Paris City Guide

25.02.2017

Talknthreads-Paris-26

 

Talknthreads-Paris-6Talknthreads-Paris-18

Everybody talks about the magic of Paris. You see it in films as the protagonists wander around the city streets in light, hazy summer rain, or under the stars at night walking along the Seine and across the bridges that were so expertly and intricately built. You see it captured in photographs; of the city’s proudest monument, the Eiffel Tower, standing tall in all its glory; of the streets and buildings constantly awash with that pale grey and beige colouring synonymous with the city – never could such a seemingly “dull” colour palette be as enchanting as it is in Parisian architecture. You read about it in books; in the old greats from F. Scott Fitzgerald and Ernest Hemingway who captured the essence of the années folles in their writings, meaning that future generations have a chance to experience a little piece of that time too; and in more modern novels where Paris is always the backdrop of the most romantic stories. But you cannot truly experience the magic of Paris until you visit and feel it for yourself.

I’m fascinated by Paris. I always have been and I have a slight feeling that I always will be. From my humble beginnings watching Disney’s The Hunchback of Notre Dame to my penchant for “reading” Paris Vogue (with a lot of help from Google Translate, as well as a lot of time spent just ogling the pictures and taking mental notes on looks and trends), and my never-ending pinning of Parisian rooftops, side streets and places to visit on my Pinterest boards. A trip over has been in the works for a long time.

Did Paris live up to my expectations? Absolutely, yes. But it didn’t leave me fulfilled or satisfied, it left me wanting more – a lingering feeling that has stayed with me since I arrived home.

Given the extensive (read: slightly obsessive) planning, you might say it was quite ambitious to imagine that I might get Paris ticked off my list in one short visit, rather, I think it will take a few more trips to explore all the places I want to see, but I’m certainly not complaining about needing to take another trip over. Sure all those years of researching and making plans would be wasted if I didn’t get to tick everything off my list! But that’s also part of my reason for writing this post, if anyone is visiting Paris any time soon I’ve got you covered with some restaurants, bars, shops and sights not to miss on your trip over.

Thanks to my heavy research we had a pretty busy itinerary. We stayed for three nights with two and a half days to spend exploring, so it was quite a short trip but we managed to fit a lot in. Our favourite thing to do when travelling is to try and live as much like locals as possible. We’ve come to realise that while it’s important to see historical sights and landmarks, it’s not how we enjoy spending all of our time while we’re away. Of course we went to see the Eiffel Tower, Arc de Triomphe and Notre Dame, but we didn’t go up/inside any of them as they tend to take a lot of (precious) time out of your day. Instead, we favour wandering around, visiting cafés, restaurants and shops that we’ve heard of and of course discovering some new gems.

I’m a real planner and love to have my day almost fully planned out when I’m travelling but I do always make sure to factor in time for “getting lost”, uncovering unknown places and spending longer than planned in others. When visiting Paris this is a must. No matter how much planning and research you do you will still end up finding something new around every corner. Beautiful corner cafés, bustling bistros, tiny vintage shops full of treasures, if there’s ever a city to ditch all your plans and just wander around freely in, it’s Paris.

The city is so big and it’s impossible to see it all in two and a half days but below I’ve listed out some of the places that I loved and some that I didn’t make it to this time but will be making sure I get to on my next trip over.

Until then, au revoir Paris and thanks for the memories…

Talknthreads-Paris-L'eclair de genie

Food & Drinks

Au Passage (a must-visit, this was our favourite dinner we had, a seasonal menu that changes every day with a selection of small plates to share, everything was delicious, the prices were reasonable and it was a really nice atmosphere), Le Baratin, Le Grand Colbert (a beautiful traditional French brasserie, also the setting of a scene in Something’s Gotta Give!), Blend/Ferdi for burgers, Pozetto (for the nicest ice-cream you’ll ever taste), L’éclair de Genie (must-try eclairs as shown in the picture above, go for the passion fruit flavour), Season, Ob-la-di, Cafe de Floré, Frenchie, Poilane, Liberté, Murciano Boulangerie & Patisserie (for delicious bread and pastries), Holiday Café, Vivant Cave (a lovely natural wine specialist bar right next to our hotel), Experimental Cocktail Club, Derrière, Hemingway Bar at The Ritz (if you’re feeling fancy).

