is perfect for travel and as a beach bag, and my monogrammed yellow PM is perfect for the week-end, though I'm mighty glad I bought them years ago, as I think prices have been inflated a bit too much lately (they are, after all, canvas bags!)... Whilst you're in the shop don't forget to check out the room upstairs, it usually has a display of vintage trunks which is worth a viewing.
233 rue Saint-Honoré
01 42 60 57 04
Continue walking west and when you cross rue de Castiglione, make a tiny detour south towards the Jardins des Tuileries, which themselves are worth a little pause from shopping. Here you'll find two litle shops I loveshops here that I love to stop at. First Annick Goutal, where I come to stock up on oe of favourite fragrances: Petite Chérie, a fruity floral which makes me smile even when it is 4am and I'm getting ready for a day trip to the continent. I also love the look of Annick Goutal's perfumes, and I think my next purchase will be a 100ML Boule Papillon bottle of Petite Chérie like the one on the right, it would look fantastic on my bedside table.
14 rue de Castiglione
01 42 60 52 82
14 rue de Castiglione
Now back on rue Saint-Honoré, I run through the last few metres that separate me from what I believe heaven looks like if it exists: 24 rue Faubourg Saint-Honoré. Hermès. The home of all things beautiful, elegant, and perfectly made. I love this place so much I make a point of popping in to have a look even if I'm not looking for anything in particular. Don't just linger in the ground floor... There is so much to see, jewellery, home, shoes etc...! If I could, I'd invest in one of their gorgeous tableware sets, all 80 pieces... this is what winning the lottery should be for, not to buy some ridiculous round-the-world cruise tour in the noughties equivalent of the Love Boat.
24 rue du Faubourg Saint-Honoré
01 40 17 47 17
01 40 17 47 17
By the time I head out of Hermès I am usually famished and looking for a change of scenery. Time to hop into a taxi and head out to Passy, in Paris 16.