Paris window shopping, Part One

Tie on your walking shoes, and let's do a little window shopping, to absorb some ideas, amble and people-watch.

Price list in window

Paris windows are remarkable not only for the tempting treats, but for the information, too. Le Duc says retail shops are required by law to list prices of goods displayed in windows, and while I saw the occasional transgressor, nearly all windows display cards or little stands, or visible price tags. This is a most welcome feature, and why do hardly any North American shops do it?

Fabulous, but wearable?
The most jaw-dropping designs in a window are at Galliano; say what you will about his behaviour, he has a sense of theatricality few have ever matched... but do you have somewhere to wear this? I don't.

If I had to nominate one company who make clothes that flatter gown women, it would be Episode. This red dress, glimpsed through the door of the flagship store, looks like a classic shift, but it's the softest, supplest red leather, baby!

Wafting from the shop, we hear Nina Simone singing her signature song, "My Baby Just Cares for Me".

Episode fur jacket
Fur is huge, and worked in innovative ways. 

This eyelash-effect jacket, thrown casually over a pencil skirt, is actually fox, in pale beige tinged with sky blue. Fur as the lightest fabric, fur that moves with you; also from Episode.

We all know "it's the accessories", but what accessories await us on our walk! A reminder to choose the unusual or pleasing note, especially if you like basics yet want to avoid the predictable.

Look at these brightest blue gloves, with perforated detail on the ruffle, again, Episode.

Beau gants!

Victoire present a richly detailed BoBo look, but also carry immaculate suits and jackets for business wear. The windows are always a symphony of chic; a sporty doudoune (padded jacket) over a floral skirt of fairly heavyweight fabric, accented with a kelly green belt, reminds us to mix more freely.

Victoire ensemble
Victoire shoes

At the bottom of this window are the most beautiful wearable shoes, for me, in Paris: multicolored wedge heels, with pieced velvet uppers, combining red, pink, moss green. (Plenty of six-inch stiletto stunners all over, but these I could see wearing to a holiday party without needing surgery the next day.)

Time for lunch; let's stop for a tartine and glass of Samur, an espresso– and maybe we cannot resist a salted caramel éclair.

Part Two appears on Thursday.


Love this post!! And I love the fur jacket with the pencil skirt! I love the idea of listing prices for window displays, but I do not see American retailers catching on. However, for the one that did dare to do this, they might be a standout with women today.
LPC said…
I don't know, I never like seeing the prices in the windows. I enjoy a moment of dreaming - before the inevitable reality.
Susan B said…
Oh, that red leather dress. The life I would lead in that dress...there would be a convertible involved.
Anonymous said…
I agree, don't wish to see the prices in the windows. I think window displays are like a piece of art and should be enjoyed that way. Love the shoes and the red leather shift. Have no where to wear either however.
Duchesse said…
Pam: I have seen women in contortions trying to read the price tags on North American mannequins. I think it makes sense to show prices.

LPC and kathy peck: Easy, if you don't want to face the hard truth, simply don't look at the price list, which in many windows is located discreetly to a far side.

pseu: Would love that dress! See you in the convertible, with a martini glass.
Susan Tiner said…
The red leather dress speaks to me.
Mardel said…
Fabulous post! Love the fur jacket and the pencil skirt and the fabulous shoes. I'm always looking for lovely shoes with reasonable heels.

As to price tags, I think it is better that they be easy to find if one is so inclined.
Anonymous said…
Thanks for a beautifully curated ramble. The wisp-of-fur jacket is VERY appealing to me, especially in those tints, and unusual gloves are one of my favorite gifts for friends. I'm with you in favor of a discreet display of prices in shop windows; I find jewelry and antiques shops particularly annoying, with their little tags coyly tucked under the objects for sale, forcing one to go inside and ask the price of each thing. I guess that's the goal, but what a waste of time for customers and staff alike!

Rubi said…
Red leather... yes, please. Also a salted caramel eclair.

And then some more lickable windows.

Thank you, Duchesse.
Tiffany said…
The red leather dress - wow. I don't really mind whether prices are displayed or not; somehow it tends to be obvious what one can and can't afford!
Frugal Scholar said…
I've always loved the prices on display. Ditto for the requirement that restaurants display menus. So much stress eliminated. And, I suppose that if you don't like the pricing on display, you could avert your gaze.
Lorrie said…
Mmm, that red leather dress would make a salted caramel eclair even more tasty.
materfamilias said…
I loved walking the Paris streets with you -- almost as much as tripping through Toronto's a few summers ago. I'm with you -- I love seeing the prices in the window. For the almost unattainable garments, I get my curiosity satisfied, and for the ones I might possibly afford, I can judge whether it's safe to pursue the attraction. And as you say, they're easy enough to ignore (in fact, sometimes figuring them out reminds me a bit of trying to figure out the legend in the chocolate box lid).

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