Talknthreads-Paris City Guide-Buildings

Shopping

Acne Studios, A.P.C, Tom Greyhound, Atelier Couronnes, Merci, Lemaire, Sandro Stock and Maje Surplus (outlet shops so you will get old season stock at discount prices), Empreintes, Colette, Margaret Howell, The Broken Arm, La Librairie Sézanne, Marche aux Puces de Saint-Ouen (flea market).

Talknthreads-Paris-Eiffel Tower

Sightseeing & Museums

Musée D’Orsay, Musée Picasso, Centre George Pompidou, Montmarte and the Sacré-Cœur, when visiting the Eiffel Tower stop off at Paserelle Debilly a bridge nearby that will give you views of the tower and a nice photo op, walk along the Seine, Shakespeare & Co. (for any book lovers or James Joyce fans), Jardin de Tuileries, Palais Royal (when here stop off at Café Kitsuné), Place des Vosges in Le Marais (oldest planned square in the city with beautiful 17th century architecture).

Talknthreads-Paris City Guide-Washed Walls

Accommodation

We stayed in a hotel in the 10th Arrondissement, this was a great location, 10 minute walk from the Gare du Nord so it is easy getting to and from the airport, lots of nice bars and cafes around, and close to metro stations. Hotel Paradis was a lovely, small boutique hotel. The room was a nice size, comfortable and clean. The price was 285 for three nights which is so reasonable for Paris. A lot of the Airbnb’s I looked up were more expensive and also required a large deposit so it’s worth checking out boutique hotels to see if prices are better, plus I always find it’s more of a luxury staying in hotels when you’re on holidays, especially if it’s for a short trip. I’d definitely stay in Hotel Paradis again and would recommend it to people going over. I’d like to explore more of Le Marais though so next time I visit I might try to stay around that area. I’d also like to try Hotel Providence and Grand Amour Hotel.

Talknthreads-Paris-Montmarte

I hope this city guide helps and if anyone has any more Paris trips leave them in the comments below so I can add them to my ever-growing list and have even more of an excuse for another trip over…

The Look I’m Chanelling Is…

24.12.2016

talknthreads-christmas-outfit-inspiration-stirrup-trousers-gilda-ambrosio-giorgia-tordini| Black Trousers H&M Check Trousers Mango | Jumper Chloe | Shirt Zara | Necklace Kenneth Jay via Net-a-Porter | Earrings Mango | Rings Jennifer Fisher & Chloe via Net-a-Porter |

Stirrup trousers and oversized tops as seen on Gilda Ambrosio and Giorgia Tordini. A look that’s been both pinned on my boards and permanently in my mind since I saw it earlier this year and it’s only in the last month that I have finally found an affordable pair that were just what I was after. My pair are from H&M but unfortunately aren’t available online, you can see them on my Instagram here and have a hunt for them in store. Alternatively the same pair are online in plain black and I’ve also found a check pair on sale in Mango, as shown above.

This for me is the perfect outfit for the festivities; no sparkles, frills or sequins necessary. Dressed up with a pair of mules, a structured shirt and lashings of gold jewellery, or dressed down with loafers and an oversized jumper, this is a comfortable look that can easily be transformed depending on your requirements and the occasion. After finishing up in the office this week I don’t plan on wearing anything too formal until at least the middle of next week, even better of course  if I can drag it out until the 3rd of January when I will be forced out of my pyjamas and back into reality. But these trousers help to feel a little bit put together while maintaining optimum comfort levels- absolutely necessary for Christmas day, of course.

Happy Christmas one and all, I hope it’s a special one for everyone.

Navy Sway

16.12.2016

talknthreads-cos-outfit-manchester-liadh-connolly-siomha-connolly-1talknthreads-cos-outfit-manchester-liadh-connolly-siomha-connolly-2talknthreads-cos-outfit-manchester-liadh-connolly-siomha-connolly-3talknthreads-cos-outfit-manchester-liadh-connolly-siomha-connolly-4talknthreads-manchester-cos-outfit-siomha-connolly-liadh-connolly| Jacket & Jumper COS | Jeans Vintage Levi’s 501s |

A fail safe outfit of jeans and a jumper that can be elevated up and out of the ordinary by the simple addition of just one interesting piece. Of course it’s this marvelous creation from COS that played the role in this picture. The double fold sleeves, oversized detatchable cocoon-like hood and the asymmetric hems, these are just a number of the elements that make this jacket what it is.

This jacket might just be my favourite purchase of the year. Looking back on 2016 I can definitely see a change in my spending habits. I think getting out of working in fast-fashion retail has definitely helped. By not being surrounded by immediately accessible impulse purchases day in day out I now find myself less inclined to buy. Of course I still work in fashion and probably spend more time now trawling the internet, “virtually” virtually shopping if you will, in order to find products for posts on maven46. But it’s definitely noticeable that my high street shopping has massively decreased. While I do like a lot of the stock that comes into say Zara or H&M (specifically the Trend section), it has to be something quite noteworthy to actually make me purchase these days, which is most definitely a very, very good thing.

COS on the other hand will forever be my weakness. Season after season, year after year, their designs go from strength to strength. And even though it’s run by the same company as H&M there is an infinitely different shopping experience when it comes to COS, it would be easy to not know that they are in fact sister stores. There’s a reason that most of the items you see on my blog tend to be from COS and this jacket is testament to the unique, interesting and current designs that they continue to produce, time and time again.

Photographs taken by Liadh Connolly.

To Delight & Inspire

09.12.2016

talknthreads-to-delight-and-inspire-nudes

December


This month I’m dreaming of…thick ’90s inspired gold jewellery including signet rings and multiple hoop earrings, Aesop’s festive gift guides specifically ‘The Constant Gatherer’ as an elegant and thoughtful gift to give or receive this Christmas, Line Drawings as found through the depths of the internet that will hopefully make their way to the walls of my home, Chanel ‘Frenzy’ nude nail polish for a simple and sophisticated shade this season, a wool throw by Mourne Textiles available at Indigo & Cloth to cosy up in on long winter evenings and the ‘Le Coin Lecture’ candle created by & Other Stories in their Paris Atelier, perfect for creating the relaxed ambient lighting needed in the home at this time of year.

Tracking Device

30.11.2016

talknthreads-outfit-manchester-liadh-connolly-siomha-connolly-5

talknthreads-outfit-manchester-liadh-connolly-siomha-connollytalknthreads-outfit-manchester-liadh-connolly-siomha-connolly-6alknthreads-outfit-manchester-liadh-connolly-siomha-connolly-2talknthreads-outfit-manchester-liadh-connolly-siomha-connolly-4| Jumper & Trousers Zara | Bag Céline Trio | Shoes Gucci Jordaan Loafers | Necklace Etsy |

Comfort is a must for me when it comes to clothes, so whenever a trend comes around that has anything to do with leisurewear, loungewear or a mixture of both you can guarantee that I’ll be dipping my toes into it before long. That means that 2016 has been quite the year for me sartorially speaking. Leisurewear came to the forefront of fashion with track pants, hoodies and puffer jackets swooping into stores, reminding us that those long-forgotten ’90s outfits were, in fact, relevant once more. While I open my arms (and wardrobe) to these types of trends it’s important to introduce them in small doses at first. This combination of athletic-inspired trousers (occasionally referred to as ‘joggers’ or ‘track pants’), an oversized jumper and flat loafers seemed to me the most accessible option. The jumper adds to the relaxed feel of the outfit while the loafers and accessories serve to sharpen it up ever so slightly. Look to Zara and Mango for affordable options, while Être Cécile and Maje have pairs that are slightly pricier but worth it. As we quickly slide into December and the upcoming festivities present themselves in abundance, consider an outfit that will see you through in both comfort and style.

Photographs by Liadh Connolly.